Posts Tagged ‘Marketing 2.0’

Hub N Spoke Social Media Strategy

December 7, 2011
As 2011 comes to a close, we can safely say that social media has become the norm rather than the exception, since Facebook has more than 10% of the world’s population (800 million out of 7 billion) using its site. Even broadcast TV puts twitter hashtags in their show’s title overlays. Because there are nearly as many social media outlets as there are social media users, implementing an effective strategy can be overwhelming. However, a few fundamental principles can help you keep your aim squarely on your marketing and business goals. Join me for this 101-level webinar on how to encourage people to go where you want to take them…back to your CU’s web site.

Attend this webinar and learn:

  • One of the most important and fundamental techniques to increase social media success
  • The place to start all social media campaigns that most people overlook
  • A step-by-step checklist to make sure you have your social media bases covered
  • The different characteristics of the major social media channels
  • Two common social media beliefs that are false and what to do instead

Click here for more info or to sign up: Hub N Spoke webinar

Ed Filene on embracing social media

August 30, 2011

There has been a long-running topic on EverythingCU.com about how to get management on-board with social media when they are dead-set against it. Over the last couple of years, many suggestions have been offered about ways to accomplish this objective.

My favorite so far comes from Andy Anderson, a credit union marketer in Atlanta this morning. He quotes Edward Filene:

“If you are going to do business, you will have to do it in this new world; and I haven’t lived in this new world any longer than you have. It is stranger, in fact to me than it is to you.”

Andy informs us: “This was his speech before the School of Business Administration of the University of Buffalo in 1936.”

These words that Edward spoke 75 years ago are as true and relevant today as they were then. I think that had Ed Filene lived in this day and age, he would have whole-heartedly embraced social media, and used it to spread the word about credit unions throughout the land.

Thank you for sharing this with us, Andy!

Introducing the EverythingCU Knowledge Warehouse

February 28, 2011

Greetings intrepid EverythingCU’ers!

We’ve got a new innovation to help you out in your endeavors… our new Knowledge Warehouse. We have placed all of the online video tutorials that I’ve shared with you on the discussion in the Knowledge Warehouse, ready for you to view instantly, at any time. All of the videos pertaining to EverythingCU are absolutely free of charge. There is even a new video there called “Under the Hood of EverythingCU” which covers some discussion navigation techniques you might not be familiar with. Once you purchase a video, anyone at your credit union can also access it, and you can watch it at any time since there will be a link to it on your personal profile page.

In addition, I am working on creating a new set of online video tutorials for the Knowledge Warehouse, and these will cover many aspects of social media marketing, including Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn tips. Others areas I can cover, if there is interest, include blogging, podcasting, and videocasting. These instructional videos will be available for a nominal charge, and you’ll be able to watch them instantly on your computer screen as well.

If there are any aspects of social media you specifically want me to cover, please shoot me an email at any time. I’ve been involved in this field since 2005 (or since 2000 if you count EverythingCU as a form of social media), and I’d love to share my knowledge for the benefit of you marvelous EverythingCU’ers.

Check out the new EverythingCU Knowledge Warehouse here! Enjoy!

(If you want to access the Knowledge Warehouse in the future, you can always find it at the Gadgets tab in the main navigation header of this site.)

Social Media is not a waste of time for most Credit Unions

November 30, 2010

Fully five years into the social media revolution, a job opening for a social media position at a credit union was posted on EverythingCU.com just a week ago. I was very excited about this development, because as many of you know, I’ve been involved in social media and credit unions for… well, before there was even such a thing as social media.

When we started EverythingCU.com back in 2000/2001, we wanted to enable credit union marketers across the country (and even a few other countries too) to be able to share and communicate. We quickly realized that it would be great to attach a face to these names flying across our computer monitors, and thus photo uploading was added. (In the early days we even scanned photos sent to us by mail.) In addition, we created easy document sharing, as well as individual profile pages.

When the words “social media” started cropping up in credit union and other online sources back in 2005/2006, I started investigating this newly emerging trend and discovered it was very similar to the peer-to-peer networking and communication we were already enabling with EverythingCU.com, only on a more personal and “regular consumer” level. “What an exciting development!” I thought to myself. “Now that social media is emerging as an entity in its own right, we’ll be able to help credit unions understand the power of this medium for themselves that we’re experiencing here at EverythingCU.com.” In the subsequent years, I’ve spoken at many CU conferences and conducted workshops on social media for credit union leagues around the country; something which I truly love doing.

So based on the job posting, the subject on EverythingCU turns to “how can you calculate the ROI of this new social media position?” What an interesting question!

It can indeed be extremely difficult to measure ROI for marketing. You can measure overall results for a marketing campaign for a specific product by comparing that product’s sales with the previous year’s results. But as was pointed out on EverythingCU by Mia Perez, how do you measure ROI for the second year of the campaign, when you had successful adoption of the product in the previous year, thereby reducing the pool of people who would have bought the product based on your spectacular new marketing campaign? It’s going to necessarily be less than year 1. But you did as great a job creating the marketing campaign in year 2, but you’ll have less to show for it. Hmmmmmmm.

Another commenter in the Social Media-ROI topic pointed to the Financial Brand’s Why Social Media is a waste of time for most banks and credit unions.

I can’t prove the ROI of social media, but I fundamentally believe social media is not a waste of time for most credit unions. If your credit union behaves like a bank, then absolutely, you should skip social media. But I find the values of most credit unions line up perfectly with what makes social media a fantastic venue. Let’s take a look at where and why this makes sense from a “values” point of view:

Social media is all about empowering individual people. Each person in entitled to their own voice, their own opinion, and can create their own network of friends, family, and colleagues. Everyone is on an even playing field in terms of putting their message “out there.” In the credit union world, all members are treated equally, i.e., every member has an equal vote in electing the board of directors who are charged with overseeing how the credit union is run. Credit unions open their doors to everyone who is eligible to join; they don’t discriminate. Credit unions are cooperatives; social media is fantastic because of the cooperation and sharing that occurs. Credit unions originally were created for employers or organizations in a single location, in other words, a location-based community of people who had something in common. Social media flourishes because people everywhere are finding and/or creating their own online communities based on criteria that are important to themselves, whether it be political, religious, occupational, or centered around comon hobbies, passions, pasttimes, locations, and all sorts of other common interests.

Social media is fundamentally democratic and cooperative, as are credit unions. Credit unions were born of communities; social media is community brought online.

But before diving further into Social Media and its ROI, let’s examine exactly what social media is, since it means different things to different people. I view social media as any way that people communicate with each other online. This is done on an individual as well as a group basis. Well, this was happening long before MySpace, Facebook, and Twitter started becoming popular. So why did the phrase “Social Media” catch on starting around 2004/05? At this point, Facebook wasn’t open to the general population; blogging and podcasting were the new and hot things. Bloggers and podcasters were starting to build community with their endeavors and were excited that they were creating what the authors of the Cluetrain Manifesto had talked about in 1998.

So if we define social media as online communication, conversation, networking, and media sharing, then it’s been happening for quite a number of years, as email, AOL, chat rooms, listservs, the web, and the like are not new by any means. And even more fundamentally, human communication has been happening via technology since cave drawings were painted, and continued on through smoke signals, telegraphs with Morse code, pony express, the telephone, radio, tv, 8-tracks, albums, cassettes, CB radio, VHS, DVDs, and many others.

Let’s examine the telephone for a second. The telephone is basically a one-to-one non-persistent communication technology. (Although via voice mail, it can also be persistent and asynchronous.) At one time, I’m sure the telephone was very expensive, and businesses were loathe to adopt a new technology that very few of their consumers possessed. But now we don’t question the ROI of every person having a phone, whether it’s on their desk, a mobile phone, or now a smartphone. And yes, we have people dedicated to running businesses’ telephone infrastructures. But we don’t dedicate one person or one department in an organization, put all the telephones in their office and say “you are our telephone department! You’ll be operating and handling the telephones for everyone in the organization! Anytime anyone needs to make a call, they’ll come here to use these telephones, and seek your guidance in how to use the darn things!”

Well, I think social media is about where the telephone was many decades ago, in terms of how businesses are thinking about being involved with it.

Also interesting is how everyone views social media differently depending on their background. Marketing looks at social media as an advertising channel, while journalists view social media as a threat to the traditional way of bringing people news. Customer service people see social media as a new method of communicating with people.

As for ROI, well, there have been quite a few Credit Union success stories in social media already. And there have been quite a few success stories for non-CU businesses in social media.

We don’t necessarily measure the ROI of attending an in-person networking event such as a Chamber of Commerce mixer. But we all intuitively understand how important networking is. Well, as William Azaroff has pointed the way, perhaps a better term for social media is online community, or maybe even better, online networking.

Bottom line: Social media is definitely not a panacea, cure-all, or get-rich-quick scheme. But it works great for businesses when it’s used as a way that makes sense for both the business and its customers. After all, communication is fundamental to human nature, business, and marketing, and these online channels, media, and community are all fantastic communication avenues. And oh, by the way, social media, and online channels, have in many respects transformed the way people interact with each other.

Second bottom line for credit unions: Did you notice how your physical community dispersed over the last ten years or so? Yes, a majority of your members still reside within a five mile radius of a branch, but c’mon, don’t tell me you weren’t excited when you discovered you had a handful of members several thousand miles from your nearest branch. Well, I’ve got news if you hadn’t figured it out already. While location-based communities and geographies are still important, and are more important than ever in some ways (The New Geography), there is a new community and it’s online. People belong to multiple communities online and are excited about them. There may be an opportunity for your credit union to also be a part of the online communities that make sense for your credit union, based on what makes your members tick.

Post Script: (As if this blog post weren’t long enough already), I think that while there are huge areas of credit union function that are in the process of being transformed by online communication, the most exciting one, which has the most potential for bringing credit unions back to the member-centric powerhouses they once were, is in governance. Right now, credit union governance is a closed-door black box despite the efforts of pioneers such as Ginny Brady. But it’s in governance that credit unions have the opportunity to engage with the members like never before; to bring better transparency, to throw open the doors to the board room, and get meaningful, frequent member interaction with the board and management decision making. I truly believe that’s what Ed Filene would have envisioned had he been alive in this generation instead of his own. While you can’t measure the ROI of social media/governance interaction by the members, it gets to the FUNDAMENTAL reason why so many people LOVE their credit unions:

Because it feels like it’s MINE.

If you spend thousands upon thousands of dollars on a “traditional” branding campaign, you won’t make nearly the impact as ACTUAL online engagement with your members about the way THEIR institution is run. This is also an advantage that credit unions will ALWAYS possess over banks. PRESS YOUR ADVANTAGE TO THE MAX!

Social Media Marketing University

June 18, 2010

We here at EverythingCU.com have built up quite a library of recorded webinar workshops on social media. In fact, taken together, you could say we’ve created a Social Media University for credit unions.

Here are links to the full curriculum. Take them either individually, or as whole, for a thorough understanding of marketing your credit union via online community channels:

Spiderweb: This foundational 101 webinar covers creating your Facebook account, Facebook fanpage, setting up an event on Facebook as well as twitter basics. Also covered in this webinar is using both twitter and Facebook to drive traffic back to your credit union’s web site.

Twitter 101: This foundational 101 webinar covers setting up a twitter account the right way, things to keep in mind when choosing your twitter handle, how to find other twitterers within a specified radius of your branches, and how to drive traffic back to your credit union’s web site using Twitter.

Bring Your Binoculars: This advanced 301-level webinar assumes you have the knowledge covered in the previous two webinars, and shows you how to tie your social media efforts together for greater impact. You’ll learn about tools to monitor what’s being said about your credit union online, and how to promote your credit union event using a number of free online resources.

Look Who’s Talking: This 101-level webinar covers how to handle responding to negative comments made online about your CU, and is geared for both CUs already participating in the online conversation as well as those on the fence who are looking for reassurance that diving in will not bring the end of the world.

Click on any of the links or graphics above to order and instantly download these recorded webinars!

Can we leave behind the term “home banking” yet?

May 6, 2010

online bankingIt has come to my attention that some credit unions are still using the term “home banking” as the name for conducting online transactions. I’d love to see this term vanish from the face of the earth. This has NEVER been a good name for this function. Yes, a huge number of people, perhaps even a majority, do their online banking from home, but a huge percentage of people access it from work. This has been true since the early days of teh internets. Not to mention that in this day and age, millions of people have laptops and/or smartphones, thus enabling “home banking” to be done from such non-home or work places like their car, the nearest Starbucks or Panera Bread, city parks, the beach, a restaurant, the public library, at a hotel, etc.

Please please please don’t call it home banking! Purge the term from your vocabulary! “Online banking” is far more appropriate.

Time to rethink Marketing 1.0 techniques

April 17, 2009

My new friend, and Amherst native, Ron Miller has graciously allowed me to be a guest author on his new blog, Social Media 101, which is co-created with Julie Roads.

I met Ron through mutual friend Tish Grier, who brought the two of us together, along with Ann Kingman, to be on a social media panel for the Hidden Tech group of Western Mass.

My guest post describes how those brought up in traditional marketing must adjust their mind-set in order to thrive in World 2.0.

It’s an honor to appear on Ron’s and Julie’s excellent new blog!

Marketing 2.0 in song

December 8, 2008

There are times when experience trumps youth. But in marketing today, fresh thinking is where it’s at. I had the pleasure of meeting Rebecca Corliss (@repcor on twitter) at PodCampBoston 3, and discovered a wonderful YouTube video of her college singing group spontaneously performing Torn, a capella, on the Boston T. Now’s she’s at it again, showing us that call centers are marketing’s dinosaur.

I LOVE recursiveness, and this video itself is a great example of inbound marketing. By creating a music video which is fun as well as educational, people like me are blogging and tweeting it (35 tweets this morning, just on oughta know, and more than 75 to or about Rebecca), of course all voluntarily. Also note that the lyrics contain the line “search results one, two, and three,” while the video wraps with a Google search on “inbound marketing.” Four of the top five results either belong to Hubspot, or an event sponsored by Hubspot.

When is an ad not an ad?

November 3, 2008

Social media advertising: an oxymoron? When many marketers learn about social media, they ask themselves either: “How can I get involved with this?” or “How can I advertise here?” Many people think that you should never “advertise” on social media or social networking channels. But others have proven that smart advertising or marketing does work on social avenues.

Enter Ben & Jerry’s and Starbucks. Both companies have a new campaign, conducted online, and propogated through social networks such as Facebook, that give away a free sample tomorrow, November 4, U.S. election day, if you provide evidence that you have voted.

In Ben & Jerry’s case, the offer is a free scoop of ice cream between 5 pm and 8 pm. While there is no B&J very near to me, I will make the drive with my son, after voting, to get a scoop. In Starbucks case, there is a free tall brewed coffee, good any time on November 4.

Both Starbucks and Ben & Jerry’s are marketing via two important avenues on Facebook simultaneously. The have both used the Sponsored Ad space on Facebook’s new home page, AND, they have both created Facebook events for their one-day specials. With a head start,Ben & Jerry’s currently claims 197,985 people attending (14,601 people have posted a comment on the event wall), while Starbucks has 65,498 people attending (and more than 5,000 posts on the event wall). I’m not sure how much the Facebook ad cost, but the cost for an organization to create a Facebook event is zero.

Facebook itself is doing it’s part to encourage voter turnout by enabling people to “donate” their status to become a message to vote at midnight on Election Day. (So far, 500,653 have done so.)

Facebook initially missed an opportunity, by only allowing three choices in the “get the vote” message. The choices were a.) Obama, b.) McCain, or c.) a write in candidate of your choice. I immediately looked for an option to “vote for the candidate of your choice”, but had to kludge my answer that people should vote “their conscience” which becomes ungrammatical in the different settings in which the answer appears. Facebook has since added a “just get out the vote” option.

Do the Starbucks and Ben & Jerry’s campaigns count as “advertising” because they are both campaigns that promote doing your civic duty to vote? Can your shop come up with as creative a marketing campaign that is also doing its part to promote the social good?

Social Media Marketing Best Practice: Reaching out

September 2, 2008

Last week, Mitch Joel of Six Pixels of Separation announced he is working on a project of best practices in social media marketing.

Here’s my third Social Media Marketing Best Practice: Reach out to others. Most people don’t find you by accident, they find you through referrals. No matter how large or small your following, you can increase readership and visibility by reaching out to others. Here are six ways to do that:

1.) Write a guest blog post for someone else. The key to making this work is that the blog you are guest writing for MUST have the same, or very similar, target audience as yours. If you write for a blog with a different target audience, there will be minimal beneficial effect. I found this out the hard way. I gave a big news scoop to someone else, but did not see much increase in traffic after the initial surge. And even the initial surge wasn’t as big as I was expecting. And I think it was mostly due to less overlap in target audience than I thought we had.

2.) Ask a popular blogger to write a guest post for you (simultaneously mentioning the guest post on their own blog). Figure out what you can do in return for the guest post, or perhaps the cross-promotion will be enough of a fair trade. Or you can ask others to talk about/link to your article on their blog. Again, the target audience must line up for this tactic to work. If your friend has a distinct readership from your own, his/her referral will drive traffic and awareness your way.

3.) Develop a blogger outreach program. I first ran across this concept being employed by Mabel’s Labels. Mabel’s Labels’ blogger outreach program includes giving away free samples. What kind of free samples or schwag could your company give to bloggers?

4.) Comment on others’ blogs. Many bloggers want feedback, critique, and reinforcement on what they are writing. By commenting on others’ blogs, you are increasing awareness for your own. Not only will the author most likely check you out, the author’s readers may also check you out (though the rate of readers clicking through to you might not be very high).

5.) Put your friends’ and target audience’s names in lights. People enjoy reading about themselves. When you blog about someone, be sure to a.) let them know about the fact that you blogged about them, and b.) tag your post with their name. This EverythingCU World 2.0 Adventure blog receives many hits on people searching for other people’s (or their own) names. When a person meets someone for the first time, and are interested in furthering the relationship, whether its business or personal, nowadays people will google their new friend to learn more. Why not have your blog come up in search results on the people you are writing about?

6.) Ask other bloggers to write about a subject that is important both to you and to them. That’s exactly what Mitch Joel did to touch off this meme. It’s only a few days old, and already its been written about by Chris Brogan, Corby Fine, Liz Strauss, Drew McLellan, SuzeMuse, and Kate Trgovac. A benefit for Mitch is that all of these blogs are now linking back to his blog, increasing his visibility among all of these blogs’ readership, as well as search engine rankings, such as Technorati. That Mitch Joel is one smart cookie!


Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 2,916 other followers