BlogWell Bay Area Social Media Case Study: Thrivent Financial, presented by Stacy Eckes-Borys


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In her BlogWell Bay Area presentation, Thrivent Financial's Social Media Relationships Manager, Stacy Eckes-Borys, explains how the member-owned brand used social strategies to build relationships with stakeholders during company transitions.

She talks about advocacy training tactics, streamlining approval processes, and how Thrivent's social plan gives members a voice and real-time feedback during times of internal change.

Published in: Business, News & Politics
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BlogWell Bay Area Social Media Case Study: Thrivent Financial, presented by Stacy Eckes-Borys

  1. 1. Stacy Eckes-Borys Activating Stakeholders in Social This video is from BlogWell San Francisco June 20, 2011 Case Studies This presentation is from BlogWell Bay Area August 6, 2013
  2. 2. Thrivent Financial: Activating Stakeholders In Social
  3. 3. Ask Yourself… Can we get 20% of our customers to do something (vote)? 20%
  4. 4. Case Study: Activating Members to Vote Thrivent benefit members vote on extending our common bond from Lutheran to Christian Fundamental to our business and members needed to approve or reject change Member voice, vote, participation was crucial
  5. 5. Vote Timeline • Education • Voting! • Thank you for voting • Results Jan - Feb March - April May June
  6. 6. Social Media Objectives for Vote Campaign Increase awareness and education for vote Trigger action – voting Create social advocates and “word of mouth” awareness Listen and encourage conversation
  7. 7. Vote Campaign: Social Strategy • Nothing fancy or expensive • Apply core social media strategies • Implement across social toolbox • Focus on execution
  8. 8. Vote Campaign: Social Strategy Additional Principles • Pre-test campaign messaging • Be flexible • Prepare leaders • Prepare team and staff
  9. 9. Vote Campaign: Social Tactical Plan Employees 5,000+ Corporate Social Sites Field Social Program Lodge Social Program Facebook Advertising Advocacy Training and ToolsMember Leaders 25,000+ Listen and Response Plan Crisis Plan Employees 5,000+
  10. 10. Vote Campaign: Social Tactical Plan Custom target ads = valuable! • Directly reached target audience • Matched 50% member emails • Click-through-rate .05% Facebook Advertising
  11. 11. • Real members in images • Facebook Event with vote date reminders • Not everything worked Vote Campaign: Social Tactical Plan Corporate Social Sites
  12. 12. Vote Campaign: Social Tactical Plan • Best Practices Training • Content Series • Generated 1,000+ posts 400+ Local Pages 20+ Local Pages Field Social Program Lodge Social Program
  13. 13. Vote Campaign: Social Tactical Plan • Use personal networks • Initial training • Host tools on intranet • Ongoing “reminders” 25,000+ member leaders 5,000+ field and corp employees As a member and an employee I urge all my Thrivent member friends to have their voice heard & participate in this vote – there is still time! Thrivent Members – exercise your right to vote! Advocacy Training and Tools
  14. 14. Vote Campaign: Social Tactical Plan • Documented plan • Socialized • Trained with tabletop scenarios • Consistent response • Dedicated, trained team • Streamlined approval process Crisis Plan Listen and Response Plan
  15. 15. Big Picture Learnings • Stakeholders want a voice during change • Real-time feedback on messaging • Volume, sentiment and themes reported up-line Listen and Response Plan
  16. 16. Hands-on Team Learnings • New territory. Typically positive brand but those opposed were vocal in social media. Helped internal stakeholders keep perspective • When to respond? And when not to? • Focused on questions and inaccuracies • Strong funnel for triage, but often had too many stakeholders Listen and Response Plan
  17. 17. Examples: Stating Opinion on Vote I HOPE YOU REMAIN ONLY LUTHERAN ... EVERYTHING IS TOO BIG ... PLEASE DO NOT BE TRICKED INTO SOME CORPORATION As a Lutheran and a Christian, voting no is not an option. As a practical, common sense, financial matter, it’s a no-brainer. Yes!
  18. 18. Examples: Questions, Inaccuracies Does anyone know how this will affect the organization’s charter? Is there a chance that Thrivent will lose its fraternal status with this change? Seems to be a key issue. Thanks for thinking carefully about your vote. To answer your question: if the vote were to pass and we were to extend our common bond to Christian, it wouldn’t jeopardize our fraternal status. Common bonds are unique to fraternal benefit societies. Christianity is clearly a religious common bond shared by our current members. We use the word “extending” instead of “changing” because Lutherans are Christians.
  19. 19. Examples: Critical of Thrivent Give me a break. You are certainly diminishing your support for the Lutheran community. I joined a fraternal organization (AAL) specifically because it did support that community. There is nothing wrong with an organization open to “all Christians”, but that is not what I signed up for. I realize that I am fighting a losing battle. This is going to be rammed down our throats sooner or later. You are going to have to support other faiths if you open membership. For all of you that want this to happen, why aren’t you either starting a new company to do that or joining some existing company that provides this “fellowship” you are seeking.
  20. 20. Vote Campaign: Social Results • Traffic from social posts and ads were 13% of total unique visitors to microsite
  21. 21. Vote Results Record Turnout • 425,000 benefit members voted • Expectations surpassed • Social played a role!
  22. 22. Vote Results Majority of benefit members who voted, were in favor of extending the common bond.
  23. 23. Key Takeaways Stakeholders appreciate place to share their voice, and be heard Take time to share social insights with leaders/decision makers Preparation and sufficient staff critical to handling listening and responding Core traditional strategies work --- it’s in the execution!
  24. 24. Check us out… • • Twitter: @Thrivent • • • • Questions: Stacy Eckes-Borys stacy.eckes-
  25. 25. Learn more about past and upcoming BlogWells This video is from BlogWell San Francisco June 20, 2011 Case Studies This presentation is from BlogWell Bay Area August 6, 2013