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Creating Content that Speaks

Creating Content that Speaks

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This is a presentation first delivered at the Michigan Bankers Association Bankers Education Summit and Trade Show (BEST) on April 1, 2015.

It discusses the purpose and process of creating powerful social media content for bank marketing audiences.

This is a presentation first delivered at the Michigan Bankers Association Bankers Education Summit and Trade Show (BEST) on April 1, 2015.

It discusses the purpose and process of creating powerful social media content for bank marketing audiences.


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Creating Content that Speaks

  1. 1. MICHIGAN BANKERS ASSOCIATION Creating Content that Speaks April 1, 2015
  2. 2. 2 an integrated marketing & branding company
  4. 4. 4 WATCH THIS.
  5. 5. 5 HOW DID THAT MAKE YOU FEEL? No, really…it’s important! 1. 2. 3.
  7. 7. 7 LET’S TAKE IT BACK DOWN TO EARTH… Lorsque vous ne les jambes de comprendre pourquoi vous êtes en train de créer ce que vous êtes en train de créer, vous êtes vous-même jusqu'à la réussite. Translation: When you do the leg work to figure out why you’re creating what you’re creating, you are setting yourself up for success.
  8. 8. 8 WHAT NOT TO DO.
  9. 9. 9 WHAT TO DO.
  12. 12. 12 FIND YOUR PURPOSE.
  15. 15. 15Meltwater: Social Media Social Media
  16. 16. 16 SOCIAL MEDIA HAS VALUE. Digital Buzz Blog:
  17. 17. 17 LET’S CREATE IT FOR YOUR BANK! Customer Service Reputation Management Content
  19. 19. 19 UNDERSTAND YOUR UNIQUE AUDIENCES. Blog Dedicated to Small Business Finance (
  29. 29. 29 CONTENT CALENDAR Date Time Topic Copy Content Category Link Multimedia Approval 4/8 3 p.m. Mobile Payment From bills to plastic to…the iPhone? Learn how technology is transforming the way we spend. Industry Innovation http://www.businessi credit-card-industry- market-competition- 2014-5 None Looks good. 4/11 10:35 a.m. The Morgans’ Baby News Long-time ABC friend, Amanda M., just couldn’t wait to share the news when she came in to deposit her baby shower gifts. It’s a girl! Happy Customers None To-do: Take photo of Mrs. Morgan with 2- year-old on 4/7 when she comes in for weekly deposit. Make sure to obtain photo release form from the Morgans. 4/14 7 p.m. Identifying the Right Time to Retire Retirement planning is changing, but we can make sure your plan remains as beautiful as ever. Our new infographic has everything you need to know to navigate the new landscape. Retirement Planning entplanningbenefits Infographic, saved on server Approved. 4/16 9:30 p.m. The Johnsons Deck Build Update The Levitts are building a brand new deck, thanks to a home equity loan from ABC. And they want to know— what do you think: cappuccino or barn red wood? Home Equity None Split frame of two test swatches. To-do: Obtain images from Johnsons. Approved.
  31. 31. 31 • Slide 4: • Slide 7: • Slide 8: • Slide 8: • Slide 9: • Slide 9: • Slide 12: • Slide 12: • Slide 13: • Slide 13: • Slide 14: • Slide 15: • Slide 16: • Slide 19: • Slide 20: • Slide 24: • Slide 26: PHOTO CREDIT
  32. 32. Find us on the web Presenting from today Thank You! Michigan Bankers Association | ©2015 re:group, inc. | 04.01.2015 TAYLOR HULYK Phone: 734.327.6622 Email: @taylorhulyk

Editor's Notes

  • Social media director at re:group. We’re officially celebrating our 12th birthday this year, but our CEO actually started an iteration of re:group way back in the ‘70s. If you’re doing the math, the same core group has been around for 40 years. When we started, re:group was a branding and traditional advertising agency. But now, we’ve morphed into an integrated communications agency. Why? Because we understand that to serve a new crop of consumers, we need to meet them where they are, when they’re there and on whatever medium they’re using.

    Account, Creative, Digital, Social, Traditional, Web Development
  • I’m going to start today off by having you watch this.

    It’s a video from Umpqua Bank, based in Portland, Oregon. They offer community banking, mortgage banking and retail brokerage.
  • How did that content make you feel?

    Do you have any thoughts about the financial institution?

    What we’re going to be talking about today is how Chase was able to get to that piece of content. What I want you to start thinking about is the work that comes before the end product…because, in a perfect world, that journey doesn’t happen with the snap of a finger. It’s not easy. But it ultimately leaves you, the consumer, feeling a certain way, knowing a certain thing.
  • At re:group, we have a process for working with clients…and on projects in general. Some of the time, this process is extensive, other times it’s more of an expedited process. For example, think about the complexities of a complete rebrand versus a product campaign.

    Today, we’re going to be talking about it strictly within the bounds of social media content.
  • I know, I know, that was very theoretical. It may have even sounded like I’m speaking French. Hence, the French. But—thank goodness—the bottom of my slide comes with a translation!

    The takeaway: Make sure you have a reason for creating what you write, design, record or film. If you do, you’re probably going to resemble the empowered little guy on the right. With purposeful creativity, the world is yours for the taking!
  • Alright, let’s make this lesson practical. When creating social media content, here are a couple examples of what I don’t want you to do: frantically search for something, anything to publish.

    Relying on the weather, or a national holiday calendar to “relate” to your publics.

    Scour your kids’ cell phones to pick up on the latest short-hands that basically annihilate the English language.
  • On the complete other side of the map, here are some images that depict a sane and competent bank social media marketer.

    Think, plan, behold, interact, measure.
  • Think back to the Umpqua Fall in Love video. It was entertaining, of course, but it also left you motivated—motivated to fall and love and do normal, everyday things, but also motivated to bank with Umpqua, who cares about you as a customer.

    Start thinking about your purpose for using social media. What is your end goal?

    This is where most go astray. If I had a dime for every time someone told me they were on social media because “everyone else is doing it,” I would probably be on my own private beach in Tahiti right now.
  • As a bank marketer, your goal is to sell your bank and sell your products. And, yes, that’s where I want you to start. That is why you’re on social media. But social media is not a magic bullet.

    You’re probably not going to sell a checking account on social…at least directly. The information people consume on social media, though, may indirectly impact that decision.
  • As professionals that live in a world of numbers, this slide may understandably freak you out. But please hear me out.

    I want you think for a second of how traditional advertising has worked since the beginning of time. Have we been able to ever measure how many purchases originated from that classic 1984 Apple commercial? What about that McDonald’s billboard on the side of 75? Sure, we’ve been able to draw correlations. And somewhere along the way, we’ve developed the ability to perform call tracking based on a unique phone number. But are those capturing all of your leads? No.

    So, let me ask you—in your own words, what has been its value?

  • This slide is going to look very familiar to most of you. This is the standard sales funnel. When thinking about your customers and your prospects, this funnel describes the customer journey. Of course, there are variations in this image, which I’m sure you’ve seen. I love this one from Meltwater that expands the funnel to include loyalty and advocacy: two thinks that social media excels with.

    When we understand that different marketing mediums play a different role in moving customers through this funnel, we then understand that all are working as contributing forces to ROI.
  • This image was part of an infographic put together by MDG Advertising in 2011, and though the percentages are outdated, the outcomes of social media marketing are still relevant today.

    What’s not in here that re:group regularly tracks in the amount of engagement, or conversation, surrounding social media posts. That goes beyond proactive customer mentions, and shows how they respond to your content.

    So, while you’re not always directly impacting ROI, you are providing value that assists in the customer journey.
  • Recall your purpose, then reconcile that with the value social can bring to your bank.

    Remember when we talked about purpose not too long ago? We started with what you’re trying to achieve as a business: getting new customers, selling your products and services, and getting them to remain with you and purchase more for a long period of time.

    And then we talked about the value social can bring to your business. Site traffic, where leads can be nurtured and ultimately converted. Or more intangibly, behavior that can signify loyalty and commitment to your brand, like positive social media mentions and reviews, engagement on your social media posts, decreasing the time it takes to address customers issues using social media, etc.

    Most of the time, the way you can add value to your brand on social media breaks down into three buckets:

    Customer Service, Reputation Management, Content Creation

    How do you ensure that these positive outcomes are occurring on social media as a result with interacting with your bank? One way is to make yourself available on social media channels. Some banks, like Bank of America (@BoA_Help) and Citibank (@AskCiti), even have designated Twitter channels just for customer service. Another is monitoring the social media conversation that is surrounding your brand, your competitors, industry keywords…and even social conversation occurring near or inside of your branches.

    The third thing is why we’re here today…
  • Mention that it’s important to distinguish your audiences, and create content to server both. Sometimes that will mean that you’ll utilize the same channel, like Facebook, to distribute content about different banking products…or it will mean creating completely separate entities to communicate with the different audiences. For instance, if you are in an area with a lot of tourism, and you earn most of your revenue on small business loans in a hospitality context, you might create a blog talking just to restaurant owners in Holland, Mich., whereas you might have a Facebook page that speaks just to consumers.
  • 80%/20%. Social media is a unique and beautiful medium that’s distinguishable from most other forms of communications because it’s opt-in. Customers receive your messaging only after they proactively seek it out. It’s different from sales in that people that follow you on social media already have some level of familiarity with your brand.

    To continue to slink them down the sales funnel, and move from Awareness to Consideration…and ultimately into Advocates, your goal as a bank social media marketer is to give them content they want to consume.

    Sounds simple, right? What you’ll realize is that it takes a fair amount of creativity to present content in a manner that engages an audience, especially if you’re used to traditional bank marketing that focuses on short presentations of the product or service, and not the story.

    A good thing method to keep yourself in check is to place yourself in your audience’s shoes: If I were homeowner, would I want to click on that? If I were a teenager investigating my first checking account, would I retweet that?

    Ally Bank does a great job. Let’s take the low-hanging fruit. Ad campaigns. Ally Bank has put together an ad campaign called “Facts of Life.” In their spots, the message they’re conveying, which is also a bank differentiator is “No branches equals great rates.” They then show a very relatable consumer situation that is a fact of life, like the shopping while hungry clip above.

    Relatability is the #1 secret to social media success. Ask yourself: will your customer think, that sounds like me after they see your content?
  • 20%. Of course, social media is built to facilitate two-way conversation, which means you do have a voice. While one of the most important things in a relationship is being a good listener, we sometimes have to share what makes us special to earn our listener’s interest and keep them engaged.

    The key is to communicate messages that are important to you in a way that an audience member will want to consume it.

    This message, by Community Choice Credit Union in Farmington Hills, Mich. is pretty basic: being a member at Community Choice Credit Union has perks. They showcase this, not by saying that, but by illustrating what one of those particular perks is. In this instance, they were really smart, because instead of using one of their creative assets, they used Turbo Tax’s video. If you look real closely, you’ll see that this particular video has been viewed almost 40,000 times, proving its resonance.

    The second is an example from OSB Community Bank in Brooklyn, Mich. The message here is clearly “We offer mortgages.” While the photo is beautiful, I want you to recognize the difference in how these messages were presented. Both were self-serving, but the first places the emphasis on the member benefit, while the second places the focus on the bank.

    How could the mortgage program offer be made more relevant to the customer?
    - Example of how the new mortgage program has helped someone’s life.
    - Example of a customer now in a stylish home because of the mortgage they were able to secure from the bank.
    - Incentive for coming in to “learn more” about the new mortgage program.
    - Lowering of interest rates.
  • You can post content in one of two ways: 1) As you go, or 2) guided by content buckets.

    For both, whatever you post has got to support the value social is positioned to add to your brand. If it’s building trust and loyalty, then the content must be formatted to do so. If it’s to increase awareness and use of bank debit card, then there must be content to support that initiative. It’ll often be a combination of a lot of different objectives.

    If you choose to create content on a post-by-post basis, make sure you analyze the performance of each piece of content, and extract any sort of trends you observe. Is a certain piece of content getting a lot of engagement (likes, shares, comments, retweets, favorites, repins, clicks, etc.)? Did your update announcing a new interest rate for your auto loan backfire? Performance metrics are cues that will help you improve your future content.

    In the above example, I pulled three examples of recent Facebook posts to Florida’s CFE Federal Credit Union’s Facebook page. If we were analyzing on a post-by-post basis, we can see that the community-oriented Orlando City Soccer Club pulled the most amount of engagement of the three posts. Therefore, in the future, I might want to do one of a couple different things: 1, the obvious: post more photos from soccer games, 2) most more community-related activities, 3) experiment with packaging community soccer games in different manners to see which works best (i.e. video, photo from field, interview with a player, etc.)

    What we also learn here is that the announcement of Apple Pay performed worst than the birds outside the credit union window.

    I want you to think about why that is: is it because it’s a very corporate-looking image? is it because the text is short and non-conversational? Is it because there is little context around what Apple Pay is and how it can make a member’s life easier?

    Once you start creating hypotheses, you can begin testing with new content in order to make conclusions.
  • re:group does this in the form of what we like to call “content categories.”

    We typically create content categories at the beginning of a social media program. These content categories are created specifically to support social media objectives, things we can achieve on social media that support the overall business goals.

    This ensures that we always have a reference point when we go to create content—if we follow these categories, then all of our content will be strategic.

    For instance, if one of Bank ABC’s business goals was to increase the number of 18-24 year-olds who open a new checking account, one of our social media objectives might be to highlight benefits of checking accounts for 18-24 year-olds, and our content category might be checking accounts.

    This does a couple things. It allows us to make conclusions about the performance of a category as a whole, while also allowing us the flexibility to analyze individually within that category. So, for instance, in the above example: Charter One’s FAQ on checking accounts tweets generated 0 retweets, 0 favorites (and from what we could see), no replies. Essentially, this tweet bombed versus X’s tweet on checking accounts.
  • It’s all about creativity in social media. Your goal is to post content that your customers or members care about that supports your business goals and social objectives. But that doesn’t mean it has to be dry content. Take a look at what some banks have put together to keep the novelty alive. Notice that some of these consumer-targeted, but two are speaking to small businesses.

    Notice as well that these banks are fighting the temptation to be straightforward. KeyBank on the top left could have just said “Happy Valentine’s Day” and posted a picture of a teddy bear, but no, they authored a blog post that focused on smart budgeting for couples. SunTrust could have said, “We support small businesses,” but no, they took a beautiful picture of a small business person utilizing that financial support to achieve their dreams. Citibank could have said, “Don’t worry—you’re safe when you buy stuff because we keep a record of everything online,” but they went the extra mile to relate to you—you, in this case, being someone with a dog. And, my favorite, Umqua Bank produced this beautiful video and published it on Vimeo about a small business person’s endeavor. The entire video is about how Steven Smith makes tea. You feel his passion—you want to buy his tea…and only in the last 10 seconds does it reveal that Umqua helped make it possible.
  • This is a little bit of a tough one, but sometimes the same message can be expressed in different ways—the resonance of which depends on how you communicate that message. For instance, if we’re talking about money-saving habits, like Bank of America, did on Google+ above, is it best to share a link to their blog where customers can learn more about why it pays to pay credit card debt off on a regular basis, or maybe people will relate to it more if a customer was video-ed, talking about how he or she was in such bad credit card debt, but working with Bank of America, they now have a better life. Or maybe, just maybe, you’re extracting a tidbit from that article and making it the focus on the post without forcing people to take that extra step to click and then read.

    Or, to complicate the matter more, sometimes posting the same message on a different social channel will improve its performance. In the Bank of America case above, the YouTube video has been viewed 370,000 times versus the Google+ post that received only 23 +1s. This example, of course, can have to do with the size of the community, but also the attributes of the people who frequent the channel.

    A good way to tell if a piece of content is performing well within a certain medium is to find the click-through rate, or engagement rate of that post. So, for instance, in the Google+ post above, if there were a total of 23 +1s, 3 shares and 100 link clicks, and that post received 200 impressions, that’s an engagement rate of 63%. However, if the same post had 20,000 impressions, that engagement rate would only be .63%. Pretty big difference.
  • When you’ve got a content strategy in place, you have the world at your fingertips. At this point, it just takes a little belief in yourself and some creativity to turn the world around you into compelling content.

    You don’t believe me?

    Let’s do an exercise.

    Can I please have three volunteers share three very normal, everyday scenarios at your banks.

    Now, let’s assume for the purposes of this exercise, that all people discussed have signed a release form allowing us to use their likeness in our social media content.

    How could you package a social media update?
  • Assess your yearly marketing calendar to be sure you’re in line with any promotional periods.

    Check your event calendar to make sure you leave space for promotion, coverage and a recap or as I like to say, “The 3 Ps”: pre, present and post coverage.
  • Content calendars are documents containing the social media updates for any number of networks for a specified interval of time.

    At re:group, we usually work with our retainer clients on a monthly basis. This is for two reasons:

    It allows us to nail down our content and receive approval once per month, so that we’re free to focus on managing social communities monitoring for keywords, all of which occur in real-time. Basically, it allows for sanity.
    It tends to be as soon as clients are prepared to discuss the events of the upcoming month.

    re:group uses these for several reasons:

    It ensures that all content created is on strategy, supporting those overall business goals by bringing value to social media.
    It makes it very easy for a supervisor or legal to approve before it’s published.
    It eliminates the frenzy that almost always results from trying to post updates on the fly.

    While “news” will occur after you finalize your calendar, you always have the flexibility to craft and have individually approved during the month.