ABA Banking Journal - May 2009 - (Page 16)
Community Banking Houston, Dallas, and San Antonio to facilitate networking and education. “We were looking for a way to extend this relationship online, to create a community for this group,” explains Christine Pechayco, 34, new media editor. As of mid-April, the bank’s Linkedin site has more than 100 members, ranging across the spectrum of industries and including people with posts from president and down. The bank’s role is kept low-key. Pechayco serves as the page’s editor, and writes updates for it periodically, but any member can open online discussions, or post comments. Requests for information and assistance can also be posted. Pechayco, brought aboard the bank specifically to handle new media, says social media is a challenge. “It’s kind of a full-time job, and you have to learn while you’re doing,” she says. Features evolve and expand, so the social media user’s activities become more involved as time goes on. “Everything’s a work in progress,” says Pechayco. Sterling Bank also uses additional electronic methods to serve customers and keep the bank’s name out front. One example: Business Confidential, an e-letter that grew out of a print newsletter the bank put together for small business owners and operators. Pechayco has been tweeting for a little Houston’s Sterling Bank brought a live community of professional women to the web through Linkedin. while, as a way to listen to what customers might be saying about the bank on Twitter. She feels it’s important to monitor key channels to hear what customers are saying about Sterling, “because they are going to be everywhere.” Arvest Bank Group, Inc.: Blogging in the heartland, to build community Jason Kincy is vice-president and marketing manager, Alternative Delivery, of the $10.2 billion holding company. His duties include marketing for Arvest cards, ATMs, kiosks, and anything done through social media. “All things nontraditional,” in other words, says the 36-year-old marketer. Indeed, Kincy says a year ago he wasn’t even personally involved in any social media, let alone using it for marketing. But he ramped up fast. He began tweeting personally, and made contact with a marketer at another area firm. The two wound up meeting for coffee, and, one idea leading to another, two became a group, and the group became an official social media organization, Social Media Club of Northwest Arkansas, tweeted into existence. “There a literally hundreds of social media and networking websites, and there are more coming online every day,” says Kincy. “I want to focus on those with the most impact. We’ll see how those go, for now.” What drives Arvest’s interest in social media is its niche in customer service. “All of our technological services are a support structure for our branch network,” says Kincy. “We are not using new media to attract customers who are not interested in that local relationship, since we are not positioning ourselves as an online bank, nor as something for customers outside our market area.” Kincy says he believes banks venturing into new media should decide, beforehand, what their goals are, to avoid distraction from their core missions. Arvest can take mortgage applications online and will soon launch online account openings, he notes, but again, it’s to support Arvest’s banking network with added convenience. Arvest’s geographic footprint covers Arkansas (where it is headNEW MEDIA continues on page 20 Does your bank use new or social media for marketing? Blogs on nonfinaical subjects 22% Planning in 2009 Features on our website E-newsletter via e-mail No 16% Yes Facebook Linkedin Twitter Podcasts YouTube 62% 52.4 42.9 42.9 38.1 33.3 33.3 28.6 19.0 14.3 14.3 9.5 4.8 16 MAY 2009/ABA BANKING JOURNAL Subscribe at www.ababj.com SOURCE: ABA BJ SURVEY of these … Blogs on financial subjects E-newsletter via our website E-Mail blasts MySpace
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