January 19, 2021

For a Successful Social Media Strategy, Agents and Insurance Marketers Must Work Together. Technology Can Help.

When insurance companies incorporate individual agents into their social media strategies, they engage in a tactic known as social selling. It’s a winning strategy that can expand the brand’s reach exponentially, but agents and marketers need to stay connected to pull it off successfully.

A solid, well-rounded social media strategy requires the specific expertise of both agents and marketers: Agents know their communities better than any marketer ever could. It’s their job to build relationships with clients and to know what’s happening in their networks. But marketers hold the expertise in digital content creation and social media advertising.

The challenge in bringing these points of expertise together lies in scalability. Even at the biggest insurance companies, a limited number of marketing experts must oversee the individual social media activity of many agents. So how can insurance companies bridge that gap? Technology is a big part of the answer. Here are a few ways the right tools allow insurance marketers and agents to combine their expertise and enable successful social selling strategies at scale.

1. Automated approval workflows

Social media management software can automate processes to streamline the production and approval of social media content. With just the click of a button, agents can send posts to the right person for approval. Marketing teams can rest easy knowing no agents’ posts will slip through the cracks without proper sign-off, and agents can create content and participate actively in their social media strategies with the knowledge that appropriate parties have seen the posts before they go live.

2. Pre-approved content

Marketers can also make posting easier on agents by creating shareable content for them. The same social media software that automates workflows can also house pre-approved posts in a digital library where agents can access relevant content to share with their networks with ease. To ensure the content is relevant, marketers should connect with agents regularly to gather insights about what kinds of information their audiences want and need.

3. Paid campaign management

Along with maintaining oversight of agents’ organic social media activity, marketers can also use the software to easily manage and optimize paid social media campaigns for individual agents. When marketers put money behind agents’ social media efforts in paid advertising campaigns, they can target each ad to land with exactly the right demographic. Agents will know their messages are reaching the intended personas, and marketers will know their time, effort, and advertising spend isn’t wasted on the wrong audience.

4. Tailored landing pages

While likes or comments on agents’ social media posts might be a good indicator of how their networks are engaging with content, the real return is only measured by how many prospects convert into clients. For agents, the first step is catching their audiences’ attention on social media, but then they can bring prospects closer to converting with the help of landing pages. Marketing teams can create customized landing pages focused on specific products or services on the company’s website. Essentially, if an agent’s connection finds their social media post or ad interesting, they can follow the link back to the landing page to get more information specifically around the point that caught their attention.

Ultimately, a comprehensive and effective social media strategy for insurance companies takes the work and expertise of both marketing departments and agents. And this work shouldn’t happen in silos. Instead, marketers and agents can utilize tools and technology to connect around content and create impactful, targeted campaigns that will deliver a significant return on investment.

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January 19, 2021

For a Successful Social Media Strategy, Agents and Insurance Marketers Must Work Together. Technology Can Help.

When insurance companies incorporate individual agents into their social media strategies, they engage in a tactic known as social selling. It’s a winning strategy that can expand the brand’s reach exponentially, but agents and marketers need to stay connected to pull it off successfully.

A solid, well-rounded social media strategy requires the specific expertise of both agents and marketers: Agents know their communities better than any marketer ever could. It’s their job to build relationships with clients and to know what’s happening in their networks. But marketers hold the expertise in digital content creation and social media advertising.

The challenge in bringing these points of expertise together lies in scalability. Even at the biggest insurance companies, a limited number of marketing experts must oversee the individual social media activity of many agents. So how can insurance companies bridge that gap? Technology is a big part of the answer. Here are a few ways the right tools allow insurance marketers and agents to combine their expertise and enable successful social selling strategies at scale.

1. Automated approval workflows

Social media management software can automate processes to streamline the production and approval of social media content. With just the click of a button, agents can send posts to the right person for approval. Marketing teams can rest easy knowing no agents’ posts will slip through the cracks without proper sign-off, and agents can create content and participate actively in their social media strategies with the knowledge that appropriate parties have seen the posts before they go live.

2. Pre-approved content

Marketers can also make posting easier on agents by creating shareable content for them. The same social media software that automates workflows can also house pre-approved posts in a digital library where agents can access relevant content to share with their networks with ease. To ensure the content is relevant, marketers should connect with agents regularly to gather insights about what kinds of information their audiences want and need.

3. Paid campaign management

Along with maintaining oversight of agents’ organic social media activity, marketers can also use the software to easily manage and optimize paid social media campaigns for individual agents. When marketers put money behind agents’ social media efforts in paid advertising campaigns, they can target each ad to land with exactly the right demographic. Agents will know their messages are reaching the intended personas, and marketers will know their time, effort, and advertising spend isn’t wasted on the wrong audience.

4. Tailored landing pages

While likes or comments on agents’ social media posts might be a good indicator of how their networks are engaging with content, the real return is only measured by how many prospects convert into clients. For agents, the first step is catching their audiences’ attention on social media, but then they can bring prospects closer to converting with the help of landing pages. Marketing teams can create customized landing pages focused on specific products or services on the company’s website. Essentially, if an agent’s connection finds their social media post or ad interesting, they can follow the link back to the landing page to get more information specifically around the point that caught their attention.

Ultimately, a comprehensive and effective social media strategy for insurance companies takes the work and expertise of both marketing departments and agents. And this work shouldn’t happen in silos. Instead, marketers and agents can utilize tools and technology to connect around content and create impactful, targeted campaigns that will deliver a significant return on investment.

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Insurance companies have long viewed social media efforts in a brand marketing light, leveraging social media for creative messaging and building corporate recognition. This is still a worthwhile endeavor, but it’s time for insurance marketers to add another level to their social media strategies: performance marketing.

Performance marketing focuses on social media as a conversion tool, driving lead generation and sales rather than vanity metrics alone. Instead of tracking a post’s comments or reach, marketers can track how many readers click through to customized landing pages, for instance.

This switch can be challenging for stakeholders to understand and accept at first. Larger organizations may have separate marketing teams for different product lines supporting the overall brand.Within those teams, employees may have separate roles for organic and paid social media. For a successful performance marketing strategy, all teams need to share a vision and commitment to driving conversions through social media.Not every post has to convert readers into leads, but it should be part of the journey to getting them there.

If you’re at the beginning of this cultural shift toward thinking about social media from a more performance-driven angle that puts conversion metrics front and center, try these techniques to move the conversation in the right direction:

1. Prioritize internal team education.
Digital marketing is constantly changing — and changing fast. Marketing leaders must give teams the opportunity, time, and space to learn about the latest trends, tools, and social media marketing strategies. The more extensive their knowledge, the more comfortable they’ll be applying out-of-the-box thinking to social media in general.

One excellent resource is Facebook Blueprint, which offers free classes and certifications around marketing on Facebook. Be sure to complement dedicated social media training with analytics training to ensure that everyone knows how to measure the success of social media efforts. Google Analytics Academy is an excellent resource for getting a grip on basic analytics and then diving into more advanced learnings from there. These courses help everyone get on the same page and more fully understand the breadth of possibilities available onFacebook and other social media platforms. 

2. Emphasize that everyone has a role to play.

Regardless of title or job description, everyone in your organization should work toward the same sales goals and understand that both brand marketing and performance marketing are needed to achieve those objectives.

Marketers should coordinate with all departments to ensure that everyone understands their roles and responsibilities when it comes to both building the brand and converting sales. When creating social media marketing campaigns, marketers should also seek out insights from the specific departments to which campaigns will be driving traffic in order to determine the right content, messaging, and metrics for each campaign.

What’s more, agents who are also sharing branded content on social media should understand how their efforts intertwine with other content to lead users down the sales funnel and closer to conversions. By including all stakeholders in the performance marketing strategy, marketers can help everyone view themselves as extensions of the sales team and increase the focus on driving conversions.

3. Combine social branding with tactical messaging.

Every social media marketing campaign should be cohesive, featuring consistent themes, verbiage, and images. Plus, all the promises made in branding copy should be highlighted in more tactical performance marketing content. In essence, the brand messaging sets the tone, and the performance messaging closes the deal by delivering on the promises.

How does this work? Let’s say your insurance company has launched a social media branding campaign highlighting how easy it is to work with your business instead of with your competitors. The performance marketing aspect of the campaign includes a white paper that outlines your specific value propositions and client testimonials to back them up. You link to the whitepaper landing page from the social media branding campaign posts, viewers input their contact information into a form on the landing page to download the whitepaper, and your sales team gets direct access to primed leads. Brand and performance marketing work together to drive sales.

Social media is harder than it was only a decade ago. Platforms have changed their algorithms to make organic content less visible, and social media marketing strategies that rely only on brand messaging and vanity metrics alone won’t cut through the noise. Instead, financial marketers need to use performance marketing efforts that offer real, tangible value to drive sales.

This was originally published in PropertyCasualty 360.

When it comes to connecting with consumers all over the world, where should you turn? Social media. Denim Social CEO, Doug Wilber, joins Sue Woodard on the Fresh Takes by Total Expert podcast to shine a light on the power of social media and utilizing it to nurture customer relationships. Doug answers the million-dollar question, “How does your brand connect with consumers on social media?”

Where Are the Biggest Opportunities to Use Social Media in Financial Services?

Denim Social's 2020 Benchmark Report shows that most financial institutions — 82% of those surveyed — are using Facebook to reach their audiences. It’s a great place to start, but Facebook is only the tip of the iceberg when it comes to social media strategy for financial services.

Your customers are active in many other places online, so why not meet them there? Our research shows that a few other valuable social media platforms are going underutilized. Let’s dive into whatInstagram, LinkedIn, and Twitter have to offer and how financial services marketers can best use each platform.

1. Instagram

As far as unsung social media platforms in financial services go, Instagram tops the list. The Benchmark Report reveals that it's the least adopted platform across all asset groups of financial services, and that’s a huge missed opportunity.

Instagram is one of the best ways to get in front of younger audiences, which is a worthwhile goal, considering that many Millennial customers will likely be on the search for new financial services providers as Baby Boomers pass their wealth on to the next generations. What's more, 80% of Instagram users follow at least one business account and 60% use the platform to discover new products.


If you’re already on Facebook, getting started on Instagram is a breeze. You can sync your Instagram account with your Facebook Business page and create content simultaneously for both platforms, saving both time and money. That's an excellent place to start, but from there, you'll want to begin creating Instagram-specific ads with extra visual content such as photos and videos.

Instagram ads also allow hyperlinks, so you can lead readers right from their feeds to your website with specific calls to action to learn more. Lead them to a personalized and well-designed landing page on your site, for instance, and you'll be drawing each follower who clicks through one big step closer to conversion.

What's more, you can create localized ad campaigns on Instagram to connect your individual employees with customers inclose geographical proximity. A local face in someone's feed is much more likely to capture their attention than a brand ad alone. Denim's social media management tools can help you organize and run localized ad campaigns with ease.

2. LinkedIn

Our research revealed that only about 63% of financial services providers in smaller asset groups use LinkedIn, and those that do use it don’t post as frequently as larger institutions. But smaller organizations might have the most to gain from LinkedIn. Employees at smaller companies are likely to know their customers on a closer level and can utilize LinkedIn to build and maintain those relationships.

For financial services marketers, a brand profile is a necessary starting point. Getting the most out of the platform, however, requires activating your employees in a social selling strategy. They can share relevant content, such as videos and published articles from trusted media outlets, as well as engage with customers and prospects one-on-one via direct messaging to establish themselves as experts and build trusting relationships. People want to engage with other people, not with general brand pages. It’s no wonder that employees on social media can garner double the engagement of brand pages alone.

3. Twitter

Like Instagram, Twitter use is also low across all financial services asset groups with an average of 36% adoption. Understandably, financial services marketers might be intimidated by the fast-paced nature of the platform and fear they don’t have enough resources to keep up. However, with the proper social media management tools, maintaining compliant engagement on Twitter is totally possible — and worth it.

One of the greatest benefits of social media marketing for financial services is the ability to provide more value to customers. Twitter makes this incredibly easy to do. Marketers can follow all relevant news media outlets and keep an eye out for any articles that might benefit their clients or prospects.For example, an explainer piece on recent changes in tax legislation may be helpful come tax season. Retweeting such helpful resources educates followers on financial topics and builds trust in the brand and its employees.

There’s no single best social media platform for marketing. Each one has a unique opportunity to reach and engage current and future customers. If you’re already on Facebook, it’s time to level up your social media marketing strategy by diving into Instagram, LinkedIn, and Twitter as well. No matter the size of your financial institution, extending your social media strategy to encompass these platforms can help grow your audience, build trust, and maintain solid customer relationships.

Gone are the days of sharing helpful, compliant content organically from your bank’s social media profile and seeing significant reach and engagement.

Social media platforms today frequently update their algorithms to make branded content less visible. In January, for example, Facebook announced algorithmic changes to filter every post through integrity filters, a multifaceted scoring system and even a contextual pass.

You might be wondering whether social media is even worth the try anymore in the broader scope of marketing efforts. The answer is a resounding yes. Your prospects and customers are still on social media, perhaps more than ever before. For example, 86 percent of Baby Boomers use social media daily. That’s only 3 percentage points less than Gen Z. With physical banking on a downward trend, banks have to meet people where they are if they want to continue making connections and building relationships.

The following steps can help financial services provider skirt tricky algorithms to get in front of the right audiences:

Don’t avoid organic altogether: Organic social media is still an important jumping-off point, and a key asset to help your brand cut through is your employees. Research from LinkedIn shows that employees have 10 times the following on LinkedIn compared to their employers and that employee posts on LinkedIn create twice the engagement. When employees share with and engage customers and prospects from individual accounts, they humanize the brand beyond brand profiles alone — in the eyes of audiences and algorithms.

Social media algorithms favor people and person-to-person conversation. Because more engagement means greater algorithmic scoring, you can bet that the more people who engage with an employee post, the more social media users will see that post in their feeds.

Pay to play: Of course, one of the biggest advantages of organic social media is that it’s free — but paid advertising doesn’t take a huge investment, either, and the returns can be well worth the initial spend and effort. Consider, for instance, pulling back your marketing budget from traditional out-of-home advertising tactics that have lost their impact as people stay home and reallocating the spend toward paid social efforts.

Paid ads actually help you optimize your advertising budget more than organic alone because you can target them. You can build a targeting strategy based on your ideal persona’s demographics, activities, interests, etc. — which means you can make better-informed decisions about what content to share with whom. Audiences will appreciate the posts’ relevance, and bank associates will appreciate knowing that social media outreach efforts aren’t wasted on the wrong audience.

Provide value with content: While great content isn’t the only thing you need for success today, it is still a crucial factor because it serves as a helpful resource for audiences. Think beyond promotion when creating and distributing ad content. Consider how to create real value.

Content should both highlight your expertise and help educate readers. Guidebooks, blog posts and videos are among many valuable content tools. And you don’t have to limit a post to include only one of them. Instead, link to a landing page on your website from a social media ad. Viewers will go to the page that houses all the relevant, valuable content they want.

What’s more, if you include form fields requesting visitor information in return for downloading some of that content, you’ll get valuable consumer data in your hands that can help you drive more conversions.

Think strategically about retargeting:  To further optimize your approach for even greater ROI, consider retargeted advertising. This means serving social media advertisements to people you know already engage with your website, social media pages or content.

Don’t just retarget campaigns to every person who has ever shown interest in your brand, however. This approach is likely too broad to create much impact, especially when customers today are all about personalization. Instead, divide your audience into segments and create specific campaigns for each.

For example, people who visited your blog might be more receptive to more educational content, while those who visited your contact page might be closer to conversion and ready to hop into a conversation with your sales team. Even in retargeting, precision is the name of the game.

The bottom line is: If your bank’s social media strategy is only organic, you won’t see enough ROI to justify your time and effort. But if you level up with employees, paid advertising and valuable content, you can optimize your efforts beyond what even the best organic strategy would allow to overcome algorithmic roadblocks and get in front of exactly the right people.

This article was originally published on BAI.org.

Instagram stands out as the shining star of social media platforms. While Facebook still reigns supreme, Instagram is quickly catching up fast with more than 1 billion users worldwide today — up by 73.5 million since 2020.

With users under age 34 making up nearly half of this user population, financial services marketers looking to reach younger generations should take note. And with an estimated sum of $68 trillion in wealth expected to transfer from Baby Boomers to Millennials in the next couple of decades, Millennials are a worthwhile target.

Studies predict that, after inheriting wealth, 80% or more young heirs will seek out a new financial advisor. Considering that 9 in 10 accounts follow at least one business on Instagram and 8 in 10 users find new products and services in the app, it’s a safe bet that Instagram will be a place to influence many Millennials. Wise financial services marketers will meet them where they are with strong Instagram marketing strategies, and the following tips can help:

1. Focus on paid ads

Instagram is a visual platform for sharing photos and videos, so it’s important for brand pages to populate their profiles with organic posts. While this presence is important, organic content isn’t what will move the needle on business goals. Financial services aren’t exactly visually interesting, and organic posts tend to have low reach as they only show up in the feeds of a brand’s current followers. Without the ability to include hyperlinks in captions, they also won’t drive any traffic back to your site. If you want to build the type of following needed to generate new business, including paid advertising in your Instagram marketing strategy is your ticket.

With Instagram advertising, institutions and advisors can target ads to land with exactly the right audience — even outside their follower base — and include links in posts to drive more traffic to the brand. With a specific call to action that directs consumers to learn more about a topic, Instagram ads offer a straight-line path to giving customers the valuable information they desire — in their own time and at their own place. What’s more, Instagram advertising is seamlessly integrated directly into Instagram feeds and stories, creating a smoother user experience all around.

2. Connect with consumers on a local level

Instagram marketing on the corporate brand level is a great starting point, but advertising on behalf of your individual advisors can take your strategy to the next level. Think of it this way: If a consumer sees a well-known brand on social media, they might recognize the name, but they won’t feel an intrinsic connection beyond initial familiarity. In contrast, they’ll feel familiarity and an immediate connection when they see a post from an advisor in their own community. Consumers want to build relationships with brands, and a shared community is a great starting point.

Of course, most advisors and other financial services employees are not experts on how to market the business on Instagram. And marketers know they must keep all social media marketing for their financial institutions compliant to avoid heavy regulatory reprimands. To keep posts compliant, save employees time, and help them build relationships with consumers in their physical communities, financial services marketers can set up and run ads on their behalf.

3. Micro-target content to your audience

As big-name brands like Amazon continue to elevate the digital customer experience with seamless customer service, purchasing, and delivery, customer expectations are higher than ever before. When customers evaluate a financial institution, they compare it not only to other organizations in the industry, but also to tech giants in any industry that give them exactly what they need when they need it.

They expect a high level of personalization and convenience, and Instagram marketing with paid advertising can help you give it to them. Match basic behavioral and geographic data to potential customers on Instagram to target ads, and then track clicks, engagements, and post-click actions. These data points don’t indicate much on their own, but together they offer a rich story about what consumers want. Continually refine your strategy with these data points in mind to deliver the kind of highly personalized experiences your audiences want on Instagram.

With a large Millennial user base that engages actively with brands online and the ability to target highly personalized ads to exactly the right audiences, Instagram is a must-have in any financial services marketing strategy. To learn more about how Instagram marketing can work to drive your business forward, download our guide to building stronger customer relationships on Instagram for free today.

From a platform that employers can use to test software development job candidates to software that aims to improve how companies deploy field services workers, software-as-a-service (SaaS) companies have made a splash in transforming workplaces in 2021.

Some of the largest employers had to adopt remote working this past year and have declared a willingness to keep some form of it even after the global pandemic subsides, prompting a renewed interest in software tools that can improve and even change business operations in a variety of industries.

With headquarter locations including San Francisco and St. Louis and Kissimmee, Fla., these startups show that not only does innovation happen anywhere, but that startup funding remains strong and good ideas don’t only happen within the largest tech giants.

#3 Denim Social

Top Executive: Douglas Wilber, CEO

Headquarters: St. Louis

Denim Social offers social media management and marketing automation software for highly-regulated industries such as banking, insurance and wealth management.

For these companies, compliance can get in the way of a consumer-oriented marketing campaign, according to Denim Social’s website. The company allows customers to schedule and plan social media content, curate industry-specific articles for audiences and learn about online audiences with analytic reports.

The company counts AWS, Twitter and Facebook among its partners.

The company was founded in 2020 through the merger of St. Louis-based Gremlin Social and Iowa-based Denim. The company also raised a $4 million Series A round of funding to increase marketing.

This list was originally published by CRN and the full list can be viewed here.

Connect & Convert on Social

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GUIDES

For a Successful Social Media Strategy, Agents and Insurance Marketers Must Work Together. Technology Can Help.

When insurance companies incorporate individual agents into their social media strategies, they engage in a tactic known as social selling. It’s a winning strategy that can expand the brand’s reach exponentially, but agents and marketers need to stay connected to pull it off successfully.

A solid, well-rounded social media strategy requires the specific expertise of both agents and marketers: Agents know their communities better than any marketer ever could. It’s their job to build relationships with clients and to know what’s happening in their networks. But marketers hold the expertise in digital content creation and social media advertising.

The challenge in bringing these points of expertise together lies in scalability. Even at the biggest insurance companies, a limited number of marketing experts must oversee the individual social media activity of many agents. So how can insurance companies bridge that gap? Technology is a big part of the answer. Here are a few ways the right tools allow insurance marketers and agents to combine their expertise and enable successful social selling strategies at scale.

1. Automated approval workflows

Social media management software can automate processes to streamline the production and approval of social media content. With just the click of a button, agents can send posts to the right person for approval. Marketing teams can rest easy knowing no agents’ posts will slip through the cracks without proper sign-off, and agents can create content and participate actively in their social media strategies with the knowledge that appropriate parties have seen the posts before they go live.

2. Pre-approved content

Marketers can also make posting easier on agents by creating shareable content for them. The same social media software that automates workflows can also house pre-approved posts in a digital library where agents can access relevant content to share with their networks with ease. To ensure the content is relevant, marketers should connect with agents regularly to gather insights about what kinds of information their audiences want and need.

3. Paid campaign management

Along with maintaining oversight of agents’ organic social media activity, marketers can also use the software to easily manage and optimize paid social media campaigns for individual agents. When marketers put money behind agents’ social media efforts in paid advertising campaigns, they can target each ad to land with exactly the right demographic. Agents will know their messages are reaching the intended personas, and marketers will know their time, effort, and advertising spend isn’t wasted on the wrong audience.

4. Tailored landing pages

While likes or comments on agents’ social media posts might be a good indicator of how their networks are engaging with content, the real return is only measured by how many prospects convert into clients. For agents, the first step is catching their audiences’ attention on social media, but then they can bring prospects closer to converting with the help of landing pages. Marketing teams can create customized landing pages focused on specific products or services on the company’s website. Essentially, if an agent’s connection finds their social media post or ad interesting, they can follow the link back to the landing page to get more information specifically around the point that caught their attention.

Ultimately, a comprehensive and effective social media strategy for insurance companies takes the work and expertise of both marketing departments and agents. And this work shouldn’t happen in silos. Instead, marketers and agents can utilize tools and technology to connect around content and create impactful, targeted campaigns that will deliver a significant return on investment.

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ALL GUIDES:

Find out how more than 400 financial institutions across asset classes, geographies, and more used social media in 2020 to effectively support their business objectives. We’ve also outlined key trends to inform your social media future.

As mortgage demand surges to historic highs, home purchase and refinance markets remain hot. This is excellent news for loan officers, but it also means the environment is more competitive than ever.

So how can marketers ensure that their loan officers stand out? The answer is social media.

Read this guidebook from Denim Social to learn how you can help your loan officers build strong relationships, stand out from the crowd and win more business using social media.

Download this guidebook to learn how 3 mortgage lenders are using social media to:

  • Position themselves in a place the community is already looking ... their social media
  • Empower loan officers to engage in local conversations
  • Turn their institution's loan officers into the voice of their brand
  • Build trust within the community

Every Mortgage Marketer Should Ask Themselves

Compliance is complicated, but don’t let it stop your lending team from making the most of social media. Think you’re ready to start social selling? Ask yourself these five questions!

Download this guidebook to learn how marketers are using social media to:

  • Drive business with the lowest digital spend compared to traditional media
  • Position employees as thought-leaders while leveraging their collective reach of their social media presence
  • Ultimately, build trust with their communities and customers that translates to positive business results

Download this guidebook to learn how marketers are using social media to:

  • Drive business with the lowest digital spend compared to traditional media
  • Position employees as thought-leaders while leveraging their collective reach of their social media presence
  • Ultimately, build trust with their communities and customers that translates to positive business results

Read this guide if you’re asking yourself:

  • Is my social media policy current and comprehensive?
  • How do I ensure social media compliance during M&A?
  • What do I need to consider for direct messaging compliance?

In this guide we will help you think about your all important social media policy and thoughtfully consider how changes in social media tech and even your bank’s structure may impact compliance.

How 6 Financial Marketers Are Creating Value in Social Media

Ever wonder what everyone else is doing in social media? We talked to six leading financial marketers about how they’re succeeding today and planning for the next big thing.

Get their insights on strengthening your social strategies, unlocking the power of employee networks and creating next-level content that drives engagement.

Which roles do you fill when building your bank's marketing dream team? This guide will show you the following:

  • Who does what
  • The right structure to execute strategy
  • How compliance software can help

Enjoy!

ABA Study: The Current State of Social Media

See what nearly 430 bank marketers had to say when asked questions such as:

  • Is it important to equip your sales personnel with social media accounts?
  • Does your bank measure the impact of your social media use?
  • Download this guidebook to learn how marketers are using social media to:

    • Drive business with the lowest digital spend compared to traditional media
    • Position employees as thought-leaders while leveraging their collective reach of their social media presence
    • Ultimately, build trust with their communities and customers that translates to positive business results

    Every Financial Services Marketer Should Ask Themselves

    Compliance is complicated, but don’t let it stop your lending team from making the most of social media. Think you’re ready to start social selling? Ask yourself these five questions!

    Stronger Customer Relationships on Instagram

    Financial Services companies should be marketing and advertising on Instagram. We break down why, and help you create a strategy to reach new customers- while continuing to build trust in your brand.

    COVID-19 & Bank Social Media

    Times are different and how you connect with customers and potential customers has changed drastically. In a socially distant world, learn to still build lasting relationships.

    Download and learn the guiding principles for using social media to serve both your customers and communities in the midst of a pandemic.

    GUIDES

    For a Successful Social Media Strategy, Agents and Insurance Marketers Must Work Together. Technology Can Help.

    When insurance companies incorporate individual agents into their social media strategies, they engage in a tactic known as social selling. It’s a winning strategy that can expand the brand’s reach exponentially, but agents and marketers need to stay connected to pull it off successfully.

    A solid, well-rounded social media strategy requires the specific expertise of both agents and marketers: Agents know their communities better than any marketer ever could. It’s their job to build relationships with clients and to know what’s happening in their networks. But marketers hold the expertise in digital content creation and social media advertising.

    The challenge in bringing these points of expertise together lies in scalability. Even at the biggest insurance companies, a limited number of marketing experts must oversee the individual social media activity of many agents. So how can insurance companies bridge that gap? Technology is a big part of the answer. Here are a few ways the right tools allow insurance marketers and agents to combine their expertise and enable successful social selling strategies at scale.

    1. Automated approval workflows

    Social media management software can automate processes to streamline the production and approval of social media content. With just the click of a button, agents can send posts to the right person for approval. Marketing teams can rest easy knowing no agents’ posts will slip through the cracks without proper sign-off, and agents can create content and participate actively in their social media strategies with the knowledge that appropriate parties have seen the posts before they go live.

    2. Pre-approved content

    Marketers can also make posting easier on agents by creating shareable content for them. The same social media software that automates workflows can also house pre-approved posts in a digital library where agents can access relevant content to share with their networks with ease. To ensure the content is relevant, marketers should connect with agents regularly to gather insights about what kinds of information their audiences want and need.

    3. Paid campaign management

    Along with maintaining oversight of agents’ organic social media activity, marketers can also use the software to easily manage and optimize paid social media campaigns for individual agents. When marketers put money behind agents’ social media efforts in paid advertising campaigns, they can target each ad to land with exactly the right demographic. Agents will know their messages are reaching the intended personas, and marketers will know their time, effort, and advertising spend isn’t wasted on the wrong audience.

    4. Tailored landing pages

    While likes or comments on agents’ social media posts might be a good indicator of how their networks are engaging with content, the real return is only measured by how many prospects convert into clients. For agents, the first step is catching their audiences’ attention on social media, but then they can bring prospects closer to converting with the help of landing pages. Marketing teams can create customized landing pages focused on specific products or services on the company’s website. Essentially, if an agent’s connection finds their social media post or ad interesting, they can follow the link back to the landing page to get more information specifically around the point that caught their attention.

    Ultimately, a comprehensive and effective social media strategy for insurance companies takes the work and expertise of both marketing departments and agents. And this work shouldn’t happen in silos. Instead, marketers and agents can utilize tools and technology to connect around content and create impactful, targeted campaigns that will deliver a significant return on investment.

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    ALL GUIDES:

    Find out how more than 400 financial institutions across asset classes, geographies, and more used social media in 2020 to effectively support their business objectives. We’ve also outlined key trends to inform your social media future.

    As mortgage demand surges to historic highs, home purchase and refinance markets remain hot. This is excellent news for loan officers, but it also means the environment is more competitive than ever.

    So how can marketers ensure that their loan officers stand out? The answer is social media.

    Read this guidebook from Denim Social to learn how you can help your loan officers build strong relationships, stand out from the crowd and win more business using social media.

    Download this guidebook to learn how 3 mortgage lenders are using social media to:

    • Position themselves in a place the community is already looking ... their social media
    • Empower loan officers to engage in local conversations
    • Turn their institution's loan officers into the voice of their brand
    • Build trust within the community

    Every Mortgage Marketer Should Ask Themselves

    Compliance is complicated, but don’t let it stop your lending team from making the most of social media. Think you’re ready to start social selling? Ask yourself these five questions!

    Download this guidebook to learn how marketers are using social media to:

    • Drive business with the lowest digital spend compared to traditional media
    • Position employees as thought-leaders while leveraging their collective reach of their social media presence
    • Ultimately, build trust with their communities and customers that translates to positive business results

    Download this guidebook to learn how marketers are using social media to:

    • Drive business with the lowest digital spend compared to traditional media
    • Position employees as thought-leaders while leveraging their collective reach of their social media presence
    • Ultimately, build trust with their communities and customers that translates to positive business results

    Read this guide if you’re asking yourself:

    • Is my social media policy current and comprehensive?
    • How do I ensure social media compliance during M&A?
    • What do I need to consider for direct messaging compliance?

    In this guide we will help you think about your all important social media policy and thoughtfully consider how changes in social media tech and even your bank’s structure may impact compliance.

    How 6 Financial Marketers Are Creating Value in Social Media

    Ever wonder what everyone else is doing in social media? We talked to six leading financial marketers about how they’re succeeding today and planning for the next big thing.

    Get their insights on strengthening your social strategies, unlocking the power of employee networks and creating next-level content that drives engagement.

    Which roles do you fill when building your bank's marketing dream team? This guide will show you the following:

    • Who does what
    • The right structure to execute strategy
    • How compliance software can help

    Enjoy!

    ABA Study: The Current State of Social Media

    See what nearly 430 bank marketers had to say when asked questions such as:

  • Is it important to equip your sales personnel with social media accounts?
  • Does your bank measure the impact of your social media use?
  • Download this guidebook to learn how marketers are using social media to:

    • Drive business with the lowest digital spend compared to traditional media
    • Position employees as thought-leaders while leveraging their collective reach of their social media presence
    • Ultimately, build trust with their communities and customers that translates to positive business results

    Every Financial Services Marketer Should Ask Themselves

    Compliance is complicated, but don’t let it stop your lending team from making the most of social media. Think you’re ready to start social selling? Ask yourself these five questions!

    Stronger Customer Relationships on Instagram

    Financial Services companies should be marketing and advertising on Instagram. We break down why, and help you create a strategy to reach new customers- while continuing to build trust in your brand.

    COVID-19 & Bank Social Media

    Times are different and how you connect with customers and potential customers has changed drastically. In a socially distant world, learn to still build lasting relationships.

    Download and learn the guiding principles for using social media to serve both your customers and communities in the midst of a pandemic.

    RESOURCES

    NEWS
    January 19, 2021

    For a Successful Social Media Strategy, Agents and Insurance Marketers Must Work Together. Technology Can Help.

    When insurance companies incorporate individual agents into their social media strategies, they engage in a tactic known as social selling. It’s a winning strategy that can expand the brand’s reach exponentially, but agents and marketers need to stay connected to pull it off successfully.

    A solid, well-rounded social media strategy requires the specific expertise of both agents and marketers: Agents know their communities better than any marketer ever could. It’s their job to build relationships with clients and to know what’s happening in their networks. But marketers hold the expertise in digital content creation and social media advertising.

    The challenge in bringing these points of expertise together lies in scalability. Even at the biggest insurance companies, a limited number of marketing experts must oversee the individual social media activity of many agents. So how can insurance companies bridge that gap? Technology is a big part of the answer. Here are a few ways the right tools allow insurance marketers and agents to combine their expertise and enable successful social selling strategies at scale.

    1. Automated approval workflows

    Social media management software can automate processes to streamline the production and approval of social media content. With just the click of a button, agents can send posts to the right person for approval. Marketing teams can rest easy knowing no agents’ posts will slip through the cracks without proper sign-off, and agents can create content and participate actively in their social media strategies with the knowledge that appropriate parties have seen the posts before they go live.

    2. Pre-approved content

    Marketers can also make posting easier on agents by creating shareable content for them. The same social media software that automates workflows can also house pre-approved posts in a digital library where agents can access relevant content to share with their networks with ease. To ensure the content is relevant, marketers should connect with agents regularly to gather insights about what kinds of information their audiences want and need.

    3. Paid campaign management

    Along with maintaining oversight of agents’ organic social media activity, marketers can also use the software to easily manage and optimize paid social media campaigns for individual agents. When marketers put money behind agents’ social media efforts in paid advertising campaigns, they can target each ad to land with exactly the right demographic. Agents will know their messages are reaching the intended personas, and marketers will know their time, effort, and advertising spend isn’t wasted on the wrong audience.

    4. Tailored landing pages

    While likes or comments on agents’ social media posts might be a good indicator of how their networks are engaging with content, the real return is only measured by how many prospects convert into clients. For agents, the first step is catching their audiences’ attention on social media, but then they can bring prospects closer to converting with the help of landing pages. Marketing teams can create customized landing pages focused on specific products or services on the company’s website. Essentially, if an agent’s connection finds their social media post or ad interesting, they can follow the link back to the landing page to get more information specifically around the point that caught their attention.

    Ultimately, a comprehensive and effective social media strategy for insurance companies takes the work and expertise of both marketing departments and agents. And this work shouldn’t happen in silos. Instead, marketers and agents can utilize tools and technology to connect around content and create impactful, targeted campaigns that will deliver a significant return on investment.

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    OTHER NEWS:

    Retail banks in the U.S. are facing a major customer attrition challenges. According to a recent Bain report, customers make as many as 55 percent of financial-related purchases from their primary bank’s competitors. While primary banks may be able to retain customers’ savings and checking accounts, the report suggests that they’re likely losing out on lucrative sales when it comes to loans, credit cards and investments.

    Considering that almost one-third of those who defected from their primary bank did so in response to a direct offer from a competitor, wise marketers will up their customer engagement and outreach efforts to retain more customers. Affordability of products is the top reason for customer defection, which marketers may not have much say in, but it isn’t the only contributing factor. Digitization has also been a major catalyst. Namely, the strong digital products and experiences that some banks offer—and others do not.

    Bank marketers who can jump onboard the digitization train to meet customers where they are with engaging, valuable messaging will be much more likely to keep customers coming back again and again for each of their financial needs. The following strategies can help:

    1. Put the human element front and center

    Traditional banks have an innate advantage over digital direct banks: The human touch. Leveraging this benefit, especially when it comes to increasingly digital customer interactions, can lead to measurable improvements in customer retention.

    One way to ensure the human touch remains part of every customer touchpoint is to focus on personalization. A February Insurance Thought Leadership piece revealed that 72 percent of people ignore marketing that’s not highly personalized. So targeting relevant content to the right recipients is essential, especially when digitization can easily strip the human element out of an interaction. Personalizing messaging and services to be relevant and valuable to the specific needs of each customer can bring the human element into focus even in a digital world.

    One way to create more relevant, personalized outreach is to practice social selling, or leveraging a bank’s employees on social media. People can relate more to other people than they can to big brand names. When your employees are the ones getting in front of customers virtually, it humanizes the digital customer experience and sets the stage for trusting and loyal relationships to come. What’s more, employees also tend to have further reach and engagement on brand-related social posts than brand pages alone, so they can expand the impact of your messaging exponentially.

    2. Create digital pathways to human interactions

    When considering how to anchor all digital marketing for financial services around the human element, keep in mind that every pathway should connect prospects and customers directly to a human.

    For example, a social media post from an employee could include a link to a landing page on your website where visitors can learn more valuable information on the topic of the post. On that landing page, you can include valuable content, such as a guidebook, behind an information request form. When users submit their names and email addresses, they will receive the content and your sales team members can reach out to them directly with a human-centric, personalized outreach approach.

    When prospects and customers know they’re just an email or phone call away from a real person at your organization, they’re likely to turn to you instead of an impersonal digital direct bank for their next financial need.

    3. Focus on customer retention just as much as acquisition

    Bringing in new prospects gets a lot of attention from financial services marketers, sometimes at the expense of retaining current ones. But focusing on customer retention and continuously improving the digital customer experience will help secure more revenue when it comes to additional services such as loans and credit cards.

    Listen to the needs of customers and keep refining your personalization tactics to meet their needs. Every time you get in front of a current customer with relevant, valuable messaging or content, you help build trust in that relationship and increase the chances of that customer coming to you for whatever service they need next.

    It’s true that people will always be drawn to brands that offer more affordable products and services. But money isn’t the only reason people look outside of their primary bank to fulfill their financial needs. Banks that differentiate by focusing on digitization alongside the human element will find that it’s easier to keep current customers from looking for greener pastures.

    This was originally published on ABA Bank Marketing.

    As the fintech industry has grown in recent years, more and more banks have partnered with these companies to enhance the digital customer experience. Fintech firms have the digital expertise banks need, but these nascent partnerships will require more thoughtful strategizing to deliver effective solutions.

    So far, only 6 percent of banks reported seeing more than 5 percent improvement in reducing customer churn with their fintech partnerships, according to a 2021 Cornerstone Advisors report. And nearly 40 percent said they’ve seen no changes at all. This is likely not for lack of trying or skill from either side. Fintech companies can still bring great value to the table, so the answer isn’t for banks to eschew formal partnerships for good. Instead, banks just need to align with fintech partners on driving specific value.

    Banks eager to improve their relationships with fintech partners and realize the full potential of bank and fintech collaboration can start by taking a few structured measures.

    1. Be transparent about your problems.

    First and foremost, banks must seek out fintech partnerships to solve specific problems. Without the core alignment around what a bank needs from a fintech partner, goals can be vague and impossible to reach. The more open banks are about the challenges they’re looking to solve, the more their fintech partners can understand how to deliver a solution. Perform an assessment of your current state of operations to identify specific challenges and the gaps in the way of overcoming them. Then, find a fintech company ready to fill that gap.

    One example of excellent alignment in a bank and fintech collaboration is Bank of America and Zelle. Bank of America realized that it needed to focus on its digital payment capabilities as customers were using less cash. With that goal out in the open, it was able to partner with a fintech company that could offer a specific solution to make peer-to-peer transactions easy for customers to do in a mobile app. In the first quarter of 2020, Zelle powered more than 102 million transactions totaling $27 billion for Bank of America customers.

    2. Get an internal fintech advocate on board.

    Having the right person in the C-suite leading the way in a fintech partnership can make a big difference for a bank. Assign a fintech advocate to devote the attention and resources necessary to help the partnership deliver on expectations. Ideally, a dedicated fintech representative in the bank can serve to educate the fintech provider about the needs of the bank and learn the ins and outs of the fintech solution to relay to the rest of the internal team. Each give-and-take discussion will foster greater alignment and keep the relationship on track. The ultimate objective is to merge the bank and the fintech partner’s goals so that everyone is working toward the same end.

    3. Put a premium on the customer experience.

    Creating a strong digital customer experience isn’t a one-and-done investment. It involves continuously listening in to how customers behave online over time and adapting your digital strategies on an ongoing basis in response. It’s a long-game investment of time and resources, but it’s worth the effort: Accenture research suggests that nearly half of the banking public would stay loyal to a bank that offered a stellar customer experience. And considering that the 2019 FIS Performance Against Customer Expectations report noted 35 percent of people want to replace their plastic banking cards with digital apps, that experience will be largely digital now and into the future. Leverage fintech partners to improve the digital environment by personalizing experiences based on customer needs as they change over time.

    4. Keep tabs on the employee experience, too.

    Getting employees on board with your fintech partnership from the beginning will be essential in helping the solution reach its fullest potential. Digitization can be a scary word for traditional bankers who fear job loss to automation and other emerging technologies. This is where a fintech partner can step in to design robust workshops and other educational sessions to show employees how fintech can help them do their jobs more efficiently and provide greater value to customers. The more your employees get onboard for digital transformation, the more innovative thinking and growth you’ll see into the future.

    The rise of fintech isn’t slowing down. But banks can leverage the digital expertise of this sector to provide more value to customers. Align objectives, get the buy-in of internal stakeholders and keep a sharp focus on bettering the digital customer experience. And you’ll see your bank and fintech partnership fuel exceptional, tangible results.

    This article was originally published in ABA Bank Marketing.

    The concept of “infrastructure” goes beyond its hotly debated political meanings. It applies to organizations as much as municipal structures and facilities. In fact, it’s a quite relevant subject for financial marketers to consider.

    That’s because the basic organizational structures needed to keep a financial institution competitive are rapidly transitioning from physical to digital. It’s a change accelerated by the pandemic, as has been well documented.

    What this means for financial marketers is that digital infrastructure demands more attention — and investment, and Marketing plays an essential role in this. If your customers are in the virtual world, you need the right tools and strategies to reach them there.

    Building Digital Marketing Infrastructure

    If your institution’s marketing efforts are pieced together with standalone technologies, you’re likely to need an upgrade. Marketers need to build strategies and digital business infrastructures that can speak to one another. Otherwise, digital marketing for financial institutions can become overly cumbersome and negatively impact both brand reach and interactions with the target audience.

    Look for technology solutions that integrate across social media management software, marketing automation tools, CRM, and even reviews and reputation management platforms. This will lead to systems that can help map and meet the needs of prospects across all stages of the customer acquisition journey — rather than simply buying tools for various purposes or touchpoints.

    Different World:
    Digital technology has made it much simpler to switch financial institutions than in the past. The barriers are almost nonexistent.

    Digital marketing in financial services is an essential element of digital business infrastructure. If your organization doesn’t reach consumers virtually and provide a strong digital customer experience, consumers are likely to turn to a provider that will. To ensure your organization has the digital infrastructure capable of building customer relationships and growing revenue, focus on the three investments in particular.

    Social Selling Strategy

    Most bank marketers recognize that an active social media presence is no longer optional, but posting from brand pages alone won’t entice many consumers to engage. With 69% of consumers today actively avoiding advertisements, according to Edelman, brands must rethink social media messaging with the human element in mind.

    A social selling strategy, when branded messaging comes from an organization’s individual employees, is the most effective form of social media marketing because people relate to other people more than to big brand names.

    Individual employees posting brand-related content on their own pages, however, can increase the risk of compliance missteps without the proper tools. Social media management software that allows marketers to have a holistic view of employee activity on social media can safeguard your brand reputation.

    Such tools can house digital libraries of preapproved content so employees can share ready-to-go posts with ease. Software can also automate the approvals process on new employee posts to ensure that no content ever goes live without proper review.

    Landing Page Builder

    Think of landing pages as your website’s personalized welcome mats. Rather than landing on the homepage and having to stumble around looking for the information they need (and people have little patience for this), prospects and customers can land right where the information is. For example, if a social media post or digital ad offers tips for first-time mortgage seekers, the message can include a link to a landing page on your website that houses more information about mortgages.

    You can gate guidebooks and other downloadable resources behind an information capture form on the landing page, prompting consumers to insert their name and email to receive the download. Considering that more than three-quarters of consumers are willing to provide their personal information in return for more personalized services, according to Accenture, landing pages are an excellent tool to provide relevant, valuable content to consumers while capturing data that can help you target outreach efforts to those who are most likely to convert.

    Few institutions have the resources available to create landing pages for each promotion, however. And most financial services marketers don’t have the coding or website design expertise to build whole web pages from scratch. That’s where “landing page builders” come in. Such platforms provide prebuilt, customizable templates that allow marketers to quickly and easily build landing pages at scale to capture valuable data while providing customers with more value.

    Onboarding Engagement Platform

    So you’ve created a suite of digital customer experiences and infrastructures to serve customers and capture prospects in a virtual world. Your tools offer remote deposit capture, peer-to-peer payments, rewards programs, financial education, and more. But what if people don’t use them?

    Sometimes, simply putting the options in front of them isn’t enough. Digital banking, though on the rise for some time, can still be a new concept for many. Even if someone is a regular user of mobile check capture, they may not grasp the concept of a digital wallet.

    You need to engage customers in an educational way to help them see the value in these tools and understand how to make the most of digital experiences. Onboarding engagement platforms can help your customers adapt to new products and allow you to get more from your digital investments.

    When someone opens a new account at your institution, for example, an onboarding engagement platform can walk them through the mobile app the first time they sign on, showing them where and how to deposit checks, transfer funds, redeem rewards, contact customer service, and more. Doing this strengthens the digital customer experience and builds trust along the way.

    This article was originally posted on The Financial Brand.

    Insurance companies have long viewed social media efforts in a brand marketing light, leveraging social media for creative messaging and building corporate recognition. This is still a worthwhile endeavor, but it’s time for insurance marketers to add another level to their social media strategies: performance marketing.

    Performance marketing focuses on social media as a conversion tool, driving lead generation and sales rather than vanity metrics alone. Instead of tracking a post’s comments or reach, marketers can track how many readers click through to customized landing pages, for instance.

    This switch can be challenging for stakeholders to understand and accept at first. Larger organizations may have separate marketing teams for different product lines supporting the overall brand.Within those teams, employees may have separate roles for organic and paid social media. For a successful performance marketing strategy, all teams need to share a vision and commitment to driving conversions through social media.Not every post has to convert readers into leads, but it should be part of the journey to getting them there.

    If you’re at the beginning of this cultural shift toward thinking about social media from a more performance-driven angle that puts conversion metrics front and center, try these techniques to move the conversation in the right direction:

    1. Prioritize internal team education.
    Digital marketing is constantly changing — and changing fast. Marketing leaders must give teams the opportunity, time, and space to learn about the latest trends, tools, and social media marketing strategies. The more extensive their knowledge, the more comfortable they’ll be applying out-of-the-box thinking to social media in general.

    One excellent resource is Facebook Blueprint, which offers free classes and certifications around marketing on Facebook. Be sure to complement dedicated social media training with analytics training to ensure that everyone knows how to measure the success of social media efforts. Google Analytics Academy is an excellent resource for getting a grip on basic analytics and then diving into more advanced learnings from there. These courses help everyone get on the same page and more fully understand the breadth of possibilities available onFacebook and other social media platforms. 

    2. Emphasize that everyone has a role to play.

    Regardless of title or job description, everyone in your organization should work toward the same sales goals and understand that both brand marketing and performance marketing are needed to achieve those objectives.

    Marketers should coordinate with all departments to ensure that everyone understands their roles and responsibilities when it comes to both building the brand and converting sales. When creating social media marketing campaigns, marketers should also seek out insights from the specific departments to which campaigns will be driving traffic in order to determine the right content, messaging, and metrics for each campaign.

    What’s more, agents who are also sharing branded content on social media should understand how their efforts intertwine with other content to lead users down the sales funnel and closer to conversions. By including all stakeholders in the performance marketing strategy, marketers can help everyone view themselves as extensions of the sales team and increase the focus on driving conversions.

    3. Combine social branding with tactical messaging.

    Every social media marketing campaign should be cohesive, featuring consistent themes, verbiage, and images. Plus, all the promises made in branding copy should be highlighted in more tactical performance marketing content. In essence, the brand messaging sets the tone, and the performance messaging closes the deal by delivering on the promises.

    How does this work? Let’s say your insurance company has launched a social media branding campaign highlighting how easy it is to work with your business instead of with your competitors. The performance marketing aspect of the campaign includes a white paper that outlines your specific value propositions and client testimonials to back them up. You link to the whitepaper landing page from the social media branding campaign posts, viewers input their contact information into a form on the landing page to download the whitepaper, and your sales team gets direct access to primed leads. Brand and performance marketing work together to drive sales.

    Social media is harder than it was only a decade ago. Platforms have changed their algorithms to make organic content less visible, and social media marketing strategies that rely only on brand messaging and vanity metrics alone won’t cut through the noise. Instead, financial marketers need to use performance marketing efforts that offer real, tangible value to drive sales.

    This was originally published in PropertyCasualty 360.

    As mortgage demand soars to historic heights, it's good news for loan officers, but it also means the environment is more competitive than ever. Denim Social's CEO, Doug Wilber, joins the American Bankers Association to talk about how banks can use social media support loan officer success and close more deals.

    When it comes to connecting with consumers all over the world, where should you turn? Social media. Denim Social CEO, Doug Wilber, joins Sue Woodard on the Fresh Takes by Total Expert podcast to shine a light on the power of social media and utilizing it to nurture customer relationships. Doug answers the million-dollar question, “How does your brand connect with consumers on social media?”

    Connect & Convert on Social

    Successfully scale conversion optimized campaigns across all social media channels with built-in compliance, publishing tools, and more.
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    RESOURCES

    VISION
    January 19, 2021

    For a Successful Social Media Strategy, Agents and Insurance Marketers Must Work Together. Technology Can Help.

    When insurance companies incorporate individual agents into their social media strategies, they engage in a tactic known as social selling. It’s a winning strategy that can expand the brand’s reach exponentially, but agents and marketers need to stay connected to pull it off successfully.

    A solid, well-rounded social media strategy requires the specific expertise of both agents and marketers: Agents know their communities better than any marketer ever could. It’s their job to build relationships with clients and to know what’s happening in their networks. But marketers hold the expertise in digital content creation and social media advertising.

    The challenge in bringing these points of expertise together lies in scalability. Even at the biggest insurance companies, a limited number of marketing experts must oversee the individual social media activity of many agents. So how can insurance companies bridge that gap? Technology is a big part of the answer. Here are a few ways the right tools allow insurance marketers and agents to combine their expertise and enable successful social selling strategies at scale.

    1. Automated approval workflows

    Social media management software can automate processes to streamline the production and approval of social media content. With just the click of a button, agents can send posts to the right person for approval. Marketing teams can rest easy knowing no agents’ posts will slip through the cracks without proper sign-off, and agents can create content and participate actively in their social media strategies with the knowledge that appropriate parties have seen the posts before they go live.

    2. Pre-approved content

    Marketers can also make posting easier on agents by creating shareable content for them. The same social media software that automates workflows can also house pre-approved posts in a digital library where agents can access relevant content to share with their networks with ease. To ensure the content is relevant, marketers should connect with agents regularly to gather insights about what kinds of information their audiences want and need.

    3. Paid campaign management

    Along with maintaining oversight of agents’ organic social media activity, marketers can also use the software to easily manage and optimize paid social media campaigns for individual agents. When marketers put money behind agents’ social media efforts in paid advertising campaigns, they can target each ad to land with exactly the right demographic. Agents will know their messages are reaching the intended personas, and marketers will know their time, effort, and advertising spend isn’t wasted on the wrong audience.

    4. Tailored landing pages

    While likes or comments on agents’ social media posts might be a good indicator of how their networks are engaging with content, the real return is only measured by how many prospects convert into clients. For agents, the first step is catching their audiences’ attention on social media, but then they can bring prospects closer to converting with the help of landing pages. Marketing teams can create customized landing pages focused on specific products or services on the company’s website. Essentially, if an agent’s connection finds their social media post or ad interesting, they can follow the link back to the landing page to get more information specifically around the point that caught their attention.

    Ultimately, a comprehensive and effective social media strategy for insurance companies takes the work and expertise of both marketing departments and agents. And this work shouldn’t happen in silos. Instead, marketers and agents can utilize tools and technology to connect around content and create impactful, targeted campaigns that will deliver a significant return on investment.

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    SIMILAR POSTS:

    In an environment that is increasingly digital, home lending is a golden opportunity to build customer relationships that span decades. Maintaining human connection doesn’t require lenders to turn their backs on tech; in fact, the right tech can help deliver a more personalized experience for borrowers. In this webinar with Sales Boomerang, we talk with industry leaders about humanizing the mortgage customer experience by using technology to curate content and create opportunities that are highly valuable, relevant, and timely.



    How Denim Social Works With Agency Partners to Create Consistent,Compliant Digital Marketing for Financial Services

    Many financial institutions partner with outside agencies to create digital marketing experiences. They hire agencies to do what they do best: build connections to customers in creative ways. Even with this support, however, financial services marketers still have to ensure every piece of digital marketing stays compliant and distribute those pieces to their brand, branch, and employee feeds.

    That’s where Denim Social fits into the picture — not as a replacement for agencies you’re already working with, but as a tool to boost their efforts. Financial institutions can turn to Denim Social to work with agency partners to activate more effective, efficient, and compliant social media marketing strategies. When agencies can rely on our compliance and management platform to cover the logistics behind social media marketing, they can focus all of their energy on crafting impactful campaigns. And financial institutions can get more out of their marketing dollars.

    Here’s how we can work with agency partners to support financial institutions’ social media strategies and digital marketing efforts:

    1. Curated Content for Social Media

    So you’ve hired an agency to craft your social media marketing strategy and write attention-grabbing, interest-piquing posts. But not all of your social media posts should be new content. Your brand and employees should also share relevant news or helpful guides from other reliable sources.

    You don’t need to task your agency partners with curating existing material Denim Social can free up their time to focus on creating new campaigns with our curated content support.​ Our integration with content curation industry leader UpContent brings relevant, curated articles directly to the Denim Social platform, so marketers or agencies don’t have to be responsible for sourcing every post. That means a lot, especially for financial institutions running social selling campaigns where hundreds or even thousands of employees post brand-related content.

    2. Social Media Compliance Tools

    The last thing any digital marketing agency wants is to create content that will land your brand in regulatory trouble. But financial institution marketers understand that even one noncompliant post could be a big problem. Denim Social can serve as the compliance checkpoint between the content an agency creates and the public, ensuring no posts go live that shouldn’t.

    Our platform offers keyword and phrase filtering to bring any creative copy with potentially noncompliant messaging to your attention — before it goes live. What’s more, automated approval workflows can streamline agencies’ communication with financial institution marketers, compliance teams, and other stakeholders to get the proper sign-off on every post with ease. Marketers also know they must record every social post and interaction in case they get audited by regulatory agencies, but agency partners shouldn’t have to focus their efforts on administrative tasks and record-keeping. That’s where Denim Social can help with automatic archiving tools to get tedious tasks out of the way and let agencies do what they do best. 

    3. Paid Social Media Management
    Denim Social can work with agencies to deliver the best possible results for paid social media advertising. Our proprietary social media ads manager automatically optimizes ads’ performance and consolidates all social media platforms into one easily accessible dashboard for a one-stop shop.

    When agencies can efficiently manage and optimize ads, they can easily scale campaigns at the brand, location, and advisor level. And when agencies can scale further and deliver more results, financial institutions get more bang for their agency buck.

    4. Accurate, Data-Driven Results

    Financial institution leaders need data to inform the smartest and most impactful decisions when determining where to allocate their marketing budgets. So agencies must provide that data to prove their worth beyond vanity metrics alone. Denim Social can help by clearly connecting social media campaigns to real business results.


    For example, agency partners can easily create landing pages for each campaign using our Landing Page Builder. From there, they can incorporate landing page links into the social media marketing strategy and track analytics to see how many prospects followed the digital journey from social post to landing page to getting in touch to learn more. Essentially, social media can drive conversions — which translates to more profit for your institution. And Denim Social can help provide the analytics agencies need to prove it.

    Successful digital marketing for financial services has to cover a lot of bases. It must be relevant, consistent, and compliant. Few financial institutions can do all of that on their own — and even their agency partners can use a hand to create more efficient and effective campaigns. That’s whereDenim Social fits into the mix. We don’t replace agencies: We support them in creating the strongest possible social media marketing strategies for financial institutions.

    Did you know that 50% of Instagram users become more interested in a brand when they see an ad for it? Brands are using social media advertising to drive awareness for their products and services among highly targeted audiences -- and they’re hitting business goals doing it. Want to learn how to get started with social media advertising? Watch our webinar “Elevate Your Social Strategy with Paid Advertising”  to find out how to easily get started with social media ads.

    Retail banks in the U.S. are facing a major customer attrition challenges. According to a recent Bain report, customers make as many as 55 percent of financial-related purchases from their primary bank’s competitors. While primary banks may be able to retain customers’ savings and checking accounts, the report suggests that they’re likely losing out on lucrative sales when it comes to loans, credit cards and investments.

    Considering that almost one-third of those who defected from their primary bank did so in response to a direct offer from a competitor, wise marketers will up their customer engagement and outreach efforts to retain more customers. Affordability of products is the top reason for customer defection, which marketers may not have much say in, but it isn’t the only contributing factor. Digitization has also been a major catalyst. Namely, the strong digital products and experiences that some banks offer—and others do not.

    Bank marketers who can jump onboard the digitization train to meet customers where they are with engaging, valuable messaging will be much more likely to keep customers coming back again and again for each of their financial needs. The following strategies can help:

    1. Put the human element front and center

    Traditional banks have an innate advantage over digital direct banks: The human touch. Leveraging this benefit, especially when it comes to increasingly digital customer interactions, can lead to measurable improvements in customer retention.

    One way to ensure the human touch remains part of every customer touchpoint is to focus on personalization. A February Insurance Thought Leadership piece revealed that 72 percent of people ignore marketing that’s not highly personalized. So targeting relevant content to the right recipients is essential, especially when digitization can easily strip the human element out of an interaction. Personalizing messaging and services to be relevant and valuable to the specific needs of each customer can bring the human element into focus even in a digital world.

    One way to create more relevant, personalized outreach is to practice social selling, or leveraging a bank’s employees on social media. People can relate more to other people than they can to big brand names. When your employees are the ones getting in front of customers virtually, it humanizes the digital customer experience and sets the stage for trusting and loyal relationships to come. What’s more, employees also tend to have further reach and engagement on brand-related social posts than brand pages alone, so they can expand the impact of your messaging exponentially.

    2. Create digital pathways to human interactions

    When considering how to anchor all digital marketing for financial services around the human element, keep in mind that every pathway should connect prospects and customers directly to a human.

    For example, a social media post from an employee could include a link to a landing page on your website where visitors can learn more valuable information on the topic of the post. On that landing page, you can include valuable content, such as a guidebook, behind an information request form. When users submit their names and email addresses, they will receive the content and your sales team members can reach out to them directly with a human-centric, personalized outreach approach.

    When prospects and customers know they’re just an email or phone call away from a real person at your organization, they’re likely to turn to you instead of an impersonal digital direct bank for their next financial need.

    3. Focus on customer retention just as much as acquisition

    Bringing in new prospects gets a lot of attention from financial services marketers, sometimes at the expense of retaining current ones. But focusing on customer retention and continuously improving the digital customer experience will help secure more revenue when it comes to additional services such as loans and credit cards.

    Listen to the needs of customers and keep refining your personalization tactics to meet their needs. Every time you get in front of a current customer with relevant, valuable messaging or content, you help build trust in that relationship and increase the chances of that customer coming to you for whatever service they need next.

    It’s true that people will always be drawn to brands that offer more affordable products and services. But money isn’t the only reason people look outside of their primary bank to fulfill their financial needs. Banks that differentiate by focusing on digitization alongside the human element will find that it’s easier to keep current customers from looking for greener pastures.

    This was originally published on ABA Bank Marketing.

    If you want your business' content to reach consumers, having a presence on Instagram is a given. It is, after all, the second most popular social media platform behind Facebook. But to make the most of your Instagram Page -- to attract and engage visitors, drive them to your website, and convert them into leads (and, eventually, customers) -- you need to optimize your Instagram presence. Get all the info you need to get started with Instagram fundamentals.

    Financial Services companies should be marketing and advertising on Instagram, but the Denim Social 2020 Social Media Benchmark Report for Financial Services shows less than 40% of institutions have adopted the platform. If you're considering starting an Instagram page, consider these basics for setting up your business profile.

    Download the infographic

    Looking for more guidance on Instagram? Check out our guide, Stronger Customer Relationships on Instagram.


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