August 17, 2021

How to Shift Social Media Marketing from Branding to Sales

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.

RESOURCES

LEARN
August 17, 2021

How to Shift Social Media Marketing from Branding to Sales

By
Doug Wilber
CEO, Denim Social

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.

Subscribe to our newsletter and get the latest sent to your inbox.
Thank you for subscribing!
Oops! Something went wrong while submitting the form.
SIMILAR POSTS:

Make the most of your social media presence by optimizing your images and including essential information about your business on each platform. By giving your customers an optimal digital experience, you will be able to broaden your reach and provide better customer service through your digital platforms.

Facebook

IMAGE SIZING:

Profile picture: 170 x 170px (desktop), 128 x 128px (smartphones)

Cover photo: 820 x 312px (desktop), 640 x 360px (smartphones)

Keep the main content of your image centered. On a desktop the photo will display as 840x312px, but on mobile will size down to 640x360px.

Facebook post image: 1200 x 630px

The ideal width for a Facebook post image is 1200px, but height can vary based on what type of device the image display is optimized for. We recommend keeping it at the recommended size to keep consistency on all devices.

When creating a Facebook Ad graphic, any text should not take up more than 20% of the photo. You can find a cheat sheet here: https://www.facebook.com/ads/tools/text_overlay.

Facebook Video: 1280 x 720px

The optimal length for a short-form video on Facebook is 15 seconds to 1 minute; for a long-form video, it is 3 minutes. The maximum file size is 10GB.

Facebook Link Image: 1200 x 630px

Make sure to claim ownership of your links for the ability to change the link preview photo. You can find more info on that here: https://www.facebook.com/business/help/528858287471922?id=708699556338610.

Carousel Post: 1080 x 1080px

Carousel posts are a great way to display multiple services or features that you offer to your customers. When placing a Facebook ad you can link each carousel photo to a different link, making it easy for people to navigate to your specific products.

Facebook Story: 1080 x 1920px

Make the most of your stories by using all of your space and creating a fullscreen experience.

IMPORTANT PAGE INFORMATION:

Page name:

This is where you can name your Facebook Page, but be sure to keep it shorter than 75 characters.

Page username:

Customize your page URL by adding a username, making it easier for people to locate and navigate people from other digital platforms. Your Facebook URL can include up to 50 characters.

Page call to action:

Facebook gives you a variety of choices on calls to action. For example, if you’d like customers to contact you by email, you can set up a “Send Email” button with your email address connected and ready to go.

LinkedIn

IMAGE SIZING:

Profile picture: 400 x 400px

Upload your business logo here to personalize your profile. If this page is for an individual, this is where you will upload their headshot.

Cover Photo: 1584 x 396px

Having a personalized business cover photo will make your profile look more professional and give you the opportunity to provide page visitors with more of the look and feel of your business. This can include an image related to your business or a graphic with information on services you provide or your business slogan.

LinkedIn post photo: 1200 x 628px (mobile), 1200 x 1200px (desktop)

When targeting an audience on both desktop and mobile, make sure that you optimize for mobile to give people the best experience.

LinkedIn Link Photo: 1200 x 628px (mobile), 1200 x 1200px (desktop)

Providing an image with your link preview can help give viewers a better idea of article content and also communicate your brand look and feel.

LinkedIn Link Video: 4096 x 2304px maximum, 256 x 144 pixels minimum

The optimal video length for LinkedIn is 30-90 seconds and the maximum file size is 5GB.

IMPORTANT PAGE INFORMATION

Page name:

This is where your business name is located, as well as your company industry, location, and number of followers.

Page description:

Add your business slogan, mission, or a short description that tells people what your company, products, and services can do for them.

Twitter

IMAGE SIZING

Profile picture: 400 x 400px

Upload your business logo or headshot to personalize your profile.

Cover photo: 1500 x 500px

Be sure to center your content to give your followers an optimized experience on mobile.

Twitter post photo: 1200 x 675px

Allow your followers to see the entirety of the photo in their feed by adhering to this sizing guideline. The maximum file size is 5MB.

Twitter video: 1280 x 720px (desktop, recommended), 720 x 720px (mobile)

The optimal video length for Twitter is 20-45 seconds and the maximum file size is 512MB.

IMPORTANT PAGE INFORMATION

Underneath your profile photo, your company name and username will be displayed.

Write a short bio to tell people more about your business.

Instagram

IMAGE SIZING

Profile photo: 110 x 110px

Your profile picture will be small, so be sure your image is sized correctly and centered. This is a great place for your company logo.

Profile thumbnail: Displays as 161 x 161px

This is a preview of your large image post, but looks best when the photo posted is square.

Highlight Cover: 1080 x 1920px

Your cover photos should have centered images to give your highlight reel a balanced look. You can also name your highlights, but be concise as they can only be 15 characters long.

Instagram Feed Photo: 1080 x 1080px (square), 1080 x 1350 (portrait), 1080 x 566 (landscape)

The recommended width for all Instagram feed photos is 1080px, but the height can vary. To optimize for your feed display within your profile, we recommend using the sizing listed above to keep your image square.

Instagram Feed Video:  1080 x 1080px (square), 1080 x 1350 (portrait), 1080 x 566 (landscape)

The optimal length for an Instagram video is 30-60 seconds and the max file size is 650MB.

Instagram Feed Ad Photo: 1080 x 1080px

Your ad photo will display the same as a normal feed photo, but with a link attached. When creating an ad in Ads Manager, you’ll be able to upload a separate photo for Instagram to keep your photos optimized for the user experience.

Instagram Story: 1080 x 1920px (portrait), 1080 x 601 (landscape)

Make the most of your stories by using all of your space and creating a fullscreen experience. The maximum length of the story is 15 seconds.

Instagram Reels & Live: 1080 x 1920px

Reels can be used to offer tutorials, demos, or service features. These will be saved under your profile page for viewers to go back and watch at their leisure. The maximum length for Reels is 30 seconds. For Live, this can be used for announcements, events, or other Q&A sessions. These can also be saved for later viewing, and can last up to 4 hours.

What’s in a #Hashtag?
February 9, 2022

Hashtag use is a debatable topic when it comes to posting and engaging on social media. Before 2007 the hashtag symbol was simply known as the “pound” or “number” symbol, but now by putting this symbol in front of words and short phrases in a social media post, they become a “hashtag” – which creates deeper meaning. Hashtags may seem arbitrary because of how widely they are used, but they can add a lot of value to your content strategy if you are intentional about where you use them. The many benefits of hashtags can include content awareness, community building, SEO influence, and more.

Content Strategy

Hashtags bring together content that has shared subject matter that otherwise may never be associated. This gives the reader the opportunity to view content that other people have created around a hashtag and use it to influence your strategy moving forward. For example: If you are interested in creating a social media campaign around “financial freedom,” searching the hashtag #financialfreedom will open the door for you to find questions people have, social posts that have been utilized with this topic, and what other businesses are saying. You may find that someone else has already done a similar social campaign, and it would make sense to change some of your content ideas to differentiate yourself in the market. Getting an understanding of how your content will fit into the conversation can help provide value and drive clicks back to your website.

Community Building

Are you hosting an event, wanting to create synergy between people, or looking for community input on a specific topic? A hashtag is a great way to group together information and  conversations in one easily searchable place. By creating a hashtag unique to your project or event and promoting it for people to use, you’ll be able to find related posts in one feed. For example: you’re planning a mortgage conference and want people to be able to snap a photo of themselves in attendance, then post it to social media. By asking them to include a hashtag – including the name of your conference and year (#MidwestMortgageConference2020) –you’ll be able to see all of the posts from attendees in one place and potentially further connect with attendees in the future.

Is there a trending hashtag related to your business or community? Utilize this hashtag to join the conversation and bring recognition to content you are creating or already have published around a topic. With all posts relevant to a hashtag pulled into one feed, you can easily respond to others and create relationships based on shared interests or topics. For example: Mortgage rates are at an all time low and #homebuying is a trending topic on Twitter. As a mortgage business or loan officer this is a great opportunity to be a part of the conversation and offer insight into how you can bring value to potential homebuyers.

SEO Influence

LinkedIn had an important platform update that is now changing the game for hashtags related to SEO by including the first three hashtags in a published post within the URL. This improves where you show up in a Google search related to those topics, therefore driving traffic back to your post (and ultimately website!). Using hashtags can also bolster your content visibility as they essentially act as keywords on social media platforms. If someone searches for a hashtag and finds your content to be valuable, they may share it, potentially giving you more link clicks and improving visibility. It’s important that you use hashtags that are not only relevant to your content, but also likely to be found by people searching.

Best Practices

It’s important to remember that your post should consist of content that gives context to the hashtags you’re using. A post with only hashtags will likely be confusing and won’t offer any value to your followers. It’s also good to note that using more hashtags isn’t always advantageous. It’s in your best interest, too.

Remember that each social media platform handles hashtags differently:

  1. Twitter, the birthplace of the hashtag, continues to place value in their use and uses them to help you learn about what’s trending on their platform. Get involved in conversations happening on the platform around trending topics by including the hashtag in your post. Click on a hashtag to find a single feed of all posts that have recently added it to their post. Try not to use more than 2 hashtags per tweet.
  2. Instagram groups together posts that utilize the same hashtag in one image feed, showing you both recent and most popular posts. Using a hashtag on Instagram can help people discover your content and increase your following. It may also lead to content shares and profile visits, potentially increasing website traffic. On Instagram posts, feel free to use anywhere from 5 to 10 hashtags per post, and up to 10 in Stories.
  3. LinkedIn as stated above is now allowing you to boost your SEO when you use hashtags within their platform. Knowing what hashtags people are using and searching for commonly will give you an advantage in knowing what types of content to post. LinkedIn also turns hashtags into clickable links that allow you to see a single feed of posts using the same hashtags. For this network, keep hashtags professional and limit the use of them to 2 for each post.
  4. Using a hashtag on Facebook will provide viewers with a clickable link that takes them to more content they may be interested in. Facebook users are generally less likely to be searching for hashtags, but they still provide value in organizing content in one easy to find place. Facebook is also seeing its users shift to more private channels, and hashtags can be useful for grouping content by themes or topics. The optimal number of hashtags to use on Facebook? 1-2 per post.

Hashtags are not going anywhere anytime soon and can bring more depth to your social media posts when used correctly. You can start and participate in conversations, build community & event awareness, gain insight into content strategy, and improve your SEO all by adding the # in front of the keywords within your posts. With all of the benefits of hashtags, why not try including them in your next campaign strategy? Who knows, you just might end up trending!

Most insurance companies were setting out on a digital transformation journey with an expected time frame of about three to five years before COVID-19. Then the pandemic accelerated the need for digitization and shortened that time frame drastically—to about six months, in most cases.

Insurance marketing teams were already using digital marketing prior to the pandemic. But as the pandemic created a world mostly void of face-to-face customer interactions, they had to ramp up digital campaigns and touchpoints significantly—and quickly. Marketers had no choice but to mold ad-hoc digital marketing strategies onto existing department structures.

One problem with charging existing teams with new strategies is that they won’t always have the expertise necessary to pull them off. In-house teams might be used to handling copy and visual, as these have been and will continue to be staples of marketing for a long time. As a result of accelerated digitization across the industry, however, managing CRMs, digital marketing platforms and data are now also critical elements of insurance marketing responsibilities.

Can your team support that, or do you need to expand and restructure?

After more than a year of working this way, it’s time for insurance company leaders to take a deep breath and a step back. They need to critically evaluate the function and structure of their marketing departments to determine if they’re well-positioned to fully embrace modern approaches now and into the future. The tips listed below can help insurance company leaders create marketing departments best suited for pulling off excellent digital marketing strategies.

  1. Combine your brand and business unit marketing teams.

The traditional marketing department structure at insurance companies separates brand marketers and business unit marketers into two or more teams. The brand team is responsible for building and strengthening brand identity and recognition and typically measures its marketing success in recall and impression metrics.

The business unit teams, on the other hand, are responsible for supporting each line of business in the company, like property/casualty, life insurance, etc. These teams produce insurance marketing materials that generally aim to drive direct sales of a given product or service. A large part of measuring success for these teams comes down to conversion metrics.
When these teams operate separately, they can too easily become misaligned around goals. Building the brand, especially on digital channels like social media, can also have a direct impact on conversions. Brand marketers need to think with a conversion mindset, and business unit marketers need to consider how traditionally brand-centric tools, like social media, actually can help grow the business. Essentially, you want to centralize your marketing team so every marketer can collaborate and communicate across the business and unify around shared goals.

  1. Democratize digital marketing.

Marketers shouldn’t be the only team members able to drive your digital insurance marketing efforts. Agents, in particular, can have a huge impact on the business when they do marketing from their own social media business accounts. This approach, known as social selling, humanizes the brand and creates stronger connections between prospects and agents. It can help move prospects closer to conversion and continue nurturing customer relationships once they do convert.
If employees are posting brand-related content on social media, however, marketers will need a way to oversee their activity to ensure all electronic communication stays compliant and consistent with brand messaging standards. A content management platform can help. Look for a platform outfitted with permission settings, user roles and governance features to help you democratize content and eliminate any bottlenecks that could stall your social media marketing efforts.

  1. Keep growing your team.

If you’re looking to expand the expertise of your team and bring on more marketers, a natural assumption might be to hire professionals with direct insurance marketing experience. But remember that growth is the imperative behind your digital transformation in the first place, and if you really want to expand, that means expanding the perspectives on your teams as well. Hiring only marketers with industry experience can make your company seem indistinguishable from the rest as content will often look and feel the same.

Instead, consider hiring people with different backgrounds and experiences, even from outside the industry, to shake things up with new perspectives. People from retail or consumer-brand backgrounds, for example, can invigorate your digital marketing strategy with fresh, new ideas and expose your team to different best practices that can help you stand out from the competition. Look into other industries that really seem to understand consumers and consumer behaviors.

  1. Embrace agility.

Traditional marketing department structures at insurance companies can seem rigid and unable to change easily. But if the pandemic taught us anything, it’s that agility in the face of the unexpected is one key to a strong business.
Structure your team in a way that enables you to pivot quickly when necessary—not just in the face of a global pandemic but also with constantly changing consumer preferences. Build a team that can constantly react to the ever-changing market with new digital tactics. And make sure your marketing team is supported by the right tools and marketing technology infrastructure to support such efforts.
Invest in digital platforms that can automate campaign, content and message delivery across channels to keep your reaction nimble and responsive. The last thing you want is to spend weeks trying to get your marketing materials out, only to find they’re now irrelevant due to some market trend.

  1. Make data-informed decisions.

When it comes to essential infrastructure for insurance companies today, remember the importance of data. Data and analytics are critical, and you need the right technology to capture, compile and disseminate data from disparate systems. The insights you can glean from well-organized data analysis can help your insurance marketing team make the best-informed decisions and provide the room to experiment and test messaging based on the most current information.

The pandemic has forced the hand of many insurance marketing executives. Prioritizing digital marketing efforts is imperative today, but if companies want to see the most return from these investments, they need the right marketing structures to support them. Then, properly designed teams with the right tools and technologies in their arsenals can continue responding to changes as they come, constantly evolving digital marketing strategies and driving success.

This article was originally published in Carrier Management.

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.

As Denim Social studied more than 400 financial institutions for our 2020 Social Media Benchmark Report, we found that only about 20% were including links in their social media content. That means about 80% of organizations are missing big opportunities to create further engagement and drive ROI from social media.

Social media marketing strategies for financial institutions are important for generating interest and building awareness, but without links, a social post is essentially a digital dead end. A post promoting a new product or service might generate a bit of interest, for example, but if the viewer has nowhere to go from there, they’re likely to drop off after hitting the “like” button. It might generate awareness, but it’s not directly moving the needle on your business goals.

A solid linking strategy, on the other hand, can build digital customer journeys that bring more value to followers and increase social media conversions for organizations. When you’re planning your social media marketing strategy, think about how you can incorporate the following links to guide followers on a journey to becoming customers:

1. External links

Denim recommends that social media marketing strategies for financial institutions follow a “4-1-1” approach. That means six posts per week, four of which should be informational, evergreen content. These posts should include links to trustworthy, verified media sources. Sharing useful information from authoritative outlets is an effective way to educate audiences on financial topics, provide value, encourage further engagement, and build trust.

2. Landing page links

One of six weekly posts should be community-oriented. This post should aim to engage the local community and demonstrate how your organization gives back. A closing photo from a mortgage loan officer is one great example of a community-oriented post. Remember that these posts should aim to catch the followers’ interest and lead them to helpful services to learn more — they should not aim to sell services outright with overly promotional content.

To lead followers to more valuable content from the community-oriented post, include a link to a landing page on your website. The landing page could prompt visitors to input their name and email in exchange for a mortgage 101 guidebook, for example. When visitors submit their details, you have contact information for primed leads in your hands, and your audience has a valuable resource in theirs. Denim Social’s code-free landing page wireframe makes it easy for marketers, even those with no web design experience, to build and scale highly professional landing pages in minutes.

3. Owned content links

The last of your six posts should be promotional about your products or services. These can drive readers to a place on your website where they can learn more or engage with an expert at your organization to ask questions. Link to owned content such as blog posts to accomplish those goals. Well-written and informative blog posts can help you demonstrate expertise and build trust. Plus, linking to these pages will guide users to your digital property, much like landing pages, and you can use that data to retarget posts to people who might have shown interest but dropped off the digital customer journey before engaging further with the brand.

Remember, although this content can promote your products and services, it should still serve a greater purpose than to simply be a digital billboard for your brand. Provide valuable information that readers need, and include a call to action in each post that gives them the opportunity to engage further with ease.

Social media is an excellent brand-building tool, but if you’re not using it to drive ROI and further progress toward business goals, you’re not harnessing its full potential. Including linking tactics in your social media marketing strategy is a simple way to make a big difference.

Connect & Convert on Social

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

How to Shift Social Media Marketing from Branding to Sales

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.

Thank you! Your submission has been received!
Download Guide
Oops! Something went wrong while submitting the form.
ALL GUIDES:

It’s no surprise that social media can help drive results for your mortgage business. In fact, the question for most marketers at mortgage lending institutions isn’t IF they should be doing more social media marketing - it’s HOW. Download to learn how to:

  • Scale your social selling program
  • Plan your content strategy
  • Train your loan officers

AnnieMac is one of the fastest-growing mortgage loan providers in the U.S., serving clients in 42 states. Learn how Denim Social helped their team to streamline its brand’s social media strategy and activate social selling for hundreds of loan officers in just four months.

Instant Download

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.

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

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.

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.

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.

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

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!

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

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?
  • 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.

    Evolve Bank & Trust (“Evolve”) is an $700M+ asset institution with nearly 40 Home Loan Centers (HLC) and nearly 500 employees nationwide. See how Denim Social helped Evolve activate Home Loan Center Facebook pages over the course of just a few months.

    Download Here
    GUIDES

    How to Shift Social Media Marketing from Branding to Sales

    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.

    Download the Guide

    Thank you! Your submission has been received!
    Download Guide
    Oops! Something went wrong while submitting the form.
    Download Guide
    ALL GUIDES:

    It’s no surprise that social media can help drive results for your mortgage business. In fact, the question for most marketers at mortgage lending institutions isn’t IF they should be doing more social media marketing - it’s HOW. Download to learn how to:

    • Scale your social selling program
    • Plan your content strategy
    • Train your loan officers

    AnnieMac is one of the fastest-growing mortgage loan providers in the U.S., serving clients in 42 states. Learn how Denim Social helped their team to streamline its brand’s social media strategy and activate social selling for hundreds of loan officers in just four months.

    Instant Download

    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.

    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

    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.

    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.

    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.

    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

    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!

    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

    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?
  • 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.

    Evolve Bank & Trust (“Evolve”) is an $700M+ asset institution with nearly 40 Home Loan Centers (HLC) and nearly 500 employees nationwide. See how Denim Social helped Evolve activate Home Loan Center Facebook pages over the course of just a few months.

    Download Here
    GUIDES

    How to Shift Social Media Marketing from Branding to Sales

    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.

    Download the Guide

    Thank you! Your submission has been received!
    Download Guide
    Oops! Something went wrong while submitting the form.
    Download Guide
    ALL GUIDES:

    It’s no surprise that social media can help drive results for your mortgage business. In fact, the question for most marketers at mortgage lending institutions isn’t IF they should be doing more social media marketing - it’s HOW. Download to learn how to:

    • Scale your social selling program
    • Plan your content strategy
    • Train your loan officers

    AnnieMac is one of the fastest-growing mortgage loan providers in the U.S., serving clients in 42 states. Learn how Denim Social helped their team to streamline its brand’s social media strategy and activate social selling for hundreds of loan officers in just four months.

    Instant Download

    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.

    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

    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.

    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.

    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.

    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

    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!

    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

    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?
  • 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.

    Evolve Bank & Trust (“Evolve”) is an $700M+ asset institution with nearly 40 Home Loan Centers (HLC) and nearly 500 employees nationwide. See how Denim Social helped Evolve activate Home Loan Center Facebook pages over the course of just a few months.

    Download Here
    GUIDES

    How to Shift Social Media Marketing from Branding to Sales

    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.

    Download the Guide

    Thank you! Your submission has been received!
    Download Guide
    Oops! Something went wrong while submitting the form.
    ALL GUIDES:

    It’s no surprise that social media can help drive results for your mortgage business. In fact, the question for most marketers at mortgage lending institutions isn’t IF they should be doing more social media marketing - it’s HOW. Download to learn how to:

    • Scale your social selling program
    • Plan your content strategy
    • Train your loan officers

    AnnieMac is one of the fastest-growing mortgage loan providers in the U.S., serving clients in 42 states. Learn how Denim Social helped their team to streamline its brand’s social media strategy and activate social selling for hundreds of loan officers in just four months.

    Instant Download

    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.

    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

    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.

    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.

    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.

    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

    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!

    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

    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?
  • 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.

    Evolve Bank & Trust (“Evolve”) is an $700M+ asset institution with nearly 40 Home Loan Centers (HLC) and nearly 500 employees nationwide. See how Denim Social helped Evolve activate Home Loan Center Facebook pages over the course of just a few months.

    Download Here

    RESOURCES

    NEWS
    August 17, 2021

    How to Shift Social Media Marketing from Branding to Sales

    By
    Doug Wilber
    CEO, Denim Social

    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.

    Subscribe to our newsletter and get the latest sent to your inbox.
    Thank you for subscribing!
    Oops! Something went wrong while submitting the form.
    OTHER NEWS:

    New research from social media pros and partners, Denim Social and UpContent, shows that economic trends like rising interest rates and inflation are impacting more than bank accounts – they’re influencing social media activity. Denim Social and UpContent integrate to offer financial marketers curated collections of relevant, high-quality and compliant social media content.

    Hundreds of UpContent-derived third-party articles are shared by Denim Social users every week generating thousands of clicks. This integration provides unique insights on what content is resonating and driving engagement. The pulse study data shows three key social trends from the first half of 2022, including:

    Financial Wellness Content on the Rise

    From Q1-Q2 this year, the number of clicks per financial wellness article shared were up nearly 10%, indicating that  social media users are interested to learn more about financial health during tough economic conditions. Sharing credible financial wellness content can help both financial brands and individual producers educate followers and build trust.

    Expanded Content Resources Available for Real Estate and Mortgage

    Marketers increased available content in both real estate (+27%) and mortgage (+38%), helping users navigate spring buying season and a changing interest rate environment. In today's market, mortgage loan officers see the value in using social media to build and maintain strong relationships.

    Social Media Interest on the Rise for Banking

    Banking users are getting more traction with social media, boasting a 36% increase in clicks per article shared, quarter over quarter. This affirms Denim Social research showing year-over-year increases in social media channel adoption within the banking industry.

    Content sourcing continues to be a challenge for financial marketers. Not only is it time consuming, it can be especially tough to find high-quality, credible content. Together, Denim Social and UpContent make it easy to source curated, third-party articles. Here’s how it works:

    • Simply log in to Denim Social to access the curated content libraries. No search engine required and custom libraries can be quickly created for you to directly address the content needs of your market and strategy without as much as lifting a finger.
    • Curated posts include pre-populated post captions or your team can customize the message to fit your brand.
    • Select posts to use at the brand level or your marketing team can pre-approve and organize posts for employee use.

    Wondering if Denim Social and UpContent is a fit for your financial institution? Check out what our customers have to say:

    It’s really handy to have the UpContent Library in the Denim Social platform that we can grab trending topics from;  we can customize both the topics we want to see and articles from publications that our team prefers. We can also be specific to our various markets to include more local content in addition to industry-wide news.

    -Tiffany Van Zandt, Marketing Specialist, Bank of Oklahoma

    “Denim’s partnership with UpContent gave us a whole library of engaging content in just a few clicks. The articles provided allows us to share updates in the financial industry, what’s going on in our communities, and overall personal wellness. Since we started posted with UpContent, every one of our end users has experienced growth with their page engagement.”

    -Ken Stump, Digital Marketing Specialist-Content Team Lead, Dart Bank

    If you’re ready to fire up a social selling strategy with pre-approved content libraries and approval workflows, we’re here to help. Sign up for a demo to learn how Denim Social can help your institution level-up its social media strategy.

    About UpContent:

    UpContent helps marketing, sales, and HR professionals build trust, deepen relationships, and drive revenue through strategically curated content. UpContent analyzes millions of articles monthly and taps into the collective expertise of their company’s team by empowering individuals to engage with, and enrich, high-quality articles prior to sharing with customers and prospects through one of UpContent’s many social media, email marketing, and website partnerships and integrations. For more information, visit https://www.upcontent.com.

    Social media for banks is a necessity. That’s a given. You meet customers where they are, and today, that’s online. But customers (and potential customers) are not just engaging and interacting with one bank’s website, apps and social accounts. They are seeing competitors’ accounts, too. Bank marketers must leverage social media analytics to understand what works for their competitors—and figure out how to do it better.

    A competitive analysis of social media data in the banking industry can help guide your strategy by quantifying the successes and failures of your rivals. This is especially true of community banks, which may feel they are fighting an uphill digital battle against the resources of fintech companies and enterprise financial institutions. Thankfully, lots of competitor data is publicly available. Plenty of successes and blunders are out there for any savvy bank marketer to learn from. With the right social media analytics tool, this data could be the key to keeping up in today’s fast-paced environment.

    There’s a lot of powerful data on social media, and banks can leverage this to their advantage. Analytics and competitive insights empower bank marketers—even at smaller institutions—to be smart and efficient with both their time and dollars. You cannot differentiate your institution unless you know and understand the stories your competitors are telling.

    You also need to be aware of the quality of your competitors’ ads, calls to action and websites. If your marketing materials are not comparable you could lose customers. It is more than just optimizing a landing page—there needs to be a quality experience at every possible touchpoint. To start understanding competitors, consider these three tips when analyzing social media for banks:

    1. Benchmark your strategy. Benchmarking is the foundation of any competitive marketing strategy because it shows how measuring your competitors’ performance can help you step up your bank’s marketing game.

    With social listening tools that enable tracking competitors’ social media activity, leaders can see the organization’s performance benchmarked against competitors and get a clear picture of where social needs more investment to stay competitive.

    For instance, if you’re working to understand how often your team should be posting to social media channels, look at how often a competitor is posting. Or if you’re aiming for 50 percent audience growth and see everyone else has 5 percent month-over-month, you know to adjust expectations to be more achievable.

    2. Understand what is resonating. When financial institutions embrace social listening, they gain clear insight into how other brands are producing engagement on social channels and resonating with customers. One bank finding resonance could be an outlier, but if multiple competitors are using the same technique, your brand can use those trend insights to craft even more relevant messaging and maintain an advantage against the competition.

    Track which trends and are getting high engagement for your competitors. Which topics that drive the most engagement? Certain aspects of storytelling? Or maybe specific kinds of posts, such as short-form videos, resonate best. Understanding what works for your competitors will teach you what works for you. Conversely, if they have posts that are driving little to no engagement, learn from their mistakes and avoid spending your time and dollars doing the same thing.

    3. Identify proactive opportunities. Monitoring competitors on social media can provide unique insights and offer proactive opportunities for your institution to pick up a customer. For better or worse, social media gives us all a view into a brand’s dirty laundry. If you notice a competitor getting social media complaints on a particular service or product, this could be an opportunity for you to target that audience and tell them how you do it better.

    Are people posting messages on your competitors’ pages about how hard it is to reach a customer service representative with them? Grab the opportunity and design a targeted paid campaign that emphasizes your institution’s excellent customer service.

    These moments may not come often or easily, so stay vigilant to make the most of them.

    Competitor social media analysis is a vital tool to help smaller financial institutions remain competitive. It keeps your finger on the pulse of what’s happening in the industry while identifying what’s working—and what’s not—for the bigger players.

    This article was originally published on ABA Bank Marketing.

    For financial services to successfully connect with their customers on social media, authenticity is essential. It is more important than ever for customers to feel genuinely connected to brands, and brands should stay true to their values and communicate in a way that is welcoming and personal. Customers support businesses that resonate on social media, and authenticity is key to strengthening that brand-customer relationship. Leading with a personalized approach on social media is the perfect opportunity to be a source of trust and reliability for financial customers. How can banks, mortgage offices, wealth management firms, and insurance agencies incorporate authenticity into their strategy? Start with these approaches: 

    1. Rely on user-generated content. User generated content is 12x more trusted than product descriptions, and brands see a 25% increase in conversion with organic images versus overly-curated ones. Through social selling, financial institutions can look to their own employees and customers to help produce authentic content to support the brand. Consider how you can activate your employees to engage in social selling, and leverage customer relationships to provide testimonials, user experiences, and more. 
    1. Incorporate video content into your mix. To meet customers where they are, it’s essential to use video as a tool in your social media strategy. With younger generations spending up to 4 hours per day on social networks, video is only going to grow in popularity. With video, customers can see for themselves what a business does every day, giving them a visualization to connect with. To make it more authentic, don’t over-edit and use storytelling to define the brand. Keep it short, though; attention spans on social media are shorter, and marketers only have a couple seconds to capture audiences.
    1. Keep audience experience top of mind. Brand loyalty among consumers continues to decrease given the surplus of choices that digital media and social networks provide. Customers are loyal to brands that they like and that they feel are authentic and care about them. Sixty-one percent of consumers switched business from one brand or provider to another in the past year, demonstrating a need to listen to customers on social networks. Businesses that can listen to customers and translate that into an authentic message or piece of content will see more success than those that push content out for the sake of it.
    1. Always offer value with content. When creating a healthy and balanced marketing mix for social media networks, don’t forget to be mindful of how to engage viewers. This is a great way for a financial brand to be authentic to what it does and how it helps customers. Social media offers endless opportunities to provide brand information, educate through thought leadership, and give insight into company values and missions. Customers want to feel that they are along for the ride with a brand, being welcomed rather than pursued. While content can be fun and entertaining, also remember to add value through content that is practical, useful, and enticing. 

    Customers want real and authentic content on social media, and this presents opportunities for financial services to connect. The best practice is to keep content professional and on brand, but feel free to have fun and show that your organization is keeping up with the times as the industry continues to change and grow. Social media management platforms like Denim Social can help financial institutions to create and publish organically, and gives businesses the ability to manage posts at the brand and user level. The ability to show up and resonate with audiences on social media will be a winning strategy every time. Book a demo to see how publishing can work for you, and check out our existing social media resources for inspiration.  

    The ability to collect, interpret, and act on current customer data to cross-sell targeted products and services is a critical driver of revenue for banks, especially for mortgage lenders. Borrowers purchase an average of 11 mortgages in their lifetime, yet lenders retain fewer than 20 percent of past customers on average. That’s a lot of missed opportunity.

    One survey of nearly 300 financial institutions found that 64 percent of respondents are not using data to cross-sell to existing customers. It makes sense: In today’s fast-paced landscape, many financial services marketers have enough on their hands.

    Digital marketing changes at a breakneck pace, and it can be difficult to keep up with constant developments, let alone all the data. Many marketers do not know how to access or analyze customer data to capitalize on cross-selling opportunities. Further complicating the situation, significant structural barriers, such as siloed teams, can limit communication between data analysts and marketers.

    Many marketers pour the time and resources they do have into new customer acquisition, but cross-selling within the ranks of existing customers is a much more lucrative strategy. Acquiring new customers is significantly more expensive than retaining existing ones. An increase in customer retention rates by a mere 5 percent can boost profits by 25 to 95 percent.

    Social media marketing strategy for cross-selling in banking

    Fortunately, collecting the right customer data to fuel cross-selling efforts does not have to be a daunting task. A strong social media marketing strategy is an excellent means of collecting and acting on valuable data, and with the right approach, can be easy to pull off at scale. Consider the following key principles to effectively gather and integrate data from social media and up your cross-selling game:

    1. Understand your audience and what’s important to them. Social media is an excellent listening tool. By tracking likes, comments, shares and click-throughs, you can gain valuable insights about what content is resonating with existing customers and where your cross-selling opportunities lie. Remember that tracking existing customer engagement is key; while the probability of selling to a new lead is just 5 to 20 percent, the probability of cross-selling to a customer is 60 to 70 percent.

    Consider, for example, you’ve shared a post with tips for first-time homebuyers. the post gets a lot of engagement from your current followers, many of which have accounts with you. This could indicate that those customers are interested in securing their first mortgage.

    2. Target your messaging strategically. Social media is also a strong targeting tool. Once you’ve gathered engagement data, create custom lists within your customer roster, and retarget those customers with paid social media ads for relevant cross-selling opportunities. Retargeting is a great way to add power to your existing organic social media strategy. Building onto the example above, this could look like targeting ads for first-time mortgage seekers to the existing customers who engaged with your first-time homebuying post.

    When targeting paid ads, remember that timing can go a long way toward effectiveness and efficiency. You want to personalize ads to land the right messages at the right time. For example, a year after someone closes a mortgage with your institution, you know that they already own a home, trust your institution, and may be looking to do some home renovations. You can capitalize on the cross-selling opportunity by serving them an ad about home equity loans for improvements right when they’re likely considering diving into a new project.

    3. Use content to keep customers engaged. You can also use engagement data to see which customers have not engaged with your team lately. Use paid social as an opportunity to remind these customers why they chose you in the first place and show them what you still have to offer with valuable digital journeys. Re-engagement initiatives shouldn’t create digital dead ends—they should lead your customers to engage further with your brand.

    Link to personalized landing pages from both paid and organic posts to guide customers to valuable content and gate the content behind contact submission forms to collect more valuable data from customers. For example, your homebuying tips post will pique the interest of customers who are looking to secure their first mortgage. Include a link in the post to a landing page on your website that houses a guidebook on first-time mortgage seekers. Customers can put their information into the contact submission form in exchange for the guide, and the form can alert your team to make a follow-up call. The customer gets valuable information, and your team gets a cross-selling opportunity right in their hands.

    Combined, these principles aim to boost revenue and build stronger relationships. When you use data to understand your customers, deliver content when it matters most and personalize the digital journey, you can keep customers engaged and offer them more and more value through targeted cross-selling opportunities.

    This article was originally published in ABA Bank Marketing.

    Traditional bank leaders know that fintechs are quickly encroaching on target audiences and customers. They also know any chance of keeping up with digital competitors will depend on making fast and substantial progress toward digital transformation. Consumer demands for easy, accessible and convenient digital services will only increase.

    While some fintechs certainly represent a threat for incumbent banks today, fintechs will also be part of the solution for getting and staying ahead. Many fintechs exist to help banks succeed in an evolving landscape. For bank leaders looking to get their institution to the next phase of digital transformation, building more valuable bank-fintech partnerships should be a priority.

    Incumbent banks must find productive ways to collaborate with fintechs in partnerships to drive excellent digital customer experiences in financial services. The first step is looking inward to develop a clear understanding of your goals and provide the infrastructure fintechs will need to bring value.

    Whether you’re in a less-than-ideal fintech partnership now or you’re looking for the next step toward a digital future, start with these questions to set your institution up for bank-fintech partnership success:

    Do you have a capable liaison? Designate a digital transformation leader within your organization. This person should be an executive leader with excellent communication skills, a solid understanding of the organizations’ needs and goals, a forward-thinking approach and a passion for transformation.

    This leader will serve as a co-development resource as your organization establishes its relationships with fintech partners. They should relay information about the bank’s expectations, requirements and goals to fintechs and learn the overall functionality of solutions to share in training with internal personnel.

    What are you trying to fix? To effectively communicate your needs, your transformation leader will need a clear vision of each of the organization’s goals for fintech collaboration. One fintech won’t be able to achieve all your transformation goals, so consider multiple partnerships aimed at solving specific problems.

    Review your current state and identify any obstacles in the way of creating better digital customer experiences before choosing partners. From there, seek vendors specifically designed to fill your gaps. As you evaluate your options, be transparent about your needs. Without a clear goals, fintech partners won’t be able to deliver clear results.

    Will the solution increase value for customers? In a study examining how the pandemic altered banking consumer behavior, Accenture researchers suggest that nearly half of the banking public would stay loyal to a brand that offers a stellar customer experience. Considering that a 2019 FIS report found more than a third of consumers want to replace plastic banking cards with digital apps, an attractive banking experience is a digital one.

    While you can count on customer expectations for convenient digital services to stay, the specifics of their needs will change over time. Improving digital experiences in financial services should never be a stagnant goal. Monitor how customers react to your digital solutions and share the data with your fintech partners. From there, refine the customer experience together to improve engagement, increase loyalty and drive growth.

    Are your employees on board? For any fintech partnership to succeed, a bank will need its employees on board, especially those in customer-facing roles. These employees will be the ones educating customers about new tools and sharing the value of digital experience-enabling investments, so they need to believe in the power of digital transformation.

    But be wary that new technology might set off alarm bells throughout your organization as many workers regard digitization as a death knell for job security. Combat such misconceptions from the beginning of the planning process by educating employees on how digital solutions will help create better customer experiences. Collaborate with fintech partners to develop workshops that clearly demonstrate how technology will support, not eliminate, jobs.

    The future of financial services is digital. As consumers continue demanding better digital experiences, can your organization meet them with virtual access and convenience to leave a lasting impression? Bank-fintech partnerships based on clarity, transparency and value can help ensure the answer is always yes.

    This article was originally published on BAI Banking Strategies.

    The ice is melting and that can only mean one thing for those in the real estate business – spring buying season has arrived! Spring has long been a time for high inventory, but economic conditions make 2022 unique and perhaps more competitive than ever. And it’s not just buyers competing for homes, mortgage lenders need to work hard to stay competitive in a marketplace where everyone is feeling the heat.

    As we look to this year’s spring buying season, we see a two key factors impacting the marketplace:

    Supply is low and prices are up

    Prices are wild out there. Existing housing inventory remains historically low and supply chain challenges continue to put the squeeze on new home construction. With low supply, comes high demand and even higher prices. In fact, Zillow projects year-over-year rate of home price growth to peak at 21.6% in May.

    Rates are rising

    Despite some news-driven, short-term drops, mortgage rates are trending upward. After two years of historically low rates, with the Fed signaling, most predict rates will climb to around 4% this year. While still low, with rates rising, we could see buyers moving to lock-in at a lower rate.

    In an environment where MLOs can’t offer bargain-basement rates any longer, how do they stand out from the lending crowd? It’s about relationships. And the best way for a mortgage loan officer to stay in touch is social media.

    How important is staying top of mind with prospects? Consider this: 77% of borrowers move forward with the first lender they speak to when they’re looking for a loan. Showing up a prospect or existing clients’ social media feed can not only build trust, it can help MLOs close more deals.

    If you’re looking to make the most of social media at your mortgage institution, check out our guidebook, A Guide to Helping Mortgage Loan Officers Achieve Success with Social Media Marketing.

    Connect & Convert on Social

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

    RESOURCES

    VISION
    August 17, 2021

    How to Shift Social Media Marketing from Branding to Sales

    By
    Doug Wilber
    CEO, Denim Social

    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.

    Subscribe to our newsletter and get the latest sent to your inbox.
    Thank you for subscribing!
    Oops! Something went wrong while submitting the form.
    SIMILAR POSTS:

    The true foundation of sales is relationship building. While this has traditionally been done in person, especially in the insurance industry, the digital landscape offers endless possibilities for relationship building. This is why leveraging social media as a sales tool is so integral to your digital marketing strategy.

    Social selling is the perfect crossroads of marketing and sales, and enables intermediaries to add value to the customer journey where there wouldn’t otherwise be an opportunity. After all, Net Promoter Scores are 15 points higher for property and casualty insurance customers when they’ve interacted with their insurers within the past year.

    Developing a social selling strategy and launching a program can be daunting. Marketing and sales teams are already juggling full plates. Adding social to the sales mix is a culture shift, and supporting hundreds or thousands of intermediaries in weaving social into their everyday processes isn’t a small feat. Remember that social selling is more than marketing: It’s using social media as a digital relationship-building and sales tool.  

    This mindset shift can take some time, and launching your strategy and program won’t happen overnight. Luckily, there are tools available to make this culture shift much easier. Denim Social was built to power social selling programs within the financial services industry, and we’ve outlined what it takes to launch a successful program:

    1. Align with your team on the definition of social selling.

    Social selling is just what it sounds like: using social media to sell a product or service. It’s leveraging social to build personal relationships, showcase thought leadership, engage with prospects, interact with existing customers, and ultimately build trust and rapport that will eventually lead to sales.

    While this may be old news to you, intermediaries may have less experience with it. Take the time to talk about it this way and educate your teams on using social media as a sales tool. This time spent learning a new marketing tactic is very much worth your agents’ time, too. Prove it to them by sharing meaningful stats on the benefits of social selling. For example, LinkedIn’s 2022 State of Sales Report found the most successful sellers at large companies — those reaching more than 150% of quota — routinely use technology to build human connections with buyers.

    2. Educate your sales team.

    Remember that social selling isn’t just marketing’s responsibility. It’s an effort that should be supported by both marketing and sales. If you’re in a marketing role looking to launch social selling for your intermediaries, take the time to educate your sales partners on social selling. Craft your elevator pitch on how social helps intermediaries meet customers where they are in the digital landscape and how enabling them on social helps amplify your brand messaging.

    Keep in mind that social media in a heavily regulated industry can feel risky, and adding it to the mix of sales tactics that have “always been done a certain way” can feel like a huge change. Patience is key! Own the narrative around social selling, build your group of internal champions to help with this culture shift, and invest time in change management and your communication plan.

    3. Find your social selling technology.

    Once you’ve got your internal teams aligned on launching social selling for your intermediaries, it’s important to find a tech solution to make it all easier! Seek a solution that creates efficiencies for the administrators of your program and your users. For instance, does your platform account for compliance coverage? Does your vendor understand the nuances of your industry? As you’re evaluating potential platforms, make sure to consider both the administrative and end-user experience, as well as both organic and paid capabilities. A holistic social selling platform will include all these things.

    Spoiler alert: At Denim Social, we do all these things! We specifically support the financial services industry, understand your compliance needs, and, most importantly, understand the impact intermediaries can make through social selling (both organic and paid). We can also operate with any other tools you use to manage your brand, so you have full control over your tech stack.

    4. Identify social maturity.

    So you’re changing the narrative, gaining buy-in, and you’ve found Denim Social to help you — what’s next? It’s time to dig into your user group to identify social maturity. You don’t have to do it all at once — a phased approach with folks of different social maturity levels will make this easier to learn and scale from.

    Start by simply searching for your intermediaries on social media. How easy is it to find them? Are their pages updated and on brand? Is their “about” info robust and accurate? Have their profile photos been updated in the last decade?

    If you are answering “yes” to a lot of these, you already have a great start. Those are your people. But if you aren’t, that’s OK — you’ll just need to start with some generalized social education and profile optimization to get your group started. Taking the time to deliver this education is critical in making social media for insurance agents stick.

    5. Train and test your user group.

    Once you’ve identified agents who are either already active on social or ready to be active, start communicating. Let your whole organization know that you’re launching a social selling program. The more folks who know, the more they can support your work. Then, communicate with your first user group; let them know what to expect throughout the launch, including your level of support and upcoming training to get them started.

    And finally ... train! Depending on the level of social maturity of your launch group, this might mean starting with the basics of each social platform, as well as the basics of organic and paid social. If your users are super ready, it could mean jumping right into your social selling tech solution.

    6. Measure success and optimize over time.

    Once you have momentum, fuel that success with regular content. It takes time: Start simply by creating intermediary versions of your brand content and add this content to your content planning processes (for instance, you might craft language your agents can use to share branded social posts). One of the perks of Denim Social? We curate your library with our content integration.

    Finally, measure your success and share it with your internal champions, teams, and leadership. Your measurement might just consist of basic content usage and engagement at first, but it will ultimately grow to measuring return on ad spend and leads generated. Take the time to celebrate small wins and educate your internal partners on the growth of your social selling program. Check in with your social sellers to make sure they’re understanding the value and celebrating with you.

    At the end of the day, remember that launching and maintaining a social selling program is a long-term commitment. It can take a while to steer the ship in a new direction, and that’s OK! It means you’re thoughtfully implementing a new strategy and are training your team appropriately.

    To learn more about how insurance agents can optimize social selling and promote growth, connect with Denim Social today.

    New research from social media pros and partners, Denim Social and UpContent, shows that economic trends like rising interest rates and inflation are impacting more than bank accounts – they’re influencing social media activity. Denim Social and UpContent integrate to offer financial marketers curated collections of relevant, high-quality and compliant social media content.

    Hundreds of UpContent-derived third-party articles are shared by Denim Social users every week generating thousands of clicks. This integration provides unique insights on what content is resonating and driving engagement. The pulse study data shows three key social trends from the first half of 2022, including:

    Financial Wellness Content on the Rise

    From Q1-Q2 this year, the number of clicks per financial wellness article shared were up nearly 10%, indicating that  social media users are interested to learn more about financial health during tough economic conditions. Sharing credible financial wellness content can help both financial brands and individual producers educate followers and build trust.

    Expanded Content Resources Available for Real Estate and Mortgage

    Marketers increased available content in both real estate (+27%) and mortgage (+38%), helping users navigate spring buying season and a changing interest rate environment. In today's market, mortgage loan officers see the value in using social media to build and maintain strong relationships.

    Social Media Interest on the Rise for Banking

    Banking users are getting more traction with social media, boasting a 36% increase in clicks per article shared, quarter over quarter. This affirms Denim Social research showing year-over-year increases in social media channel adoption within the banking industry.

    Content sourcing continues to be a challenge for financial marketers. Not only is it time consuming, it can be especially tough to find high-quality, credible content. Together, Denim Social and UpContent make it easy to source curated, third-party articles. Here’s how it works:

    • Simply log in to Denim Social to access the curated content libraries. No search engine required and custom libraries can be quickly created for you to directly address the content needs of your market and strategy without as much as lifting a finger.
    • Curated posts include pre-populated post captions or your team can customize the message to fit your brand.
    • Select posts to use at the brand level or your marketing team can pre-approve and organize posts for employee use.

    Wondering if Denim Social and UpContent is a fit for your financial institution? Check out what our customers have to say:

    It’s really handy to have the UpContent Library in the Denim Social platform that we can grab trending topics from;  we can customize both the topics we want to see and articles from publications that our team prefers. We can also be specific to our various markets to include more local content in addition to industry-wide news.

    -Tiffany Van Zandt, Marketing Specialist, Bank of Oklahoma

    “Denim’s partnership with UpContent gave us a whole library of engaging content in just a few clicks. The articles provided allows us to share updates in the financial industry, what’s going on in our communities, and overall personal wellness. Since we started posted with UpContent, every one of our end users has experienced growth with their page engagement.”

    -Ken Stump, Digital Marketing Specialist-Content Team Lead, Dart Bank

    If you’re ready to fire up a social selling strategy with pre-approved content libraries and approval workflows, we’re here to help. Sign up for a demo to learn how Denim Social can help your institution level-up its social media strategy.

    About UpContent:

    UpContent helps marketing, sales, and HR professionals build trust, deepen relationships, and drive revenue through strategically curated content. UpContent analyzes millions of articles monthly and taps into the collective expertise of their company’s team by empowering individuals to engage with, and enrich, high-quality articles prior to sharing with customers and prospects through one of UpContent’s many social media, email marketing, and website partnerships and integrations. For more information, visit https://www.upcontent.com.

    Forward-thinking marketers understand the power of social media at all stages of their marketing funnel. From awareness and consideration to loyalty and even advocacy, social and digital channels can and do inform purchase decisions. Financial institutions are catching on — more than 90% of the 50 largest banks are currently on Facebook, and 88% have active Twitter accounts — but being on social media doesn’t equate to a strong social media strategy. Today’s digital market requires an integrated strategy that meets target audiences throughout the buyer’s journey. This means investing in paid social campaigns alongside organic and driving deeper relationships with customers through social selling.

    Sounds easy, right? While marketers may understand the strategies and costs associated with modern social success, senior decision makers may still need educating and persuading. That’s why it’s essential to be able to effectively communicate the benefits of integrated social media strategies. In addition to intangible benefits like building trust and humanizing your brand, both organic and paid social selling strategies offer metrics that enable marketers to prove value.

    After all, people buy from people. So if you’re ready to advocate for an expanded social media strategy, start by asking yourself these questions. Not only will they help you decide on your strategic priorities, but they will also show you how to articulate the value of social media strategies to the people holding the budget strings. To prove the value of social media in financial services and get buy-in from senior leaders, marketers must ask themselves these questions:

    Does Our Social Media Marketing Drive ROI?

    Expanding a social media strategy often means increased spending — so you must be able to show decision makers the value of social. While financial marketers are already advocates — they know the power of paid social media efforts and have seen it in action — other leadership may not have that knowledge. It’s up to marketing teams to connect the dots on how their efforts are driving business results, and that means providing a strong argument based on metrics and concrete benefits.

    Data tells a powerful story, so let it guide the conversation. And to further strengthen your case for expanded social media strategies, make sure to highlight these benefits:

    • Targeting

    While organic content is important, leaders must understand that it’s not enough to impact the bottom line without paid support. Paid social media gives more flexibility than organic content — you can target specific customer subsets, or even new audience bases, allowing for greater personalization and a higher ROI. It’s all about delivering relevant content to the right consumers at the right time.

    • Feedback

    Feedback may not always impact the bottom line, but social media itself does offer a direct line to consumers. With the lines of communication open, it becomes easier to listen and learn about their wants, needs, and interests. An open-ended post, for instance, can encourage comments, which provide qualitative feedback on any given topic. This will improve the trust in your institution; customers (and their followers!) will see the commitment to providing an ever-improving experience.

    • Conversion

    Social media is about more than likes: If you’re providing links on social media (and you should), you’re creating conversion opportunities. Direct consumers to a landing page — from there, you can collect lead information. All that’s left is a follow-up. If that landing page has a form, track completion rates. The icing on top? These interactions are all measurable. Prove value by comparing these metrics with traditional tactics. When did a leader ever see a recorded, data-backed conversion metric from a billboard?

    • Efficiency

    Measuring social media marketing ROI, like most analytics, requires technology — and the right technology, at that. Spreadsheets simply won’t cut it, and they’re not as accurate or efficient as the tools that fintech partners offer. That’s why the Denim Social platform was built with financial institutions in mind. Its analytics capabilities allow for a more efficient means of capturing results while also centralizing information. Data is readily available, which can simplify and improve the approval workflow. Improvements to the workflow process have been shown to free up 20% to 30% of employees’ time — so bring that statistic to decision makers to prove its necessity.

    How Do You Use Social Media Analytics to Make Your Case?

    Expanding marketing strategies means collecting more data, and that necessitates a robust social media management tool. Gathering data on any social media marketing campaign affords you the opportunity to measure its overall performance and gives you clear-cut evidence to support business measures related to those efforts.

    Of course, data should be gathered based on specific criteria. Meaningful insights come from specific measurable goals related to your campaign and the goals of company decision makers. While the objectives of any social media strategy for financial services will vary from one institution to the next, any marketing effort can benefit from optimizing strategy through social media ROI metrics.

    Use metrics to hone your messaging and audience. Every social media marketing post is a learning opportunity about what resonates with your audience. Analytics show what topics drive engagement, what calls to action inspire clicks, and so on. Then, fine-tune subsequent posts based on your findings. Mastering social is an iterative process. When speaking with upper management, highlight how this process delivers greater value over time by continuously evolving.

    As you optimize your messaging, look to target audiences. Social media, and paid social in particular, allows you to target subsets of consumers. Vary your messaging and content, and you begin to understand what connects with whom. This allows you to maximize social media spend going forward — you’re not wasting time and effort putting messaging in front of an uninterested audience. When decision makers want to reach specific audiences, outline how putting money toward paid ad campaigns makes that happen.

    Audience engagement with your posts isn’t the only important metric; they’re likely interacting with your competition, too. Denim Social’s social listening tools provide a simple — but comprehensive — snapshot of competitors. Use our built-in metrics comparisons to learn what’s working for others and where you’re ahead.

    When you’re looking at your own metrics, be sure to pay attention to where the customer journey is going. Failure to guide customers to a landing page and other lead-generating tools will lead to dead ends, which isn’t the best use of these channels. Trackable links and analytics help marketers recognize the best avenues for using social media posts to capture leads that translate into sales. If you aren’t effectively working toward leads, it’ll be difficult to defend the necessity of your budget.

    Finally, don’t measure your ROI too soon. If you’re going to connect the value of social to your broader business objectives, you need to sync your measurement time with your sales cycle or risk misunderstanding (and likely underestimating) the impact of social. Help leadership understand that ROI isn’t a one-and-done and it’s not instantaneous. That way, you’re guiding their expectations to the bigger picture of what your social media strategy is doing.

    Troves of data are available from social media channels, and you’ll need the right technology to organize the information and arrive at a set of objectives that align with your larger business goals. The right measurement tool can build the confidence digital marketers need to foster social media marketing ROI success.

    What’s the Cost of Getting Social Media Compliance Wrong?

    Social media compliance for financial institutions can feel challenging, especially today. SEC Chairman Gary Gensler has brought increased scrutiny to social media since his appointment, and it’s understandable for institutions to want to pull back efforts to mitigate compliance risks. Make sure your executives understand that this method loses more than they gain.

    Consider that customers are increasingly using digital methods to meet financial needs. Can anyone afford to lose out on that audience base? You won’t reach new customers, and you’re losing valuable social selling opportunities with the ones you have. Social selling influences half of revenue for 14 major industries — and financial services is one of them.

    Rather than scaling back social media efforts (and in the process, your revenue), work to mitigate compliance risks. When senior management airs concerns over compliance, counter with technology to automate compliance monitoring. Denim Social was built for compliance, so you can focus less on worrying if you’re compliant and more on fostering leads.

    With Denim Social, you can use numerous tools that can help in ensuring:

    • Protection. Problematic posts never see the light of day, as our platform not only establishes an approval workflow but also flags posts containing questionable keywords or phrases even before the review process.

    • Education. Our platform can serve as an ongoing compliance education tool. Team members receive almost immediate feedback and can test the equipped filters to understand what might cause regulatory trouble.

    • Enablement. Denim Social allows for the creation content libraries and curated, pre-approved posts. Team members can pull from these resources without the need for approvals, adding speed and efficiency to the process.

    • Record-keeping. The potential of an audit hangs over every financial institution. Our platform archives all social media posts and interactions. It even does the same with comments. If regulators come knocking, you’ll have a report in no time.

    • Notifications. Should a team member try to send a post through the approval process with a prohibited keyword or phrase, those flags send a notification directly to the individual. Employees quickly learn what can and cannot be posted.

    • Profile locks. Rules can be built within the platform that can prevent team members from posting problematic content, helping to quell worries about social media compliance. The goal is to provide the controls necessary to avoid issues.

    • Editing. Admins can edit or delete team members’ posts, comments, or direct messages right from the platform — across any connected social channel. In fact, the process is automated when prohibited keywords or phrases hit the network.

    Social media compliance for financial institutions shouldn’t be more complicated than any other compliance for your operation. It all comes down to your choice of technology, and Denim Social has the experience and tools you need to make it a breeze.

    What Do We Need in a Fintech Partner?

    The social media marketing needs of financial institutions are unique. You’re not necessarily selling a product or a service but a relationship with a qualified professional, which calls for authenticity and empathy to establish a sense of trust. The tactics used by “traditional” brands simply aren’t as impactful in the financial services space.

    Beyond that, social media compliance is complex. Without industry knowledge, it can be difficult for a marketing agency to navigate the nuances set by FINRA. Your fintech partner should fully appreciate the regulatory constraints and respect the concerns of your financial institution while still understanding how to drive real value with your social media strategy.

    However, according to Cornerstone’s “What’s Going On In Banking 2021” report, financial institutions aren’t having much success finding these qualified and attentive partners, noting that FI “boards will tire of not seeing results [from fintech partnerships]." Executives are relying on your expertise to identify fintech partners with a proven ability to collaborate and create solutions. And because boards may be wary of partners, you must be able to outline exactly how that partner will help you reach your goals. Help executives understand these benefits.

    • Customized onboarding.

    Denim Social customizes our onboarding process to meet your specific needs, so executives know they’re getting an experience tailor-made for the company. No questions are left unanswered — we walk alongside you to always offer an explanation. On top of that, our team will help you craft the communication necessary to get employees to use the platform. Emails, messaging, toolkits, and more are available to encourage adoption, so upper-level management knows they’re investing in a tool that will see widespread use.

    • Team training.

    Depending on your size and needs, we provide kickoff and regular training to help team members make the most of the platform so that decision makers can rest easy knowing our software isn’t being underutilized. We can also provide train-the-trainer sessions to move training internal, and our recently launched Academy can help marketers become certified on our platform.

    • Strategy consultation.

    Our customer success team can help you identify tactics to move the needle on your social media strategy. Just ask, and we’ll provide best practices and industry-relevant comparisons to inform your tactics and optimize your social selling implementation.

    • Content libraries.

    We work directly with your institution and UpContent to ensure you can create a customized content library that matches the specific needs of your business and your customers.

    In order to optimize a social media strategy, FI leaders and marketers must be able to sustain compliance at scale and understand social media measurement and analytics to see ROI. When you understand your metrics, you can bring that knowledge to decision makers, too. They’ll see the value you bring to the brand and associates (and match that value when it’s time to make budgets). Trusted fintech partners with dedicated customer success teams can help.

    Bottom line: Social media is hard, but marketers don’t have to do it alone. With Denim Social, they have dedicated team members they can call to help.

    Get in touch with us today to schedule a demo!

    For financial institutions, digital marketing for their financial services is a must, but organic posts are not enough on their own to build and nurture audiences. Organic content only reach an average of 2.2% of followers of social media platforms, so how can financial institutions stand out in busy social media newsfeeds and reach more people in their natural environments? The answer lies in paid social media advertising.

    A third of internet users find new products and brands through paid ads, so it’s no surprise to see a rise in digital ad spend over the years. While organic posts are also an important part of a social media strategy, paid ads are where financial institutions can grow their audience and reach their marketing goal metrics.

    You’re not doing ads for the sake of ads. Know your goals. Do you want to convert, get people to consider you, or build brand awareness? The platforms are going to ask you these questions, but you should know before you ever start building the ad sets. Once you have your ad campaign, budget, and targeting ready — the red tape needed before breaking ground — you can begin implementing your digital marketing strategy. This process can be repeated on multiple campaigns for maximum impact, increasing your ROI with each successful campaign.

    Creating Paid Ad Campaigns for More Effective Marketing Efforts

    When optimizing digital marketing for banking or any other financial institution, you’ll always hit these four key pillars:

    1. Choose a Platform

    Determining which platform is right for your financial institution depends on your objectives and target audience. There are no right or wrong answers; it’s about whom you want your ads to reach and for what purpose. For example, if you’re looking to build trust with professionals, LinkedIn is consistently rated as the most trustworthy platform. Featuring your ads there will have a higher impact than posting on platforms such as Instagram.

    Speaking of, Instagram is often used by Gen Z, and the most popular platform for following brands — almost 90% of people say they have followed, visited a brand site, or made a purchase because of Instagram ads. This would be a great place to post investment tips and personal finance advice because, according to FINRA data, Gen Z users are looking specifically for that subject. Tailoring your content to a specific platform requires thoughtful planning, but it’s a step you won’t regret.

    2. Create and Test Content

    Even a single social media post is made up of a lot of moving parts — from the images, to the copy, to the call to action — and each part can be optimized. Look at what pieces of your ads work, and change what doesn’t. Don’t follow trend articles; rather, pay attention to what works for your audience and your institution.

    This could mean using paid ads to A/B test different audiences or trying out different CTAs. The options are nearly endless. Track the performance of individual content decisions and use these insights to make improvements. And remember, all these content decisions — especially the placement of links — should be made with your customers’ purchase decision journeys in mind. Consumers want brands to be practical, authentic, and engaging. Test your content to ensure you’re delighting your audiences at every touchpoint.

    3. Monitor Analytics

    Every platform has analytics — but they all handle them differently. That’s why Denim Social gives you access to real-time, easy-to-understand engagement metrics across the board. Monitoring your analytics helps you track engagement metrics and benchmark your success against forecasts and competitors. By tracking which posts your audience engages with the most, you can also give your team a place to start when creating new content: Our platform lets you share local insights with your teammates in just two clicks. Taking high-performing topics and adapting them further will help you provide customers with the knowledge they find most valuable and cultivate trust. Almost a third of internet users say they find new products and brands through paid social ads, so monitor who you’re reaching and how it’s boosting your institution.

    4. Optimize Budget

    We’ve mentioned the need to set a budget, but let us emphasize that budgeting is crucial in your digital marketing strategy. With so many ad options available and so many potential target audiences to reach, it can be confusing to know where to invest your marketing dollars. Thankfully, Denim Social uses a proprietary social media ads manager to automatically optimize ad performance across multiple platforms. This allows you to run an omnichannel marketing strategy with ease.

    Digital marketing for financial services can seem daunting at first. Financial services marketers have a lot of details to pay attention to, and each platform has its unique way of serving ads. But a singular platform like Denim Social can help you run and monitor social media ad campaigns across all networks and ensure you’re standing out among the competition — to get started, reach out for a demo of the Denim Social platform today.

    In today's market, building and maintaining strong relationships with your connections is more important than ever. Your business and customer relationships can also help you make new connections, building your referral network and sales pipeline.

    Listen in as FinLocker President and COO, Brian Vieaux and Denim Social CEO, Doug Wilber, discuss how in a tough market, mortgage loan officers have an opportunity to use their social media influence to reach the right people at the right time and how you can get started with a social selling program to drive sales.

    Interested in learning more about social selling for mortgage loan officers? Check out our guidebook: Helping Mortgage Loan Officers Achieve Success with Social Media Marketing

    Social media for banks is a necessity. That’s a given. You meet customers where they are, and today, that’s online. But customers (and potential customers) are not just engaging and interacting with one bank’s website, apps and social accounts. They are seeing competitors’ accounts, too. Bank marketers must leverage social media analytics to understand what works for their competitors—and figure out how to do it better.

    A competitive analysis of social media data in the banking industry can help guide your strategy by quantifying the successes and failures of your rivals. This is especially true of community banks, which may feel they are fighting an uphill digital battle against the resources of fintech companies and enterprise financial institutions. Thankfully, lots of competitor data is publicly available. Plenty of successes and blunders are out there for any savvy bank marketer to learn from. With the right social media analytics tool, this data could be the key to keeping up in today’s fast-paced environment.

    There’s a lot of powerful data on social media, and banks can leverage this to their advantage. Analytics and competitive insights empower bank marketers—even at smaller institutions—to be smart and efficient with both their time and dollars. You cannot differentiate your institution unless you know and understand the stories your competitors are telling.

    You also need to be aware of the quality of your competitors’ ads, calls to action and websites. If your marketing materials are not comparable you could lose customers. It is more than just optimizing a landing page—there needs to be a quality experience at every possible touchpoint. To start understanding competitors, consider these three tips when analyzing social media for banks:

    1. Benchmark your strategy. Benchmarking is the foundation of any competitive marketing strategy because it shows how measuring your competitors’ performance can help you step up your bank’s marketing game.

    With social listening tools that enable tracking competitors’ social media activity, leaders can see the organization’s performance benchmarked against competitors and get a clear picture of where social needs more investment to stay competitive.

    For instance, if you’re working to understand how often your team should be posting to social media channels, look at how often a competitor is posting. Or if you’re aiming for 50 percent audience growth and see everyone else has 5 percent month-over-month, you know to adjust expectations to be more achievable.

    2. Understand what is resonating. When financial institutions embrace social listening, they gain clear insight into how other brands are producing engagement on social channels and resonating with customers. One bank finding resonance could be an outlier, but if multiple competitors are using the same technique, your brand can use those trend insights to craft even more relevant messaging and maintain an advantage against the competition.

    Track which trends and are getting high engagement for your competitors. Which topics that drive the most engagement? Certain aspects of storytelling? Or maybe specific kinds of posts, such as short-form videos, resonate best. Understanding what works for your competitors will teach you what works for you. Conversely, if they have posts that are driving little to no engagement, learn from their mistakes and avoid spending your time and dollars doing the same thing.

    3. Identify proactive opportunities. Monitoring competitors on social media can provide unique insights and offer proactive opportunities for your institution to pick up a customer. For better or worse, social media gives us all a view into a brand’s dirty laundry. If you notice a competitor getting social media complaints on a particular service or product, this could be an opportunity for you to target that audience and tell them how you do it better.

    Are people posting messages on your competitors’ pages about how hard it is to reach a customer service representative with them? Grab the opportunity and design a targeted paid campaign that emphasizes your institution’s excellent customer service.

    These moments may not come often or easily, so stay vigilant to make the most of them.

    Competitor social media analysis is a vital tool to help smaller financial institutions remain competitive. It keeps your finger on the pulse of what’s happening in the industry while identifying what’s working—and what’s not—for the bigger players.

    This article was originally published on ABA Bank Marketing.

    Connect & Convert on Social

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