Is Social Media worth the shift in marketing dollars?

My Marketing Strategy
Nicolette Lemmon, President & Founder

Headlines from the marketing pundits have been very interesting as we enter 2011. From noting a lack of budget to be successful to having mobile already usurp it as the “newest thing,” are consumers really interested in connecting with the financial institution enough to make social media a budget and personnel priority in 2011? 

Here are some interesting perspectives:

How to Avoid the Great Social Media Crash of 2011, Jamie Turner on, December 21, 2010

The author makes a case for the fact that “most businesses don’t know how to measure the ROI of their social media campaigns.” Therefore, the amount of time and budget are not being deployed to social media marketing.

11% of Consumers Have a Social Media Connection with Their Bank? No Way…, The Financial Brand, December 8, 2010

Jeffry Pilcher, editor of The Financial Brand, took to task a Fiserv survey that really did not “pencil out” in real numbers.  The main issue is that very small percentages of consumers want to friend, follow or fan their financial institution and even the biggest, like Bank of America and Wells Fargo with 50 million and 45 million customers actually reach less than 1% through social media.  If they can’t do more with their huge budgets, then Pilcher is right about the difficulty in gaining ground in social media.

Consumer Marketing Trends from 2010: Social is here to stay, mobile is on the way, Adam T. Sutton on, December 16, 2010

The author commented that mobile marketing is still emerging. “Marketers have not adopted mobile strategies in large numbers, experimenting with SMS, mobile websites and mobile apps, similar to how marketers experimented with social marketing in 2009.”

Four Reasons to Revive the Bulky Direct Mail Piece,

Writes Dean Rieck at Direct Creative, the recession and the shift to online marketing channels has made direct mail seem expensive and outdated, it hasn’t gone away for one simple reason, it still works!  A couple of items that he cites are that the direct mail piece faces little competition in the mailbox, provides extra space for marketing copy, and focuses the reader on your message, not just flipping through their preview pane in the inbox.

What is the verdict about social media? It’s just another tool that must be judged on its ability to support revenue goals at your organization.  With every marketing budget being lean and lowered, the most important thing to do is determine how best to reach your members/customers to achieve corporate goals.  The aspect of creating the ROI on social media is key for the main reason it is so hard to get leads or sell auto loans or checking accounts at a party (Facebook) or on the fly in 140 characters (Twitter)!


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