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The Changing Landscape of Online and Mobile Communities

Posted By Carie Schelfhaudt, McDougall & Duval Advertising, Tuesday, June 4, 2013
Updated: Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Digital marketers are constantly being asked at networking events and social gatherings about the latest and coolest trends in social and digital media. With a new mobile app, social network or digital enterprise being launched on the market every day, it’s no secret that there’s an online trend towards data-rich content.

Though financial institutions historically have not been at the forefront of the social media revolution, it’s important for bank marketers to understand and embrace the ever-changing landscape of online and mobile communities. Keep your eyes open for emerging social networks, such as Instagram and Vine, which are riding the wave of success from other data-rich social networking giants.

Instagram

Beautiful photos and imagery come to mind when you think about data-rich online content. Instagram took what some would call "the best features of Facebook” (photos) and used the concept to create an online community centered around beautiful imagery.

If you have never heard of Instagram, the mobile app description reads, "It’s a fast, beautiful and fun way to share your photos with friends and family. Snap a picture, choose a filter to transform its look and feel, then post to Instagram. Share to Facebook, Twitter, and Tumblr too – it's as easy as pie. It's photo sharing, reinvented.”

With both an online computer interface, as well as an internationally-recognized mobile app, Instagram has transformed the way photos are shared on the Internet. Instagram photos feature a distinctively square shape that can be enhanced with easy-to-use filters. By working with Facebook and Twitter (not against), Instagram has made it simple to find friends and share content at the touch of a few buttons.

Skeptics will say that this is no place for financial institutions. However, if you’re feeling adventurous – and your compliance officers have you given you their blessing – here are a few ideas for images that financial institutions could create:

  • Retirement/Savings Tips
  • Financial Advice
  • Coupons
  • Charitable Donations (i.e. Jeans Day or Relay for Life)
  • Financial Funnies/Comics
  • Tips for First-Time Homebuyers

Vine

Vine, a relatively brand-new mobile app, has taken the video-sharing world by storm. Vine is a mobile app (available to Android users as of June 3, 2013) that allows users to create and share short, six-second video clips with other Vine users or embed them on social networking sites. In fact, Twitter acquired the app in October of 2012, making social sharing simple and easy.

Vine’s app description claims: "Vine is the best way to see and share life in motion. Create short, beautiful, looping videos in a simple and fun way for your friends and family to see.”

Vine videos can be created with unique "gif-like" motion effects, because the camera only records while the user’s phone screen is being pressed. The addition of an audio file has propelled Vine to its current success. But how are brands embracing it?

Check out this article from Social Media Today that looks at7 Brands Getting Creative on Vine. You’ll see examples of how brands embrace this new platform to roll out innovative campaigns. While the videos don’t often directly promote a brand’s particular products, they are engaging and popular, which helps these companies create an unmatched online buzz.

Here are some ideas for forward-thinking financial institutions that decide to embrace this new channel:

  • Three-Step Meals Under $10
  • Feature Bank Mascots
  • Showcase Community Events (Road Races, Relay for Life, etc.)
  • Making Gifts on a Budget

If using these platforms seems "out there” for your institution, remember that many financial institutions thought the same thing about Twitter and Facebook. For now, you may just want to keep tabs on the unfolding social media that your customers may experience.

What other cutting-edge social networks have caught your eye?

Continue the conversation in the comments below!

Tags:  mobile  social media 

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NEFMA Member Spotlight: Bill DeWitt

Posted By NEFMA, Wednesday, May 8, 2013
Updated: Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Name:Bill DeWitt

Title:Partner

Financial Institution/Company:HCC Marketing

What I like best about my job:Working with clients to solve their marketing challenges.

First job out of school:Deposit Product Manager at Fleet Financial Group. I actually had wanted to be a commercial lender growing up. The commercial lending program at Fleet was filled when I applied, but they offered me a position in Marketing.

The biggest challenge my company is facing in the coming year:Managing growth and staying on top of the ever-changing "media" landscape.

If I had an unlimited budget this is how I would spend it:I would do a lot of observational research to really understand why consumers make the decisions that they do. And then I would develop a campaign that spoke to those behaviors.

Marketing campaign I wish I had done:The original Volkswagen "Drivers Wanted" campaign with Cappuccino Girl. I joined Arnold Communications a year later so I saw the subsequent work from the inside, but that campaign made me really proud to own a Volkswagen.

Why I joined NEFMA:The ability to network with and learn from some really smart people.

Number of years as NEFMA member: 10 years.

What I like best about NEFMA:Learning from and sharing experiences with other members.

When I'm not at work you can find me (fill in blank):When you run a business, you are really always working, but I like to stay busy, so I have also gotten involved with some not-for-profits and local government. But there is absolutely nothing I enjoy more than spending time with my wife and three kids, be it our annual drive to Florida, a day at a swim meet or a family dinner. They are the reason I do everything else.

My favorite book I have read in the past year:Either "Great by Choice" by Jim Collins or "Predictably Irrational" by Dan Ariely.

Tags:  spotlight 

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YouTube Updates Make Everybody a Star

Posted By Carie Schelfhaudt, McDougall & Duval Advertising, Thursday, May 2, 2013
Updated: Tuesday, November 19, 2013


The ability to record homemade music and videos has never been easier, and during the past decade YouTube has helped make those creations readily available to the masses. So while The Kinks couldn’t have imagined YouTube in 1972, their song "Celluloid Heroes" captures today's impact of YouTube on society in an incredibly succinct way:

"Everybody's a dreamer / And everybody's a star
And everybody's in show biz / It doesn't matter who you are."

YouTube continues to evolve, testing the boundaries of its social influence. If you are using the site to make yourself, your company or your brand a star, you’ll notice there are even more changes the next time you log in to YouTube. Don’t worry, though: The site offers a complete guided tour so you can easily learn the nuances of your new channel.

When you've completed the tour, look to the right of your page to view the channel setup checklist. This list will guide you through the new setup process. Additionally, YouTube will automatically check off the items as you complete them. The channel setup checklist includes:

Set your channel icon -Look at the upper left-hand side of your YouTube page. This is where you will find your channel icon. Most companies choose to utilize this space by uploading the official company logo or logo icon, depending on which image best fits the perfectly square dimensions. Channel icons will also be present next to your financial institution’s name in search results and other areas of the site. YouTube suggests that a high resolution, 800 x 800 pixel image is uploaded, but be certain that it looks good at smaller resolutions.

Add channel art -Similar to a Facebook Cover Photo, YouTube provides users with the ability to visually tell a story of your YouTube page through the use of channel art. Utilizing this space will help bring your brand’s unique personality to life and set the overall tone for the page. For optimal results, be sure to closely follow theChannel Art Guidelinesto ensure that your images appear on every device used to access YouTube. Additionally, when you include your financial institution's website and social media channels on the About Tab, those links will appear at the bottom right-hand corner as an overlay on your channel art.

Describe your channel -Your channel description is your unique selling proposition, and should set your channel apart from others of its kind. Your channel description will appear on various areas of YouTube, such as in search results, but most prominently appears on the About Tab of your YouTube page. Keep in mind: The first few characters appear most frequently throughout the site, so think critically about your opening words.

Add web links -Add web links to the About Tab for easy, cross-channel marketing. These web links can include any links on the web associated with your financial institution, such as your website, blog and social media channels. They appear within the About Tab and can be chosen to overlay your channel art. See above section, "Add channel art” to include this feature.

Add a section -In YouTube, organization is key to getting your best—and most relevant—content noticed by visitors to your page. Sections are a perfect way to organize your video content for potential subscribers who are not familiar with your channel, as well as subscribed users who are returning to the channel to view new content. Think about which videos best represent your financial institution and would be the most relevant to your visitors. Then, categorize these videos into sections. Sections can include popular uploads, recent uploads and playlists. Similarly, sections can be updated dynamically, i.e. liking a video, or can be created with tags that split up your content into different themes.

Add a channel trailer -A YouTube channel trailer is your "elevator pitch” video that introduces your channel to potential subscribers in one-minute-or-less. Effective trailers encourage calls to action, so script a message to your visitors and use text cues throughout the length of the video. Don’t forget to showcase your financial institution’s brand personality by explaining the benefits of becoming a YouTube subscriber. Note: If the channel trailer feature is not enabled, unsubscribed views will just see your sections. See above section, "Add a section" to include this feature.

Which new YouTube feature will help bring your financial institution to stardom?

Continue the conversation in the comments below!

Tags:  social media  youtube 

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Welcome McKenna Management

Posted By NEFMA, Sunday, April 14, 2013
Updated: Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Along with some new members and first time conference attendees, there will be some new faces at the May conference in Framingham. We are pleased to announce that McKenna Management, Inc. of Chelmsford, MA has been hired as NEFMA’s new association administrator. Company principal Pam McKenna and account executive Maria Emrick will be joining us at the event for their first NEFMA conference.

McKenna Management will support NEFMA’s needs relative to general administration, conference planning and execution, financial management, as well as membership recruitment and retention. McKenna Management currently supports 20 other associations and foundations, including the New England Society of Association Executives, the Human Resource Leadership Forum and the Massachusetts Podiatric Medical Society.

We would also like to thank Beth Kurth and Kurth & Company for 5 years of outstanding support. They have played an important role in NEFMA’s growth and success, and we wish them well.

Tags:  NEFMA News 

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NEFMA Member Spotlight: Robyn LeBuff

Posted By NEFMA, Monday, April 8, 2013
Updated: Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Name: Robyn LeBuff

Title:Vice President, Marketing Team Leader

Financial Institution/Company:Kennebunk Savings.

What I like best about my job:Variety. Every day is different and brings a new challenge.

First job out of school:Payroll clerk – lasted six months.

The biggest challenge my company is facing in the coming year:Generating more loan volume to offset shrinking interest margins.

If I had an unlimited budget this is how I would spend it:I would develop a more aggressive digital marketing effort designed to generate a stream of business leads.

Marketing campaign I wish I had done:The Old Spice Guy – such an unexpected approach to market a product that I thought was a thing of the past. My dream campaign would include a clever idea that would go viral big time.

Why I joined NEFMA:Networking then, networking now!

Number of years as NEFMA member: Yikes - 34 years.

What I like best about NEFMA:NEFMA is a great way to connect with other marketing people to share ideas.

When I'm not at work you can find me (fill in blank):Digging in my gardens.

My favorite book I have read in the past year:Just Kids by Patti Smith.

Tags:  spotlight 

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