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CU marketer offers advice on leveraging social media
FARMERS BRANCH, Texas (7/18/14)--Even if credit unions have embraced the fact that marketing to new members must include a social media strategy, for many the question remains how to develop the most effective and engaging campaign.

Social media has armed consumers with a voice and with more power than they've ever had, Melissa Herrington, Garland County Educators FCU, Hot Springs, Ark., with $3.5 million in assets, recently told Cornerstone Credit Union League magazine Perspectives ( Leaguer July 17).

Now, modern marketers have the task of deciphering how to leverage that development into growing their brands and influencing consumer behavior, she said.

"While there are many factors to consider when building a social media strategy, if credit union marketers view social media through a philosophical lens, that is, if they choose strategies that play to their strengths in an effort to be authentic to their membership base and to the ideals of the movement, (consumers) will be more apt to 'like' and 'share' in their marketing efforts," Herrington said.

To engage an audience through social media, Herrington suggests the following ideas:
  • Publish content specific to select employee groups that's informative, entertaining and educational. "Remember, it's not about you, it's about how your products and services can make your members' lives easier and help them become owners of their financial futures," Herrington said.
     
  • Recruit loyal members to be ambassadors for the credit union and ask them for input on social media content development. If they're invested in a meaningful and authentic way, Herrington says, they will be more likely to take ownership of the process and spread the word about the credit union.
     
  • Share the message that credit unions are different from other businesses, and explain how.
"The modern marketing strategy is to create content for specific groups of people so that when they see it, it not only resonates, but motivates them to take action," Herrington said.


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