PARSIPPANY, N.J. (9/8/10)--Garden Savings FCU, Parsippany, N.J., has found its social media niche. The credit union entered the social media scene in early summer with a video featuring Garden Savings President/CEO Lou Vetere. The video received more than 200 views on YouTube. In the video, Vetere provides an overview of what the credit union offers its members (The Weekly Exchange Aug. 23). A second video the credit union released parodies the differences between credit unions and banks. The script was written by the credit union’s sales and marketing team. Mike Powers, assistant vice president of marketing and business development; Rob Anselmo, vice president and retail sales and service; and Daniel Czerniawski, assistant vice president of lending, appear in the video. In the video, the credit union exposes the holes in banking customer service. “We plan on using the video as an educational piece to display to members and potential members,” Vetere said. The $190 million asset Garden Savings has partnered with Grey Sky Films, which films and produces the credit union’s videos, and monitors its Facebook, Twitter and YouTube accounts. While Garden Savings doesn’t use TV ads, it ran a radio campaign and a print ad campaign in Portuguese newspapers in Newark, N.J. The ads reinforce the credit union’s dedication to the Newark community. Six of seven Newark branch employees speak Portuguese. The credit union is getting ready to launch new target marketing and reporting software in November to track its marketing. In the future, the credit union hopes to separate its marketing efforts between traditional, direct mail and social media at a percentage of 50/20/30, Powers said. “The hardest part of social media is to get people to follow you,” Powers said. “More members are signed up now, but it was difficult to start.” Of the 27% of companies without a social media marketing strategy, 80% plan to have one in the next year. Only 11% of companies without strategies do not plan to implement one in the next year, with 9% undecided, according to a recent survey by King Fish Media (LoneStar Leaguer Aug. 25). About 75% of companies plan to increase their social media investment in the next month. Of companies planning a social media increase, one-third are tying it to a specific project, another third will make social media an incremental marketing budget increase and one-fifth will fund social media by moving budgets, while 11% are not sure.