ABA report confirms that banks are more social than ever.


It was just over a year ago that we were talking about social media in our blog “5 ways to attract customers using social media,” making the point that social media isn’t “just for kids,” and that social media messaging platforms must be an essential component of a community banks' overall marketing strategy.

Why?  Because social media IS community, which is why it aligns perfectly with community banking. Unlike the large, national banks, community banks are in the business of participating in their communities and, importantly, helping people through relationships. It’s about connecting with customers on a personal level.  And that’s what social media is all about.

The recent American Bankers Association study, The State of Social Media in Banking 2023, makes the same point, delving deeply into how banks are managing social media programs, what results they are getting, what they wish they could do better, and what opportunities and challenges are on the horizon. The report, which you can download here, wraps up with some really insightful “takeaways” and is definitely worth a read.

According to the survey of 330 banks of all sizes, nine out of 10 banks (89%) believe social media is important to their banks and 88% are very or somewhat active on their social media accounts. They’re using their social media accounts to “educate, inform, entertain, and celebrate,” with messaging that, for example:

  • Promotes causes they sponsor, such as food drives or pet adoption events
  • Showcases employee promotions, anniversaries, and birthdays
  • Creates fun contests and giveaways 
  • Promotes the benefits of products and service

Not surprisingly, the most preferred platform is Facebook (95%), followed by LinkedIn at (75%), Instagram (62%), X (formerly known as Twitter) at (41%), and YouTube at (39%). Their top uses? Communication at (89%), recruiting at (75%), financial education at (71%), marketing and sales at (59%), and customer service at (57%).

“It’s not just fun and games and warm and fuzzies,” said Doug Wilber of Denim Social. “It’s a way of connecting directly with prospects and a powerful complement to tried-and-true methods.” Russell Davis, ABA’s executive vice president of member engagement, went on to say that the report “shows that social media serves as an essential marketing channel that allows banks to connect with customers by meeting them where they are.”

I couldn’t agree more. Social media channels have become the go-to marketing tactic for banks. And that’s probably why so many financial institutions – just over 300 right now – rely on us for their social media marketing. Our goal here at BankMarketingCenter.com is exactly that - to assist banks in meeting customers where they are, with marketing materials designed by financial industry marketing professionals. 

If you’re not all that familiar with what we do, we’ve built a web-based portal that provides our partner banks with thousands of marketing materials - from social media posts, in-branch digital signage and print ads, to direct mail and statement stuffers. Our subscribers enjoy a host of benefits, including:

  • Layouts that can be customized in just minutes with no software or design skills needed
  • Access to millions of Getty images at no cost, and 
  • ChatGPT functionality that can be a tremendous asset when crafting, for instance, a long-format piece, such as a brochure, blog, or newsletter.

There are a few additional features I think are worth mentioning. Once your ad is created, our portal will then, automatically, insert your logo, address, and phone number. It can then be automatically routed along a pre-determined, pre-arranged compliance approval path. Each subscriber also has easy access to their order history, enabling them to track all the marketing materials that are produced - an added benefit if and when, in a compliance review, they’re asked by regulators for access to their marketing materials. 

In the end, no matter how you choose to build your brand and revenue with social media marketing, as Nike says, “just do it.” And, if you decide that you need help, well, we’re here to provide it.

About Bank Marketing Center 

Here at bankmarketingcenter.com, our goal is to help you with that topical, compelling communication with customers; the messaging — developed by banking industry marketing professionals, well trained in the thinking behind effective marketing communication — that will help you build trust, relationships, and revenue. 

To view our marketing creative, both print and digital – ranging from product and brand ads to social media and in branch signage – visit bankmarketingcenter.com.  You can also contact me directly by phone at 678-528-6688 or via email at nreynolds@bankmarketingcenter.com. As always, I welcome your thoughts.