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Banks struggle with social media - Citibank tops rankings.

Only a small group of the world's leading banks have finally grasped the opportunities of social media such as Facebook and Twitter. This is a main finding in a new analysis of the social media presences of the world's top 50 banks, conducted by Swiss research company MyPrivateBanking. In the ranking Citibank comes out as winner with an outstanding 47 points out of a maximum of 50. Runners up are BBVA of Spain and the National Australia Bank (NAB) with 44 points each, followed by Credit Agricole and Deutsche Bank with 43 points.

According to the report, "Social Media for Banking 2012", this small group of social media leaders in the banking sector have each managed to build an excellent social media presence reaching across all the important social networks and across global markets, and also including their own websites. A success built on an integrated global social media strategy, in most cases executed by a globalvteam of social media specialists.

Although social media have been around for a number of years now, a disappointing third of the benchmarked global banking players still only attain half of the maximum points or even less. This substantial proportion of leading banks worldwide, labeled as social media laggards by MyPrivateBanking, miss out on leveraging the new opportunities provided by social media. They have mastered only the basics of social media, are not present on all social media and lack a social media strategy entirely.

"We see a widening gulf between a handful of banks worldwide, leveraging social media extremely well to serve existing as well potential customers, and the majority of banks still struggling with the new platforms", says Steffen Binder, Research Director of MyPrivateBanking. "These banks need to catch up fast or they will lose a new generation of clients".

The critical weaknesses identified in the report for more than two-thirds of the banks are:

The majority of banks evaluated are still lacking an integrated and strategic approach to social media. For instance, only 16 banks have meaningful content on all the analyzed leading social network.

In most cases, social media are not up-to-date. For instance, social media on bank websites are only in seven out of 50 cases fully up-to-date, defined as the latest content on each blog or videocast etc being no older than one week.

Facebook, as the most important social network, is still the weakest link for most banks. On average, banks reach only 60 per cent of the total possible points for their Facebook presence in the MyPrivateBanking benchmark.

The report says bank must have a presence on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Youtube and Google Plus and that these presences require frequent updates with lively comments, videos, photos and other content to captivate the user. In addition, increasingly, users expect direct customer support through social networks like Facebook and Twitter, where they're posting questions and complaints and expecting timely responses.

2012 CPI Financial. All rights reserved.

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Publication:CPI Financial
Date:Apr 18, 2012
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