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Banks are avoiding Social Media!


This year in January ICICI bank launched their Facebook application page  which forced me to search for application for another banks in India. After doing little bit R&D we realized that Social Media is still an alien concept for banks especially nationalized banks.

The banks listed above are government banks in India. Scenario is little bit different when we enter in the Indian Private banks domain.

They are active but on branding level except one that is ICICI Bank.

ICICI Bank is very active on social media platform and present on all three major platform that is Facebook, Twitter and Linked-In. Their Facebook application is the most comprehensive and sophisticated application developed by a bank on Facebook. They have recently taken Social Media very seriously and integrated it with their branding and customer services very strongly.

Kotak Bank are running their latest Ad campaign  ”Subbu sab janta hai” on face book also and it is also the landing page of the Kotak bank on facebook. Their landing page on Facebook very basic and it is mostly for branding purpose. There twitter account started only in September 2011..

Axis Bank is active on Facebook but on their tweeter account they have yet to start tweeting. On Facebook this bank is active and their page is also comprehensive but no where in comparison of ICICI bank.

HDFC Bank is active on Facebook and Twitter. This Bank is using his Facebook page for branding purpose and we think that in coming days this page will be more comprehensive. HDFC twitter account is being  actively used.

On twitter the official account of SBI  states through the background image ” we are running a beta Twitter account of State Bank of India. Kindly follow us put up your valuable opinions”. SBI twitter account was opened in 2010. This time-frame is a bit long to run a beta account on Twitter. Banking institution in India have not open their doors for Social Media Platforms.

The scenario is not different in US also. Eight out of ten top banks of US didn’t have the sharing tabs or buttons of top three major platform of Social Media on their home page. The two banks who have accepted Social Media on their homepage of their website are CITI GROUP and BNY MELLON. The acceptance level of social media platforms in the world of banking is very low.

The major hurdles we could think of for this low acceptance are

  • Security is one of the major reason which doesn’t allow banks to adopt this media full heartily. Social Media is a platform for engagement with the customers and every one can see about the discussion which is going on. The chances of the hacking of these official pages is very high.
  • Engagement on social media platform in a positive way will require an extraordinary effort from the banking team and Banking industry is a retail oriented industry where customers branches are fragmented throughout country or world but on Social Media they will follow only one account and this is the place where real effort is required is how to engage and streamline this fragmented customer experience.
  • Recent world wide protest against banks and wall street has also raised the concerns for Banking industry towards social media.

We think that Banks will start taking these platforms seriously atleast for branding, Marketing and information dissemination in recent future. ICICI bank should be credited for taking this platform very seriously and applying it in a very sophisticated way on Facebook. It is a brave move from ICICI Bank to embrace social media.

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