The Aussie banking institutions are aiming at the social media space to increase popularity and proximity to their customers.
One thing that is still slowing them down from gaining larger online presence is the concern that such financial data may be used for fraud.
“There’s definitely some fear about integrating data on social media platforms. Banks are concerned how that data might be used: will they then own that data, will it be manipulated, will there be identity fraud,” commented Charis Palmer, the editor of the Online Banking Review.
An Australian website called Smarty Pig is licensed by ANZ from the US, and it allows you to track your savings goals. It also enables friends and family to join in order to help reach your goal.
In addition, NAB’s UBank is integrating bank products through broadcasting educational videos on YouTube and Mozo. Customers have to write reviews of these products and thus the institution gained a large community online.
“Australians are really embracing the concept. Everyone’s got a view on their bank and they’re only too willing to share – there’s a real desire for people to help each other make decisions,” said Rohan Gamble, Mozo’s founder and managing director.
He also noted that social media changes the relationship between banks and consumers as the bank’s power is now turning in favour of the consumer. The result is better products and services.
Social lending through community banks is becoming a very popular trend lately, explained Liza Boston, director of digital media agency Our Religion.
“People can connect to other real people. It’s like borrowing and lending with your friends and family – except there are thousands of people you can lend and borrow with. Social lending is a smarter, fairer and more human way of dealing with money. By demonstrating that social lending works on a large scale, Zopa has changed the financial sector for good,” she said.
Many opportunities are becoming available for the banking institutions, Boston added.
“Social media is the greatest market growth opportunity facing the banking sector this century.”