HOW BANKS AND CREDIT UNIONS CAN CREATE A PICTURE-PERFECT INSTAGRAM PRESENCE

Instagram probably makes you think of chic fashion brands, oversharing celebs and teenagers superglued to their phones. Not appropriate for a financial institution, right? Wrong. Instagram marketing for banks and credit unions is an effective way to enhance brand and drive consumer engagement.

With 800 million active monthly users (and counting), Instagram’s membership is impressive enough, but its big selling point is its user engagement rate (the ratio of likes, shares and comments to how many people see your post). Thanks to the platform’s active user base and image-driven content, it can offer brands more than 50 times the engagement of Facebook or other social media. No wonder Instagram is one of the most creative marketing ideas for banks and credit unions!

While financial services may not have the glitz of a designer handbag or luxury cruise, a smart, creative Instagram strategy can still elevate your bank or credit union’s brand. The key to Instagram marketing for banks and credit unions is to communicate what makes your organization unique by sharing authentic imagery and storytelling that focus on lifestyles and emotions – not products.

When it comes to Instagram marketing for banks and credit unions, ditch salesy messaging and focus on these subjects:

 PEOPLE

There’s a reason Instagram is dominated by celebrities (and aspiring celebrities). Users respond to personalities, not institutions. Here’s how you can use Instagram to showcase your brand personality:

  • Put people front and center (literally: photos with faces got 38 percent more likes). Share pictures of staff behind the scenes or customers or members engaging with your brand.
  • Celebrate the successes of your customers or members. Encourage them to share photos of the home you helped them finance or the vacation they took through your credit card rewards program.
  • Use contests and prompts to build community. Offer small prizes to encourage followers to respond to a fun question – Favorite movie? Dream vacation? – or share a relevant photo with your branded hashtag.

 COMMUNITY

Showing your impact in the community is one of the best ways to use Instagram. Are you the “business-friendly” lender? Post photos of local businesses you serve. Are you the “home town” bank or credit union? Share pictures from the events you support. Whether it’s a car show, rodeo or food festival, this is a great way to align your brand with the local culture. Some other suggestions:

  • Share photos and stories related to charities you fund or volunteer with, or highlights from your latest employee service day.    
  • Snap photos at your homebuying seminars and other educational events, and keep the conversation going with an online Q&A.
  • Load your posts with relevant, trending, local hashtags. This is a crucial way to stay visible on Instagram, where 95 million photos and videos are shared each day.

LIFESTYLE

Instagram’s demographics skew younger: about two-thirds of America’s 18- to 29-year-olds use it. With an increasing number of fintech competitors vying for younger consumers, Instagram can be a great way for your bank or credit union to reach them first. Here’s what you can do:

  • Highlight the lifestyle benefits of your products and services (less so the products and services themselves).
  • Tell real-life stories about financial milestones, such as first-time homeowners raising a family or millennials conquering student debt by refinancing.
  • Because 20-somethings are new to many banking concepts, share educational content such as infographics about budgeting or a video explaining how to deposit checks with your mobile banking app.

 

With the right content, being on Instagram could be a turning point for your financial services marketing. Need help with your Instagram strategy? We’ll make it a snap.

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