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TMCNet:  Financial Services and Social Media: Just Try It

[January 03, 2013]

Financial Services and Social Media: Just Try It

ST. PAUL, Minn. --(Business Wire)--

Financial services companies are in a social media quandary. There are many obstacles to using these channels effectively, the biggest being regulatory limits on what can be said to whom. And then there's the lack of clarity as to what topics social media users will find interesting enough to follow.

Securian Financial Group decided to stop worrying and forge ahead with a social media pilot program.

"We knew that if we waited for ideal conditions to launch a social media campaign we'd fall behind the curve," said Angela Schema, manager, Communications. "So we picked a topic, 'Long-term goals need a long-term partner,' that was both representative of our brand and comfortable for our compliance department. We hired a small crew, walked to a local park and conducted spontaneous interviews."

The interviews became a series of four videos that supported that company's brand proposition of financial security for the long run. Each of the videos, posted on Securian's YouTube channel, featured people (and pets) from all walks of life sharing their views on personal goals, financial strategies, debt, retirement savings and more. In November, Securian posted one video per week and promoted the series on the corporate Facebook and Twitter pages. They kept track of the number of followers, subscribers, likes and views on each medium.

The campaign objectives were:

1. Increase Facebook "Likes" by 25 percent
2. Increase Twitter (News - Alert) followers by 15 percent
3. Build brand recognition for Securian
4. Promote Securian's commitment to helping people reach their long-term financial goals

The measurable goals were exceeded. Facebook likes rose 27 percent to 571 and Twitter followers increased by 19 percent to 191. While these numbers are not large, Schema (News - Alert) says the experiment was a success on several levels.

"Finding a way to be both creative and compliant with social media was a win," says Schema. "Even better, our results show that our long-term value proposition is resonating and we can build a social media community around our brand."

Since 1880, Securian Financial Group and its affiliates have provided financial security for individuals and businesses in the form of insurance, investments and retirement plans. Now one of the nation's largest financial services providers, it is the holding company parent of a group of companies that include Minnesota Life Insurance Company and Securian Life Insurance Company, a New York admitted insurer.

DOFU - 01-2013

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