first direct

How 16 retail banks handle social customer service

Last week I conducted an investigation into how 20 top UK retailers handle social customer service. It was a fascinating insight into the world of Twitter customer care and revealed just how a consumer’s experience can vary from brand to brand.

This week I’m turning my attention to retail banking. 

Earlier today I interviewed First Direct’s senior communications manager Amanda Brown and learnt some best practice tips as well as guidance on what to expect from aiming a Twitter enquiry towards a bank.

Will I experience the same level of personality as I did with non-banking retail brands? Will I have to be taken to a more secure channel? Will the banking industry just be too busy to answer my question?

Let’s find out…

How First Direct handles social customer service

It matters little whether you’re a shoe retailer or an online bank, if your brand operates a social channel, consumers will want to talk to you on it.

As I discovered in last week’s investigation into how 20 top UK retailers handle social customer service, the most successful brands are the ones that are not only quick to respond, but also genuinely helpful and clearly written with personality.

This is all well and good in retail, where perhaps it’s more acceptable to adopt a more relaxed, fun tone of voice, but how difficult is it for a financial services brand to not only maintain an efficient customer service channel that fully complies with banking regulations that’s also human?

Today I talked to senior communications manager Amanda Brown at First Direct to gain some insight into how the online and telephone based bank handles customers on social. 

Why Tumblr is the new unexpected social platform for first direct

When you think of Tumblr, you probably think of edgy creative images and striking visuals. You probably don’t think about your bank. 

But at first direct, we’re just about to launch a new Tumblr channel to showcase ourselves in a slightly different space, a space which is not particularly a ‘bank space’, a space which is unexpected.

Banking, social media, regulation and risk

A colleague passed something on to me last week: HootSuite’s CEO Ryan Holmes’ quote on social in regulated industries – “For highly regulated sectors like finance, social media can be a legal minefield”.

Whilst this isn’t anything new, I guess it goes without saying marketers in regulated sectors are the most cautious of our breed.