Over at the Bankervision blog an exchange between leading banking bloggers Chris Skinner (of FinanSer) and James Gardner (at Bankervision) has prompted a lively exchange of comments from the banking and social media community online.
This is my contribution to the commentary
From my perspective, banks should proactively participate in social media, not to make money as Skinner argues, but to dialogue with current and prospective customers. Particularly during uncertain times as the long term prospects for banks – large and small – are questioned, bankers should reach out and engage with their customers online. Of course, social banking (Mint, Wesabe, Prosper, etc.) and social payment (PayPal, Facebook's Spare Change) are direct competition to banks' traditional services and, over time, banks will have to participate, or be left with the commoditized payment execution on the back end. But in the immediate term, simply dialoguing with customers via social media will enable bankers to a) learn about social media, b) better understand what their customers want and the services they are likely to adopt, driving prioritization of scarce resources, and c) remain relevant and top of mind as customers face intense financial anxiety.
Check it out and add your 2 cents here.