Delivering the right message to the right customers – Why lending companies must use social media diligently

Customer engagement rules supreme in any business to determine its success, and the lending business is no exception. The issue becomes more important when lenders must deal with defaulters to bridge the gap

Delivering the right message to the right customers – Why lending companies must use social media diligently

Customer engagement rules supreme in any business to determine its success, and the lending business is no exception. The issue becomes more important when lenders must deal with defaulters to bridge the gap

Eva Vergis
Eva Vergis
24 July 2019 Wednesday 08:54
2546 Reads
Delivering the right message to the right customers – Why lending companies must use social media diligently

Customer engagement rules supreme in any business to determine its success, and the lending business is no exception. The issue becomes more important when lenders must deal with defaulters to bridge the gap in communication and create an environment that encourages re-engagement and rehabilitation. This approach should help lending companies to come out of the red that can happen due to heavy defaults.  Unlike banks, alternative lenders, including online lending companies, cannot afford to make bad loans as it can dent their business model and even drive them out of business. In order to continue providing cheaper and speedier loans, lending companies like Liberty Lending must maintain strong communication channels with customers to gain their confidence in empathizing with them even in case of loan default.

Using the social media platform provides ample scope of customer engagement, and this is where alternative lending companies can outscore banks.  Experts feel that banks used to fail in the lending business because of making bad loans and inability to engage customers on social media. However, things have changed, and today, all financial companies, including banks, are using apps to provide the best customer experience. Financial companies just cannot afford to leave their customers in the dark and must always be in close touch with them to maintain a transparent relationship that builds trust.

To achieve the goal of superior customer engagement on social media, lending companies can adopt some or all of the following steps depending on the needs.

Understand why social media is important for finance business

Social media provides immense opportunities for lending businesses to stay in close touch with customers and build relationships that generate loyal customers. Taking special care of customers by communicating with them and sending personalized messages to generate trust that turns into loyalty towards the brand and business with time. The social media provides an open channel of communication to nurture potential customers and maintain a close relationship with existing customers to keep them abreast about the latest developments of the company.

Customers for financial products like loans are taking extra interest in digital processes, and the attraction is growing at a very high rate with the majority of US citizens using digital platforms for conducting financial businesses like banking and borrowing. With the generation of baby boomers going to the sunset and millennials expressing their intense inclination for using digital services of all kinds, it is a compulsion for finance companies to go digital in all areas of business. The most important aspect of social media communication is that it can deliver the right message to the right customers that increase engagement.

Choose the most effective social media platform

Which social media platform to focus upon is a very important decision because although it is possible to create profiles on every available platform, it really does not make sense. The social media does help to gain visibility for brands and business, but its real worth is in empowering users to communicate with the targeted audience in the most befitting manner that serves the causes of business. It means that the level of interactivity on social media platforms is very important, and this makes it evident to choose those channels only where businesses can find the majority of the audience. Businesses must ensure that they engage with the audience meaningfully by communicating with them to resolve issues and offer better customer care instead of solely relying on business promotion.

Since customer care is the most influencing factor that determines the success of finance companies, they must be active on customer-preferred channels to build sustainable relationships. Instead of trying to create too many different strategies for too many social media channels, companies must focus on a few selected channels to implement some selected and strong strategy that elicits the right response. Learning to make the best use of the tools of customer care on social media platforms should help to leverage the communication strategies for gaining maximum mileage.

Bridge the gap between marketing and customer care

For getting the most from customer relationships to augment marketing, it is essential for finance companies to break down the compartmentalization of the two functions to develop a holistic approach in dealing with customers for maximizing marketing gains. Marketing and customer care functions must work hand in hand for delivering the most efficient and personalized service possible. The sooner it is possible to break down the barriers better; it is for the organization. As each team gains more insights about customers, sharing of information enhances the strategies for more effective communication.

 While the customer care team attends to thousands of customer queries that come through the social media during the day they must have the support of the marketing team to address the issues and work towards resolutions to the satisfaction of the customers. Although many issues could be within some expected range and have stereotyped answers, there could be many others which are a bit out of the box and need the collaborative effort of both teams to provide some plausible solution. 

Build deeper customer relationships

Being active across social media platforms give financial companies unprecedented opportunities for engaging with customers to develop deeper relationships. It requires investing in social media to understand its ramifications on financial services and charting a way for making the best use of the platform by choosing the appropriate channels. Understanding the challenges of social media and learning to navigate across it should help to achieve the business goals of lending companies, especially in the area of payment defaults.

The social media communication can be quite informal and non-intrusive that helps to interact with defaulters without hurting their ego and sentiments. It helps to create the space that defaulters need for coming out from their shell and respond to the communication with positive intent. The interaction can go a long way to reinstate confidence among defaulters as they realize that the lender is ready to empathize with them and even ready to have the patience to work out some resolution that creates a win-win situation which is the most preferred outcome for any business.

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