Congratulations to the 2011 Winners of the Global Finance ‘World’s Best Internet...

Congratulations to the 2011 Winners of the Global Finance ‘World’s Best Internet Banks’ Competition (Including Social Media)

Logo-GlobalFinance
On 22 July 2011, Global Finance (also on twitter @gfmag) released the 2011 edition of its World’s Bank Internet Banks rankings.

The rankings ahve been released by 5 regions in the world: North America,EuropeAsiaLatin AmericaMiddle East & Africa, and Central and Eastern Europe.

AkBank-Facebook-GlobalFinanceAward
I found out about this announcement on 26th July via facebook, thanks to an update from one of the winners in the social media category, AkBank in Turkey.

About the Competion and the Winners
Only banks that entered the competition were considered for awards, andawards were only given in those regions, countries and categories in which there were entries.

Winning banks were selected based on the following criteria: strength of strategy for attracting and servicing online customers, success in getting clients to use web offerings, growth of online customers, breadth of product offerings, evidence of tangible benefits gained from Internet initiatives, and web site design and functionality. Category winners, such as “best online cash management” were selected based on the relative strength and success of those web products and services.

AND “THE WINNERS” ARE
Please find below the highlights per region with a focus on digital engagement (social media and mobile banking).

North America
Best Consumer Internet Banks
Country Winners: Royal Bank of Canada, Wells Fargo.
Best in Mobile Banking: CIBC
Best in Social Media: Wells Fargo

Best Corporate / Institutional Internet Banks
Country Winners: Citi, Wells Fargo.
Best in Mobile Banking: Wells Fargo
Best in Social Media: Citi

Europe
Best Consumer Internet Banks
Country Winners: HSBC (x2), Marfin Popular Bank Public, Piraeus Bank, Activo Bank, Bankinter, Lloyds TSB International.
Best in Mobile Banking: Activo Bank
Best in Social Media: AkBank

Best Corporate / Institutional Internet Banks
Country Winners: Activo Bank (x2), Lloyds TSB International (x2), AkBank, Yapi Kredi Bank.
Best in Mobile Banking: Citi
Best in Social Media: Citi

Asia (APAC)
Best Consumer Internet Banks
Country Winners: Citi (x9), HSBC (x3), Standard Chartered (x2), BPI, ChinaTrust, CIMB Group.
Best in Mobile Banking: ChinaTrust
Best in Social Media: Siam Commercial Bank

Best Corporate / Institutional Internet Banks
Country Winners: Citi (x13), HSBC (x7).
Best in Mobile Banking: Citi
Best in Social Media: Citi

Latin America (LATAM)
Best Consumer Internet Banks
Country Winners: ScotiaBank (x20), HSBC, Banco Santander, Santander Rio, BBVA Banco Provincial, Banco Bradesco, Banco Agromercantil de Guatemala.
Best in Mobile Banking: Banco Santander Chile
Best in Social Media: Grupo Bancolombia

Best Corporate / Institutional Internet Banks
Country Winners: Citi (x17), Scotiabank (x11), Banamex, BBVA, Corpbanca Chile.
Best in Mobile Banking: Citi
Best in Social Media: Citi

Middle East and Africa
Best Consumer Internet Banks
Country Winners: Citi (x2), Standard Chartered (x2), Bank Leumi, Arab Bank, Kuwait Finance House, Blom Bank, Bank Muscat, Mashreq Bank, Samba Financial Group.
Best in Mobile Banking: Bank Hapoalim
Best in Social Media: Standard Chartered

Best Corporate / Institutional Internet Banks
Country Winners: Samba Financial Group (x2), Bank Leumi (x2), Abu Dhabi Commercial Bank, Bank Hapoalim, Standard Chartered.
Best in Mobile Banking: Citi
Best in Social Media: Citi

Central & Eastern Europe
Best Consumer Internet Banks
Country Winners: Swedbank (x3), mBank (x2), BRE Bank, Citi.
Best in Mobile Banking: Bank Millenium
Best in Social Media: BRE Bank

Best Corporate / Institutional Internet Banks
Country Winners: Citi (x7), UniCredit Bank (x5), BRE Bank.
Best in Mobile Banking: Citi
Best in Social Media: Citi

MY TAKE
First of all, congratulations to the winners!

Overall
Citi is one of the biggest overall winners with an outstanding number of awards, mainly for its corporate / institutional internet banks, and for its mobile banking services and social media activities.

This is not surprising considering Citi’s involvement in mobile banking withMobile Money Ventures, now part of Intuit, and its native iPad applications. If the bank has demonstrated its commitment to leverage social media in the US for the last couple of years under the leadership of first Jaime Punishilland now Frank Eliason formerly known as ‘ComcastCares’, to my knowledge the bank hasn’t been as active in other parts of the world like Europe, Middle East and Africa or Asia-Pacific…

The very existence of this new ‘social media’ category is another proof of the growing importance of this topic in the financial services industry globally. But I wonder what the Global Finance team wanted to recognize there? Did they mean: social marketing and not social commerce? Activity for customers or prospects? Level of Transparency or engagement? Crowdsourcing and product co-creation?…

North America
Wells Fargo did well in North America in pretty much all the categories, including social media. Congrats to Tim Collins – SVP Experiential Marketing at Wells Fargo and his team. I invite you to find more about their social media strategy. But I must admit that they haven’t necesserarly been the most innovative in the last year or so. I’m thinking American Express,USAABank of America

We are currently tracking 761 twitter accounts and 401 facebook pages and apps in North America. I invite you to watch our twitter Top 10s and our facebook Top 10s.

Europe
In Europe even though I could think of at least five other banks which should have been serious contenders (like webankfirstdirectthe BNP Paribas Group…) I’m glad Akbank won the social media award. Indeed, the turkish bank has achieved so much in just one year essentially thanks to the ragging war on facebook earlier this year between the leading turkish banks…

We are currently tracking 584 twitter accounts and 457 facebook pages and apps in Europe (Eastern, Western, Central). I invite you to watch our twitter Top 10s and our facebook Top 10s.

APAC
In the APAC region, I must admit I thought I would find Standard Chartered in the mobile banking and possibly social media categories. Aman Narain– Global Head of Mobile and Online Banking and his Breeze team have launched many innovative initiatives and services within the last twelve months.

We are currently tracking 119 twitter accounts and 99 facebook pages and apps in Europe (Eastern, Western, Central). I invite you to watch our twitter Top 10s and our facebook Top 10s.

LATAM
Grupo Santander Chile and Grupo Bancolombia are among the most active financial institutions in social media with respectively 9k and 13k likes on facebook. Please note that the size of their audience is quite modest compared with Santander’s Banesco (over 65k likes) and BBVA Provincial (over 45k likes) in Venezuela…

We are currently tracking 59 twitter accounts and 25 facebook pages and apps in the LATAM region. I invite you to watch our twitter Top 10s and our facebook Top 10s.

The Submission Challenge
Nowadays event organizers and online magazines which organize global awards ceremonies face a big challenge. As I mentioned in my recent post on the Forrest Groundswell Awards 2011, the quality of the winners depends essentially on the volume and the quality of the nominees or contestants.

So awards organizers must make sure to fully leverage social media channels themselves to increase the awareness and drive the volume of submission. They must ensure that the most innovative and successful banks and countries are represented. Otherwise, one might challenge the value of those very awards…

The EFMA and I were in a similar situation when we organized the social media awards during ‘Online Banking: the e-volution’ (Paris, May 2011)… But needless to say that we had some worthy winners!

And the awards season is just starting. On 26th July, eToro – the world’s largest investment network, with over 1.75 million users in over 140 countries and a finovate alumni – announced their innovative open book service helped them win three World Finance Awards this year: ‘Best Social Trading Network’, ‘Best Mobile Trading Platform’, and ‘Best Trading Software Provider’.

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