Promsvyazbank Aims to Create the First Social Bank in Russia [Guest Post]

Understanding all that, PSBank took most necessary precautions by:

* Describing firsthand what it is hoping to achive from social media: and that is not to bring the bank to social channels, but to make it all social: infuse social media channels into all channels and recreate customers interaction by applying the rules of these new platforms. Since cusomers are accustomed to instant response from the outer Web, there is no way the bank will manage a two-dimension stance (that most do). That required close cooperation with products, customer service and marketing – that agreed on a basic framewok – to hand out full control over social media to a single «change agent», that is mandated to coordinate and control speed, quality and approach on social media channels.

* The bank hired the best person it could possibly uncover – a true change agent in social media, that has the gut feeling to create numerous ways of engaging with users on social platforms. No way a banker can handle the phylosophy of social tools – so PSBank took onboard Alexey Giyazov who is part-timing as an advisor of several startups – that being crucial to managing relationships with an independent network of talented people.
I invite you to check my blog post ‘5 Ways Banks Use to Build their Social Media Team‘.

* The Bank initially defined several platforms where that would be crucial to be present (Facebook and Twitter) – and those that would only distract attention: it also defined metrics and feelings it would need to convey – in order to lower the churn and «oblivision slide» rates (more on channels later in this post).

* The Bank also synched the social media strategy with a product roadmap. That is deemed very important by the bank, seeing how the simplicity of social media channels should convey a similar feeling towards products (the Bank sees that as prime suspect for customers not being interested in banks products as they are interested in consumer goods).

Russia-FacebookStats-November2011The bank sees Facebook (4,8 monthly active usersas of end of summer) as its prime social media platform, despite the fact that social networking platforms like Vkontakte and Odnoklassniki are more numerious (both boasting of dozens of millions profiles). Since becoming prominent in Russia in 2010 – the platform is an elitist gathering of Russias most active and well-off customers.

The Bank launched its official page back in August 2011 – from where it quicly rocketed to one of the most prominent enterprise pages in Russia with close to 5k likes (this also taking note of a single person tasked to bring it online – and only 3 500 USD budget for design, initial marketing and prize draws).

The Bank’s approach is to make this platform a default platform for bank’s customers – and deliver first-class customer service and share news related to money saving.

The Bank is also taking the same approach to Twitter – that is used by it to alert customers on upcoming products, respond to customer queries and other questions.

The Bank is also planning to launch several geolocation-based services in 1Q of 2012 that would greatly appeal both to the Bank’s customers as well as other consumers too.

The Bank’s mid-term strategy is to take all the elements (share, like, social reputation) people now take for granted and take them on our offline channels (sucha as placing a reputation score to individial branches when a customer is there) – and to even mark individual employees – so that there would be a possibility to render the Bank as a truly social institution.

More Info on PSBank
* TOP 10 bank in Russia
* >1 million retail customers
* ~1500 ATM
* 260 branches
* New dedicated team hired to relaunch retail business in early 2011