Visible Banking Twitter Watch #6 – 55,589 followers / 121 financial institutions / 12 countries

Logo-TwitterI started to identify and track the financial institutions on twitter since 15 March 2009.

It is a work in progress, so please do not hesitate to flag any missing initiatives!

On regular basis, I will post some statistics and insights to understand how banks are leveraging twitter. I will do my best to spot the hit and miss, the best practices, the most innovative initiatives and the funniest ones.

VB – Twitter Statistics
Currently, I track 121 twitter accounts from banks, credit unions, credit card issuers, insurance company and tax specialists.

Please find below some stats (between 12-May & 18-May / stats collected on 18-May around 11am GMT).
* Followers of FIs:
 10,573 (new) / 55,589 (total) / 459 (average)
* Updates from FIs: 2,405 (new) / 27,441 (total) / 234 (average)
* Restricted tweets: 4
* Top 5 FIs – Largest Group of Followers: @SomersetMtg (6,075), @Wachovia (3,620), @INGDIRECT (2,933), @HRBlock (2,831),@usaa_news (2,740)
-> 57 FIs (+8) have 200+ followers and 24 FIs (+5) have 500+ followers.
* The 1,000+ Follower Club: 13 FIs (+2) have 1,000+ followers, @Wachoviais still the only bank with over 3,000 followers. 99 – 6,075 – 61: after just 99 days on twitter @SomersetMtg, Somerset Mortgage Lenders, have already a staggering 6,000+ follower base growing at an average rate of 61 new followers per day. What’s your secret Becky?
* Top FIs – Most Active:
 Advanta’s @Ideablob (59 updates),@Ask_WellsFargo (57 updates), @BofA_Help (34 updates)@UBank (30 updates),

VB – Comments
* UBank: @UBank now counts over 1,300 followers whereas they had only 217 followers on April 20th.
I think nobody can argue that their USB initiative was a success. Yesterday, I received an email from confirming I would receive my USB Key soon. The message was signed by Monty Hamilton, Head of Online, (@montyhamilton) who also took the opportunity to direct people to UBank’s other social media initiatives on YouTube and Facebook.
* Whether you like it or not twitter made it big: if you follow some of my fellow banking bloggers, you probably know that twitter is somewhat controversial. As far as I am concerned, I believe banks can’t afford not to take advantage of this fantastic tool for real-time market research and real-time customer support. May I remind its detractors that twitter’s concept of sending very short messages doesn’t allow to create ‘meaningful’ content, neither send comprehensive responses to your customers. On the other hand, it is a great tool to point people to the right direction, to demonstrate you listen, and to identify an issue in a timely manner.
Moreover, now it is official: twitter is BIG. It is big not only in the us where apparently 20% of the 42 million women engaged in social media weekly use twitter, but all over the world: in the last 10 days, a twitter user has been arrested in Guatemala to “inciting financial panic”, an Irish mountain climber is using twitter while climbing Mont Everest… And last but not least, twitter announced that their business model will be based on providing enhanced tools for companies to better communicate and market themselves on the popular service.
* Most sizable growth: 718 more people (+163%) are following @UBank, 118 more followers (+14%) for @Ask_WellsFargo, 109 more followers (+6.5%) for @BofA_Help. Last week @INGDIRECT@Ideablob, and@ANZMoneyManager bagged only 184 new followers between the three of them.
* Followers: @bank_of_america@flcu@chesbank@LIBRABANK and@citi_forward each lost at least one follower.
* Following: 2 banks added a massive number of “web friends” +1,054 for@Ask_WellsFargo, +765 for @UBank. I am not into following all your followers in return, but it is the only way to send private (direct) messages on twitter.
The following FI stopped following a few twitterati: 66 Fed Credit Union, Allianz Versicherung, CA Health Insurance, Capitol Credit Union, COP Credit Union, KU Credit Union, peoplesbank. @ANZMoneyManagerstopped following 194 web friends.
* Updates: LBSi_Ost “lost” three updates… Have you ever come across a loss of updates on Twitter? Could it be a bug from the popular micro-blogging platform?

@Visible_Banking on Twitter / Followers 91-110
VB-Twitter-355FansIn addition toVisible-Banking.comthe Visible Banking Page on Facebook, thanks for following me on Twitter. I am glad to announce that@Visible_Banking has 355 followers so far.

Thank you all for engaging with me on this exciting platform, and spreading the word around you!

Please find below my followers 91-110 (listed by chronological order):
91. @uturnchallenge (US)
92. @Ask_WellsFargo (US)
93@kitson (US): Josh Weinberger, Independent Writing and Editing Professional
94. @shiggy03 (US): Shannon Walsh, Account Manager at The Bateman Group
95. @collinst (US): Tim Collins, SVP Experiential Marketing at Wells Fargo
96. @wechslerross
97. @mgreen49 (US): Mark Green, Managing Director, VP, Digital at Wechsler at Wechsler
98. @bradgarland (US): Brad Garland, CEO at The Garland Group
99. @juliepaynter (US): Julie Ann Paynter
100. @stessacohen (US): Stessa Cohen, Research Director at Gartner, Inc.
101. @nufire1 (?): Missy Marti
102. @greenbanking (US): aj martin
103. @carrieagroff (US): Carrie A Groff
104. @robgarciasj (US): Rob Garcia, Director Product Strategy at Lending Club
105. @BankInnovation (US): JJ Hornblass, President & CEO at Royal Media Group
106. @IanFrode (France): Ian Poinsenet, Head of Innovation and Knowledge Management at BNP Paribas Assurance – Cardif
107. @MssRio (US): Jennifer Sypal, Commercial Services at Informa Research Services
108. @BarCampBank (World)
109. @viisii (Canada)
110. @bharatru (?)

VB Twitter Watch: 121 twitter accounts tracked so far
Since Visible Banking Twitter Watch #5, I have added 16 twitter accounts to the list: Caisse Epargne, Cornerstone_FCU, Ecureuil – Benefices Futur, Ecureuil – Entrepreneurs,, EducatorsCU, Heartland CU, MSU Federal CU, Orrstown Bank, Somerset Mortgage, Sound Community Bank, Susquehanna Bank, Texas Dow Employees Credit Union, UMB Financial Corp, UT Federal Credit Union, WV United FCU.

I am currently tracking the following FIs with a presence on Twitter:
* US – Banks: 1st Mariner Bank (3), Arvest Bank, Bank of America (2), Bank of Oklahoma, Chase Bank, Chesapeake Bank, Citibank, Fidelity Bank, First American Bank, First Arkansas Bank, First Federal, First National Bank, Hancock Bank, ING Direct, Marquette Bank, Nicolet Bank, North Shore Bank, Northeast Bank, Poeples State Bank, RBC Bank, Suntrust Bank,SVB_Financial, usaa_news, Wachovia, Webster Bank, Wells Fargo (2),
* US – Credit Unions: 66 Fed CU, Alliance CU, Bellco CU, Brewery CU,Capitol CU, Chetco CU, COP CU, CU CU, DATCU CU, ELGA CU, Ent CU,Florida CU, FORUM CU, Gesa CU, Group Health CU, Idahy CU, Kemba CU, KU CU, MaPS CU, Mazuma CU, MEA Fed CU, NWGA CU, Oklahoma Employees CU, Pioneer CU, Tech CU, Telesis CU, US First CU, UW CU,
* US – Credit Cards Issuers: Advanta, Discover Card,
* US – Insurance: AIG Hawaii, Allianz Versicherung, CA Health Insurance, Dear AIG, ND Insurance Dept, VPI Pet Insurance
* US – Others: HRBlock,
* Spain – Banks: Banco de Santader, Banco Sabadell, BBVA, Caja Navarra
* Canada: Banque du Canada, CEO_INGDIRECT, RBC, RBC Royal Bank,Vancity (2)
* The Netherlands – Banks: Friesland Bank, Rabobank (2)
* Germany – Banks: BNP Paribas, GLS Bank, Hann. Volksbank, landessparkasse, LBS IMMOBILIEN Ost, SEB Bank, Sparkasse GE, Sparkasse Hanau, Sparkasse KölnBonn, Sparkasse PF CW
* Australia: ANZozCEO, ANZMoneyManager, individuum, NAB, nablab, Raboplus, RaboplusNZ, Ubank, Westpac_help
* South Africa: First National Bank
* Chile: Banco de Chile
* Ecuador: Banco de Guayaquil
* Puerto Rico: Banco Popular
* Romania: Libra Bank
* UK: Capital One, first direct

To find out more about social media in banking and financial services, I invite you to check my social media directory and to contribute.

What do you think?

Written by Christophe Langlois

Based in London for almost a decade, Christophe is an entertaining fintech marketing keynote speaker and a trusted advisor to the global financial services industry on the topics of digital marketing, innovation and B2B social media.

Christophe has contributed to over 140 events in 18 countries.

Currently, Christophe is advising a number of fintech startups on marketing and growth hacking and he is the Chief Marketing Officer of The Fintech Power 50, an exclusive annual programme helping fintech scale-ups to accelerate their growth globally.

Christophe's views on are his own.

Visible Banking News – Show #1 – 11th-17th June 09

VB Social Media Banking News via Twitter #3 – 18th May 2009