New regulations could impact social media marketers in the financial sector

Posted by Justin Hesser on April 1, 2013

As social media becomes an increasingly vital component of an organization’s marketing efforts, it’s becoming more important for companies to ensure they are receiving a strong return on their respective investments. This applies in a number of industries, including finance.

Earlier this year, the Federal Financial Institutions Examination Council (FFIEC) released proposed regulations on how banks, credit unions and other financial organizations manage their social media. Ultimately, the FFIEC believes financial institutions engaging in digital conversations with potential and current customers could affect their risk profile, particularly if they receive a bevy of negative feedback via their various social platforms. These risks include those pertaining to security, reputation and legal compliance, among others. Given the massive impact the financial crisis has had on the economy these past five years, the FFIEC is doing what it can to ensure no financial-related operations go unnoticed.

The FFIEC understands the importance of social media in the business realm – whether that includes Facebook or Twitter engagement, online video creation, blogging or any other form of potential interaction – and doesn’t want to discourage marketers from utilizing this valuable strategy. It does, however, want to see what organizations are paying for such endeavors and learn just how much they are receiving in return. That’s why one of the components of the plan is regular ROI reporting.

The FFIEC is asking financial organizations to draft reports and send them to regulatory officials, “enabling a periodic evaluation of the effectiveness of the social media program and whether the program is achieving its stated objectives,” according to the proposed guidance.

Without the right tools, this could be a complicated process. Financial organizations are already receiving a tremendous amount of pressure from a variety of governing bodies, so throwing an additional layer of regulations on top of standard operations will require extra tools to improve efficiency and organization. Using FileMaker to develop a custom database software solution would go a long way toward accomplishing this.

By implementing a similar system, companies can stay on top of their social results and track data pertaining to their ROI as a way to better prepare themselves for inspection.