Web2.0 tools open up opportunities for business to interact directly with customers through implement appropriate social media strategies. Socail media such as Twitter, Facebook and Yelp also provide similar potential and resources for small business owners to compete with larger enterprises. Even finacial institutes catch the trend and utilize socail media as a direct channel to disseminate message to their customers.
Citigroup has long adopted Twitter to distribute organization news, upcoming events and market updates; together with blog, Facebook fanpage and Youtube, the website of Citigroup is like a web2.0 platform, connecting to miscellaneous channels for users to interact with the company.
CitiGroup applies different marketing strategies for different platforms to attract attention from customers. While they use Youtube
to deliver speaking from executives about market news and commercial videos about organization’s insight, they post breaking news and provoke interesting discussion on Twitter and Facebook.
Citigroup has successfully achieved desired outcome through adopting the concept of Enterprise2.0:
1. Productivity and efficiency:
Through the news posts and users engagement on socail media, Citigroup has boosted productivity by receiving and monitoring users’ feedback and comments on their distrubuting content, and further improve the product. At the meanwhile, using socail media to disseminate messages enhances the efficiency of information delivering, comparing with traditional channels such as TV or newspaper advertisements, it enable the business to communicate with customers more effectively.
2. Staff engagement & knowledge sharing:
Citigroup’s Global Transaction Services unit is in charge of monitoring outlets of respective social media, to collect data from user feedback about potential direction to improve the products. Besides, Citi has employed a social networking based intranet since 2005, and in 2009 the cooperation adopted Citi2.0, which is a sharepoint-based platform, for improving the efficiency of collaboration and knowledge sharing. And it features idea generation function which encourages ideas created, voted on, and refined by the community of global employee.
3. Enhance reputation:
Citi utilizes numerous social media to directly reach and interact with end-users, through real-time information updates and news distribution, customers can gain thorough idea about the market and the company, and build up strong connection or even loyalty with it.
But even web2.0 tools give enterprise abundant opportunites to engage with their customers, it brings hidden dangers as well:
Citibank suffered a major information security crisis in 2011 while around 360000 customer’s financial data have been exposed through a large-scale cooperation hacking. Security experts have addressed that Citi should not have embedded bank account numbers directly in the URL. While according to Harvey Koeppel, CIO of Global Consumer Group, Citigroup, “Financial service has a risk-averse nature”, the exposurer of customer data may have tremedous negative impact on customer retention and reliability of organization.
2. Loss of Control & Impact on Reputation
According to Customer Service Scoreboard, Citi has only 10 positive comments out of 286 total submitted comments, furthermore, there are 3 negative comments from employee which are seriously against the banking service of Citi. Despite the reliability of whether it is submitted from “real Citi employee”, the comments will impose a brutal impact on customer retention and loyalty.
So what can Citi do?
|1. Focus on Diversity:Apply different socail media and platforms with specified strategies for different countries. Some of the regional websites of Citi have not employed any Web2.0 tools to facilitate their engagement with customers.2. Enhance the security to recover customer retention:It is very crucial to guarantee customer high information security since no one will like to risk exposure of financial statement. Since the apporach which the hackers applied to hack into Citibank’s website is quite simple, which reveals even worse concern about reliability of Citi.
3. Encourage active users engagement on social media:
It is easy to have customer like your fanpage while what shall be taken into concern of Enterprise2.0 is how to encourage customers to actively participate in the discussion, and be willing to recommend this product to their acquaintance, thus to improve retetion and attract more potential customers.
American Express Open has illustrated great examples of how to successfully get your customers talk about your products and further bring more customers in. Focusing on what customers would be interested in and providing them with appropriate contents and service are the key to keep customer stay, instead of using socail media to disseminate repeating commercial advertisements.