Hosted by Valerie Morris, Porter Gale and Jeanne Bliss further discussed implications of Social Media for Credit Unions. Jeanne Bliss mentioned that Credit Unions have to listen pro-actively, not rely on surveys or focus groups, the real conversation happens on the Social Web. Porter Gale added that Credit Unions need to be committed to Social Media and not getting in and out. Don’t regard Social Media as a campaign, regard it as an initiative. Less push more pull. How to handle negative comments Porter Gale’s considers negative comments as gifts, a lesson for a company to fix what’s broken. You need to handle negative comments as transparent and open as possible. Treat each communication channel equal: Make sure people on the phone treat people the same way as on Facebook. How can Credit Unions join the conversation and tell their story? Don’t talk to yourself in financial magazines, find where the people are you’re trying to reach. Talk to people where they live. Find the influencers that change perceptions of their followers. Credit Unions stand for humanity and they can stand out in a vertical where most customers don’t have any good customer experiences. Find pain points of bank customers and create an experience that makes it easy for them to move to your Credit Union. And, make sure not to use the conversation as a data-mining opportunity. Join the conversation and be authentic. Engaging experiences Credit Unions need to focus on digital experiences, like delivering delightful experiences (Scanning a check on your phone) and creating tools that helps them improve their lives. In real life, a smile and handshake goes a long way. You need to have good people, a good culture and cover the basics before joining the conversation. If you have nothing good to talk about, Social Media won’t be the solution to your problem.