First Direct invited me to moderate a roundtable looking at social media in financial services in conjunction with Social Media Week (last week).
(I had planned to do a blog on this sooner - but despite a flu jab a few months ago - I came down with the most horrendous flu/cold last week - so blog posting were sparse)
The discussion included speakers from First Direct, HSBC, Royal & Sun Alliance, and Moneysupermarket.com, among others.
While there has been a real shift in focus towards customer needs from banks, when it came to social media 'cautious' was still the optimum word. In fact, 'fear', was uttered quite a few times at the roundtable. Despite this, it is 'courage' that I remember
I asked the gold star question - "Can anyone demonstrate any real ROI from a social media initative?" Lo and behold, Roberto Hortal, head of ebusiness at RSA Insurance piped up and said "Yes".
A few months ago the More Than unit of the RSA group ran a social media game in Poland, which resulted in actual, real money sales of the firm's insurance products. What does this have to do with courage? Well, Roberto admited that as head of ebusiness,
he almost shelved the project. Instead, he chose 'courage' over 'cautious' and as a result More Than Poland racked up a few more sales.
Roberto (@rhortal) will be sharing that story at
Finextra's upcoming Social Media Days in London on April 7th.
First Direct has also released a nifty,
edited, video short of the roundtable. So enjoy.