Financial Markets and B to B Social Media

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[This post is one in a series from Ragan's Social Media Revolution Conference, which took place in Chicago on June 24-26.
Browse my social media conference coverage.]

For two of the best examples of corporate communications and PR on twitter, follow @allanschoenberg and @cmegroup. Allan Schoenberg is director of corporate communications for CME Group, the largest exchange in the world in terms of market cap. To Social Media Club Chicago folks, Allan is a great guy who regularly attends our events [that’s Allan with Ann Knabe @thinkpr and me at the SMC Chicago June event], an event host for us and a speaker who helped define business to business social media for SMC Chicago in a video produced by CME Group.

“If it’s news, it affects us. We have a lot of ground to cover.” Allan Schoenberg, director of corporate communications for CME Group

Allan went through the four stages of CME Group, starting out 150 years ago up to today where 80% of trades are now electronic.

CME owns 3 exchanges: CME, Chicago Board of Trade, NYMEX and is the largest exchange in world in terms of market cap.

Allan’s a huge proponent of P-O-S-T, a systematic approach to social strategy from the book Groundswell.

P People-determine where customers are

O Objectives – decide what we want to achieve

S Strategies – plan for how relationships will change

T Tech – decide what SM platforms to use

Finding Your Audiences

Search => know your customer’s search terms, product names, trends

Listen => choose your platforms

Engage => remember, it’s not about you

70% of what he posts is indirectly about CME Group (via blogs and news stories) and 30% is directly linked to to cmegroup.com

[note above stats edited and clarified by Allan; updated from original version]

He suggests talking about things that matter to customers first, then bring them into the site later.

Goals: Be a leader in financial services social media and influence opinion on what matters to us.

Brand Enthusiasm: Turn customers into “fans” – what teams do you really rally around?

Loyalty: improve customer service – this is their platform, this is where they’re located

Advocacy: Build and maintain support. Post things that matter.

Social Media Guidelines

Managed and approved by corporate marketing communications to remain consistent to our brand and abide by regulators

Remains governed by CMH group’s Code of Conduct and External Communication and Disclosure Policy

CME Group employees are personally responsible for the content they publish, which includes confidential information.

Social Media Sites

Twitter 510,000 people

Most of the people followed are: reporters, traders and bloggers

Integrated with Facebook. 5-12 updates per day – uses www.tweetlater.com to set up tweets and get emails when someone replies to you.

Facebook 210 fans

Number of groups that they track – related to company, but created by others

LinkedIn – 4 groups, 2 run by education

Private group for journalists and bloggers for covering finance and economics – all about social media and the way news is changing. Group is about 100 people; working out really well right now. People do care about this – they’re talking, connecting and communicating.

Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn are more forward-facing, just starting on FriendFeed, Delicious, digg and stumbleupon.  Uses wordle a lot – uses FB as a marker on twitter.

Six Social Media Lessons Learned

1. Be unique and focus on value to users. What matters to you – as a customer?

2. It’s not a silver bullet [or replacement] for communications.

3. It’s two way communication – 80-90% of messages he replies as soon as he can publicly.

4. Try new things and benchmark – surveys haven’t worked for them, looking at social bookmarking sites.

5. At the very least monitor conversations: Backtweet, BackType, GoogleAlerts – get an idea for what is going on and being talked about your company. Uses Vocus right now.

6. Be social, be good, be curious – ask questions, get to know people. Can build alliances in other places.

What’s next for CME Group?

Measure and evaluate

Educate employees – they want to know what’s going on and how they can help

Further integrate communications – with traditional – should we have @cmegroup in the boilerplate

Develop and integrate SEO [search engine optimization] – never done SEO in terms of paid terms – tie into social bookmarking

Video content – do roughly 80-90 videos live every day, do their own original content every day

We are creating opportunities for customers to feel a part of our brand by listening to them and giving them ideas to talk about.

Questions from the audience . . .

Philosophy on measurement?

Mostly looking at eyeballs, using bit.ly. How do measure media relations and blogger relations? Follow @kdpaine – she is focused on measuring relationships. A lot of it is qualitative research: are we doing the right thing, where can we improve?

How many people on team?

12

Why did you decide to create your own Facebook page versus use the existing one?

Facebook fan pages get lots more in the way of analytics and options. Most customers are on group page, most employees are on the fan page.

Reach out to your customers, if they want to meet you face to face, then meet them.

How do manage the brand versus personal persona?

He is who he is. Follow @scottmonty – good model for business and personal integration.

How do you deal with c-level and company objections to getting started with social media?

Essentially, you have no control. You can correct information that’s wrong. If you’re out there having conversations as a real person, it can be to your benefit.

Update July 9, 2009
Thanks to Allan for sharing his presentation . . . .

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Note: Lightly edited transcript based on Barbara Rozgonyi’s reporting. May contain inaccuracies and typos. Also missing other opinions; please add yours.

Thanks to Ragan Communications for the ticket and to CME Group for hosting!

Social media conference coverage.

Read #ragansocmed, @wiredprworks twitter coverage or browse all #ragansocmed coverage.

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