Consumers increasingly use social media to connect with card issuers
Facebook is most popular means of contact
US credit cardholders are increasingly using social media to connect with card issuers, according to a new survey.
Around 25% of people who have a credit card have become a “fan”, “friend” or “follower” of a credit card company or brand on a social networking service, the survey by Synergistics Research found.
Comfortably the most popular way to establish a connection with a credit card brand or company was via Facebook. Twenty-three per cent of the 877 cardholders surveyed have become friends of a card brand or organisation through Facebook, while LinkedIn was used by 5% and only 4% used MySpace and Twitter.
The research company said these social connections are often more about self-interest than friendship.
In fact, one-third of the people who connected with a card company or brand said they did so to find about special promotions and offers. One in six people wanted to learn about or share experiences with the brand or company, while only 8% had contacted a company via social media to request information or resolve a problem.
The survey – Exploring the Changing Credit Card Market – was conducted via Internet interviews with 1,000 people aged 18 or older.
Synergistics chief operating officer Genie Driskill said: “Card issuers should continue to expand their online strategies for customer outreach and brand exposure. In using social networks, issuers will need to respect the social nature of the media and focus outgoing messages on discount and promotional announcements and responses to customer inquiries.
“The largest proportion of those pursuing a connection with a card issuer have done so for reasons of self-interest, such as to take advantage of special offers or promotions, rather than because they like the brand issuer or card,” Driskill added.
The enthusiasm for social media interaction with companies among Americans is totally at adds with Brits, where a recent survey by ForeSee Results found that 97% have no interest in connecting with their banks via Facebook or Twitter.