If you don't think it makes much sense for banks to be putting a lot of energy into FaceBook and Twitter applications-despite what marketing teams think-new survey results from Javelin Strategy & Research provide some backup for your position.
Though going where your customers are is the mantra-and 52 percent of online adults and 82 percent of core millennial use social networks-most consumers can't fathom a great reason to interact with their banks there. "There's a 7:1 ratio of consumers who say, 'I don't see a connection between social networking and banking,'" says Javelin analyst Mark Schwannhauser.
That overwhelming "no thanks" softens slightly when researchers look at consumers ages 18 to 24; nearly one-third of these millenials think social networks are a good way to communicate with their bank. Also interested in the idea are "moneyhawks," those consumers that actively receive financial alerts from their bank. This group is three times more likely than consumers in general to say they are likely or very likely to interact with their bank via social networks.
Javelin's numbers suggest that despite the gold rush aura surrounding social networks, it's not crucial for banks to build applications there yet. What is key, however, is to monitor the networks, both to see what consumers are saying about your brand there, and to be poised for the moment when they would welcome another direct channel for interaction with their bank.