How To: Social Media Listening for Banks and Credit Unions


How To: Social Media Listening for Banks and Credit Unions

“Most people do not listen with the intent to understand; they listen with the intent to reply” – Stephen R. Covey

We talk a lot about monitoring on social media. Looking for comments, reviews, and tweets that need a response. Finding ways to make a connection when genuine engagement is a two-way street.

Social listening should be a part of every bank and credit union’s social media policy.

But what is social listening? Is that different than monitoring? And if it is, why should you care?

How To: Social Media Listening for Banks & Credit Unions

Social listening is like eavesdropping online.

It’s about finding out what’s being said specifically about your bank or credit union as well as your competition and any topics that might be of interest.

READ: 8 Ways to Use Social Listening for Your Business via Social Media Examiner

Listening makes it easier for you to catch negative issues or any buzz that might build momentum and become a problem. It lets you get out in front of the train and turn it around before it gets out of control.

How is Social Media Listening Different From Monitoring?

Monitoring, in social media terms, is the act of watching your platforms for any mention or direct communication with your brand. Constantly being on the look out for things you need to take action on.

Standard things to monitor:

  • Mentions of your official bank or credit union account names (@mybank)
  • Common ways people refer to your business in every variation
  • Website link shares ( )
  • Branded hashtags  


Monitoring also allows for quick response to customer service issues. They can take the form of:

  • Direct Tweets or messages
  • Comments on posts, even older ones that wouldn’t seem relevant today
  • Page reviews
  • Tagging the page within a post or in a Tweet
  • Posting directly to a page

By contrast, social media listening is a gathering of information.

What are people saying about you, your industry, your competitors? Are there trends you can spot? What keywords are industry professionals using and what hashtags are relevant?

Listening helps maintain awareness of the social media environment you want to be a part of.

READ: Track Every Important Conversation: 6 Simple Ways to Build a Social Listening Dashboard

Listening is easy to do if you have good social media monitoring tools in place and take the time to set a few things up in advance.

Ways to start social listening:

  • Ask for feedback on your social media profiles. See who responds and engages in conversation and follow any relevant pages or profiles that result.
  • Set up Google Alerts or Talkwalker Alerts (other free sites and tools do this as well) for certain keywords or mentions. You’ll get notified if those words come up. 
  • Set up custom Dashboard streams if you use a social media management tool like Hootsuite or Sprout Social. Follow keywords, hashtags, influencers, and competitors and check them daily. 
  • Read reviews on sites such as Yelp and TripAdvisor.
  • Make a list of any forums or communities where your customers congregate and regularly check in on them.

Start listening with the intent to understand. That understanding is why you should care. And it will give you the knowledge to make better connections with your customers or members.


How can you further enhance your customer service through social media?

Financial Businesses’ Guide to Responding to Customers on Social Media

Be Proactive With Frequently Asked Questions

Bank & Credit Union Tools for Effective Social Media Management


About Author

Larkin Grant

Larkin is the Chief Strategist and co-owner of Move Digital & Our Valley Events. She holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in Communications from Georgia State University and has worked in social media for the past 6 years. She was recently named Best Social Media Specialist by the American Advertising Federation/North Alabama. At Move Digital, Larkin consults with local businesses about how to maximize their social media efforts. When not eating cupcakes or getting her sparkles on, Larkin enjoys working with local nonprofits like Leadership Huntsville/ Madison County, Huntsville Young Professionals.