How Are Indian Banks Faring On Social Media?

by Prasant Naidu on April 20, 2012

in Campaigns

Presence and performance both matter today for brands on social media and it holds true for all sectors. Recently, IDBI bank declared itself as the most social bank in India(1). If one reads the article intensely then one would find that the basis of self proclamation of the bank has all been based on the number of fans the brand has on Twitter and Facebook. Besides this, it has added YouTube and Google Plus to it’s list but I am keeping them aside.  I believe any brand proclaiming itself to be the most social brand is justified if you compare yourself with your peers in the market. But nothing was mentioned about this.

So I decided to compare at my end with the help of Unmetric, which is a social media monitoring product. Presently, Unmetric monitors your brand’s presence on Facebook and Twitter. So before I reveal the in-depth analysis on how some of the popular Indian banks are faring on social media, here is a list of input data I have used:

  • Social Media Monitoring Product: Unmetric.
  • Social Media Monitoring Networks: Facebook and Twitter.
  • Monitoring Period: Last Month (03/20/12 to 04/19/12)

Facebook Insights:

1. Fan Growth: The basic parameter on social media starts with number of fans or likes on Facebook and a sizable number of fans are required to drive any kind of engagement on social media. IDBI bank is a clear winner in terms of fans with a growth rate of 19% in the last month. However ICICI Bank, although a late entry in joining social media, has shown tremendous growth and 34% increase of fan growth in the last month is a clear indicator of it.

Indian banks Facebook Fan growth

Fan Growth

2. Conversations: This is a parameter which Facebook reveals on every brand page which is small indicator that tells how many people are talking to the brand at any given point. However, the number is quite broad but has been a valuable indicator apart from just the number of ‘Likes’. The below image indicates that ICICI bank has 11.2% of conversations in the last month and it also makes the bank as the most talked about amongst fans.

Indian banks facebook conversations


However, IDBI bank has some disappointing numbers here as on March 20, 2012 it had 15,8066 people talking but it has gone down to 5531 by April 19, 2012. The below image shows the downfall and I think that brands should be doing a bit of brainstorming to find out the reason and how it could improve upon it.

idbi bank fans on facebook

IDBI Fan Growth Vs Number of talking about

3. Engagement: The above insights might have given a clear indication that ICICI bank even though has been a new entry in the social media space but has been doing great. ICICI bank is also the most engaged bank on Facebook and HDFC bank is the second most engaged bank as shown in the below image.

indian banks facebook engagement


4. Sentiment: Most of the brands in service sector keep away from social media because of criticism. However, here too ICICI bank is the clear winner with the most (net) positive sentiments, which is close to 50% and HDFC bank, which attracted the most number of posts from fans, had the maximum percentage of negative sentiments.

facebook sentiment of indian banks


Twitter Insights:

1. Followers: @IDBI_Bank is a clear winner in this space like Facebook and it has also shown the highest growth potentiality on Twitter. The below image says it clearly and no other bank is close to it.

twitter followers of indian banks


2. Frequency of Reply: Unmetric divides Tweets into three categories – 1) Retweets 2) Replies and 3) Proactive Tweets. @ICICIBank_Care, which is using Twitter as customer care, has been really successful, as the brand has used Twitter as a conversational platform. Out of 375 tweets that were tweeted by the brand, all of them were replies or mentions to its community on Twitter.

frequency of tweets by indian banks


3.  Average Reply Time: Twitter is all about conversations and average reply time is a very important parameter on which brands are measured. @HDFCBank_Offers leads when it comes to replying to its community on Twitter and @ICICIBank_Care takes the longest in responding to queries. If brands are using Twitter as a customer query resolving platform then the average reply time should be really quick and must be real-time.

twitter replies from indian banks

Average Reply Time

4. Sentiments: @HDFCBank_Offers, which is the quickest in replying on Twitter, has the best (net) positive sentiments close to 70% and @IDBI_Bank has attracted more number of negative sentiments amongst all banks.

twitter sentiment of indian banks


Key Takeaways:

  • IDBI bank has definitely a bigger community on Facebook and Twitter but it needs to think on increasing the engagement levels on social media.
  • ICICI bank, although a new entry is the most engaged bank on Facebook but the brand needs to have a better Twitter marketing strategy.
  • HDFC bank has a better Twitter engagement with the quickest response time on Twitter and also the most positive Indian bank on Twitter but fails to impress on Facebook.

I think there is no clear winner on social media amongst the Indian banks as of now, as all of these banks are evolving in terms of engagement and customer service on social media. One can’t label oneself as the leader in social media based on just the number of likes or followers. It is how you drive that community to your objective. It is always better to have an engaged community rather than having a huge community with no one to respond.

What are your thoughts on how Indian banks are faring on social media. For me there is no clear winner and it will take some more time for them to be happening on social media.

  1. As reported by WAT blog []

Prasant Naidu

Founder and Blogger at Lighthouse Insights.

Twitter - More Posts

  • Vijay S Paul

    FANTASTIC Analysis!! Couldn’t have been done better.
    Just one suggestion if I may. Wouldn’t it be nice if you could also add a bit detailed opinion of yours as to how each of them could buck up their Social Media activities. I love to read your opinions and suggestions in this matter :)

    • Prasant Naidu

      Vijay you can always :) and good to have some feedback. Will surely keep in mind or may be i can have a part 2 post on this. let me think on this. 

  • Charu Gupta

    Very well researched article. I think Indian bank’s social media presence is still in it’s early stages. If you see all the banks that are currently present on social media, except for HDFC Bank and IDBI Bank, rest are all new entrants. Most of the banks have advertised heavily on Facebook and hence have managed to gain a huge fan base but interactions remain a concern area.

    HDFC Bank, ICICI and AXIS Bank have managed quite a decent amount of interaction on Facebook. One needs to keep in mind that the banking industry is not particularly everyone’s favourite! Despite this, these banks have managed to innovate.

    ICICI Bank came out with Facebook banking app, HDFC Bank talks about financial terms, Money Matters and rare currency while AXIS Bank has a cool factor to it’s page with really nice creatives.

    Another point to be noted is the audience they are talking to. Majority are males, 25-34 years of age group. This is the segment which is interested in the financial world!

    We need to give them some more time to prove their worth. What do you think?

    • Prasant Naidu

      Thanks Charu for sharing your thoughts :) Yes it is really early stage and the segment where they are interacting is not that easy. The only problem i have when brands boast on numbers. we all are aware that how you can increase numbers on facebook and the same is not possible on Twitter so we see the differences. 
      It is going to take time and that is how i have ended the article, saying that there is no clear winner. Lets hope brands and their agencies concentrate on nurturing a community rather than simply boasting about numbers :)

  • Ajay Hiraskar

    Nice analysis Prasant. It’s great to have a local analysis & you are doing great work on this front. Will share this with folks known to me in the banking sector. 

    • Prasant Naidu

      Thanks Ajay for sharing your thoughts :) good to know that you liked our analysis.

  • Peter

    Great analysis, as usual, Prasant! One thing I would add for the conversations part is that earlier in the date range IDBI had high growth rate but as soon as the growth rate stopped so did the engagement. What I’ve seen in the past is that when this happens it’s usually because a campaign has ended or the brand did some kind of promotion. I don’t know if this is true for IDBI but it’s usually the case.

    • Prasant Naidu

      Peter one more interesting fact is that there has been a tremendous drop in people talking about the brand on facebook for idbi and as you have said it could be true. thanks for sharing your thoughts, unmetric is helping us lot :)

  • Ajax Joshi

    Talk about us metric includes the page likes coming from FB Media, should we be calling that out and doing a separate analysis on engagement at the wall level?

    • Prasant Naidu

      That is the reason why i have said that its time when we try and find per post level engagement aligned to the content. Talking About Us is a very vague number but for now that is the only metrics available.

Previous post:

Next post: