We’ve all heard myths before. If you eat pop rocks with soda, your stomach will explode. If you make a silly face and the wind changes direction, it will get stuck like that. Or if you tell a lie, your nose will grow like Pinocchio’s.

While these are silly and notably false, some myths are created. Despite this, people believe them to be true. For example, Michael Jackson and Elvis Presley aren’t really dead, and they’re living on some island together. We never landed on the moon, and there was a second shooter on the grassy knoll.

While these conspiracies might be nice to believe, chances are they are simply made-up stories. They have just enough data to convince people they’re the truth.

That being said, banking has developed many of its own myths, especially in regard to social media.

We’re here to debunk these social media myths so that you can go into the social media world with confidence, knowing that you aren’t setting yourself up for failure.

Myth: Banking Customers Are Not Social

87% of customers use Facebook, 31% use Twitter, and 34% use LinkedIn. In other words, customers are using social media.

The myth comes into play because of the customers on social media— 71% do not find their bank’s content to be relevant, and 79% do not feel engaged by the content.

So while banks say that the customers aren’t social, that isn’t true. They just aren’t interested in the content being provided.

If banks can figure out what drives their customers to interact with them, they have a chance at success using online mediums.

Myth: Content And Social Media Are Mutually Exclusive

A lot of the time we hear that banks want a social media strategy but don’t want a blog or to create content. Well the two actually work hand-in-hand.

What banks really want to create is a content strategy.

In a content strategy, you will begin to figure out what type of content your customers like to interact with, and you can use social media as a tool to distribute it. Your audience will keep coming back to you for your content, not because you have a Facebook page.

Social media and great content work together to create content that people like and put it in a place that people can find it.

Without using both, you’ll either create content that has a limited audience or post material that can be found in other places, thus bringing no value to your bank’s social media platform.

Myth: Content Should Be About Your Products & Services

While, yes, you are a bank/financial institution, that does not mean you should be exclusively talking about mortgage rates, CDs, and home equity loans.

This gives community banks an advantage because they are involved with so many things throughout their communities. They have an assortment of things to choose from.

It has been shown in multiple types of research that bank customers do not find their bank’s social media to be engaging—the content is not interesting to them. Banks also tend to focus on pushing their products and services.

The fact that these two things don’t align is at the heart of what is causing issues for banks in social media.

Instead, banks should focus on things their customers want to hear about. They’ll become attached to your bank as a useful source of information. Then, when they do need to make a purchasing decision, your bank is the logical next step over others.

In providing content that they can relate to, you have nurtured the relationship between bank and customer. You have made them prefer the products you have to offer.

If banks continue believing these myths, they’ll never successfully branch out into the social landscape. They’ll be stuck thinking that their customers aren’t social while bank customers continue to Tweet reviews and post about community events.

They’ll keep posting content that other people have created and drive their audience away from their websites. Lastly, they’ll push their products instead of nurturing a relationship. They’ll miss the point entirely.

These are just 3 myths; many others exist. The point is that they’re not unbreakable truths. If you want your bank/credit union to succeed in the online landscape, you’ve got to break through the barriers these myths create.

We’ve proven to you that these myths are merely that, myths that are not based on facts. Now let’s work to change those beliefs.

Let’s face it, if we all believed what our mothers had told us, we’d never make a silly face again. Do you agree?