Today Forrester released a compelling case study about USAA, “USAA Uses Social Media To Drive Sales, Product, And Service Strategies,” noting that they are a pioneer of social commerce in the financial services industry.

Forrester worked directly with Tom Vaughn, Director of Social Media at USAA , who spoke at length about their relationship with Bazaarvoice and impact of customer reviews on all areas of the business.

USAA created a social media strategy focused on four pillars: listening, engaging, strengthening relationships, and innovation. A year after offering Bazaarvoice ratings and reviews to its members on USAA.com, thousands of members have provided reviews, and USAA has used those reviews to drive product improvements, improve Web site conversion, and increase interactive marketing effectiveness.

Here’s the executive summary:

Financial services firm USAA created its first formal social media strategy in October 2008. In 2009, it further refined and represented the strategy as four pillars of focus: listening, engaging, strengthening relationships, and innovation. As a tactic of listening and engaging, USAA engaged Bazaarvoice to offer ratings and reviews to its members on USAA.com. Nearly a year later, the results are astounding. Thousands of members have provided reviews, and USAA has used those reviews to drive product improvements, improve Web site conversion, and increase interactive marketing effectiveness.

  • Situation: USAA Pondered The Role Of Social Media To Its Business
  • Best Practice: USAA Brings Social Media Tactics To eBusiness
  • Ratings And Reviews Provide The “Authentic Voice” Of USAA Members
  • USAA Has Achieved Tangible Results From The Use Of Social Media On Its Web Site

You can find the full Forrester case study online. And keep an eye on this blog for an interview with Tom Vaughn in the coming weeks.

11 Responses to “Forrester recognizes USAA as social media innovator”

  1. Social media innovation is great, but their customer service is still deplorable. I purchased eight new policies in February, and was quickly hit with price hikes, price reductions, changes in coverage, and general mayhem! For the past six weeks I have been requesting a policy by policy itemization of what they have changed and, more importantly, how they have applied my payments. Their email system provides only canned responses that do not answer my questions. Their telephone reps are very courteous, but not empowered to resolve any question or to provide answers to the questions – they can refer my inquiry to someone else though. After five weeks of communication I actually received a voice mail message from a billing expert who could resolve the issues. I have called her six days in a row, getting her voicemail, leaving a message with all required information. She has never called back.

    Social media is great tool, but they have no idea how to resolve a customers’ inquiry.

  2. Two additional firms in the Financial Services industry, specifically that are doing innovative things in Social Media are Putnam Investments and T. Rowe Price. Other firms that also have a mix of an active / listening role in place are Vanguard and Fidelity.

  3. Two additional firms in the Financial Services industry, specifically that are doing innovative things in Social Media are Putnam Investments and T. Rowe Price. Other firms that also have a mix of an active / listening role in place are Vanguard and Fidelity.

Leave a Reply

XHTML: You can use these tags: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>