BBVA : Social media muddle

A Spanish bank attempts to navigate channel proliferation with a badly managed microsite.

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The feature

BBVA summarises its social media activity on a microsite linked from the universal footer menu on the corporate website. The microsite has its own primary navigation bar, with links to a blog and five corporate social media pages – Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, Google+ and LinkedIn. The landing page is comprised of a series of image panels.  The topmost panel has an excerpt from the corporate blog, and below this is an interactive map summarising the bank’s activity across its many Twitter feeds. The rest of the page shows examples of tweets from these feeds. There is also a right menu to filter by topic. The microsite is provided in Spanish and English language versions, and content on both pages appears to be identical.

The takeaway

The microsite certainly demonstrates that BBVA’s social media presence is vast, possibly too vast. It has 34 separate Facebook pages listed, for example, including a corporate page, pages for charitable causes it supports, as well as multiple pages within its countries of operation. It has comparable numbers of pages on Twitter and YouTube. While we should perhaps be criticising the bank for channel proliferation and failing to stop so many separate social media pages from appearing, BBVA should be given credit for at least attempting to navigate them all with a directory page. Indeed, summarising all of this information in the right way could be a positive from a messaging point of view – saying to customers and other stakeholders that BBVA is transparent, socially responsible and modern.

However, this potentially positive message is undermined by an untidy microsite. First, it is unclear why the section needs to be contained in a microsite at all, when it would be more accessible as part of the corporate website itself, a better approach. It is also unclear exactly who the page is aimed at – it is signposted from the corporate website home page and within the press section but visitors looking for a specific channel appropriate to them will struggle with information overload. Specifically, some of the elements seem out of place. The interactive map, for example, although visually interesting, is designed to show global Twitter statistics (follows, shares, replies, etc), which would likely be of more interest internally than to BBVA’s external audiences. The rest of the long, scrolling landing page contains references only to Twitter feeds, when BBVA is present on four other channels. Crucially, the landing page lacks any summary of which social media channels are for whom and why they should be followed.
First published 04 March, 2015
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