ROI of Social Media badge Social media applied to business is marketing and we’re seeing the use of the phrase ‘social marketing’ being used more and more by marketers – we agree.  Dan Marks and the gang at First Tennessee Bank are at the forefront of testing and learning what works best in social media.

Dan’s day-to-day concern is the question of “am I missing something that might be important?”.  Based on what we heard during the interview, I do not think so.  Dan shared an example of something that could not see the ROI on and they decided to test it.  They placed an ad on a job hunting site – the job site was a social site for sure,  but as it turned out job hunters were not good banking prospects.  So they ceased the campaign.

First Tennessee Bank logo at SocialMarketingConversations The team at FTB keep an eye on the acceptance by consumers of messages by brands in social media.  If they sense that social media participants begin to actively resent overt advertising and marketing, it might impact the ability of the bank of adopt social elements more deeply.  Social is merging with traditional and fast becoming a Dan Marks headshot at SocialMarketingConversationsfeature of ‘Web3.0’.  Dan sees that consumers will be able to interact in social regardless of the platform they use to connect to the web.

According to Dan, the issue for marketers advertising with social is a leverage point; if you got a good product people will know about it, likewise if you have a bad product, people will know about it.  Product flaws and operational errors in the organization will be discovered and commented on, not in attempt to be derogatory, but possibly just a way to be more helpful.  The ability to hide from the conversations is not feasible any longer; you’ll be a part of the conversation whether you decide to participate or not – how you decide to respond will impact the brand.  Participation can enhance your brand, while ignoring the discussion will not.

Dan leaves us with the encouragement to not be afraid to experiment and learn where your place is in social media – get started, but get started in a small way and find out what works.  Wise advice from a pioneer in social media in banking and financial services.

Play / Download Dan Marks / First Tennessee Bank Episode 3 Podcast Here

To get a hold of First Tennessee Bank, look at their website, and you can reach them on their Twitter handle of @FirstTennessee.  Dan can be connected with via his Linkedin profile and his Google profile.

This is the final episode of the three part podcast with Dan.  Guy Powell and I want to thank him; we appreciate his perspective and taking the time to share it with us in our podcast interview!

Here are links to material related to the interview that you may find useful; the entire conversation in one extended recording and a transcript of the conversation

Play / Download Dan Marks / First Tennessee Bank Entire Interview Podcast Here

Read / view the Dan Marks / First Tennessee Bank Podcast Transcript at

We’re very interested in your perspective on the topic and, if you have a great interview who can add to the conversation, please let us know – we’re looking to interview them and put it up here!

Thank you again to you our listeners – hope you enjoyed the effort and work we put into it!

The Podcast and Credit For Where Credit is Due – This podcast / transcript was developed from a live interview on April 23rd, 2010 between Dan Marks of First Tennessee Bank, Guy Powell and Steven Groves using

The podcast interview was downloaded and processes in Audacity, which is available from, and with ‘4toFloor.wav’ music loop from member ‘Rooks’ and posted at

The transcripts are sponsored by Social Marketing Conversations and the Introduction Voice Talent is Ms. Cynthia Propst.

FTC Notice: Neither Steven Groves or Guy Powell received any compensation for this post and neither bank with First Tennessee Bank.