How Credit Unions Can Go Viral on Social Media

Recently, as a resident young person here at CU 2.0, I have ventured on to TikTok. You may have heard of it—either from your kids, the news lately, or maybe from our blog.

TikTok has an interesting set up. The main page doesn’t show videos from people you follow. Rather, it shows content catered “for you” by artificial intelligence. It doesn’t matter if you follow the creator or not.

Sometimes, videos that hit my “for you” page only have six likes, and sometimes, they have millions. All from people I’ve never heard of before. That means that TikTok users have one goal, and one goal only:

Go. Viral.

Why Go Viral?

Going viral is important. You’ve possibly seen the recent democratic debates, where candidates fight to get their “viral moment.” Shareable moments help with name recognition. Just that recognition is critical for building comfort and trust.

For a credit union, going viral is about brand recognition. But can credit unions create the kind of content that people don’t just read, but also share?

On TikTok, these kids have the methods to go viral down. And as someone who works with social media for a living, I’ve been taking notes.

Side note: I’m not saying that Credit Unions should hop on to TikTok just yet. (Well, maybe, if you have a really cool intern.) Fortunately, going viral is applicable to all social media platforms, especially Facebook and Twitter.

  1. Pay Attention to the Trends

You may have heard of the song Old Town Road. It’s one of the songs that can attribute its popularity to TikTok. Not only did Lil Nas, the rapper behind Old Town Road, go Diamond with his song, many other people on TikTok went viral just for using the audio behind their videos.

One of the easiest ways a credit union can go viral is hop on the bandwagon. Ask that intern or young employee what the latest meme sweeping the internet is, and post something about it. I’m pretty sure the latest one is Baby Yoda.

(Editor’s note: not so fast, though. Baby Yoda will probably be old news after this week!)

  1. Demand attention

Here’s something you may not want to hear: videos and images are absolutely essential in grabbing attention. TikTok is only video. It’s the perfect attention sucker, and since the videos are only 15–60 seconds long, it’s a perfect recipe for losing hours of your day watching TikToks.

What does that mean for credit unions? Post as many images and video that you can, and keep it short and to the point. That could be quick tips for members, or helpful infographics members can pin on Pinterest.

  1. Ask for Likes

There’s no shame in it. Some of the most viral content on TikTok is begging users to “not let [the video] flop.” Translated from Gen Z slang, that means, “Please like this video.” Sometimes, we all need a reminder to smash that like button.

For credit unions, one of the best ways to ask for engagement is to hold a contest. Asking for likes and shares for a potential prize (maybe a certain amount of cash, or a gift card to a local business) create just enough engagement to spread the word of your credit union through social media.

  1. Don’t Discriminate by Age

Sometimes, us adults, (yes, I am a Gen Z adult,) assume that silly things like Old Town Road and Baby Yoda are for kids. Why would a credit union need to post memes if they’re catered towards kids, who are unlikely to open an account?

In truth, the young people seem to “get” it before we do. Frequently, my mom (a very sweet baby boomer) shows me viral memes and videos that I’ve seen 2 months prior. These trends, viral images, and viral videos transcend generations. Trust me. And if they don’t, well, they’ve probably heard of it from their kids.

The fact is that adults like and share memes as well. We may be slower on the uptake, but they’re still the content we love.

In Conclusion

As consumers, we come to the internet for entertainment and information. It’s important that, as credit unions, we give the people what they want, and hopefully, some of our content will reach people that have never heard of us before.

If you need more help with your credit union’s social media content, check out some of our other blogs down below.

What is marketing automation for credit unions?

Social media tips for credit unions