10 Jul

Rundown of Small Business Communities of Banks

NetBanker has an interesting overview of the small business community sites of banks and financial services companies. Jim Bruene, the author, gives a summary of these communities:

Advanta’s Ideablob

American Express’s OpenForum

Bank of America’s Small Business Online Community,

Capital One’s Slingshot,

HSBC’s (UK) Business Network

Intuit’s Quickbooks Group:

VISA’s Business Network on Facebook is just mentioned. Left off the list is Intuit’s JumpUp Community for small businesses and startups.

I’ve had involvement with several of these, including the Intuit QuickBooks Community. I’ve also been a member of Intuit’s JumpUp.com.

And of course I’m especially partial to American Express’s OpenForum site, as I write there weekly. 🙂

Advanta’s Ideablob is perhaps the most unique concept of them all, being designed around a monthly contest.

Jim includes Compete.com traffic graphs, which while they are imprecise, at least show relative traffic and popularity. They demonstrate one thing above all else: that hard work, persistence and longevity matter. That is aptly demonstrated by the QuickBooks Community, which is the big Kahuna in terms of traffic, content and community size. It’s no conincidence that it’s also has been around the longest.

The lesson? Don’t wait to start a small business community, and when you do, don’t ignore it. A community will not grow on its own — you must work at it.

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  1. Paula said on July 11th, 2008 at 7:36 am

    As a regular reader of your Amex Open writing, I really enjoy your articles. The Bank of America site has a lot of great info there too. I like how a lot of these larger businesses are branching out to the web to offer us little people info and assistance. Smart, since I’m probably not the only one who prefers to look up stuff online than travel to the banks.

  2. Martin Lindeskog said on July 12th, 2008 at 12:13 am

    I haven’t seen business communities lead by banks in Sweden. It would have been a smart way of introducing users indirectly to their services and at the same time stand out from the competition. Talking about banks, I have to say that I enjoy Wells Fargo different style of blogging with a historical flavor. http://blog.wellsfargo.com/GuidedByHistory/

  3. Chris said on July 21st, 2008 at 5:50 pm

    I, too, am a regular reader of your postings at the AMEX Open Forum. I’m thankful for the “big boys” reaching out and making themselves available within these online communities and I’ve already benefited from it many times. And when I’m “in the market” for something or am in need of information – I don’t get in my car and take off to a physical location – I fire up my computer and set of into virtual space.


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