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Insights & Intuition

Q: What role does social media play in your business? What ways do you use it for work?

Brekka Kramer, Vice President and General Manager at Odney, Minot, N.D.

Social media has been a game changer for the advertising world. It’s likely that in 2020, more than half of the population will be active social media users. Social platforms are a key component of any effective media strategy for Odney and our clients. 

Our team develops paid and organic strategies to effectively reach and influence the way target audiences think and act. Whether it’s building brand awareness, increasing website traffic and store visits, or communicating consistently to long-term followers, we use social media to meet our goals and those of our clients. 

There’s already a conversation about you happening, so let’s make sure you’re a part of it.

Brenna Grossbauer, Chief Human Resources Officer at Starion Bank, Bismarck, N.D.

In the last five years or so, Starion Bank has been very intentional about strategically utilizing social media. Most of the posts fall into one of four categories: community, culture, education, and products/services. Obviously, social media is one way to communicate with our customers, prospects, and communities at-large, but we’ve also seen benefit from a human resources perspective.

We have banks throughout North Dakota and in Wisconsin, and social media has been one way to help our employees feel connected across the miles. For example, if you visit our Facebook page, you’ll see employees working the high school concession stand; donating money to charitable organizations; celebrating employees being hired, promoted and retiring…and the list goes on. Our employees are quick to react to these posts and regularly share good news about their co-workers. 

This social media strategy has also been beneficial in employee recruitment because potential applicants can see how we live out our company values and give back to our communities, helping them decide Starion is a place they can see themselves.

Missy Keney, Director of Marketing and Client Experience at Alerus, argo, N.D.

The role of social media continues to evolve rapidly in our business. What started first as a place to share information has now turned into a necessary platform to build and maintain client relationships and provide personalized client experiences. We utilize social media in conjunction with other channels to increase brand awareness, foster client engagement, partner with organizations we support, and educate our followers with financial focused tips and content. We also use social media to recruit new employees or to communicate urgent, real-time messages, for example, weather related announcements or other company news.

Since social media gives clients a voice, it has also become another tool we can use to service clients as we respond quickly to questions or requests for help. Given the nature of the financial industry, security and privacy for our clients is always one of our top concerns. We balance meeting clients where they are while also protecting their information.

And just as social media continues to adapt, so does Alerus. Whether it’s looking at new social media platforms to utilize, or retooling social media campaigns based on performance or feedback, we continue to leverage this as an efficient marketing and client experience tool.

Karla Santi, Founder and CEO of Blend Interactive, Sioux Falls, S.D.

Recruiting a talented workforce is our biggest challenge as a business, so we use social media to tell our story, share a glimpse of what it’s like working for Blend, and put our company culture on display. 

Whether we are sharing a birthday celebration, rooftop cookout, or an offsite event, our social channels broadcast those lighter moments. It helps potential employees and partners understand the community we work hard at promoting on any given day at Blend.

Beyond that, social media is our main channel for promoting our skills and knowledge. After 15 years in website development, we’ve built a body of expertise and examples, and it’s important to both Blend’s employees and our company values to make sure we pass along some of that knowledge. Our industry is ever-changing, so it’s a privilege to use those channels to help promote and shape that change for the future.


Insights & intuition is a regular feature in Prairie Business, in which we ask several regional professionals a question or two about how a business trend might be impacting them. If you'd like to participate in an upcoming issue, reach out to editor Andrew Weeks to find out the next question: or 701-780-1276.