Your 4-Step Path to Social Media Success for Financial Advisors

We want to ensure that your encounters with social media become as easy and productive as possible.

Most important, we don’t want your growth to be derailed by the elusive promise of shiny new media.

Here’s a sound place to start:

For Financial Advisors, Social Media Is Where the Clients Are

In an interview with the Street’s Rhonda Schaffler, Clara Shih, Founder and CEO of Hearsay Social, pointed out:

“The average American spends nearly six hours a day across social, mobile and digital.” These are, she added, “. . . really a forcing function for how all businesses have to think about connecting with their customers.”

Step #1 – Grasp Exactly What Social Media Can Do for Your Financial Advisor Practice

Uncover Your objectives!

Whether you are experimenting cautiously or have plunged in as a heavy investor of your resources, you will discover information here that will be valuable for your next steps.

First, Let’s Begin with Data from the Putnam Investments 2015 Social Advisor Study Results.

From this study of more than 800 financial advisors nationwide here are a few key findings:

Almost every advisor is in on the game . . .

* Over 80 Percent of financial advisor use social media for business up from 75% last year.

* This year 40% of advisors of all ages now are using four or more networks for business (25% last year).

Advisor Alert: “Using four or more networks” may NOT be a productive use of resources.

Clarifying objectives and making a commitment to the one or ones most promising for helping you accomplish those objectives may be a more effective approach. More about this later . . .

* Advisors look toward certain social platforms to help perform different business-building functions:

– LinkedIn helps to improve their referral network and connect with other advisors.

– Facebook enhances client relationships.

– Twitter helps to expand professional knowledge.

* LinkedIn continues to be the dominant network for business by advisors; however, business usage of other networks is growing more rapidly.

* It’s interesting to note that advisors are increasingly getting their business news and information from social sites – equating the sites’ credibility with traditional news sources.

Additional results from the Putnam Investments 2015 Social Advisor Study are HERE.

Second, what does the recent American Century Survey tell us about a return on investment?

Nearly 43% of advisors have attributed a return on investment to social media use.

The survey says: They brought in anywhere from less than $1 million to more than $5 million of new business. Some 27% acquired a new client or gained a relatively large amount of business from an existing client in part because of social media (less than $1 million).

It is significant that 10% gained $1 million to less than $3 million and 3% of responding advisors gained over $5 million.

The American Century Investments’ Sixth Annual Financial Professionals Social Media Adoption Study included 300 financial advisor, brokers, or registered investment advisors.

Over 51% reported “moderate experience” with social media.

The study defined moderate as “I’m actively participating regularly in at least one medium.”

More information about the American Century 2015 Financial Professionals Social Media Adoption Study is HERE.

Step #2 – Understand and Comply with the Rules

The excellent article, “8 Things Financial Advisors Should Know About Social Media Compliance” from “Financial Planning” magazine is about the rules. And it starts here:

* “Follow the Rules of Your Firm”

“The good news is that you have someone looking out for you. Being familiar with your firm’s policies and following them closely is in your best interests.”

* “There Are No Social Media Rules”

“Most advisors are shocked to hear this, but the fact is that regulatory bodies like FINRA and SIPC have not written any new rules to govern social media. What they had done is apply existing rules to this new technology”.

This section concludes with the reminder: “Don’t do anything on social media that you wouldn’t do outside of social media.”

The article “8 Things Financial Advisors Should Know About Social Media” from “Financial Planning” magazine is HERE.

Step #3 – Refrain from Leaping Into Action Until You Have a Strategy

Deena Katz in a video for “InvestmentNews,” “5 Steps to being a Digitally Savvy Advisor,” warns “it’s not something to jump into before you have a strategy.”

She begins with questions: Should you actually do it? Do you have the resources in place, can you or someone on your team take responsibility for it? Will be you able to be consistent?

We would stress, it’s not something to jump into without a PLAN.

Step #4 – Financial Advisors, Start Your Planning

This straightforward process takes into account your traditional planning as well as social media planning. Be Aware: Social media may be only one of your selected marketing programs . . . not your only planning option.

You’ll find the 7 steps for your plan here at:

We don’t want you to be mesmerized by the latest marketing tactic or fall into the trap of calling on one and only one marketing tactic.

If you already have a marketing plan and ongoing marketing, then these steps will enable you to slot in social media with your current marketing.

With a plan you’ll zero in on proven marketing tools that will be most effective for your unique financial advisory practice. And you’ll save your scarcest resource . . . your time!

“How Much Difference Would It Make to Your Practice to Have a Marketing Plan That Coordinates Your Social Media Marketing with Your Traditional Marketing?”

Ensure that you have a course of action that capitalizes on Your Available Resources

Call Bob Hanson for a complimentary consultation at 617-901-6886 or send an email to

About Shirley Hanson

Co-Author "Marketing Power for Financial Advisors"
In 1991 Shirley Hanson co-founded the Hanson Marketing Group, a direct marketing firm. Since 2005 she has focused her work on helping financial advisors take advantage of the same strategies and tactics that high-growth firms count on year after year. Advisors are able to attract more of their ideal clients, reach a Category of One, and raise their production. She collaborates with advisors to unlock their vision for their practice sooner with less hassle.

Contact Shirley
Phone: 215-753-2620 | Fax: 215-754-4165
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