How can financial professionals increase their chances of finding success when using social media platforms? We asked a couple to share their recommendations, including six do's and don'ts for social media, including Facebook and LinkedIn.
Compliance is one of the most important factors to consider with any content creation by financial professionals, said John Pojeta, VP, business development, The PT Services Group.
“Whether it’s a blog post, an infographic, short tips, or advice, ensuring it meets compliance ground rules – which we all know are not particularly definitive – is a vital step that the financial services field must undertake,” he said. “So, knowing your compliance team and how quickly they work is essential to factor into your social media schedule to ensure consistency of posting and to make sure that your content is timely.”
For the B2B side of the business, Pojeta said he doesn’t believe there is a better channel than LinkedIn. It is built for business, he said. “On the other hand,” he added,” if you are in the B2C market, don’t discount Facebook, but be mindful of the platform’s casual and friendly nature.”
Do's and Don’ts for advisors
Pojeta then shared his social media do's and don'ts to consider when using Facebook and LinkedIn:
Don’t be sales forward. Your posts should not be a place to sell your services. “Likewise,” he said, “do not connect with someone and then direct message them on the same day with a sales pitch.”
Do be content forward. Provide useful and relevant information to the people you want as clients. For example, if you do retirement planning, maybe you can share a Facebook post about the top 10 cities to retire to. Likewise, if you are a benefits advisor, sharing a great article on LinkedIn about unique benefits programs offered by top employers makes sense.
Do be consistent. Post regularly--this can be your content, other people’s content or even inspirational quotes. “Whatever you do,” he said, “develop a regular calendar for posting.”
Do create your own content. If you can, do simple, quick videos. This is the best bang for your buck. Otherwise, craft monthly blog posts (LinkedIn’s new creator mode makes this a breeze.) Also, consider a podcast, or write an ebook.
Do take advantage of your niche audience. For example, if you work with a specific group, like families who have children with special needs, think about the type of content that would be meaningful to a mother with an autistic child. Content could also highlight a local sensory-friendly theater performance or links to new medical research. This approach works particularly well on Facebook and helps you to be seen as a valuable advisor, he said.
Do seek help. If advisors are not sure if they can create meaningful content that connects with potential and current clients, or if they do not have the time to do it well, they should seek out the help of professionals. Two great ones that Pojeta works with are Two Dogs Social and 401(k) Marketing. Both provide industry-specific content and bring incredible value to their clients.
For high-net-worth clients
MDRT member Panos Leledakis is active on popular platforms like Facebook, LinkedIn, Instagram, Twitter, TikTok, and lately. Threads. For Leledakis’ niche market, which includes high-net-worth clients and entrepreneurs, LinkedIn is definitely a social media "do," having proven to be the most effective due to its excellent search tools, participation in targeted groups, and sharing of valuable content.
YouTube is also a great content marketing tool, he said. Additionally, he engages in VR to participate in Metaverse worlds like Horizon Worlds, VRChat, Rec Room Spatial. He also explores some non-VR Metaverse worlds such as Decentraland and The Sandbox, both powered by the Ethereum blockchain. These allow users to create virtual lands and avatars, as well as to interact with others.
Leledakis said that he uses “Discord, which is an instant messaging and VoIP (voice over internet protocol) social platform. Users have the ability to communicate via voice calls, video calls, text messaging, media and files in private chats or as part of communities called "servers."
On LinkedIn and Facebook, Leledakis’ target demographic group consists mainly of older consumers and high-net-worth individuals. When he uses Instagram, TikTok, and Threads, he focuses on attracting younger generations and tech-savvy clients. VR and other Metaverse platforms cater to younger consumers, he explained.
Currently, Leledakis said that he has found the most referral success on Facebook and LinkedIn. However, his VR strategy is also showing promising results. Looking ahead to 2024, he plans to incorporate more Instagram and TikTok into his social-media strategy, since they are growing rapidly.
Ayo Mseka has more than 30 years of experience reporting on the financial services industry. She formerly served as editor-in-chief of NAIFA’s Advisor Today magazine. Contact her at [email protected].