Financial advisory clients are increasingly turning to social media to streamline, and even help manage, their investment portfolios. This leaves many advisors out in the cold if they have not jumped on the social media marketing bandwagon. So where does one start (or in some cases start over)and what should be your first steps? Here are some short suggestions, which should be the basis and starting point to a successful marketing campaign on social media.
A marketing plan with a clear goal
Just like the rest of your marketing strategy, promotion on social media requires a clear-cut plan and a purpose. Preliminary research is a vital part and it is important to take only a part of everything that you collect online. Articles such as 43 Twitter Tips and Treats for Financial Advisors are a great source of gathering information but you must take only what applies to your strategy because the vast amount of information online can be quite overwhelming when not processed properly.
Identify your target market
It is important to determine whom you are going to reach out to, as it will play a crucial part in your ultimate success. Things to ask would be where do they live? What is their level of income? What are their interests? When and where do they use social media? Remember that social networks have a variety of targeting options including age, income and interest. Oftentimes, if you have properly set up your paid campaigns you can see results very quickly after launching your first paid ad campaign on one or several social media platforms.
Less is more
The initial error that many can make is adding a ton of social profiles and sharing as much content as humanly possible. It is important to remember that quantity does not equal quality on social media. Especially such sites as Reddit, where spamming content and links will lead to restrictions and bans. It is better to use less accounts and give each account a specific goal in your plan. For example, if you are using Facebook then make sure to have a personal page and a business page. Where your personal page, can let everyone in your network know what is going on, talk about your personal philosophies, your professional beliefs, etc. While your business page can be your public hub for thoughts, writings, activities, and that are overall business-specific.
Know what not to do.
There are many articles discussing the dos and don’ts of social media marketing for advisors. However, it is also important to know both FINRA and SEC regulations and more importantly make sure you have the latest on the guidelines. Here are a few examples:
Promote yourself with a personal blog
Social media requires any content but unique, quality material and what better content than your own blog. This gives you a great opportunity to present yourself as an expert in the financial field while writing about what you do and know best. In fact, many financial advisors and experts have taken up writing blogs and have had great success in doing so. You can see a small sample here: Top 50 Financial Advisor Blogs and Bloggers
Ultimately, when starting out it is important to be patient because even with paid advertising social media marketing takes time to gain traction. It is imperative to remember that with social media you are playing the long game but if you play your social media cards right then your investment return can be much more than you bargained for.