4 Social Media Mistakes RIAs Should Avoid Like the Plague
Social media has transformed the way people communicate with each other and how brands represent themselves. With today’s social tools, a reputation can be tarnished instantly by a spiteful client. We’re no longer judged as a book is by its cover, but rather by the social media pages that comprise our brand identity.
One wrong turn on social media could put your business in jeopardy. This is especially true for RIAs. Even if you’re not trying to expand your business, simply maintaining clients requires a thoughtful, active social media strategy.
When implementing a social media strategy, make sure you avoid these common – albeit costly –mistakes.
- No presence. The biggest mistake is not having a social media presence. Nowadays, clients and prospects are researching you before even shaking hands, and most people start with social media. To many, it’s suspicious if they don’t find a social media profile – whether that’s on LinkedIn, Twitter, Facebook, Google+, YouTube, etc. – representing your company.
At the very minimum, set up an account on the most common social media networks – it’s the equivalent of hanging a sign outside your door letting people know you’re open for business.
- Not blogging. At Gregory FCA, we believe that the foundation for a strong social media campaign is a blog. It’s an easy way to control your content and create a central hub connecting all of your company’s social media platforms.
With a blog, you have the freedom to write about whatever you want. It’s an opportunity to opine about the news, offer advice and showcase your expertise. From there, you can utilize Facebook, Twitter, etc., to drive traffic back to your blog and your web site.
- Canned posts. There is a reason it’s called social. Users and brands alike are expected to interact with one another. If someone visits your social feed and notices nothing but dry and, worst of all, obviously canned updates, it comes across as artificial. Social media is a way to show your firm’s personality and expertise. It’s certainly fine to plan your posts and updates ahead of time, but pay attention to current headlines and trends. For instance, if there is significant market activity, find a way to acknowledge it.
Lastly, never, ever ignore users that are trying to connect with you to complain, whether it’s via a post on your wall or tweeting at you. Ignoring them makes it look like you and your staff are unwilling to deal with and correct criticism.
- Lacking LinkedIn. Did you know that more than 50 percent of financial advisors who utilize LinkedIn as a prospecting tool successfully attract new clients? In almost one-third of those cases, the resulting increase in AUM is more than $1 million. LinkedIn is the new networking happy hour. It’s where deals begin, contacts are introduced and people go to find influencers.
In addition to offering a very robust and increasingly popular publishing platform, LinkedIn is a virtual resume. It’s a chance to showcase your credentials and win new business. As an RIA, you should be putting forth your best foot on this channel.
If you’re like me and consider LinkedIn the online equivalent of a networking event, then it’s perfectly admissible to send or accept an invitation to or from someone you don’t know personally (note: this does not condone spamming). If you have no problem going up to someone new at a conference or networking event and handing them your card, then you have justification to connect with new people on LinkedIn—just be sure to personalize your note and why you are looking to connect.
As social media infiltrates more and more of our lives and business dealings, it’s critical to get your strategy right. Of course, there is no one-size-fits-all formula to implementing a social media campaign, which is why it’s important to watch out for the landmines and constantly refresh and update your presence.