InvestmentNews INsider

The INsiderblog

InvestmentNews reporters offer their take on intriguing or controversial articles from around the web.

Dig further into social media to get the biggest business bang

Tools from Google and beyond will help you better connect with clients and prospects

Mar 21, 2013 @ 2:35 pm

By Liz Skinner

Think about the impact an adviser can have on client relationships if he is the first — and maybe only — professional in their lives to congratulate them on that important business or personal success. The likelihood of those clients leaving to find an adviser who understands them better just went way down.

The secret lies in searching online for key information and setting up alerts that let the adviser know, say, when a top client's firm gains a large contract or when a client's daughter wins the state spelling bee.

Setting up accounts and profiles on social media sites and establishing a connection with clients through those accounts is a necessary first step. Carefully describing an adviser's value proposition, posting interesting and educational info and linking to a firm's website are also early moves into social media — they help establish an adviser's brand. However, real business value can be unearthed if advisers dig further with the tools.

“I guarantee you will create a deeper relationship with clients and identify new prospects,” said Sam Richter, chief marketing officer of ActiFi, to a group of advisers at the FPA Business Solutions conference earlier this month in Chicago.

Mr. Richter's online searching tips include using quotes around names in a search and doing more advanced searches that eliminate certain mentions or include certain terms. For instance, to search for client "Liz Skinner" and not include those entries that include basketball (because I am not the Liz Skinner of the Indiana Basketball Hall of Fame), but do include mentions of the word reporter, the search would look like: "Liz Skinner" -basketball + reporter.

Other advanced search techniques include using *, which basically means "something" when you can't recall the exact name of a person or company, and using ~, which essentially means "sounds like."

Advisers should create alerts from Google or other search providers to stay in touch with what's happening in the lives of top clients and prospects. To set up the alert on Google, use the search terms that you've figured out filter the most targeted results for that person.

Then stand back and reap the rewards from the client who's enormously impressed when they get your note of congratulations the night their son scores the championship-winning touchdown.

There also are methods of searching for information that go beyond what Google searches, which is only 5% of the web, according to Mr. Richter.

Many services typically allow some free searching and can often be used at the local library. Check out: Manta.com, Reachable.com (shows connections with others), Opensecrets.org (political persuasions), 411.com (to find addresses), Zillow.com (home values), as well as Criminalsearches.com — and Mr. Richter's own, YouGottheNews.com.

Another way to dig into a client's life is to fully examine their LinkedIn, Twitter and Facebook accounts to find hobbies or other interests that would be topics the adviser may have in common with the client or other curious tidbits the adviser could mention in the next meeting to delve further into their personal goals.

An adviser might say, for example, “Sara, I noticed on your Facebook page that you like surfing. Is that something you've been able to do recently or would like to do more of?”

By checking out someone's LinkedIn profile, you may discover a client is connected to a local firm's president who you've been hoping to contact. The adviser might approach the client by saying, “I noticed through LinkedIn that you are connected to John Jones. How well do you know him and do you think the three of us could play golf or have lunch together one day?”

Consider creating an alternative profile to do your investigative surfing so LinkedIn members can't see that you have examined their profile if you don't want them to!

0
Comments

What do you think?

View comments

Recommended for you

Sponsored financial news

Upcoming Event

Mar 13

Conference

WOMEN to WATCH

InvestmentNews is honoring female financial advisers and industry executives who are distinguished leaders at their firms. These women have advanced the business of providing advice through their passion, creativity, inclusive approach and... Learn more

Featured video

INTV

When can advisers expect an SEC fiduciary rule proposal and other regs this year?

Managing editor Christina Nelson and senior reporter Mark Schoeff Jr. discuss regulations of consequence to financial advisers in 2018, and their likely timing.

Recommended Video

Path to growth

Latest news & opinion

Cutting through the red tape of adviser regulation is tricky

Don't expect a simple rollback of rules under the Trump administration in 2018 — instead, regulators are on pace to bolster financial adviser oversight.

Bond investors have more to worry about than a government shutdown

Inflation worries, international rates pushing Treasuries yields higher.

State measures to prevent elder financial abuse gaining steam

A growing number of states are looking to pass rules preventing exploitation of seniors.

Morgan Stanley reports a loss of advisers after exiting the protocol for broker recruiting

The firm said it lost 47 brokers in the fourth quarter, the most in any quarter of 2017.

Morgan Stanley's wealth management fees climb to all-time high

Improvement reflect firm's shift of more clients into fee-based accounts priced on asset levels, which boosts results as markets rise.

X

Hi! Glad you're here and we hope you like all the great work we do here at InvestmentNews. But what we do is expensive and is funded in part by our sponsors. So won't you show our sponsors a little love by whitelisting investmentnews.com? It'll help us continue to serve you.

Yes, show me how to whitelist investmentnews.com

Ad blocker detected. Please whitelist us or give premium a try.

X

Subscribe and Save 60%

Premium Access
Print + Digital

Learn more
Subscribe to Print