Outside-IN

Outside-INblog

Outside voices and views for advisers

7 social media mistakes financial advisers should never make

It takes years to build a successful business and a great reputation, but one careless social media post could destroy it all

Apr 18, 2017 @ 3:24 pm

By Shawn Sparks

+ Zoom

Financial advisers should have some sort of social media presence. Think about it. There are more than 1.8 billion active users on Facebook alone. It is the most popular app used on smart phones.

However, as great as social media can be for your business, it can damage your business beyond repair if used incorrectly. Remember, anything you put on social media is permanent. Even if you delete it, you can't control who might have saved or "snapped" a photo of your post and shared it with their friends.

(More: 10 steps to establishing a social media presence)

Don't say anything negative on video, send a scathing email or post anything on social media that can hurt your professional reputation. Whatever you feel you are going to gain from the post, is not worth the risk of it carrying over into the reputation of your business.

With that in mind, I've compiled a list of the top seven things financial advisers should never post on social media.

1. Product promotion. Never promote your favorite financial products or your business investments on social media. It drips of shameless promotion and is an instant turnoff for clients and prospects. If you want to give sound advice, connect with people in person, get to know their needs and then give them a holistic recommendation.

2. Bashing your competition. Your social media channels are for you and you alone. You can engage with clients and prospects, highlight your company's personality and increase your brand, but you should never talk ill about a competitor. Why put their name anywhere on your page?

3. No political comments. This is a timely piece of advice. You never want to offend people on social media. This is why you should stray away from your political views when using the various social media platforms available for your business. Political topics are sensitive topics, and it's nearly impossible that every one of your clients and prospects share your exact same view.

(More: Watch your mouth on social media — or else)

4. Predict the future. It's great to share what you believe or your philosophy when it comes to investing. But never try and predict what the market or any investment is going to do. Predicting the future, whether you believe it or not, is an impossibility.

5. Regulations. Some financial advisers believe that posting a small testimonial on social media isn't a big deal. Similarly, some believe that the act of sharing personal client information won't be noticed. However, these acts break regulations within the financial adviser community. Make sure that your social media posts don't violate any laws.

6. Don't give investment advice. Remember from the points above, don't give broad-stroke investment advice. Each person is unique and needs specialized advice. There is no one-size-fits-all piece of investment advice. Make sure you don't give advice on social media, which is a broad channel.

7. Elicit an emotional response. Everyone is emotional. However, financial advisers should never be emotional on social media. Don't engage in the trolls or try to fight fire with fire on social media. Remember the saying: If you fight with an idiot, no one can tell which one is the idiot.

(More: Meet the Social Media Adviser)

Remember, it takes years to build a successful business and a great reputation. But it only takes one careless social media post to destroy it all. Always be sure what you post or put in writing is compliant and in line with the image you want to display.

Shawn Sparks is vice president of adviser development at Advisors Excel. He is the author of the book, "The Advisor Breakthrough."

0
Comments

What do you think?

View comments

Recommended for you

Sponsored financial news

Upcoming Event

Jun 27

Webcast

Emerging Market Debt: 5 Forces at Work

When it comes to emerging market debt, there are a series of forces that help you drive better results for your clients. In today's continually changing market environment, it is critical to know the forces at play to help keep your investment... Learn more

Accepted for 1 CE Credit from the CFP Board. Approved by IMCA for 1 CIMA®/CIMC®/CPWA® CE credit. Approved for 1 CFA Credit.

Featured video

Events

Tech tools of tomorrow: Innovations your firms can't live without in 2020

Gadget Girl hits the tech pavilion at Pershing INSITE to see what exciting new tools advisers can't afford to miss.

Video Spotlight

Will It Last As Long As Your Clients Do?

Sponsored by Prudential

Video Spotlight

The Catalyst

Sponsored by Pershing

Latest news & opinion

Brian Block's $4 million bonus was tied to a key metric at ARCP

Prosecution rests case in fraud trial against CFO of American Realty Capital Properties.

Voya's win in 401(k) fee suit involving Financial Engines bodes well for other record keepers

Fidelity, Aon Hewitt and Xerox HR Solutions are currently defending against similar fiduciary-breach claims.

Collective investment trusts getting more attention from 401(k) advisers

The funds are catching on due largely to lower costs and more product availability, but come with some inherent drawbacks.

Vanguard rides robo-advice wave to $65B in assets

Personal Advisor Services, four times the size of its closest competitor, combines digital and human touch.

CFPs, including brokers, may have to adhere to a stricter fiduciary duty

CFP Board revises its standards and aims to beef up fiduciary requirements of certificants.

X

Subscribe and Save 60%

Premium Access
Print + Digital

Learn more
Subscribe to Print