Using social media to attract clients

By Ravi Samalad |  07-07-20 | 

An increasing number of people are today consuming information through mediums like Twitter, LinkedIn, WhatsApp and YouTube. So financial advisers need to be present where their potential clients are. In this article, we give you a perspective on some of the important features of Twitter and LinkedIn which can be used by advisers. We will also learn from two advisers how they have been attracting prospects by educating investors through their blogs.

LinkedIn is a sought-after social media platform that is used by millennial job seekers to C-suite executives and business leaders. Thus, advisers should not ignore this important medium to showcase their thought leadership and build new professional connections.

Here are some important features of LinkedIn which you can leverage.

Photo

The first thing visitors notice on your profile is your photo. Make sure you use a professional headshot. Like Facebook and Twitter, LinkedIn allows you to use a background photo. It appears behind your profile photo in the introduction card on your profile.

Unique URL

Your default URL has your name followed by some numbers. To simplify this, LinkedIn allows users to customize their public profile URL. It'll be an address that looks like www.linkedin.com/in/yourname. Read more on this here.

Information

The information card displays your personal and professional status when people visit your profile. Use this section to add a headline, current position, education, location, contact information and summary.

Skills

You can add skills in this section that are relevant to your practice. Financial advisers can list skills like behavioral coaching, investment advisory, financial planning, insurance planning, tax planning, mutual funds, estate planning and so on.

Group

You can join up to 100 groups on LinkedIn to reach your prospects. Pick the top two to five groups that you want to be part of. Look for groups where your ideal prospects are members. Visit these groups on a daily basis which will help you get opportunities to participate in conversations.

Share Updates

You can share your thoughts in the form of a short update on news developments that impact investors. For instance, what would be the impact of the imposition of Stamp Duty on purchase of mutual funds? If the content is good, people will start engaging with you by asking follow-up questions.

Write Articles

To write in-depth pieces, LinkedIn has a feature called ‘Write an article’ which appears right at the top of your homepage. LinkedIn allows you to share drafts with your connections to get feedback on the content before you publish them. You can also add images, videos, podcasts, slides, tweets, and others by clicking the ‘Add Multimedia’ icon in your post. Add hashtags# in your posts to help your content reach your target audience.

Spending at least 10 minutes on LinkedIn every day can help you stay abreast of clients who have changed jobs or got promotions. This can be an opportunity for you to increase wallet share.

How to use Twitter effectively

Besides LinkedIn, Advisers can use the popular micro-blogging site Twitter, which is currently being used by over 270 million people across countries. Here are some dos and don’ts while using Twitter and its important features.

Thread

Videos and photos allow you to express more in one tweet but sometimes you might want to update your followers on a developing story or make a larger point. Here’s how you can publish a twitter thread. Click on the tweet button to compose a new tweet. After you have typed your tweet you can click on ‘add another tweet’ button which will open the second tweet window. Follow the same procedure for subsequent tweets. You can publish the entire thread at one go with the ‘Tweet All’ button.

Visual

A picture is worth a thousand words, goes the adage. Putting an image or video along with your tweet will be more impactful. Studies show that tweets that have photos are more likely to get retweeted and liked.

Frequency

While there is no thumb rule on the number of tweets one should publish, studies suggest that you should post 5-6 tweets as long as they are spread across the day. It’s a good idea to like and retweet if you like your followers’ content as it increases the engagement.

Use hashtags

Using # will help your content be found by people who are looking for such information. For instance, if you have written a blog post on the 5 best ELSS schemes, use #taxsaving while tweeting your post.

Video

Twitter lets you record and watch live video, upload videos from your phone and desktop. Videos should be less than 500 MB. One limitation is that it lets you upload videos of only up to a certain timeline. Alternatively, you can upload your videos on YouTube and share the links on Twitter.

Twitter list

You could be following 100 handles and the avalanche of updates on your timeline can be overwhelming. You can follow updates from a few influencers/clients that are relevant to you. To do this, you can subscribe to ‘Lists’ created by others or create your own List. A list is a curated group of Twitter accounts. Viewing a List timeline will show you a stream of tweets from only the accounts on that list.

Cross Promotion

If you send newsletters to your clients, insert a Twitter icon in the newsletter with a hyperlink to your handle which will direct them to your Twitter handle and follow you. Similarly, put the Twitter icon on your company website. You can also share your handle on your business card. Informing your network will help you build the initial follower base.

Besides Twitter and LinkedIn, one can use their own website or a blog to showcase their thought leadership to engage with existing clients and attract prospects.

Attracting clients through blogging

Bengaluru-based RIA Basavaraj Tonagatti has got a good response to his blog Basunivesh from his readers, many of whom have started investing with him. He recounts how he started blogging and how advisers can ace it.

“I realized that blogging does not mean writing a few articles a year. Thus, I took up blogging full time. I started writing 7-8 articles per month. Blogging is a great platform to share your knowledge and connect with your prospective clients.

I usually write around 7-8 articles a month. I’m following this schedule since 2011. There is no such process of identifying ideas. I write a post about whatever new things I learn and feel may be helpful for readers.

However, when blog readers read your posts and comment when they do not find answers, such comments help me expand my own knowledge. Each reader is unique and they expect something from our blog as a solution. If you offer them this solution, it is easier to convert them as clients. Also, blogging is not a part-time job. It requires a lot of your time and you must consider this as a full-time profession. Then only you will start to earn and attract clients. I know that many advisers have their blog section on their websites. However, they hardly update the same through frequent posts. Share your knowledge as often as possible. Clients are looking for simplified solutions rather than a complicated world.

It is not an easy process. To showcase yourself as a thought leader and start getting decent traffic it takes at least 2-3 years. However, each day you spend on building your finance blog will reward you in the long run. Hence, never look for short cuts.”

Attracting clients through website 

SEBI Registered Investment Adviser Dev Ashish has got many clients by writing personal finance/investment articles on his website Stableinvestor. Dev shares some tips for advisers on how they can go about writing articles.

“I have been writing about investing and personal finance since much before I even became an RIA. So it does come naturally to me. In fact, since most of my clients come via my website, I can clearly say that writing is what has helped me build my practice over the years. And I have this feeling that writing helps distill down the thoughts one has. So even in money matters, if you think about it, then you will realize that there are thousands of money related thoughts that float in our minds. Some are useful while others are just noise. When you begin to write, it’s a process of reviewing what you know, reading up more on shortlisted thoughts and then putting down your understanding in writing. All this upgrades your thought process as well. And if readers like what you write, then it helps build a kind of bond that is based on trust. And that is most important in any profession that uses the online medium to attract clients.

What are prospects looking for?

People who read don’t want to see your expertise on a standalone basis. They want to get answers to their questions. They want to go from point A to B. So if your expertise or even your basic thoughts can solve the reader’s problems, then they will like to read what you write. It’s as simple as that. So my suggestion is to always write by getting in the shoes of the reader. Write it from their perspective and not to show off your expertise. People have questions that need to be answered. As advisers, we can use our websites/blogs to provide them with those answers and build trust + connection with them. This benefits both sides in the long run.”

We hope you found these tips useful.

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