Financial Advisor Marketing & Technology

Marketing & Technology For Independent Financial Advisors


Social Media Adoption By RIAs and Broker/Dealers

Investment advisers and independent broker/dealers are adopting social media as I expected they would: B/Ds are using crappy content and automation technology, while the large majority of RIAs mostly ignore social media marketing.

Broker-Dealer Social Media Adoption

The BD executives making the decisions have not themselves used social marketing successfully. Moreover, they are outsourcing to vendors that likewise have no record of success in social marketing.

Broker-dealers re striking enterprise deals with social media vendors for low-cost solutions. Little attention is paid to the quality of the content. Content is treated like a commodity, as if one vendor’s content is no different from another’s.

Broker-dealers made the same mistakes 15 years ago in adopting registered representative websites. They approached it as a compliance- technology issue. The BDs struck deals with vendors with almost no regard for content. To this day, most financial advisor websites read like reference books.

Just as they did in adopting websites 15 years ago, BDs now are ignoring the marketing needs of their advisors as they adopt social media solutions. No effort is being made by BDs to help their advisors differentiate themselves. It’s canned content and a cookie-cutter approach and it will fail.

Seeing the mistakes of the past repeated by broker-dealers does not surprise me. BDs generally have little interest in educating clients because they don’t see how anyone makes money from it. Meanwhile, marketing executives at most independent BDs have little clout in making decisions and business executives as well as compliance executives make the calls on social media adoption by reps, even though neither is truly qualified make these decisions.

Registered Investment Adviser Social Media Adoption

RIAs meanwhile are also behaving as expected. A large majority of RIAs are making no serious effort at social marketing.  RIAs are always very slow to adopt new ideas.

Most investment advisors know social media isn’t a fad but have other ideas about how to spend marketing dollars. Most IA reps laugh at the idea that anyone would give you $1 million to manage after meeting you on LinkedIn.

Perhaps 20% of RIAs have a social media marketing strategy and are executing on it. Maybe 5% of CEOs of private wealth advisory firms would say they have benefited from social media marketing.

Solutions For Social Media Marketing For RIAs And Broker-Dealers

For social media marketing to be effective, private wealth advisors and registered reps must create their own content. Your clients and referral sources need to hear from you.

Investment advisors need content that explains how they size up the investment markets. The content can be articles, videos, webinars, blog posts, slideshows, tweets or some other medium.

The content must be optimized for search engines. It must contain keywords that target clients would use to find you using a search engine. And those keywords must spring from your strategic marketing plan.

Creating your own content is not easy, however.

An excellent vehicle that can be the basis for creating content that explains your world-view is financial economist Fritz Meyer’s research. Meyer’s monthly analysis is contained in 70 PowerPoint slides advisors can utilize in seminars, webinars, and client meetings.

The monthly presentations contain dozens of tables and charts guiding an illustrated analysis of key economic data.

When the stock market drops 10% or more,  special editions are published.

IA reps have an advantage over FINRA-licensed reps  in social marketing because their content approval process is simpler.

Targeted to investment advisors utilizing strategic asset allocation, you can purchase Fritz Meyer’s Slide Shows For Advisors for $300 a year.

While there is no replacing your own original content, the Social Media Content Stream For Financial Advisors comes closer than most “canned content” solutions. With the content stream, Advisor Products provides:

  • Article and video content for high-net-worth individuals
  • A dashboard to manage the content on your website
  • Tweets about the linking to your website
  • A dashboard to send or schedule tweets to social networks

Advisors can also get help with executing on strategic marketing plans. If you know who your target clients and if it is a true niche — retirees are not a niche, but retired professors are — Advisor products can write search engine optimized copy for you and write social media profiles and a social marketing campaign content for advisors.



2 Responses to “Social Media Adoption By RIAs and Broker/Dealers”

  1. February 3rd, 2012 at 9:09 pm

    David says:


    Could you provide metrics on how effective your “canned” content is? I know in your Gold and Platinum websites you do provide canned content, but when an advisor points a prospect/center of influence/client to his website, how many of those visitors actually read the canned content you provide?

    Thank you


  2. February 8th, 2012 at 11:07 pm

    agluck says:

    Truth is, not many clients or prospects read the content.

    To bring clients and prospects to your website to read the “canned” content, we have provided advisors a turnkey email newsletter system since September 2001. Advisors who use it regularly tell me it works well.

    The email newsletter costs $500 a year and involves a $300 set-up fee.

    That’s in addition to our $2,337 annual fee for all of our wealth management content, AdvisorVault, website archiving, and eight hours of service from our help desk.

    That’s why I am excited about the Social Media Content Stream For Financial Advisors. We’ve added it on for free to our Platinum license.

    To be clear, were giving advisors the ability to broadcast status updates (tweets) on social networks based on our FINRA reviewed wealth management content linking to their websites. And it’s free with the $2,337 a year Platinum advisor website.

    If an advisor creates a LinkedIn group for retirees, for instance, she can tweet that group with our retirement planning coverage.

    Or if the advisor creates a group for senior management executives at Florida Power & Light, for instance, she can tweet about one of our articles geared to pre-retired executives.

    Thanks for your questions, Dave!

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