At first glance, Twitter may seem like a frivolous medium used primarily for “Mean Tweets,” questionable jokes and whatever it is the Kardashians post. But financial advisors should take it seriously. It is a platform that can help drive traffic to your website or blog (you are blogging, aren’t you?), establish you as an authoritative voice, and communicate with clients (and attract new ones).
Twitter, with a reported 310 million users around the world, according to its website, has carved itself a niche as the social media platform most conducive to following events and breaking news in real time as well as a compelling platform on which to follow and interact with interesting and inspiring people. Are you one of them?
Spectrem Group’s wealth market report, Financial Behaviors and the Investor’s Mindset for the Mass Affluent, Millionaire and Ultra High Net Worth investor, finds that Twitter usage may be less superficial than commonly perceived. Across all wealth levels, beyond family or friends, Affluent investors are more likely to follow political and news commentators and financial and/or investment commentators than they are athletes and entertainers.
Followship generally increases with wealth. One-third of Mass Affluent households with a net worth between $100,000 and $1 million (not including primary residence) follow political commentators and news commentators, while 18 percent follow financial and/or investment commentators. These percentages rise to 41 percent, 43 percent and 24 percent, respectively, among Millionaire investors with a net worth up to $5 million. There is a further uptick among Ultra High Net Worth investors with a net worth between $5 million and $25 million. Four-in-ten of these elite investors follow political and news commentators and 28 percent follow financial and/or investment commentators.
“Twitter can be advantageous to financial advisors in two ways,” Spectrem Group President George H. Walper, Jr. notes. “It can be used to keep up to date on industry trends and issues via newsmakers and opinion makers, and it can also be used to communicate this information to clients and to establish one’s self as an information resource.”
Presently, across all wealth levels, Affluent investors are more likely to follow financial and/or investment commentators than they are their financial advisor, our report finds. This represents an opportunity for advisors to establish their presence on Twitter. An analysis by age of Mass Affluent and Millionaire investors find that Millennials are most likely to follow their financial advisor. Among UHNW investors, Millennials and Gen Xers comprise the largest percentage of those who follow their financial advisor on Twitter.
In conjunction with compliance guidelines and your company’s social media policy, financial advisors are encouraged to tweet. Here are some tweet tips:
Top Takeaways for Advisors:
- Spend time on your tweets. Be careful and thoughtful about what you want to communicate. Get feedback before you hit “send.” Regulatory requirements likely are compelling your firm to archive your Twitter output.
- Use tweets to promote your blog or to link back to articles your followers will find of interest.
- Tweets are more engaging with appropriate images.
- Your tweets should be true to your personality.