Matthew Halloran, one of the Top Advisor Coaches in the financial services industry, unwinds online marketing. Matt shows you how to get started with social media in a safe and easy way.
Mathew Sawyer: Wow, what a tremendous number of participants on today’s webinar. This by far, is the most we’ve ever had, and I think it speaks very highly of the interest that you all have in learning more about how to do your marketing via social media and integrate some of those tools.
First of all, my name is Matt Sawyer. I’m with WealthVest Marketing. I want to thank you all for taking time out of your day to attend our webinar. It is entitled Getting Started with Social Media, and as I said before, based on the attendance there is huge interest in this topic and we’re going to answer a lot of questions that you have in implementing these types of programs.
I do want to mention that once we begin, you’re able to ask questions in the bottom right hand corner of your screen. If you type those in, we will make certain that your question is answered towards the end of the webinar.
You know when we first started laying the groundwork for AdvisorDeck in this program, we listened to advisors just like yourselves, who were telling us a lot of things, but they all sounded basically the same. You were telling us things like, “Hey, my marketing programs aren’t working like they did in the past.” “I’m not drawing the attendance to the events that I used to in the past.” “It’s hard to find effective programs and when they are, they’re very time consuming and very expensive.” The question that we got a lot was, “How can I integrate the huge cost advantage of the internet to my practice, especially with the compliance concerns that financial advisors have in the financial planning industry?”
This was about three years ago now, and we’ve listened to everything you said, and that’s really why we developed this AdvisorDeck program that we launched at the beginning of the year and is available to you now. Although it does a lot of things for you, if you wanted to encapsulate a couple of the really most important things from a marketing perspective, AdvisorDeck is going to help you generate high quality leads with far less effort and cost, which we all know is extremely important.
It will allow you to manage ongoing communications and marketing to your existing clients so that you can work holistically with your entire book of business whether they’re your clients or prospects. And it can help you develop and manage an inbound marketing campaign where folks find you, using programs like Pay-per-click, and also Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn, which is what we’re going to be talking about today.
That brings us to Matt Halloran, who is a very well recognized expert in the industry of social marketing, and a very, very good friend to WealthVest and I’m certain that a lot of folks on the call, that you’ve been on previous calls with Matt as well, so you know how tremendous he is.
He is recognized as one of the top advisor coaches in the nation. He’s coached hundreds and spoken to thousands of financial advisors. He has a keen understanding of how you run your business, the importance of new, effective, and low-cost marketing strategies, and the sensitivity that we always have to place on compliance.
Matt is the Director of The National Development for Give Strategies, which is focused on redirecting one billion dollars to charity, and he’s the President and Co-Founder of Top Advisors Coaching, a program for top producers in business, finance, legal, and philanthropy. Also, as if he didn’t have enough to do, he’s the Co-Author of a very important book called The Social Media Handbook for Financial Advisors, which will be released on August 7th.
Matt, welcome back!
Matt: Thank you very much, Matt. You know, today is an absolutely miraculous day for financial advisors in social media for a lot of different reasons. Number one, the floodgates are starting to be opened. The availability, from your compliance department is to be able to use social media is starting to open. There are people who are cascading into this marketplace, but unfortunately, they’re doing it tripping over themselves and making mistakes.
What we’re going to talk about today is how you can get a firm foothold within the social media marketplace before you can get yourself in trouble. So I want to specify that the big picture of what we’re going to talk about today is how you can get comfortable from a consumer perspective – very, very important, a consumer perspective on using social media, so when you launch and use products like the AdvisorDeck platform, you can feel comfortable that the type of communication you have is actually the kind of communication that people want to consume.
Another thing that I’m really excited about, and I know this sounds like a shameless plug, but what the heck, I’m going to take it. For those of you who have Kindle or online readers, The Social Media Handbook for Financial Advisors is actually available for download today. I’m waiting for my hardbound copy in the mail. My co-author got hers already and I just can’t wait to be able to see what it’s like, to actually feel like the book is actually real.
Speaking of reality, only 16 percent of financial services professionals are actively using social media today. Fifty-two percent of them specifically say that they will never use social media because it’s too much of a black hole.
Now, for those of you who like the competition aspect of the business, which I personally do; knowing that there’s only 16 percent of my co-financial advisors out there, my other people who are in my industry who are existing in this space, I want to get in here as soon as I can because it’s unchartered waters. It’s like the wild wild west here that you can go out and have huge aspect to a prospect base that is just dying for information, especially when it comes to the financial services industry because it’s devoid.
I’ve been on Facebook, I’ve been on MySpace, Twitter, Pinterest, and all of the social media sites for like the past 10 years, and being able to find good information about planning for retirement, retirement income, retirement pitfalls; savings, 529 plans, 401k’s anything, annuities – most of the information that’s out there is negative information.
We know that through what’s going on your education from what you’ve done up until this point, plus all of the great things that an organization like WealthVest does; you can put out good information and they are craving it. But getting your mouth watering for this sort of aspect of marketing is something that you need to understand, it is dangerous. You have to do it right and you have to do it within the compliance framework of whatever compliance department you’re working at.
I’m going to talk a lot today about Twitter and Facebook. Probably the next webinar I do in September, I’m actually going to bring a friend of mind, the co-author of my book; her name is Krystal [sp]. She is going to talk about LinkedIn because she is the LinkedIn ninja, literally. A lot of you are already able to use LinkedIn now. Your compliance departments have opened up LinkedIn because of the compliance aspect of archiving is actually very easy through LinkedIn.
With Facebook and Twitter, it’s a little more difficult, so we’re going to leave LinkedIn aside, because I personally believe, and Krystal and I argue about this all the time, that Twitter and Facebook are a much better way to market to prospects. One, because there’s nobody existing in that space right now, and two, you are a B to C business. If you were a B-to-B business then LinkedIn is the place to be, because it’s about business. If you are a B to C, Facebook is the place you want to be. But before you get to Facebook, you have to get comfortable with using social media.
We’re going to start with Twitter. Now I personally love Twitter. I think Twitter is one of the most brilliant inventions when it comes to communication, since text messaging, because that’s actually why Twitter was set up the way that it was; most people text about 140 characters, right? So when the founders of Twitter set it up, they wanted a quick easy blast of short communication that was going to be scalable, and oh my God is it scalable.
I’ve been on Twitter for about six years now. I’ve got about 84,000 followers; about 150,000 followers total on all of my Twitter accounts. I use Twitter for dissemination of information and consumption of information. I started out by just using it as consumption of information, which is what we’re going to have you start with today.
So what happens is, you go Twitter – you type it into your Google search tool, your Bing or whatever and this is what’s going to come up. It’s very easy to sign up for this, but there are a couple of things I’m going to ask you to do right off the bat. Number one; do not use your compliance check email for this because you are going to set up a personal account. Remember, I need you to understand social media from a consumer’s perspective before you try to use it as a business perspective, and the only way to do that is to actually become a consumer.
Go into this marketplace like you are, as you are, a normal everyday human being who’s married. Maybe you have some kids, maybe you’re married or you’re not married. You’ve got a couple of dogs. This is what you want to be able to view, how Twitter works. It’s very, very simple. You put your name, you put your e-mail, and you create a password. It’s very, very simple!
This is what’s going to come up. So now you need to come up with your Twitter handle. It’s basically going to be how you’re going to be recognized on Twitter. Now this is a shadow account that I set up and this isn’t even active anymore. I’ll show you what the active Twitter account is here in a minute, but you are not going to put your business name in here. I recommend that you put your name.
Don’t do a nickname. Like let’s say you were called Drunken Moose when you were in college or in high school. You probably don’t want that to be what you’re recognized as on social media, because all of these things are going to be integrated at some point and we don’t want Drunken Moose to be attached to your professional persona. So do something simple like your first name_last name, first name initials, middle initial_ , because there are a lot of people on Twitter and your name might not be available.
Then you’re going to be able to click create my account. So you’ve got your first full name; go by your legal name. Then you’re going to put your address in, because what Twitter is going to do is send you an e-mail to make sure that you’re not a spammer so you can activate your Twitter account. This is your personal address. This is your @comcast.net, @gmail.com, Yahoo, AOL. This is your personal account and not the one that is checked by compliance, because you’re not going to be broadcasting anything here that has anything to do with the financial services industry, but you are going to consume what is going out in the financial services industry and I’ll show you more about that here in just one second.
So this is what comes up. It’s going to ask you what your interests are. Now as a consumer – since remember, you’re wearing your consumer hat – you’re going to find out what is being broadcast on Twitter about the financial services or the financial advisory space, and you’re going to get recommendations; people you should follow. So you type in financial advisor, and these are the sorts of things that come up. So you’ve got NAFA, you’ve got Advisor Tweets, who actually is a friend of mine; you should follow that. That’s fantastic. You’ve got a family financial planner. My name is going to come up. You’ve got a lot of different things.
Follow things like The Financial Time, Blumberg, WealthVest. Follow Wade and Lincoln; they both post stuff on a regular basis. Whoever your local WealthVest rep is – follow Matt Sawyer. You’ve got all of these people you can follow, and you need to follow 10 right off the bat. I highly recommend that you follow the Social Media Handbook for Advisors. It’s going to be tweeting regular stuff about good habits and how you can use social media to your advantage. Whomever you read on a regular basis.
Let’s say you’re a big fan of Financial Planning Magazine – Source Media, Financial Planning Online. All of those organizations, you can find them here and you can use that to your advantage because you can see what they’re posting, and therefore, tailor what you’re going to post using something like AdvisorDeck or another platform. You can say, “Gosh, that really does look like what the Financial Times of London is posting,” and let me tell you, they’ve got like a million followers, so what they’re posting is something that people want to consume.
There’s a couple of pitfalls here that I want to make sure that all of you pay very close attention to. Number one, don’t be an egg. You’ll see on the screen right here that there’s an egg. You maybe don’t put a picture of yourself on the account, and a lot of people won’t end up following you unless you have a picture of yourself. Most eggs, which is what we call them in Twitter speak, are actually spammers. You don’t want to be an egg, don’t be an egg; that’s a mantra for you today with Twitter. What you want to do is upload a picture of yourself.
Once again, don’t put a picture up of Drunken Moose, put a picture up of you or your family. Like on my personal Twitter account, the_life_coach, it’s me and my Saint Bernard right? Which is a memorable picture because he’s a huge 150 lb dog and I get comments on it all the time, like “Nice dog,” and it gives me an opportunity to interact with my Twitter followers.
Paste a picture. Headshots are good. We don’t want you to be saying a lot of stuff about yourself professionally. For instance, website – do not put your business website there because this is a personal consumer account, alright. I do recommend that you put your location in there because we’re going to talk later, when we actually talk about what AdvisorDeck does, how Geo-location and Geo tagging is very important, and this is a good way for you to get comfortable with how that works.
Now your bio, which is the last piece on this screen, what I would like for you to do, is to do something very simple. My first Twitter account said, “I’m a husband and father and coach. I enjoy fly fishing and photography.” So a little bit about myself, enough that people have some dialogue with me and it also shows what the priorities are in my life. Something very, very simple and it can’t be long, because as you can see, you can only do 160 characters.
The other piece here is anytime that any social media tool outlet, such as Twitter, gives you tips like you can see on the right hand side there where it says Profile and Tips – read them. It’s amazing. They want you to effectively use their social media tool, so they’re going to give you all sorts of magnificent hints, tips, and ideas to maximize your following, maximize your relationships.
This personal account, remember, is going to be you consuming information, so you’re not looking at 70,000, 80,000 followers on this account; you’ll maybe have 50 or 60. If you have personal friends of yours, who are on Twitter, which by the way it’s going to ask you about that, it’s going to say, “Hey, do you have any friends, family, or anything on Twitter? You can’t do that because you don’t want to have them go to your personal account. They can search your Yahoo, Google, Bing, MSN addresses to be able to find people, and this is what it’s going to look like after you actually activate your account.
Stepping back just a second, I put my picture and I’ve got my bio and I start creating my account. Twitter is going to send you an e-mail, are you a real person? You active your account, and then “klablamo” you sign back into Twitter and this is what you’re going to see.
So this is one of the people that you should follow because this is our book; Social Media Handbook for Advisors, [16:31.5]. We’ve got a website and Facebook on this too. I will follow you back as soon as I possibly can. In fact, I’ve got people who help me with all of that, since I’ve got as many followers as I do. But if you Direct Message me, I will most likely Direct Message you right back and say congratulations on getting on Twitter.
This is what you’re going to see. It’s going to show you who you should follow. It’s always going to recommend by who you have followed to who you should follow. I get messages all the time or requests and suggestions on Twitter all the time for other people that I should follow. Sometimes it’s interesting. I don’t happen to be the largest Suzie Orman fan, but every time I log onto Twitter, it says, “Matt you should be following Suzie Orman.” Well, she’s got like three million followers and she doesn’t really need another one, and I don’t really like what she says most of the time so I’m not going to follow her. But they’re going to suggest for you to follow people all the time. Generally, take those suggestions.
You’re going to see this is what’s going to come up. It’s going to show your location, it’s going to talk who you are. If you have a Facebook page, which we’re going to talk about in a minute, you can actually link them to your Facebook page. Now I use all of this stuff for business, but I definitely started out as a consumer.
Now one of the other things that you’re going to see here, which I think is really powerful, is this right here. That stuff right there, you can see that there’s a thing called Following and Followers. Now when you’re starting to use this for business, always be following more people than are following you. In fact, I posted an article on Financialplanning.com a little while ago that was entitled, You’re Not Lady Gaga, So Don’t Act Like Her.
Unless you are world famous, you are generally always going to be trying to seek more followers. Don’t be one of those people who say, “I’ve got 600 people following me, but I’m only following 100.” Well, most people right now are using Twitter tools, bots that help you follow and unfollow people, and if you don’t follow them back they’re going to dump you. You’re going to lose people and they’re going to feel like you’re not engaged.
Now, using Twitter, before we get to what’s going on here on Facebook – for business is very, very simple, but it’s complex at the same time, because the way that there’s archiving needed with Twitter is through something called an API. I’m not going to get too technical with any of this stuff, but the people who brought me here today, which is not only WealthVest, but AdvisorDeck, we were working on this API question, which is how are they going to do compliance archiving of your tweets, scrubbing them to make sure that they’re good to go. Actually, Cameron, the founder of AdvisorDeck, was able to work with a company called Page Freezer, which is the same compliance company that the FCC uses, so their stuff is up and ready to go.
We’re going to do one of these conference calls on Twitter and how to use it to market your business and find out what you’re competition is doing a little bit later down the road. But I want you to get comfortable with Twitter because it’s the easiest thing to do. It doesn’t involve an enormous amount of setup and in fact, it’s like four or five quick information gathering pieces for you to get involved with on Twitter. It’s very, very easy to maintain, it’s easy to follow, unfollow, block people if you get a spammer on your page. It’s very easy to do.
Facebook is the next level of complexity, and then I firmly believe that LinkedIn adds probably four or five times the complexity that Facebook does, so that’s why we’re going in order here and we’ll bring in Krystal, the LinkedIn expert later on down the road.
When it comes to the big picture, why is Matt Halloran now telling me I need to do this as a consumer instead of really bringing this as a business is because when you do bring it for business you need to be prepared, because one out of every eight minutes spent online is on Facebook. That should freak you out.
That means that almost everybody who logs onto the internet is going to check their Facebook page. When we get the point of teaching you how to market on Facebook, which again, AdvisorDeck can help you set up a business page and stuff like that, but when you start marketing on Facebook as a business, you’re going to see on the right hand side of your Facebook screen that there are ads that pop up and they’re tailored to you.
Facebook marketing, in my opinion, is genius. It’s what the marketing industry has wanted for the last 100 years. It’s I already know what you’re talking about and I’m going to create an ad that’s tailored to what you’re talking about when you’re talking about it, so it’s going to be timely and increase the likelihood of you clicking on it. But before you get there, you’ve got to get comfortable. You’ve got to setup your personal Facebook page.
Now I’m going to go back very quickly to the whole Drunken Moose thing here everybody, and you want to be very, very stark with the information that you’re going to put out. You’re also want to again, not connect with clients; you’re going to want to connect with old friends.
Here’s the reef. Now I took this screenshot probably about 6-7 months ago. These numbers have almost doubled at this point, but if you look at this from a prospecting standpoint, a lot of us are really going to be working with ages 45 up to 64. Total users, right now we’re at about 40 million people who fit into that group. Forty million people, that only 16 percent of financial services people are marketing to. There’s no way they could handle that volume of business.
I want to be able to get you comfortable with social media to the point where you can be able to enter into it, in a business perspective, and make it so that you’re successful. But first, you’ve got to get comfortable.
So this is what Facebook looks like when you’re about to set up an account. It’s not too difficult, but for those of you who are slightly on the paranoid side, just be prepared that they already know all of this information anyways, so tough noogums. Anybody can find out anything. I can find out just about anything about most of you very quickly online because those of us who know how to do that can find it, so your information is already out there. Your male/female and your birth date is not going to be something that’s going to be used against you by big brother.
Trust me, they have the information already. But first name, last name. Again, your e-mail; this is your personal one, and then you’re going to put in a password. Again, try to be specific with that stuff.
If you want to get really freaked out, read the terms of service of Facebook, and three days later after you get through the 155 some-odd pages of it, you’ll probably not want to join Facebook. They’re going to use your information, so you just need to cognizant of what you’re going to post. I have friends of mine from high school who I connected with on Facebook, and yes it was a long time ago since I graduated from high school, but they post stuff on there that I just think to myself, you’ll never be able to run for office with that post. Pictures of them drinking in bars or at clubs. I mean, goodness gracious people, we’re adults here, let’s make sure we act like it.
If you wouldn’t tell your mother the information that you’re about to post on Facebook, don’t post it. It’s just that simple. If it’s controversial in any way and you think it can be used against you, not only in a court of law but also in a social situation, don’t post it. In fact, that’s why I want you to get comfortable with looking at Facebook from a consumer standpoint because you’re going to see what not to do more than you’re going to see what to do. So sign up is relatively easy, and then it’s going to take you through.
Now again, I’m going to sound like a broken record here, but I want to make sure that everybody is clear. Please don’t use your compliance approved e-mail here; use your personal e-mail. What Facebook is going to do is go into your e-mail contacts and they’re going to find you people who are already on Facebook. In fact, once you start answering some of the preliminary questions on Facebook – like when did you graduate? What school did you go to? Where were you born, and some of these other questions, they’re going to be able to find you people all the time.
I get old high school friends, college buddies, Navy buddies, people who I’ve worked with in the past pop up on Facebook all the time because I keep my information up to date. So have Facebook help you find people. It’s really cool, because some of the people who are like, “Nah, I don’t really know if I want to talk to them again.” I’ve re-engaged with some of my old friends and it’s just a great way for me to feel connected with people since I live geographically very, very far away from them.
All right, high school, college, and employment is another way that Facebook is going to help you find people to friend and to like. Remember, these organizations want you to be successful with their tool. So Facebook wants you to get up to 50, 60, 100 friends as fast as you possibly can because then they know that you’re going to be on their site more often. The more often that you’re on their site, the more chance they have to sell ads and ad space, keyword searches, and different things like that so Facebook can generate money.
If you think Mark Zuckerberg isn’t out there for making a whole bunch of cash on this, well you obviously haven’t watched any of the movies. But the whole idea here is personalized information that’s tailored to you, and right now you need to be a consumer to see what information they put in front of you.
Now, I am a big fan of images. I think a picture conveys a thousand words and that’s just the truth. I really like putting up pictures on Facebook of my kids. Very recently, I took my son fishing and he caught his first catfish. It was a great picture, and it’s something that all of my friends and family can see, just so they feel connected. That’s the joys of social media, especially when it comes to Facebook.
You’re not going to get that level of connectivity on Twitter, which is why I want you to start there. It is an information consumption tool. Facebook is a lot more of a two-way street. I post a picture of my son holding up the catfish. My mother, who lives 11 ½ hours away from me is able to post and say, “Oh my gosh, he’s gotten even bigger,” or “Gosh, that’s the smallest fish I’ve ever seen anybody catch.” Fun stuff like that, and then not only do my kids, my family, and I feel connected with people who aren’t geographically close to me, but my friends and family feel the same way.
I want you to just think about that and let that sink in, because when you use Facebook as a business-building tool, you’re trying to build a connection. The connection is the key. The connection is that warm feeling that you want to create for everybody who is working with you and who is interacting with you. Now professionally, they need to feel like you’re talking to them, and by using Facebook from a consumer perspective first before you bring it in as a business, you’re going to be able to see how businesses interact. You’re going to look at who you’re going to like; what companies. Again, you’re going to want to probably follow your general agency, broker/dealer, insurance company. You’re going to want to follow WealthVest. You’re going to want to follow and products or services that you use from a consumer perspective to see what sort of information that they’re giving to you. Because you can digest this information and really feel comfortable with the information, and then when you start being that information producer, then you’re going to know what they way.
Now before we move on with Facebook, I’m going to take a pause here real quick because the production of information, when it comes to social media is really tricky for everybody in the financial services industry. They want to do whatever they possibly can to make it so that you don’t post anything timely, that it always has to go through some sort of filter or some sort of compliance department to make it so they make sure you’re not saying anything you’re not supposed to.
Personally, as a person who’s used social media for many, many years, I’m really frustrated with that and I’m sure you are too, because I follow people on Facebook and I follow people on Twitter who are physicians who are handing out medical advice all the time and nobody tells them to shut up, but if I’ve got a great idea for retirement savings, I’m not allowed to post that because I could be doing harm to people. Well, I found out that I could get rid of gastric reflux by drinking eight gallons of baking soda every day. That would kill me, but you know what; hey he’s not regulated, they can say whatever they want and we’re incredibly heavily regulated. So you have to be careful.
One of the best ways to be careful is to outsource that aspect of communication. Many of you have market commentaries. Many of you have newsletters. It’s something that ghostwritten by somebody else, and I’m going to recommend that you find somebody like that to help you.
Now AdvisorDeck can do that for you. They can do personalized blogs for you, which basically, we’re talking about blogs which are posts here. They also have a nice content pool that you can draw from, and you can post it frequently. Now we’re not asking you to post five times a day. In fact, I’m not even recommending that you’re going to be posting three times a day. I say you should post information that’s good information one time per day.
Now it’s not going to be wildly time-consuming, especially if you outsource it. It takes me probably 15 minutes now everyday where I will go in and I will post something across all of my social media sites.
Sometimes it’s the same emulated information, sometimes it’s new content, and you’re going to get to that point too. But big picture, you all tell me since I’ve coached so many people like you, “Matt, I just don’t have time.” I’m so busy doing other things, I need to bring in new business. I don’t have time to really mess with social media. I guarantee you, you’ve got 15 minutes to start getting your feet wet in this. That 15 minutes that you spend using Twitter and Facebook right now, is going to yield you new business two months from now, three months from now.
If you decide to outsource and use something like AdvisorDeck, it’s going to be way faster than that, because the forward thinking group at WealthVest has created this nice package for all of you guys that’s safe, it’s compliant, and it’s good content. I’m going to keep going here. Please put a picture up. Make sure, dear God, that it’s not you drinking tequila in a bar. Make sure it’s a nice family-friendly picture.
Now I love this picture. One, because I happen to love dogs, but two, I want to reiterate a point that I had said earlier. Don’t worry about people watching your information, because again, they already are. They just are. When you’re posting something, think about this dog. Would this dog be shocked at what you’re posting? Would your mother-in-law be shocked at what you’re posting? Would your father-in-law be shocked at what you’re posting? Would you want your kids to see what you’re posting?
If you answer, “No, I don’t want any of those people to see this, then just don’t post it. I want all of you on the call today to feel very comfortable with social media, and I’m trying to throw out as many warnings as I can so when you start existing in the social media place, that you know what the rules are, because there are social commentary rules on all of this stuff in everyone.
There’s social rules on Pinterest, there’s social rules on Google Plus, there’s social rules on Twitter, there’s social rules on LinkedIn. And wow, when we start talking about social rules on LinkedIn, they’re astronomical. It’s like a handbook that you have to do just to be able to exist there comfortably. Facebook is a little bit different, because again, Facebook is a connection, is a way to make it so that you’re warm and comfortable with all of the different people that you connect with.
After you log onto Facebook and you get your profile set up, find people to connect with. See what they’re posting. See how long they post. See how images show up; how quickly the images will show up at the top of what’s called your newsfeed, which is at the top of your page; because as financial services professionals, I recommend all the time that you regularly post pictures because people like to see pictures. So if you have a picture going along with an article, it’s more likely that those people are going to read that article if there’s an intriguing picture surrounding it, much like the one that I put on the screen right now.
Can you imagine you’re on Facebook and you see this dog’s face; you’re going to click on the dog, right? What in the heck is this dog about? Then they click on the dog and it says something – you know one of the people who I’m connected with is in Baltimore. It’s the Humane Society in Baltimore. It’s called B-More Humane. If you want to see a business using social media correctly, find B-More Humane. They’re fantastic because of all of the stuff that they do. They’re posting pictures of people adopting animals, little stories about them, and as a person who follows them, I feel really connected and I live in Omaha, Nebraska. That’s a three hour plane ride for me to be able to connect with those people, but I like keeping up with them because I happen to be an animal lover. Find out what people are posting, get really comfortable with it, and then go ahead and take it from there.
So I’m going to talk about AdvisorDeck just a little bit. The reason why I feel comfortable talking about AdvisorDeck isn’t because they’re the people who brought me here today and it’s not because WealthVest brought me here today, it’s because Cameron and their team contacted me to consult on AdvisorDeck on what they should be building and really what you all need.
As a person who’s worked with so many financial advisors, and when I really started getting involved in social media I would have advisors talking with me on a regular basis from a coaching and a consulting standpoint. “Matt how can I use this?” So when I sat down with Cameron and the folks at AdvisorDeck, we went through a lot of different pieces. What made me feel really comfortable is that they’ve covered all of your basis. There are a lot of other field marketing organizations, insurance marketing organizations that are starting to rush into this space because they see a need, they see that they can make money with this, they can provide value and get their products and services in front of you, but I’m going to warn everybody on this call that they are running into the fray and they are not prepared. They either have existed in our space, which everybody on this call right now knows that financial services industry, in general, is a very tricky marketplace.
If you don’t have the experience to exist in this marketplace, then you know what; you’re going to fail and everybody around you is going to fail. That’s the cool thing about what AdvisorDeck and the folks at WealthVest. They did their homework.
That’s one of the reasons why I’ve been a fried of WealthVest for so long, with Lincoln and Wade, specifically. I’ve gotten to know Matt over the years. They want to make sure that they give you products and services that allow you to be safe, but allow you to be competitive, and that’s one of the cool things about AdvisorDeck. AdvisorDeck is going to be your hub where you can disseminate information to Twitter, LinkedIn, and Facebook, blog rolls, they help you create a website, and it’s all archived with Page Freezer, which again, is the same social media compliance company that works with the FCC.
Now, big picture, from really beginning to end. Social media has to be taken from a consumers point of view. In fact, when I used to teach financial services professionals communication skills; how to listen better, how to communicate and connect with their clients more; one of the first exercises that I used to do is I used to make them sit on the other side of their table/their desk. When I do this in person, because I do on-site consultations, I will immediately walk into your office, sit in your desk, and make you sit on the other side of your desk. You would be surprised how many of you have never done that. “Wow, this is what the perspective is? This is terrible? Gosh the front of this desk is ugly,” or “Gosh, there’s nothing behind me. I don’t have any pictures on the walls,” or “The pictures that I have on the walls are crooked.” You have to take things from a consumer perspective, that’s why when you start off with Twitter and you start off with Facebook, I’m going to ask you to start off from a consumer’s perspective and not from a business perspective. Take your time and get comfortable in these mediums.
Twitter is the easiest thing to set up, it takes you about 15 minutes. In 15 minutes, you can be following 10-15 people, you can be seeing how often things are refreshed. You can be seeing how things look at 140 characters or less. You can see what sort of information the financial industry is posting and giving to consumers. So when you take the plunge of opening your own professional Twitter account, you will be able to emulate the kind of information that you’ve been consuming and have felt comfortable with.
The same thing with Facebook. After you log onto Facebook with your own personal account, you’re going to start seeing how people market on Facebook. On the right hand side of your page, you’re going to see ads.
There’s a couple of cool things about ads that I want to touch on because I love this about Facebook. Again, this is like a marketer’s dream, and everybody on this call is a marketer. I can get real-time information if the person who’s seeing my ad likes the message because I, and I do this all the time, can click on the ad and say, “Hide this ad,” because it’s not important to me, or it’s offensive, objectionable, or repetitive, or I don’t like their message. Facebook records that information and sends it back to the people who put the ad in place.
There are real time analytics, which is another thing that AdvisorDeck offers and it’s something you can get on Facebook. You can see exactly how many people saw your post. You can see how many people liked your post. You can see the names of the people who liked your post, so you can communicate directly back with them. This is something that I’m doing a lot right now because since you can download a copy of the Social Media Handbook for Advisors today, I’ve been posting this across the board and I’m getting people who are saying, “Hey Matt…,” they like this post or they make a comment – “Hey I just bought my advanced copy.”
I can engage with my audience and say, “Hey, thanks John for buying an advanced copy. Please tell me what you think,” and I’m getting all of this buzz surrounding this, which is what something like AdvisorDeck can do for you.
The web, you need to visualize it, it’s just like a spider web. The more little tentacles that you have out there, it’s all going to keep feeding back to you in the middle, and that’s one of the great things about social media.
Yeah, a shameless plug, there’s the book. All of you can download it onto your Kindle today, it’s a whopping $30. It’s going to go up to like $60, I think at the end of this month, so order your advance copy today, that would be great.
Big picture, to just tell you about what this is. What I went over today is included in the book, so when you want to learn about how to use Twitter and how to use Facebook, which are the two areas that I cover – Krystal is the one who covers LinkedIn and compliance; I teach you how to set it up and then I teach you how to use it in a business sense. So I take you through the whole spectrum here, how to use it personally and then how to use it professionally to gain business, not only with Twitter, but also with Facebook.
And then Krystal – and if you guys have a chance and if you’re already existing on LinkedIn and you’re trying to get business from LinkedIn, look up Krystal. Her last name is spelled right there, it’s T-H-I-E-S. She’s the LinkedIn ninja. This woman is a genius marketer when it comes to LinkedIn and I would highly recommend that you connect with her and see what she can do for you.
But the big picture is, all of you are probably saying, “Matt, one again, this is all pie in the sky. Good for you. Yea, social media, I still don’t have time.” You have a relationship – I don’t know what it is – with WealthVest. WealthVest has a relationship with AdvisorDeck. Talk to Matt Sawyer. Talk to your local WealthVest rep and say, “How do I get involved with this AdvisorDeck thing, so that I can start using social media, because I want to be one of that 16 percent of people who are using social media to market my business and to generate new revenue. I really, truly believe that the forward thinking folks at AdvisorDeck and at WealthVest have brought the best product to the market.
There are going to be other people who are going to come to your offices and sit down across from you. They’re going to be wholesalers and they’re going to tell you that they can do everything that you need on social media. Be wary! I wouldn’t put my time, I wouldn’t put my book, I wouldn’t put my co-author, I wouldn’t put up my reputation and throw it behind an organization unless I knew that they were doing what you all need, and I truly believe that AdvisorDeck are the people who are going to be able to do that.
I’m not really sure if anybody has been asking questions because I’ve been kind of running around my office here. It’s just part of my energy level, it’s hard for me to sit down when I’m presenting, and on top of that I’m flaling my arms all over the place and I’m afraid I’ll break something. So I’m going to turn it over to see Dana, if there are any questions then we will go ahead and take it from there.
Dana: It sounds good. I’ve highlighted some Matt, that have come in, so I’m going to just start with them.
The first one is, do you recommend developing a calendar for tweets and Facebook posts to make things easier?
Matt: That is an excellent question and absolutely. If you are going to just exist in one of the two spaces, there are other programs that you can use to help you do that. But yes, I highly recommend that you do a calendar. One of the pieces that you can do online right now is you can find out what is the most of effective time to post. There is research all over the web about that. In fact, I’m sure that Cameron and the folks at AdvisorDeck have that very handy, but yes, create a calendar. Talk about things that are timely.
We’ve got an election coming up. Bernanke was just on TV. You’ve got all of this stuff that’s still going on in Europe. These are things that are really good things to post and schedule them out. So yes, find out when is the most appropriate time to post in your area. Just so you know, it’s 10 AM in the morning, but that’s when you’re going to want to schedule your tweets. You can use things like TweetDeck, you can use Tweet Adder, you can use Hoot Suite. There’s a whole bunch of other tools that are out there to help you with the calendar function, or you could more wisely use something like AdvisorDeck.
Dana For those of us who are registered with Series 65, are there not restrictions with Facebook, for example, if someone puts you as Like then this could be considered a testimony.
Matt: You know what, they’re really wishy-washy on this. I’m going to be honest. The best way for you to find out what you can do with your 65, and I covered this on the last presentation, by the way; is a look at social media in the last Massachusetts guidelines that they came out with. If you type in FCC Massachusetts Social Media Guidelines in your Google search. In fact, Dana, do you guys have it?
Dana I do and I’m happy to sent it out Matt, with our thank you, the recording and our note.
Matt: Why don’t you do that, because I think that will answer the question even better. Is it like a testimonial? No it’s not, because there’s no content behind the like. I really strongly believe that that’s going to be changing. As of right now, you can’t not have people like it because if you set up your page, there’s a Like button right there and that’s a battle that I would be more than comfortable with and I think you all should start getting comfortable with going to your compliance department.
What that shows is that the FCC and FINRA, both of them together really have no idea what social media is. Their learning curve was unfortunately a little delayed, but it’s starting to pick up as of now.
Dana: Using Facebook, do you have to have separate accounts for personal and business or do you use one account?
Matt: You have to have two accounts. Please, dear God, have two accounts. One of them is going to be your Facebook page for you personally and the other one is going to be a business page and you’re going to set it up as a business page. They used to be called Fan Pages, but now they’re called Business pages.
After you create your personal Facebook account, do not – I think it was the last time we were on the call Dana, somebody said to me, “Oh Matt, I just use my personal page to disseminate all of my personal information.” That advisor/agent is going to be in hot water. You have to set it up separately because when it comes to compliance, just so you know, your broker/dealer, your general agency or whoever you report to and/or if you’re with your 65, then you need to have good compliance archiving capabilities and it needs to be put on your business page. And the information you’re going to put on your business page is hopefully going to be very different than the page that you create personally.
I want you to create a personal page. You cannot be an effective marketer on social media unless you fully understand how the information is received by clients.
Dana: The next one is actually related to that one, Matt. How do you reconcile a previously existing Facebook account with a more professional persona and would you suggest simply creating a new account?
Matt: These are great questions. I would absolutely recommend you open up a new page. Now again, we’re not going to open up a new personal account, we’re going to open up a new professional business page.
After you create your own personal Facebook page, it’s going to say, Create A Page. I think it’s actually in the upper right hand corner. Facebook has been changing things with Timeline and they’re still messing with stuff, but you can create your own page and then it will walk you through are you a business, local, nonprofit organization. Then it will walk you through those steps. If you have any questions about that again, I cover all of that stuff in the book, The Social Media Handbook for Advisors. It will walk you through screenshots step-by-step.
The problem is, if Facebook decides that they’re going to change things about every three months and it takes six months to get a book out, so some of the screenshots are still going to give you the right information, but they might not look exactly the same.
Are there anymore?
Dana: There’s actually a lot but I’m going to cull it down to a couple. One of them I can answer right off the bat. It says, “I don’t have a Kindle. Where and how can I purchase an advance copy of your book?”
I can tell you all that it’s on Amazon and I can also tell you that in the thank you e-mail that we will send out to you with a copy of the recorded webinar, there will be a link so that you can pre-order the hardcopy of the book.
Matt: Right. The books have already been printed actually and so August 7th, that was their dates when they were going to have them released. They’re going to be in the warehouses on the 22nd of July and you should be able to get it that first week of August if you pre-order it today.
Dana: That sounds good, so just look out for the link we provide you in the e-mail. A couple more real quick, Matt.
Is there a way to post to all of your social media accounts at the same time?
Matt: Absolutely, and that’s one of the reasons why using a hub like AdvisorDeck is going to be the most appropriate way to do that, because when you post through AdvisorDeck, it’s immediately archived at the AdvisorDeck level. If you try to use outside sources like some of those things that I was talking to you about before like Hoot Suite is a great example or Tweet Deck. The ability for compliance to be able to pull that is not as smooth. I highly recommend that you use a hub, is what we call it, and that’s why on this slide here, I show that AdvisorDeck is the middle of the hub here so you can see that there are ways to post through all of these different things when it comes to AdvisorDeck specifically.
Dana: Alright Matt, I think one final one that I would love to wrap it up with.
Is social media necessary to connect with baby boomer clients?
Matt: Absolutely! You know the fastest growing demographic on social media happens to be boomers. They love the ability to connect with friends and family, and I’ll just give you a couple of personal examples.
My mother and my stepfather, after they found out I was writing this book and they were excited about it and they wanted to get involved with social media and they both got on Facebook. It’s absolutely amazing – I just messaged my mom, oddly enough, this morning – that she was saying, “Matt, I can’t thank you enough for getting me involved in social media. I’ve been able to connect with people who share my same interests and connect with groups and organizations that provide me with the information that I really want.”
My stepdad, his father was a B52 World War II pilot and so he’s very into World War II memoralbilia and all of these things. They’re flooding to this because once they find out how easy it is to set up, they exist there. And to kind of wrap it up here, and to put all of this big picture into perspective, if I’m 65 and above – let’s say I’m 55 and above, and I post that I’m going on vacation to Switzerland with my wife because I’m enjoying retirement.
You can, from a marketing standpoint, put an ad on Facebook and one of the keywords is going to be vacation. Another one is going to be retirement. You’re going to be able to have very, very specific demographics. Like I only want people who are 66 and above, so when you post your ad, your article, or your teaser to get people to go to your website or whatever you want to have them go to like an event, it’s going to target those people specifically.
I’m going to talk very quickly about the cost there, if you do this on your own. I put an ad and I spent $250. My ad got in front of 300,000 people and I got $15,000 worth of new business. That’s a darn good return on my investment, and do you know what follow up I had to do on that? I had to do a webinar. So my ad drove people to a webinar. The webinar was actually talking about the GIVE strategy, which is one of my other jobs that [53:41.4], and I got advisors from just a two-stage sales process. They saw my ad, they logged onto the webinar, they saw the webinar and they actually gave me a deposit that day to be able to join our alliance.
That’s the power of this, because I’m putting my message in front of the people who want that information when they want the information, and that’s the power of social media. It’s the power of social media marketing. It’s the power of pay-per-click campaigns. It’s the power of all these different things, and luckily since all of you were affiliated with WealthVest in whatever way, shape or form, man just lean on them and let them help you with this because they’re the pros. They’ve got the stuff. They’ve got the goods. They’ve got AdvisorDeck and I believe that they can truly help you bring your practice to the next level.
Matt: Well folks, we are reaching the top of the hour. Another fantastic and well spent hour with Matt. Matt, as always, thank you so much for that. To finish up the call – and I do know there are some other questions and we’ll do what we can to try to get those answered individually, if at all possibly. But if you’re out there and you say, “I’m interested in AdvisorDeck, I want to know more or I want to sign up,” there’s a very easy way for you to do that. You’ve got the number there in front of you for WealthVest, (877) 595-9325.
We’re going to do a lot of things for you. We offer concierge service to set up the AdvisorDeck for you. We’ve got an incredible resource in here. Her name is Katie Coyle [sp]. She’s at extension 203. She will walk you through from start to finish and get you up and running with your AdvisorDeck
You’re going to need a few things. You’re going to need to update your biography. You’re going to have to have a high quality photograph to make sure that your website looks very professional, and set aside some time. Katie will literally take you through every step you need to make, but it will take a little bit of time so make sure you’ve carved out a little bit of time to do that and do it correctly.
I do also want to say that in the coming days we’re going to be launching a promotion that will allow you to use your production to do a couple of things. One, get access to AdvisorDeck. Two, to implement an inbound marketing campaign.
We’ve done the numbers on this folks. If you do pay-per-click programs with AdvisorDeck, we can statistically show you that based on your budget and what you’re spending; what kind of lead generation you can expect, and these are pretty scientifically and statistically proven, so we’d love to share that information with you as well. The best thing is, we will manage the entire process from start to finish. We can blog, we can provide content, we can provide archiving for compliance purposes, we can do everything in one shell in AdvisorDeck. So I would urge you, if you just want to have a conversation, give us a phone call. We’d be glad to visit with you and we’ve got experts here that can really help you get going.
With that we’ve reached the top of the hour. Thank you everyone for taking time out. Thank you everyone for your business. We very much appreciate that at WealthVest and if there’s anything we can do to help with your marketing efforts please give us a call, (877) 595-9325.
With that I’ll bid you a happy Wednesday afternoon and we will talk to you next month. Take care