Simple Steps for Social Networking Success

The objective of social media engagement is to eventually get in front of prospects. Read on for the rules of social networking success.

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Simple Steps for Social Networking Success

Simple Steps for Social Networking Success

Blind trust in financial institutions was a casualty of the 2008 credit crisis. Increasingly, investors prefer to rely on trusted sources to find a financial advisor, making social networking success critically important to growing an advisory business.

There are “Rules” to Social Networking Success

Social networking leverages your social network to find prospects and build trusted relationships. To do it right, you need to follow some basic protocols:

1. Be Committed to the Process—Before undertaking any social networking endeavors, you must resolve to be fully committed to the process. Social networking will not succeed when done half-heartedly.
2. Create a Professional Image—Your online presence may be the first impression you make on a prospect, so be sure it reflects a professional, competent image.
3. Offer Insights—Overt sales messages are prohibited. Be sure you regularly update your social media with relevant, interesting thought leadership content.
4. Build Trust—Conversations ought to be centered on your audience’s needs or concerns, with the goal of informing them and gaining their trust.

Getting Started

Select the social media platform(s) you wish to join and make sure that your profile is completely updated; ensure that all compliance requirements have been met, as set forth by your firm. LinkedIn can serve as an excellent resource for identifying prospects and centers of influence.

Don’t stop there. Review the profiles of the types of prospects with whom you wish to engage (e.g., doctors, entrepreneurs, etc.) and note the additional groups to which they belong, as it may represent another pool of similar prospects with whom you can communicate.

Keep Engaged

Since you can’t spend your entire day watching new posts, use a social listening tool (e.g., Google alerts or Twitter search) to set up a notification system and learn when someone in your group or audience mentions a need or challenge you can address. For instance, you may learn from your notifications that someone announces a new job or retirement. Events are not the only thing to track. You’ll also want to know what your potential prospects are reading, so sign-up to those channels. Be sure to share interesting articles.

The objective of social media engagement is to eventually get in front of prospects. When you want to introduce yourself, first look to see if you have similar connections on LinkedIn that might be able to provide you a warm introduction.

Expect social networking to be a bit of trial-and-error, so try to be patient with yourself and the process. By sticking with it, you’ll open yourself up to a new world of prospecting possibilities.

See referenced disclosure (2) at http://blog.americanportfolios.com/disclosures/ 

About The Author

Gerri-Ann Seidman

 

Corporate Communications Coordinator 
631.439.4600, ext. 157 

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