• Social Business: The Marketer’s Perspective

    Recently, Peter Delano, Senior Research Director at TowerGroup, shared some very helpful perspective on the evolution of social media in a panel discussion titled, “Achieving Business Outcomes Through Social Networking Relationship Management.” The session took place at the TowerGroup Financial Services conference, and included Manish Mallikarjuna, Vice President of CRM Strategy at Fidelity, and John Refford, Vice President of Strategic Marketing Technology at Natixis Global Asset Management.

    Business outcomes through social networking relationship management

    Peter shared some key data points from the TowerGroup 2011 HNW Client Experience Survey. For example, 57% of clients showed high loyalty to their financial advisors if the FA helped the client with a life event. Additionally, 30% of HNW individuals increase assets with their primary advisor if the FA motivates their household to take action.

    Manish and John reinforced during the panel discussion that it is important to focus on two things:

    • The distinction between social media and social networking means financial advisors need to focus on connecting in real ways to prospect for clients and foster better relationships.
    • How do you do this? By creating two-way dialogue and conversations around content as collaborative experiences.

    But how can an organization even begin to take advantage of these social networking concepts effectively? Peter closed the panel discussion by reminding the audience of the important point that business leadership within a firm must develop a social networking relationship strategy, not just a social media strategy. I continued to think about these concepts when I traveled to another conference at the end of May.

    Social business results at Modern Woodmen

    The points from the TowerGroup conference discussion were driven home when I presented at the LIMRA Marketing and Research conference later last month with Lisa Hamerlinck from Modern Woodmen.

    Lisa led a great discussion about “Jumping hurdles and embracing social media,” using the example of the successful approach that her firm has taken by doing just what Peter Delano was explaining – working across business departments on a strategy and making concerted efforts to drive successful usage by advisors on Facebook, LinkedIn, and Twitter. Lisa shared the experience of corporate communications, web, compliance, legal, and agency professionals all working together on their social business program.

    After a dialogue-filled session, Lisa closed with a sentiment that was appreciated by the marketing audience. It was a tip related to resources and planning for social business: “This isn’t a one and done item. Staffing? Social changes constantly, someone has to keep up.”

    Each of these two conferences provided great opportunities to talk with marketers and sales leaders who are tackling social media challenges to drive business results for their firms. It is always exciting to hear these examples, and I expect more to come from today’s discussions at the SIFMA Social Media Seminar, where Socialware CEO Chad Bockius is speaking, or the upcoming LIMRA Social Media Conference in Boston later in the summer.

    Category: Financial Advisors, Financial Professionals, Marketing | Tags: , , , , .

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