As part of a 3-part series, we’ll be exploring the various ways financial advisors can gain leads through social media and work to expand their businesses and gain new customers. First up? LinkedIn – the professional social network.
Your presence on LinkedIn is all about expertise – showing you know your stuff and that you’re the person for the job. How can you exhibit this? Well, you have to post. You have to brag (a little). And you have to know what your audience needs so you can tout your talents appropriately.
There are several ways to use LinkedIn to inform your audience of your expertise as a financial advisor and increase your leads. We’ll share a few of our favorite tips and tricks, from posting methods to LinkedIn tools, that will help you on your way to new business!
LinkedIn Groups as a shared space for professionals to share content, ask each other questions, find answers, and establish themselves as industry experts. Groups are a great place to stay up-to-date on the latest industry news – you can glean new insights from your peers, and share your own. LinkedIn’s “search” feature can help you find groups for almost any topic, industry, and interest. Our rule of thumb? Don’t join too many – you don’t want to spread yourself too thin! Choose a varied selection so you can reach multiple audiences.
LinkedIn Groups can be helpful for financial advisors in several ways. You can find out what other financial advisors are talking about to stay ahead of trends in the market, and learn what questions they have. They may be asking about what their clients are currently struggling with, which will help inform what to discuss with your audience.
Consider other groups you can join to meet new people who may not otherwise have known what you do – alumni associations, local networking clubs, and various industry groups are a great place to start. This is a great way to extend your network and help other people who may be great clients know that you’re an expert!
You can update your settings to alert you when new conversations are started in these groups, so you know when to chime in. We know you don’t have countless hours to spend perusing the various social networks, so these alerts can help you save time without missing a beat.
Ask Your Audience Questions
The best way to find out how to be an asset to your audience is to ask them! Run a regular poll to find out what services your clients (or potential clients) need help with. What aspect of their financial future causes them the most stress? What elements of the financial process confuse them? This will not only help you better serve your clients, it will help inform what you can post about to show you can help them with those very needs.
Build Your Profile
Make sure you take advantage of the various profile sections LinkedIn offers. People will often feel more trusting with their financial needs with someone they feel a connection with, so if you can highlight where you went to school, what sport you may have played in college, a bit about your hobbies and interests – you have a higher likelihood of building a bridge with a potential client. You don’t want to be talking about your personal life all the time on LinkedIn, but if you can share a bit here and there, it opens the door to people finding a reason to connect with you. This is a great place to share your degrees, certifications, and experience -- show people you have the background to be an asset to their financial future.
Post, post, post!
Just as it is with any social network, the key to visibility is to post regularly. If you’re silent, you can easily seem hidden in the incredible vastness that is professional networking. Make it a point to post a few times a week – and pay attention to which times of day your audience is most active. Do you tend to notice that certain people are posting, liking, and commenting on others’ posts earlier in the morning? Then join the early-bird club and get after that worm! If you’re not sure, try posting at different times of the day on different days of the week until you find what works for YOUR audience. Once you find a time that works best for you, use a scheduling tool (like GREMLN!) to get your messages out to your audience when they’re most active.
Don’t be afraid to toot your own horn, either. While you certainly don’t want to be a braggart, it’s important to share various goals you’ve met, certifications you’ve earned, or awards you’ve received. The work you do to become better at your job will not go unnoticed.
Did you recently attend a seminar or development course that provided you with some new insight into the market? Sure, it may have been a lot of dry content to the average Joe, but that’s why they hire YOU to help them with their finances. Don’t share every detail of what you learned; but show your passion for your job and let people know you’re working hard to stay ahead of the curve!
Take advantage of LinkedIn’s Connected App – it= syncs with your contacts and calendars, reminding you of important milestones (new jobs, birthdays, promotions, and work anniversaries) while also giving you insight into people you are about to have meetings with, and reminders to connect with those you’ve recently met. Being on top of the networking game will help you make the most of your connections!
LinkedIn’s Latest Features
LinkedIn is constantly improving its networking game – recent additions include the ability to see who has viewed your profile, and find out the actions you took that led that person to view you. Did you post something that piqued a particular client’s interest? Perhaps a comment you made on another’s post led someone to check you out. Following up on your profile views and reaching out to those who wanted to know more about you can instantly lead to a qualified lead.
These methods are not the only ways to gain leads on LinkedIn – but they can help get you started with reaching out to your audience and sharpening your social networking skills. The important thing is to stay active – a latent LinkedIn profile doesn’t do much good for you, or for your connections. So post regularly, ask questions, join groups, and have fun!