Our 2013 Affluent Investor Study uncovered that if an advisor has a business and social relationship with their clients, metrics such as referrals, introductions, perceived service, perceived portfolio performance, and more increase. Thus, having a business and social relationship with your clients can do wonders for your client acquisition and client loyalty.
When it comes to social media, Facebook is the prime place for sharing personal information. It’s the perfect platform to support cultivating a personal relationship with clients. With over a billion users, and senior citizens as the fastest growing demographic on social networks – your clients, prospects, and COIs are using Facebook. If you are ready to build a personal relationship, they are ready to connect.
The following are three key benefits to connecting with your clients on Facebook.
1. People use Facebook to share life experiences and many of these experiences have financial implications. Wouldn’t you like to know when your clients are buying a second home, preparing for a new grandchild, getting married, and more? Facebook is full of this type of information. And when you notice one of these transitions, taking it offline is as simple as saying, “I noticed on Facebook that you are searching for a new home…”
2. Facebook gives you an opportunity to display your unique personal side, which will help your clients relate to you and like you more. Whether you are posting pictures of hosting Thanksgiving at your house or a short video of your kid’s baseball game, showing your clients the “behind the scenes” look of your life will help them identify more with you, and feel closer to you. You will also seem more accessible.
3. People use Facebook to share their passions and interests. If you are ever searching for a personal gift to send a client (we refer to this as Surprise and Delight), Facebook is jam-packed with ideas. For example, if you were to glance at my mother’s Facebook profile (who could be your client!) you would quickly find out she is a college football fanatic, just returned from a trip to Bali, and presently building her retirement home in the mountains. And that’s from a twenty second glance at her Facebook wall. Sure, you could gather this information over time through conversation, or you could get it all instantly with a few carefully crafted mouse clicks. Of course, all of this is dependent upon how much your client chooses to share.
If building a social relationship with your clients is important to your business, and we think it should be, don’t neglect Facebook – sharing passions and interests is what it’s all about.
Kevin Nichols is a thought-leader with The Oechsli Institute, a firm that specializes in research and training for the financial services industry. Follow him on twitter @KevinANichols www.Oechsli.com