Social media has been praised as the new way to network, market your business and communicate. However, for a lot of financial professionals, there are extreme barriers to fully engaging in social networking. While there are a lot of reasons given for not getting involved, here are four of the most common:
- Little control over what happens in social networks
- Lack of knowledge
- Adherence Issues
- Lack of time.
We will be addressing these four barriers to social media engagement and as well give some tips on how to overcome them.
Social media conversations cannot be controlled
Truly, conversations or happenings on social media cannot be controlled. This is why it is first important to understand and accept that you cannot control user-generated content and even search results about yourself. Letting this lack of control dissuade you from social media networking is a big mistake.
Rather than lingering over something you cannot control, focus on the ones you can. Social media has allowed users to use certain features in cases where it is necessary. Here are things you can control:
- You can participate in online dialogue. Thus, you can easily sell your brand or share opinions. Additionally, you can also manage what you say on social media by editing or deleting personal posts you find unsuitable.
- You can respond to queries, reply messages and engage your audience. This is a very important aspect of social media. It also helps in showcasing you and/or your brand.
- You can inspire people on your brand. Everyday. people are looking for something to inspire them. Using social media is a tool to achieve your goals can be a form of inspiration to others.
- In the instance of unwarranted threats, you, along with a community of people you have accrued can report a user. Social media platforms pay attention to reports or complaints other users have about some users. In this case, the user can be banned from using social media for a while.
- Avoid engagements that can get you reported. If you’re particular about you or your brand’s integrity, you should avoid these type of engagements.
Social media is a tool of communication between you and your market. This is a two-sided affair and it requires your participation and agreement. Giving up because you’re unable to control the outcome is not an option.
No Social media Knowledge or clue of what to say or do
A lot of successful professionals feel out of place on social networks. They have no idea what to say or show. Maybe you’re a bit techno[hobic or you think you’re not much of a writer. Perhaps you have tried to write something on Twitter and you just can’t bring yourself to doing it. Truly, there is so much to learn on social media. Some of these include new etiquette, new tools and even ho to meet new people.
There’s great news. All you ever needed to know about social media is online and for most of the time, free. Try testing social media tools personally by connecting with friends and family. This can help you to get the hand of sharing in an online space.
Also, think about it. You’re most likely going to have a distinctive feature and/or perspective that everyone would love to see. Note that your unique perspective on the world is exactly what your social networks want from you. This is the reason why clients will do business with you and as well refer you to others. It is also an important part of your personal brand as it is the very basis on which you’ve built your successes. Your most important goal on social media is to unleash your personal brand. No one else understands your brand as much as you do. It is your duty to make everyone else see as much of your brand as possible. If you don’t do that, no one else will.
Social media adherence requests can be unclear
There are so many social media networks and tools that give very unclear compliance rules. Thus, it can make social media marketing look like quicksand to be avoided. However, these compliance issues are being clarified each day. For instance, social networks like Twitter and LinkedIn are becoming the major players in the financial service space.
The best way to overcome your concerns around compliance in social media is to reevaluate the issue. Stop seeing adherence as a barrier to social media. Rather, see it as an opportunity to focus on nurturing relationships and being social. For example, tweeting about the products you sell or your brand is not the most effective way to show people why they should do business with you.
The better alternative is to use social networks to build your reliability. Get to know your clients better and allow them to get to know you. Use social networks as a convenient way to add value, connect and reach out. Have in mind that people only do business with people they know, like and trust.
Take out the ”heavy lifting” from your brand. This is a process where you have to meet a client in order to make him/her make an investment decision or an informed product. Instead, use channels like online video calls, phone calls, emails and most importantly, social media platforms. Make sure to archive your social media information in the case where you will need to retrieve it for later.
There’s no specific time for social media
Professionals are often very busy. Time is one of the most important but scarcest tool in our daily work lives. So, how can it be sensible to spend precious time in front of your laptop chatting with people?
While social engagements take time, there are a lot of great reasons why you should make time for it. First, social networks are very convenient. You don’t have to travel as much in order to maintain connections with important people in your network because social engagements will handle it. Secondly, social networking helps you maximize your time. Since you’re having public exchanges within your network, more people can observe and listen in. When done right, it can make you more efficient with your time.
Here are what we suggest on making out time for social media:
- Use your support team to help you. Learning how to properly utilize your team will make you more efficient and smarter.
- You may need to put in a little after-hours time to figure out social media.
- Outsource to third-party services that can help with your social networks.
- Reframe all your time allocations. For instance, you may want to reduce some leisure time for more social networking.