A social media presence isn’t just nice for a wealth management firm to have, it is now vital to the business, Clara Shih, founder and CEO of Hearsay Social, a social media marketing software maker, told the audience at SIFMA’s Private Client Conference last week in New York City.

“The world has gone social and mobile,” Shih said. Ninety-eight percent of U.S. Internet users belong to a social network, with Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn being the most important social networks for advisers, she said.

These tools help advisers to stay in touch with clients and keep their business top of mind. Ultimately, online signals can lead to offline conversations and a striking social media presence is as important as being listed in the Yellow Pages used to be, Shih said.

But social media is more than a marketing tool. It allows advisers to see the life events of clients that trigger financial decisions, such as getting married, having a baby or buying a home. (read more…)

Finding the time for social media is one of the hardest things, I often hear business owners say. You know that you have to find the time for social media because it is important for your business, but you just want to find the simplest, smartest way to get it going, then be consistent and get it right. I hear you.

“Everything worth doing is worth doing well.” This is so true. Why bother if it is just going to be another time-waster or worse yet, your money goes down the drain? I have yet to experience any time or money wasting, though it is enticing to sit flicking through YouTube channels and spend hours trawling for interesting content — business-related or not.

You started your business because you have a passion for it and you believe that you are darn good at it. Right? (Your answer here should be a big yes!) That’s the first step to getting your mind around fitting it all into your busy schedule. (read more…)

There’s no doubt that Pinterest is generating considerable amounts of referral traffic for businesses. Many people were using Pinterest for business by finding ways around the settings meant for personal users, but now Pinterest is officially opened up to the business world. This is a great opportunity for brands that have been waiting to join to get involved with Pinterest.

Already have a Pinterest account that you’ve been using for business? Here’s how to convert yours: Log on to the network’s business page, where you will be prompted to convert your personal account to business by following the steps outlined below:

  1. Choose your business type. Here you can choose from Professional, Public Figure, Media, Brand, Retailer, Online Marketplace, Local Business, Institution/Non‐Profit and Other. Since you will be in the section with all of your profile settings, this is a good opportunity for you to take a look at your profile description to make sure that it accurately states what you do and includes great keywords surrounding your business.
  2. (read more…)

In our personal lives, we talk about things like security and privacy all the time. Last week’s uproar on Facebook is only the latest example.

But most large enterprises seem to be missing the boat … by a nautical mile.

According to the Altimeter Group, “almost two-thirds of companies … say that social media is a significant or critical risk to their brand reputation.”

And Forrester Research tells us that 64% of large companies “have no social media policy in place, or if they do, they lack tools to sufficiently enforce and support the policy.”

Why is this?

In the rush for engagement, conversation and reach, critical issues that protect the integrity of the brand like security, risk and compliance can get left by the wayside.

Sprinklr works with some of the world’s largest, most social brands. Companies such as Dell, Samsung, Cisco, Hearst and Virgin America — among 100 others. (read more…)

Every time I attend a small-business conference, I make sure I get into the room for the session on using social media to market your business, and every time I find myself in the midst of a professional group-therapy session for the digital age.

When Three Dog Marketing partner Kristin Slice opened her presentation in the “Start Using Social Media to Your Advantage” session at the National Association of Women Business Owners Women’s Business Conference by saying “there are still skeptics in the room,” I knew this would be no exception.

Then I went through the emotional stages I experience every time: disbelief, outrage, acceptance and finally hope, because those skeptics in the room have opened their minds enough to show up and try to learn.

It’s important that they — and all other skeptics out there — take the steps to learn because, as Slice quickly pointed out, marketing is not the game it was just five years ago — the companies that do well are the ones that understand and make good use of social media. (read more…)