How Can We Use Twiner?
Twitter is, in many ways, the center of the social media revolution. Simple in nature and forceful in impact, this platform has revitalized the way we, as a culture, communicate. Twitter breaks down barriers of time, space, and media proprietorship to connect real people and real stones in real time. It is freedom of speech and equality at its finest. To merely say it has made an impact wouldn't be enough, for it has shaken the communicative foundations of people, businesses, and establishments all across the globe.
The most important aspect of Twitter is that it's always in the present moment. Other platforms like Facebook and LinkedIn move at a slower pace – conversations and posts can linger for days, whereas on Twitter, tweets will sometimes only last for seconds. Users pump out information in real-time, 24 hours a day and 7 days a week, because the platform is, by its very nature, in the moment. As of January 2014, Twitter had more than 645 million active users, 135,000 people signing up each day, and guess what . . . 9,100 tweets are produced every second. That's a lot of interaction!
TWITTER IN FINANCIAL SERVICES
Why should financial professionals use Twitter? Many advisors, investors, and agents still cast off Twitter as useless. In this chapter, you'll see why that mindset is incorrect, and that Twitter is actually incredibly useful and beneficial from both a business and reputation perspective. If used correctly and strategically, Twitter is a business gem. Here's why:
■ Your audience is on Twitter – With more than 645 million active users, it isn't a question that your audience, in some form or another, is on Twitter. By having a presence, you build credibility for your brand and open the doors to millions who may be interested in what you offer.
■ You have access to the media – This is huge. Accessing local news stations and publications can be a daunting endeavor – especially for busy financial professionals. With Twitter, you have instant access to people and publications that will earn you the exposure your brand needs.
■ Stay up to date on trends – On Twitter, you're given moment-by-moment updates on what's going on in your local community and industry. This is key for staying on the cutting edge of trends, news, and ideas.
■ You don't have to accept people – On LinkedIn and Facebook, you have to request and approve people in order to connect. With Twitter, those barriers don't exist. You can follow whomever you want. Reciprocally, anybody can follow you. Twitter also doesn't contain heavily private or personal information about you. Simply put, your profile has your picture, a 10-character bio, and a background. Its simple nature makes privacy a non-issue.
■ Reach the wealthy and the masses – Because there are no connection barriers on Twitter, you can reach and connect with influencers and high- net-worth individuals. As cited in the New York Times, “ According to recent research conducted by Scorpio Partnership, a consulting firm, more than 40 percent of high-net-worth individuals younger than 50 viewed social media as an important channel for communicating with their banks.” If nothing else, this is a brilliant way to get your brand in front of them.
■ Keep yourself in front of prospects – Jude the Certified Financial Planner is a great example of how advisors can use Twitter. He merely engages in conversation, and keeps on the lookout for people who just might be looking for a financial planner. Perhaps more importantly, he serves as an educational resource. Who doesn't have questions about finances and retirement?
■ Improve customer service and damage control – Whether you have a presence or not, people are talking about you on Twitter – and it's time to join the conversation. Nowadays people are turning to social media for customer support, and by responding to questions and complaints you'll be able to minimize risk and maximize opportunity. Later, we'll talk about client servicing using Twitter. See Figure 14.1.
-  Sonia Kolesnikov-Jessop, “Banks Slow to Embrace Social Media,” New York Times, March 26, 2012.