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By Laura Suter | Published Oct 04, 2012

Top tips: How to become a social media guru

Gareth Jones spoke at the IFP conference this week, advising IFAs on how to get clients and returns from all manner of social media. Here are some top tips:

1. Manage the message

“Anyone can find out about you on the internet, including future clients and they can make a decision on you before they have even met you,” says Jones. “Social media may not lead to an explicit sale, but it will influence how people think about your business.” So while you might be able to attach an explicit increase in revenue, you may find it boosts your client base.

2. Target your efforts

“You can’t possibly do all the social media stuff every day,” says Jones, “But that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t do anything.” He adds that downloading tools such as Hootsuite and OnlyWire make the job easier and allow for easier distribution.

3. Tickle your clients

People make decisions based on emotional reactions, so they will decide whether to click on a link or read a blog based on the feelings it evokes in them. “You need to work out what emotions clients want tickled. This is the same as everyday conversations, so you just need to be yourself and have a chat,” Jones says.

4.Blog, blog, blog

Research shows that 100% of companies that blog multiple times a day get customers from it. However, this isn’t realistic for every company. Jones says, “As long as you blog more frequently than your competitor then you will be seen more regularly by clients.” But you need to write about stuff that clients are interested in, otherwise no one will be listening.

5. Look to the future

People are adapting, and the youth of today are increasingly becoming use to going to the internet first for anything, and businesses need to adapt to that. “One problem with the client of the future is that they will not think of engaging with you unless you do all this. If you are not active in the online world you will find it more difficult to engage with clients.”

6. Have a strategy

You need to decide who you are targeting and how and this then develops into thinking about when you will use social media, at what time of day and what you aim to get out of it, Jones advises.

“People who act like butterflies lose money as they are not focused, so decide what you want to use social media for.”

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