Spruce up your social media policies: Hearsay

Spruce up your social media policies: Hearsay

Advisers need clarity in how to use social media to their advantage, Yasmin Zarabi has said.

The vice-president of legal and compliance for Hearsay Social, a firm that encourages social media use among financial advisers, claimed that few advisers were fully conversant with it.

She pointed to research carried out by Hearsay Social last year, which found that, while 58 per cent of UK financial advisers used social channels for business, only 25 per cent stated their employer had a policy governing its use.

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Therefore she welcomed recent moves from the FCA, which released guidance earlier this month on how social media should be used by financial services firms and their employees.

Under the FCA’s new rules, tweets will be considered standalone promotions, even when they are used to link to a website.

Adviser quote

The FCA’s social media rules are common sense, but there is a danger of erring too much on the side of caution, according to Simon Mansell, director of Worcestershire-based Temple Bar Independent Financial Advice.

Responding to warnings from Steve Hagues, founder of Retiring IFA, that advisers should beware retweeting product recommendations, Mr Mansell said: “Electronic communication can be broadcast to a significant number of people, which multiplies the potential for significant risk. But it becomes sanitised because we are trying to avoid restrictions.”