Adviser demand for social media as a tool to attract and regularly interact with clients has grown rapidly, leading mortgage advice network TenetLime to develop a strategy to help its broker members.
Although the use of social media in business has come with a warning from the FCA in recent years, the potential to drive business growth has been a key attraction for advisers, according to TenetLime managing director Simon Broadley.
A survey from software firm Intellifo last year found that although governance is increasing, more advisers need to create policies around using sites such as Facebook and LinkedIn.
Mr Broadley said: “We spoke with our members at the end of last year and it became apparent there was a growing desire to use social media as a means of promoting their business and maintaining contact with clients. But obviously social media is a means of financial promotion, and it has pitfalls in the same way a direct mail letter would have.
“We took on board that feedback and emerging need and have built a social media strategy that our members can use. We have a number of pre-approved social media messages, that could be deployed on Twitter or Facebook. But the key point is that the member firm can be confident the financial promotion has been rigorously reviewed and approved. They do not have to worry if it is meeting regulatory standards because we have done that for them.”
This is just one of several developments taking place at TenetLime as Mr Broadley gets his feet under the table. He is 10 weeks into the job when he meets with Financial Adviser, after joining the company at the start of the year following the departure of Gemma Harle.
As well as being managing director of the mortgage advice firm, Mr Broadley also looks after Tenet Select, which offers compliance services to directly authorised firms outside of the network. He was attracted to the role at the Tenet Group as he feels the directors have a strong desire to really grow and develop the business. And one of those developments is taking place in the protection space.
In February it was reported that the FCA is concerned about the levels of protection sales when the mortgage market is quiet. Mr Broadley said this issue was not helped by the time constraints attached with taking a customer through the sale of a protection policy.
Making time to talk
He explained: “There may have been instances due to the time constraints where the adviser and customer have not been able to have a full conversation. But I would like to believe that going forward, with the advent of big data and the streamlined underwriting processes, irrespective of how big a mortgage adviser is, there will still be ample opportunity and time to have that protection conversation.
“A big part of what we are looking at is how do we work with protection firms that are embracing technology and looking to streamline the underwriting process so that we avoid a situation where the protection customer journey is as long, if not longer, than the mortgage customer journey.”