Asset managers see the digital light

Asset management companies are going through a step change in their attitude towards social media. In the past, many companies did not think clients wished to receive communications via social media. Feedback from many high net worth clients, who have traditionally and understandably appreciated discretion from those looking after their money, thought of tweets as being ‘loose chatter’.

However, digital media has now become so prevalent in all our lives that it has forced a re-think on asset managers. HNWIs are adopting digital media much more, not least because a whole generation of younger people who are used to getting their information on the internet are making their own wealth or inheriting it. 

A survey by wealth advisory firm Scorpio Partnership found HNWIs spend around 5.5 hours a week managing their finances using digital media. A survey conducted by Citigate Dewe Rogerson in partnership with PAM also demonstrated the growing importance of digital/social media in the wealth arena. The survey, carried out among private banks, family offices, wealth advisers and asset managers, found that 85% recognised the benefits of digital media, with 68% active on LinkedIn at a corporate level and nearly half (48%) with a company Twitter account.

Barriers and concerns cited by respondents included lack of control (55%), compliance issues (42%), lack of resources (42%), lack of knowledge (34%) and maintaining brand consistency (16%).

So as asset managers address their digital media challenges, what should their objectives be? There is not a one size fits all solution. Asset managers must ask where their audiences are and identify the right platforms to engage with them.

Social media can certainly be used to get messages to market but for any company, getting the message right is paramount. What is the comfort zone in terms of what can be talked about? Are there compliance issues? Will Q&A guidelines need to be set down for those members of staff authorised to engage digitally with the market?

Social media is also a good way to listen: monitoring digital media can give a firm an idea of what customers and potential customers are saying about it and provide a chance to respond to complaints.

Blogs, podcasts and video interviews can all be used to good effect but digital media is also a complex and potentially dangerous arena. It helps to have advice to navigate its complexities, reducing risks while exploiting opportunities to the full. 


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