Wells Fargo is hosting its first-ever financial advisor social media summit on April 30 in the form of a small, invite-only conference where top-performing advisors who use social media and LinkedIn’s Sales Navigator will share their marketing strategies.
Like other brokerages, Wells Fargo periodically hosts conferences for its advisors. But this one-day summit focused entirely on the advisors’ digital persona is the first of its kind at Wells Fargo, said organizer Krista Goryl, the regional manager of Wells Fargo Advisor’s Western Region.
“The people [at this conference] are taking advantage of the resources already ... but we want to take it to the next level,” she said.
Only about 40 advisors from the Western Region are attending the event in San Francisco. Goryl said the goal is for advisors to learn from one another and take that knowledge with them to their respective teams and offices. In addition to those skilled at social media networks, there will be presentations and panels that touch on customized websites, video conferencing with clients and other topics related to digital advisor solutions. The hope is the event will be replicated in other regions.
The summit will begin with a presentation of a recent social media study by Putnam Investments showing advisors who use social media have more assets under management (an average of $89 million versus $85 million AUM). The report also found 82 percent say social media helped shorten the time to convert a prospect.
Long Beach, Calif.-based Managing Director Alan Schreiber will show how he uses the internet and social networks to interact with clients and attract new ones.
“It’s a way, I think, to scale the business in the future,” Schreiber said. “There is only so much time in the day for each one of us.”
Automated social media posts and messages have kept Schreiber top-of-mind for clients and made those relationships “stickier,” he said, maintaining a personal touch that keeps clients from jumping to another advisor. It has also led to more referrals, Schreiber said.
While Schreiber has been posting on social media for a long time, he is relatively new to LinkedIn’s Sales Navigator, a subscription service from the platform that allows for more specific searches for people and companies. For example, an advisor could use Sales Navigator to search for executives and other qualified prospects nearby, see who they mutually know, then ask the mutual acquaintance for an introduction.
In the first three weeks of using Sales Navigator, he said his group scheduled three in-person meetings with prospects and one became a client. Relative to the time and effort they put in, he said it was an incredible result, especially compared to building a book of business with just a phone and call list.
Goryl said an advisor who has been “very, very good” at leveraging Sales Navigator and uses it “religiously” will be giving a live demonstration to summit attendees.
Wells Fargo began working with LinkedIn to offer Sales Navigator to advisors in 2015. It’s not the only brokerage using the social media network’s product.
Bank of America’s Merrill Lynch also began working with LinkedIn to offer Sales Navigator in 2015. A spokeswoman for the brokerage said there are currently 9,000 advisors using LinkedIn and fewer than 1,000 using Sales Navigator. It also has two virtual workshops and best practice guides for using it, but has not hosted a summit focused on it like Wells Fargo’s next week.
A spokeswoman for RBC Wealth Management said the brokerage does not “pay for or sponsor advisors to use Sales Navigator.”
Morgan Stanley, UBS, Raymond James and LinkedIn could not be reached to comment for this story.