Interview with Social Media Guru Stephanie Sammons

By Cynthia Stephens on Monday, October 18th, 2010

Interview with Social Media Guru Stephanie Sammons

On the heels of launching our new blog I had the opportunity to catch up with social media guru Stephanie Sammons. I thought it would be fitting to get Stephanie’s unique perspective on the importance of blogging. Stephanie’s company Wired Advisor helps financial advisors and financial services firms develop powerful and compliant social media strategies. She has the inside scoop on who’s doing it right, who isn’t and should you do it at all?

Why should financial advisors develop personal blog sites?

Blogging is what drives your social media presence – it’s the central nervous system of a social media portfolio. You want to create a positive online reputation. When someone is researching you and can’t find anything about you that reflects on your reputation. Blogging gives advisors a unique opportunity to showcase their personality, passions and expertise. It gives your prospects the opportunity to get to know, like and trust you, and it can serve as a fantastic client retention tool as well. And, your blog enables you to capture leads. By connecting your blog to your social profiles, you can add value by contributing your thought leadership to the conversation and ultimately drive prospects back into your blog.

Why do advisors need a blog if they already have a website?

I think websites need to evolve in order to reflect the online social landscape. Most financial advisor websites are static brochures and sales tools. A blog is a relationship development tool with many built in engagement opportunities rather than a sales tool. Clients and prospects will learn more about you as a person through your blog and you’ll have more opportunities to cultivate and strengthen relationships with them.

What should advisors know about blogging regarding FINRA regulations?

If you are regulated by FINRA, your blogging content will need to be pre-approved. And you need to be prudent not to make specific recommendations and guarantees. Chances are you have some pre-written content that you’ve sent out in client newsletters or posted on your website. One way to simplify your blogging efforts is to take those existing articles , edit and personalize them, and re-purpose them for your blog. However, make sure you are utilizing unique content more often than ghost-written content. It will be much more effective in the long run.

Look for more insights from my interview with Stephanie Sammons in an upcoming entry.

Stephanie Sammons is the CEO and founder of Wired Advisor. Stephanie spent a total of 15 years in the financial services industry at two of the largest global wirehouse firms (including 10 yrs at Merrill Lynch) and served as a Financial Advisor, Branch Manager, and Regional Sales Manager. Stephanie is a CFP and also served as a financial advisor to high net worth clients during her entire 15 years of service.

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