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#HSonAir Podcast: Employee Spotlight Series: Dan England (Sales Operations)

danenglandAs we celebrate our half yearly company kickoff, we invite Dan England to share some insight as to how marketing and sales operations works at Hearsay Social. Dan is a certified Salesforce administrator with over 10 years experience.
This show was recorded the week that the Supreme Court validated marriage equality across the US. Dan recently married his partner Tim and he talks about the impact of this decision for LGBT people in the workplace.
Join the conversation with @victorgaxiola and @elizelig on Twitter, use hashtag #HSonAir.  If you have a question, comment or suggestion, please send us an e-mail to OnAir@HearsayCorp.com.
Like our NEW page on Facebook and follow the progress of our good friend Ronny Kerr on Twitter using hashtag #RonnyWalk

Announcing New Hearsay Social Mobile Apps for iPhones and Android Devices

Social media and mobile devices go hand-in-hand. Recognizing this, access to Hearsay Social via smartphones has always been an important part of the solution that we offer to the over 100,000 agents and advisors that have access to our software. Today we are excited to announce the new and improved mobile applications for both iPhones and Android mobile devices that are available for free to our customers.
We know that advisors and agents are not always at their desks, so we wanted to give them an even easier way to engage with clients from anywhere; whether that be from home, in line at a coffee shop, or walking between meetings.  We’ve streamlined the mobile experience by packaging the key on-the-go activities that users wanted into simple apps that financial professionals can easily use to engage their clients. With this enhanced mobile experience offered through our iOS and Android mobile apps, advisors can even more easily access new Predictive Social Suite to receive and act on client insights anytime, anywhere, from the device of their choice.
Hearsay Social iPhone App
What we are most excited about is that many of our customers are already leveraging the mobile applications. Jason Graham, Regional Marketing Director at Penn Mutual, said, “I am on my iPhone for calls and checking emails, about 90% of the time, so when Hearsay Social came out with a new app, I was ecstatic. The app allows me to capture content more readily and post to my LinkedIn account at a moment’s notice. The functionality is fantastic and it provides the speed that is needed to put material out there in the fast paced environment I work in.  Kudos to Hearsay Social!Hearsay-Social-AndroidApp
With a few finger taps in one of the apps, financial professionals can publish posts from the Hearsay Social Content Library to their social networks, create original posts to share, view their post schedule, as well as quickly email or text contacts. Plus,with Social Signals through the app not only alert advisors when key life events happen to people in their networks, they also make it easy for advisors to reach out and engage based on those alerts.
Rebecca Peduzzi, Operations Manager at The Boyer Agency, said, “the Hearsay Social app does everything I need it to while I’m out of the office. What I find most valuable is the ability to push content to all social networks instantly.
Amanda Isert, Associate Agent at Billy Hewes Insurance Agency, shared, “the Hearsay Social app is great. I love that I have it at my fingertips and don’t have to be on a computer to do what I need to do… I have already recommended the app to several people.
 
Hearsay Social customers can download the new  Android app or the iPhone app  and login with their existing company credentials.
Read more about today’s announcement in our Press Release.

For wealth managers in Asia-Pacific, digital, mobile, and social will be crucial to meeting client expectations

The same trends driving rapid adoption of mobile and social technologies in North America and Europe are not only playing a role in Asia-Pacific as well, but they’re actually even more impactful there.
Asia-Pacific Wealth Report 2014
For example, 82% of high net worth individuals (HNWIs) in Asia-Pacific (excluding Japan) expect most or all of their wealth management relationship to be conducted through digital channels in five years, in contrast to 61% of HNWIs in the rest of the world, according to the Asia-Pacific Wealth Report 2014 recently released by Capgemini and RBC Wealth Management. Not only that, but the study found that Asia-Pacific HNWIs across all ages and wealth levels will increasingly demand mobile and social technologies for interacting with wealth managers.
According to Jean Lassignardie (Chief Sales and Marketing Officer, Capgemini Global Financial Services, @jlassig):

“The risk of not getting digital right is high for wealth management firms in Asia-Pacific, as its high net worth individuals are distinguishing themselves as more digitally-minded than their peers in the rest of the world. Asia-Pacific wealth management firms will need to offer a deep, multi-channel experience that takes into account regional variations in order to meet these high expectations.”

Of course, social media is especially crucial to the younger generation. Over half of Asia-Pacific HNWIs under the age of 40 indicate social media as an important channel for their wealth management relationship. The Asia-Pacific wealth manager should share that perspective, especially since Asia-Pacific HNWIs are already openly sharing information about themselves on social networks, which will be a useful resource for the digital-savvy financial professional.
To further explore Asia-Pacific’s wealth management climate and how the digital movement will play a part, download the free 52-page Asia-Pacific Wealth Report 2014.
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Compliant social business for financial services with LinkedIn’s new Sales Navigator

logo-linkedinToday, LinkedIn is making social business even easier with the launch of their new LinkedIn Sales Navigator, and we here at Hearsay Social are excited to enable financial services customers of both LinkedIn Sales Navigator and Hearsay Social with enhanced compliance and content publishing capabilities to support this new product.

Financial services professionals using the expanded features of the new LinkedIn Sales Navigator can rely on the same compliance and content support they’ve always enjoyed with LinkedIn and Hearsay Social.
Designed specifically for the sales professional, the new LinkedIn Sales Navigator combines LinkedIn’s network data, relevant news sources, accounts, leads, and preferences in a customized, stand-alone experience for your day-to-day sales needs. The new LinkedIn Sales Navigator leverages the power of LinkedIn’s 300+ million professional network to help sales professionals focus on the right people, stay informed on key updates, and build trust with prospects and customers.
So what does this mean for financial services professionals and particularly Hearsay Social customers? As part of LinkedIn’s Certified Compliance Partner program, Hearsay Social is helping to ensure that the new LinkedIn Sales Navigator will be ready for the financial services industry. We’ve been working with LinkedIn’s product team to ensure that all new features and functionalities on the new LinkedIn Sales Navigator are backed with Hearsay Social’s leading compliance platform.
Drawing on our deep experience in enabling social business for financial services, Hearsay Social will provide compliance capabilities for the new Sales Navigator. Existing customers should look for more information about using the new Sales Navigator in financial services in the upcoming months.
We’re incredibly excited to help bring the new LinkedIn Sales Navigator to the financial services industry. LinkedIn and Hearsay Social believe that social media represents an enormous business opportunity for our customers. By combining Hearsay Social’s advanced compliance and content delivery with LinkedIn, the largest professional network on the Web, financial services professionals will be able to better prospect, build sales relationships and grow revenue while enabling social media compliance.
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Financial services: Find, relate and engage with the best prospects on LinkedIn and Hearsay Social

By Dan Swift (Director Financial Services, LinkedIn Sales Solutions) and Ron Piovesan (Vice President, Strategic Alliances, Hearsay Social), who recently hosted a Social Media Strategies Workshop in New York.

Social selling leverages your professional brand to fill your pipeline with the right people, insights and relationships. Why has social selling seen such high adoption rates? The buyer’s process has changed:

  • According to the CEB (Corporate Executive Board, 2013), 5.4 people are now involved in the average B2B buying process.
  • The CEB also shared last year that 75% of buyers are using social media for research.
  • The Harvard Business Review in 2012 shared that 90% of decision makers say they never respond to cold outreach.

Sales in 2014 is the art of navigating and getting ahead of these trends. Leading to the point of sale, a revenue producer must stay in contact with the prospect to provide relevant and compelling information so as to always remain top-of-mind.
LinkedIn and Hearsay Social understand the modern sales process and have teamed up to help financial services professionals capitalize on the moment a client wants to make a purchase.

How Sales Navigator supercharges the LinkedIn experience

The LinkedIn Sales Navigator program is the premier social selling solution, allowing revenue producers to find, relate and engage with the best prospects on LinkedIn. Revenue producers can maintain contact with an ever-growing target list and move prospects along the funnel from initial interest to final sale.
The benefit is demonstrable. After using LinkedIn Sales Navigator for only 11 weeks, a major wealth management firm was able to connect with new clients, rapidly build new relationships and bring in more than $100 million in new investable assets. This is an actual benefit realized by a wealth management firm in the market today. How? By being notified by LinkedIn of life change events such as a job change and surfacing the person in their network who can provide a warm introduction. Referral selling at scale!
LinkedIn Sales Navigator is a premium subscription purchased centrally on an enterprise basis for revenue producers. The program also includes targeted training and education for the duration of the agreement.
This supercharges the LinkedIn experience.

LinkedIn Spring 2014
LinkedIn Premium leads the pack when it comes to sales intelligence.

Depending on their specific strategies, financial advisors are using Sales Navigator to identify C-Level executives, partners and business owners on LinkedIn in particular industries or at particular companies. They then see who in their networks can make referrals into that target audience.
Commercial bankers are going a step further by reaching out to business owners in their third degree to start sales conversations. The benefit is scaled exponentially in collaborative teams as Teamlink helps revenue producers share contacts and find the best way to enter and grow an account.
LinkedIn and Hearsay Social are seeing more and more traction in the insurance sectors where agents are looking for benefits managers and brokers. Revenue producers across the financial services, banking and insurance sectors are saving these prospect lists and receiving daily updates of new perfect prospects along with relevant insight gleaned from a member profile and the name of the person in their network that could make the referral. Why go in cold?

Using LinkedIn Sales Navigator and Hearsay Social to grow business

To harness the power of the LinkedIn Sales Navigator platform, insurance and financial services firms face the unique hurdle of regulatory compliance, as well as the need to access tools that make a revenue producer effective on social.
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This is where Hearsay Social comes in. With over 85 leading financial services customers around the world including Raymond James, Penn Mutual, and Thrivent Financial, Hearsay Social’s 1-2 punch of its content library and compliance engine means that revenue producers always have access to compelling information to compliantly share on social.
The content can come from a third-party news source, the corporate marketing department or even be developed by the revenue producers themselves. Hearsay Social also has content partnerships so producers will always be able to engage their prospects in the most compelling way. And all these conversations can be as open or as closely monitored as compliance officers choose. Compliance sets the social media rules, and the Hearsay Social platform implements.
Hearsay Social also integrates with enterprise governance and archiving systems so access can be controlled via single sign-on, and conversations can be stored in a compliant WORM archive.
These and other topics were discussed at an exclusive recent event at the LinkedIn headquarters in the iconic Empire State Building in New York. A packed room of senior insurance, banking and financial services executives heard case studies, saw demos and learned how to use LinkedIn Sales Navigator and Hearsay Social to build new relationships.
Watch out for other such events happening soon. If you’d like to connect to get more information, please do so with LinkedIn at dswift@linkedin.com or Hearsay Social at bd@hearsaysocial.com.

Read more:

Social Business Innovation Summit 2014: Bringing Financial Services and Silicon Valley leaders together

UPDATE: See our recap of the Summit here.

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Next week, Hearsay Social is proud to be hosting its second annual Social Business Innovation Summit in San Francisco, bringing together executives and thought leaders from across the financial services and technology industries. CEOs, heads of sales and distribution, CMOs, compliance officers, and more will be traveling from across the U.S. and Europe to join us for the Summit.
Kicking off the Summit on Thursday, May 8th, Hearsay Social CEO Clara Shih (@ClaraShih) will share her perspective on how the financial services industry can embrace innovation, as well as the role that social media, mobile, and big data play in transforming the client experience. Every sector today, from hospitality to retail, is being disrupted by new digital technologies, but we truly believe that the relationship-based business of financial services is best poised to take advantage of these innovations.
SBIS_HeadshotsWe’re not the only ones who think so. In two special fireside chats, we’ll hear executives Eileen McDonnell (Chairman, President and CEO of Penn Mutual) and John Taft (CEO of RBC Wealth Management — US) share their views on the state of the financial services industry, their vision on how technology complements the business, and how to build a culture of innovation.
We’re also honored to be welcoming Silicon Valley stalwarts — including Joe Fernandez (CEO and founder of Klout, @JoeFernandez), Ralf VonSosen (Head of Marketing for Sales Solutions at LinkedIn, @rvonsosen), and Bryan Schreier (General Partner at Sequoia Capital, @schreier) — who will be discussing social influence, the future of social networks, and what to expect overall from technology in the coming decade.
In addition to several other leading Silicon Valley entrepreneurs–Bill Ready (CEO and founder, Braintree, @williamready), Aaron Vermut (CEO, Prosper, @vermooti), Bo Lu (CEO and founder, FutureAdvisor, @bolu)–and financial advisors, we are thrilled at the caliber of speakers and attendees that will be joining us to share their views on entrepreneurship, technology trends in financial services, and how to succeed in the digital era.
For those of you unable to make it, be sure to follow the conversation on Twitter at #SBIS14 for live coverage and check our blog for key takeaways from this year’s Social Business Innovation Summit.
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Unveiling a new dashboard and compliance enhancements to help you grow business on social media

Over the past several years, we’ve closely collaborated with the largest financial services companies in the world, honing in on the tools and strategies that best help advisors grow business through social media. We then took this knowledge and developed a best practices methodology that focuses on the essentials to being successful on social:

  1. Get found
  2. Grow your network
  3. Research and act on social signals
  4. Build credibility through thought leadership.

Today’s new social business dashboard from Hearsay Social directly incorporates this methodology through its interface and features. Key enhancements developed in the past year include:

  • Advanced compliance capabilities: Dedicated to serving financial services organizations, which are regulated by FINRA and the SEC, we’ve streamlined compliance and supervision–not only to help compliance teams but also to help advisors. Today we’re launching a seamless LinkedIn profile review and publishing experience through the Hearsay Social interface. Over the past year, Hearsay Social has doubled the information it collects for archiving from social networks, streamlined the user interface for supervision, and improved integration with industry-leading archiving tools, all to enable significantly more efficient compliance capabilities.
  • Advanced Social Signals: Through Hearsay Social’s unique Social Signals offering, which uses natural language processing to alert users to important life events of people in their networks, users can now track alerts and follow up on an individual level. This allows agents and advisors to effectively manage lists of current and prospective clients and respond to social signals at scale.
  • Enterprise-level integration: Hearsay Social has released new enterprise APIs, making it even easier for global businesses to integrate the Hearsay Social platform into their business-critical enterprise and compliance systems. This enables further customization with system-level integration for global companies and streamlines the deployment process, helping agents and advisors to start using social media more quickly.

Of course, we won’t stop there. Every day we work closely with the social networks, the regulatory bodies, and you–our customers–to continually improve upon Hearsay Social, the leading social business platform for the financial services industry.
Read the full press release here and learn more:

Quality content rules the Facebook News Feed

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With over 1 billion users worldwide, Facebook is a key social platform for financial services professionals to reach out and connect with customers. Every day, agents and advisors use their Facebook Business Pages to share content, post updates on their business, and provide useful insights into what is happening in the market.
But it is a simple truth that as more advisors and other business owners use Facebook Business Pages, the more crowded a users’ news feeds will become. At best, a user can sift through dozens or maybe a hundred updates a day.
To reduce noise and keep a user’s news feed as relevant as possible, Facebook uses over 1000 filters to determine which posts should get highlighted. Instead of presenting every single story in a user’s network, the company algorithmically chooses the best posts to display to provide the best possible reach and engagement.
In a recent TechCrunch article, Will Cathcart (Facebook News Feed Director of Product Management) highlighted the main filters:

  • How popular (Liked, commented on, shared, clicked) are the post creator’s past posts with everyone
  • How popular is this post with everyone who has already seen it
  • How popular have the post creator’s past posts been with the viewer
  • Does the type of post (status update, photo, video, link) match what types have been popular with the viewer in the past
  • How recently was the post published

As an agent or advisor, you’ve worked hard to build a loyal and active following on your Facebook Business Page. Make sure you keep those followers engaged and up-to-date by posting timely, relevant content.
Focusing on consistency and quality of content will help you increase the prominence of your business page’s posts in your followers’ news feeds.
Learn more:

Social media compliance: What investment advisors need to know

Ed. note: The following post, authored by Yasmin Zarabi  (vice president, legal & compliance, Hearsay Social), originally appeared in Financial Planning.

FinancialPlanning_logoAs social media grows increasingly popular among RIAs, there are still questions regarding testimonials, endorsements and recommendations on social sites. The SEC’s recent guidance allowed for certain use of third-party commentary on social media that would not violate the “testimonial rule.”

Here’s what investment advisors need to know now.

Underlying rule

Since the 1940s, the SEC has forbidden RIAs from promoting client endorsements or testimonials in anything that constitutes an “advertisement.” Rule 206(4)-1 under the SEC Investment Advisers Act of 1940 prohibits an RIA from publishing, circulating or distributing any advertisement which refers — directly or indirectly — to any testimonial of any kind concerning the RIA or any advice, analysis, report or other service rendered by the investment advisor.
But in the digital age, clients can effortlessly use social media to endorse and recommend their advisors with just a few clicks. The SEC has issued a couple of clarifications related to social media. Back in January 2012, it published a National Examination Risk Alert on Investment Adviser Use of Social Media, outlining its concerns about RIAs’ use of social media and describing how clients can provide recommendations and endorsements. More recently, in March 2014, the SEC issued Guidance No. 2014-4 — Guidance on the Testimonial Rule and Social Media — providing further clarity on investment’s advisors’ use of third party commentary on social media.
How could a third-party comment or social media “action” be viewed as a “testimonial” on social media and therefore prohibited? One thing is clear: In its guidance, the SEC says an investment advisor should not invite its clients to post commentary directly on the investment advisor’s own social media site or page.

But what uses of third-party commentary would be permissible by the testimonial rule?

mzl.hcndxsjsLinkedIn recommendations & endorsements

LinkedIn endorsements and independent recommendations about the advisor’s skills should be avoided. An endorsement can occur in two ways: A client could endorse an advisor for a skill that is already listed on his or her profile or a client could initiate an endorsement for a new skill that does not already appear on the advisor’s profile.
To avoid the first scenario, advisors should select “No” for the “I want to be endorsed” feature under the “Skills and Expertise” section on their LinkedIn profile to turn off the feature that allows clients (other LinkedIn users) to “endorse” their skills. In addition, if a connection attempts to add a new skill to the advisor’s profile, the advisor should reject the endorsement to avoid violating the testimonial rule under the Advisers Act.
Recommendations on LinkedIn are completely separate from endorsements. They are free-form written opinions of one’s professional skills, accomplishments or experience. A client can choose to recommend an advisor or an advisor could request such a recommendation.
If advisors receive unsolicited recommendations, they have the ability to review and approve the recommendation before it appears publicly on their profile. Advisors should not accept or request any recommendations on LinkedIn. Advisors may also want to add a preemptive note to the Summary section of their profiles to say up front that they will not accept recommendations or endorsements.

Tweets

Advisors should avoid retweeting any tweet from either a securities research analyst or a client who is providing a testimonial about the advisor’s performance or a product or service of its firm.

LikeSocial media “likes”

Many firms also worry about the interpretation of a like on Facebook or LinkedIn, or having viewers choose to “favorite” a tweet. Likes can mean many things: For example, a like from a third party may simply indicate that a visitor enjoyed an article that was shared or appreciates the artwork on a page.
Much depends on context: The 2012 SEC Risk Alert was careful to state that interpretation of a like as a testimonial is based on the facts and circumstances. A like that an advisor solicits as an indication of a client’s experience with the firm may be construed as a testimonial. However, a like on a photo of an advisor’s new baby may not.

Links to third-party sites

The March 2014 SEC guidance also clarifies how advisors can use third-party commentary on social media. According to the guidance, advisors should not link to commentary on a third-party social media site unless they can demonstrate all three of these:

  • That the advisor has no ability to affect which public commentary is included or how the commentary is presented on the independent social media site.
  • That the commentator’s ability to comment is not restricted.
  • That all comments, both good and bad, can be viewed publicly.

Takeaway: rules for advisors

Financial regulations only prohibit the use of testimonials or endorsements that are related to financial services and the ability to manage money. But advisors can avoid violations of the testimonial rule by following these guidelines:

  • Do not list any skills on your LinkedIn profile.
  • Turn the LinkedIn endorsements feature off.
  • Do not accept any LinkedIn endorsements initiated by a third party.
  • Include a disclaimer on your LinkedIn profile instructing third parties not to endorse.
  • Only share links to independent third-party social media sites on which you have no influence on the third-party commentary and you are not materially entangled with the third-party social media site.
  • Do not cherry-pick favorable client testimonials or endorsements  on your social media pages or any advertisement. If you allow testimonials, you have to show the good and the bad commentary, and not just the favorable comments.

In general, advisors should avoid soliciting client feedback in a way that may frame a Facebook like or a third-party post as a testimonial.
And as a best practice to limit their risks, advisors should prominently display language on their LinkedIn and Facebook profiles indicating that they (and their firms) are not responsible for and do not encourage third parties to post anything on their behalf.
Given that the financial regulations relating to social media are relatively new, and social media platforms continue to evolve in their uses and the ability to effect controls, firms should consider the guidance in light of their organization’s policies for their advisors.

Disclaimer: The material available in this article is for informational purposes only and not for the purpose of providing legal advice. We make no guarantees on the accuracy of information provided herein.

The Facebook Business Pages redesign and what it means for financial professionals

Facebook recently announced that it is rolling out a new look for Facebook Pages. The new streamlined design will change the way business pages look for both Facebook users and page administrators.

What’s changing?

Facebook will get rid of the two-column design that splits activity to the right and left hand side of the page on the desktop version of the site. Now, all posts and activity will be displayed in a single column on the right-hand side of the page, similar to the single-column view that mobile users currently see. Information about your business (including a map, hours, phone number, and website) will now be displayed on the left hand side.

This change mirrors updates that Facebook made to personal pages a year ago.

Facbook_New_Page_Layout_March2014

What’s new for admins?

The new layout will provide page administrators even easier access to key admin tools. A new navigation at the top of the page will make it easier to access your activity, insights and page settings. The “Build Audience” menu will also give admins the ability to access their Ads Manager account directly.

In addition to the design changes, a new feature called “Pages to Watch” is being rolled out. This feature lets administrators create a list of other pages to monitor and compare metrics versus your own. This will allow you to easily benchmark your Facebook social presence against competitor pages or any other pages you wish. Specifically, you will be able to compare new page likes, total page likes, posts this week, and engagement this week.

Facebook_Pages_to_Watch_Screenshot_March2014

What about custom Facebook Tabs?

These changes will also make custom Facebook tabs even less prominent, putting them under the “More” dropdown in the top navigation of the page. If you currently have tabs in place, it does not seem like there is anything that you can do to make them more visible.

What about compliance?

These changes should not affect any supervision provided by Hearsay Social. Although the site layout is changing, the information displayed remains the same and the Hearsay Social compliance solution will maintain the same coverage as provided with the previous business page design.

What do you need to do?

There is no action needed for financial professionals using a Facebook business page. These changes will be rolled out in waves to business pages. Facebook did not specify when every page will have the new design, but we are already seeing some new pages with these changes (for example: the Facebook for Business page).

However, since the new design features information about your business on the left hand side (map, hours, phone number, website URL, photos and videos), if you have not filled out some of these fields the left hand side of your page may look incomplete.

Disclaimer: The material available in this article is for informational purposes only and not for the purpose of providing legal advice. We make no guarantees on the accuracy of information provided herein.