Mitigating the social media shift

Mitigating the social media shift

Social media analytics providing wealth managers with customer insight and sentiment.

Chairman of KPMG New South Wales and National Sector Leader, Insurance

KPMG Australia

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Man climbing stairs looking at his mobile

Running rampant on rumour

With all the unfiltered information out there, the trick is to remind clients that you can help them make sense of it all. The vast information in social media moves so quickly that it is often difficult to follow for investment purposes. Mobile social apps, such as Buffer, Hootsuite, Sprout Social and Everypost are effective ways to reach customers 24/7 on their always-handy mobile phones and tablets.

In this age of advancing technology, wealth managers offer real experience and the distinctive ability to isolate and shield clients from following bad advice. Digitally savvy wealth advisors with good social media presence can position themselves as trustworthy and knowledgeable and help:

  • pull the right data
  • help clients distil this data
  • map out effective insights
  • serve as a buffer against bad advice and unfounded rumour.

‘New’ versus ‘old’: Understanding your clients

The need for social media outreach is vital to maintaining and improving competitive advantage in the wealth management industry of tomorrow. Cursory attempts at social media outreach aren’t enough. Strategic engagement through social channels is crucial.

Organisations may not like the way people talk about them online. When it comes to reputation, wealth managers must be prepared for the good and the bad. Managers need to recognise emerging trends before they reach critical mass online. Views from social media can be highly influential. Social media analytics can help uncover customer attitudes from a range of online sources and help you to better understand your markets, manage your brand, and improve the client experience.

Third-party software that merely monitors online volume and topics is not enough. Addressing complex issues raised online can’t be boiled down to numbers. In social media, the context matters. Understanding the nuances of who is saying what, and how they are engaged leads to more actionable intelligence for wealth managers.

The future of social media analytics

For wealth managers, the social-inspired power shift could be social media analytics. Social media analytics take a uniform and robust approach to capture non-linear consumer data, analyse its meaning, identify influencers, predict potential problems, and help preempt them from becoming business obstacles.

Case in point: BEPS

In October 2014, a tax avoidance issue relating to base erosion and profit shifting (BEPS) blew up in the mainstream press. Traditional media ‘broke’ the news that BEPS could have adverse impacts on Australian economic activity, tax revenues and the potential to diminish the status of Australia as a regional investment hub. Front-page newspaper articles touted the seriousness of the implications. However, this was old news. The BEPS conversation had been brewing in social media for months, but had only just surfaced in traditional media.

Social media is an instant indicator of sentiment that has the potential to merely dissipate over time or explode into the latest crisis. Social media analytics provide deep and vital tools for handling risk in wealth management and connecting with consumers.

Understanding these shifts – in terms of why, what, and with whom – can be the real game changer. Social media provides an unfiltered opportunity to understand how customers engage via social media, and what they really want. This mutes the vanity argument, which is slowing wealth managers’ engagement on social media.

Organisations need to harvest more useful demographic data to ultimately help target specific segments. Wealth client profiling via social media can arm investment managers with real-time analytics through which they can target, approach and ultimately interact with customers. In short, social media can give wealth managers a fresh advantage in new client outreach.

As one CEO recently suggested: "If you haven’t got a big project going on which leverages advanced data analytics with a mobile front end, you are likely to become extinct.".

Questions for wealth managers to consider

  • Are you building a client base through social media?
  • Do you know enough about your clients and potential clients?
  • Are you aware of your clients’ needs?
  • Have you engaged in client dialogue in a meaningful way and on their terms?
  • Are you listening to the ‘word on the street?’
  • What do people think of you and your organisation?
  • Is your reputation online intact or under fire?

Wealth Management

Wealth Management

KPMG's Wealth Management practice offers a range of services to superannuation funds, life offices, employers and fund trustees.

© 2016 KPMG International Cooperative (“KPMG International”), a Swiss entity. Member firms of the KPMG network of independent firms are affiliated with KPMG International. KPMG International provides no client services. No member firm has any authority to obligate or bind KPMG International or any other member firm vis-à-vis third parties, nor does KPMG International have any such authority to obligate or bind any member firm. All rights reserved.

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