Digital Marketing Compliance Tips for Financial Advisors

The Issue of Compliance in Digital Marketing for Financial Advisors
There is no doubt that digital marketing is a powerful tool for creating awareness and engaging prospective investors for financial advisors. However, many financial planners, insurance advisors, estate planners, and other financial advisors are hesitant to jump on board because of the strict compliance requirements of marketing campaigns.

Since online marketing is often interpreted as advertising, the content used in the campaign is subject to the financial industry’s regulations. However, financial advisors also cannot afford to ignore the importance of digital marketing in a highly competitive industry.

Digital marketing for financial advisors may be tricky; however, once the proper systems are set, you will see that you can generate a lot of leads while following the industry regulations.

Social Media Compliance

Understanding financial advisor compliance is crucial when it comes to social media. Social media platforms, including Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and Instagram, need to be pre-approved for compliance. From the financial advisor's profile picture to any advisory information they include, everything must meet the compliance requirements.

Every financial advisor needs to understand that any interaction or communication on social media platforms is treated the same as in-person communication between an advisor and a financial investor.

Avoid Advising or Making Recommendations

Financial advisors cannot give advice or recommend particular products or services to a mass audience. One of the most basic principles of financial service compliance is that any advice given by a financial advisor needs to be customized for every client, based on specific factors like financial goals, risk tolerance, and other criteria. Financial advisors can only advise clients on a one-on-one basis.

As a financial advisor, your goal on social media and your website should be to create an environment where people can gain knowledge and learn about general principles of finances. You should never recommend specific products, services, strategies, or investments since you do not know who is reading your content and whether your advice is suitable for them or not.

If done in the right way, your clients will know what you do and who your clients are and they will contact you for more specific advice themselves.

Beware of Adoption

Financial advisors may be inclined to pass on tempting financial information from others to their clients; however, it comes with many compliance risks. Adoption is the endorsement or support of information provided by others. Just by re-tweeting a post or sharing a link to an online article can carry risks since you don’t know whether that content is compliant or not.

If there is any hint that a financial advisor is adopting non-compliant information, it is a breach of compliance.

Avoid Dictating

Financial advisors can avoid many issues with compliance if they simply avoid making direct statements. Instead, they can present information in the form of questions. For example, if discussing a post on investment opportunities, a financial advisor can ask questions like, “Do you think the outlook for the Canadian economy looks promising?”

In addition, make sure that you only educate and guide, not dictate financial choices for your investors. An article published by a financial advisor that discusses an investment strategy worth considering is different from an article that directly recommends that strategy to clients.

Bottom Line

If you have a digital marketing plan, you will need to get the content approved as per the usual compliance regulations to avoid violations and harming your reputation. In addition, any correspondence with the clients should be monitored and archived. For many financial advisors, it can be difficult to manage digital marketing by themselves or train a social media manager to post compliant content on their behalf.

At AdvisorNet, we provide fully compliant financial articles that can be easily posted to a Financial Advisors social media profiles with just a click of a button at the bottom of the article. We have a team of professional digital marketers who have in-depth knowledge and experience in the financial industry and understand all compliance regulations related to financial content marketing. Reach out to us..