How Finance Firms Can Get a Handle On Twitter Handles

August 3, 2015

By Consulting Group

Black Swan Partner’s Investment Week article highlighted the slowness of financial services to implement meaningful twitter strategies, and to use the platform as an effective means of customer engagement.  But, as demonstrated by a number of fund managers, insurance brokers and share dealing platforms, Twitter presents a significant opportunity for these companies and usage varies from firm to firm.

Personal Twitter Handles

CEO of Aberdeen Asset management Martin Gilbert (@MartinGilbert83), and Seven Investment Management co-founder Justin Urquhart Stewart, (@ustewart) use personal twitter handles to tweet a mixture of business content alongside private commentary.  Both accounts are an interesting follow and present a good balance between personal touch and corporate messaging.  Martin Gilbert is often re-tweeted by @AberdeenAssetUK and @7IM_Adviser regularly inform followers of Justin’s business updates as well as tagging his personal account.

Whilst across the industry the number of company Twitter handles is increasing, firms still appear uneasy at the prospect of providing employees with their own business-linked accounts.  This is not unique to the financial services; employees in a variety of industries tweet in a professional capacity from personal accounts.  In Black Swan Partners experience, fear of non-compliance is the main driving factor behind firms preferring individuals not to operate business-linked accounts.

Corporate Twitter Handles

AXA Wealth has taken steps to provide a number of its employees with their own personalised, but AXA branded accounts, from which they can post predominantly work related content.  From a marketing perspective this makes the brand more personable and promotes the context of interacting with individuals on Twitter rather than a corporate.

For employees that operate in public facing roles, liaising with magazines, television and the radio, personalised corporate accounts are an effective way of leveraging the personal aspect of Twitter, but maintaining the corporate brand.  These accounts can be run by the individual or they can be operated by the marketing team via tools such as Hootsuite, CrowdControlUK or OKtopost, which allow access to multiple accounts.   If an employee leaves the company, the twitter handle can be changed and the follower numbers retained.


 Best Approach

Corporates need to balance a range of issues, including compliance, messaging and existing media presence of individuals before determining the right strategy. We believe the most important point is to have the conversation and proactively decide what to do rather than let social legacy dictate how your brand moves forward across multiple channels.


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