Putnam Investments has been a financial services social business pioneer for many years, so here I’ll summarize their pioneering initiatives that show that regulated financial services firms can communicate with clients and prospects in many-to-many social venues without going astray. True, it helps having a CEO that was the first CEO from a mutual funds firm on Twitter.
The point remains, imagination and inertia are preventing financial services firms from engaging with clients and prospects in digital social venues, not regulators. Here’s how it’s done.
Putnam Investments Social Business Initiatives
Financial Services Blogs and Twitter
- One of Putnam’s blogs is The Retirement Savings Challenge, which is notable because it’s concerned with stakeholders’ (prospects, clients) financial wellbeing—it’s not focused on financial products. It talks about the challenge in general (most Americans have relatively little saved for retirement). That said, they need to work on interactivity.
- Wealth Management shows thought leaders in action, as they offer posts pertinent to various investment goals.
- Advisor Tech Tips shows investment advisors how to use digital tools and social business to engage. How-to posts and videos on using LinkedIn, Twitter, Google Alerts and others.
- Note what Putnam CEO Robert L. Reynolds puts in his Twitter bio: “My goal is to… help solve America’s retirement savings challenge.” It references a higher purpose, which many readers will not believe at first, but when he walks the walk, shows by his online actions, that he cares about people, he’ll earn their belief.
Here is Putnam’s Mark McKenna, Head of Global Marketing:
“We’re proof that the SEC and FINRA have created broad guidelines and it is up to the industry to work within the guidelines to make social media work for shareholders,” says Mark. “It’s another media that we all have to learn. Some people were slow to the Internet and I see similar patterns with social media adoption where the power is underestimated.”