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Financial Industry, Social Media at ‘Pivot Point’: Twitter Exec

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The financial services industry has its hands full. While it prepares for huge regulatory shifts tied to the expected new Department of Labor fiduciary standard, it also has to move quickly to update and expand its use of social media, according to keynote speakers at the 11th annual social media seminar from the Securities Industry and Financial Markets Association.

The event, taking place on Thursday in San Francisco, drew about 120 financial advisors and other financial professionals. 

“We’re at a pivot point to move social media out of silos and into total integration for financial services,” said Dan Greenberg, a senior account executive at Twitter, during a panel discussion.

Use of social media has boomed from 7% of individuals in 2010 to 65% today, he adds. “And with those that have more than $75,000 of investable assets, the use is very high.”

But there’s more.

“Mobile device use doubled in three years, from 2010 to 2013, with growth of 493% to 381 million users,” said Greenberg, who works with financial services firms. “Mobile has doubled the amount of time we spend online, and it doesn’t take time away from desktop time online. Everything is shifting to mobile.”

For example, 80% of millennials access Twitter on mobile devices, and they check Twitter at least once a day, he points out.

Some 30 million of these individuals have investment accounts, 15 million are searching for financial information, and 11 million are experiencing “life stage moments;” plus, there are 13 million high-net-worth users on Twitter, Greenberg says.

The industry has to tackle another media trend: “We must look at the growth of video consumption on mobile devices,” he stressed. “The user appetite is incredible, as is the growth in the desire for and consumption of videos.”

To embrace video and reach out to clients and leads online, “We have to stop thinking of social media as social platforms … it’s traditional media and is one of many platforms,” Greenberg said.

Yes, he explained, there’s no way out.

“If mobile video is trending up, then that is the reality. [Content] publishers have got to do this in an easy and simple way on mobile,” said the Twitter executive. “We will be judged by the best content, that is easily digestible … It’s all about the ease of consumption.” 

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