Social networking is more than just setting up an account and letting it be.
These days, wealth management firms need to be aware of the regulations that have been set up by the Securities and Exchange Commission, as well as the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority, which are geared toward ensuring compliance. Additionally, they need to verify that all employees are up to speed on what it takes to keep the firm compliant.
LinkedIn continues to grow as a social network for professionals in a wide range of industries. However, wealth management firms should never designate an individual to control the LinkedIn profile without making sure that he or she understands how to maintain compliance. Here are some tips for helping everyone get on the same page.
1. Create a standard policy
Whether your firm will primarily be using LinkedIn or a slew of social media websites, it’s critical to create a standard social media policy that can be used across the board by everyone at your company. This will make it easier if the SEC and FINRA do a spot check and ask for details about your social networking strategy.
2. Archive your social networking activity
An effective way to monitor compliance is to archive your social media activity. Doing so can give you an opportunity to go back through your posts and verify that your firm has been compliant with regulations.
3. Train your employees
It’s imperative that every employee who engages in social networking on behalf of your wealth management firm gets trained on your policies, as well as the compliance standards set by the SEC and FINRA. Many firms choose to test their staff quarterly or annually to make sure that they have a grasp on utilizing social media.
These three tips are steps in the right direction as you look to maintain compliance. However, it’s important to remember that your social networking strategy is constantly evolving – it’s not a set document that you can create and tuck aside. Being compliant is about keeping your social media rules on par with what the SEC and FINRA requires of your wealth management firm now and in the future.