May 23, 2018

600 Advisors: Scaling a Broker-Dealer's Social Media

Money Concepts is an independent broker-dealers based in Florida. When they made a commitment to increase their support of social media for their more than 600 advisors around the country, they were concerned about the workload this could create for their compliance department. That's when they turned to Gainfully to support their program. In this case study we'll take a look at how they have been able to offer success-oriented social media across Facebook, LinkedIn, and Twitter while keeping compliance overhead extremely low.

Program Goals

The Money Concepts leadership and Gainfully success team worked to design a program that could achieve a number of specific goals. First, Money Concepts wanted to ensure that all of their advisors could access the program. This includes scaling the program so that advisors aren't left behind for cost or logistics reasons. It also requires that any advisors regardless of technical proficiency can access the program, not just younger power users. Secondly, a goal of equipping advisors with not just the technology and compliance, but also the marketing content to share was very important: Money Concepts knew from experience that without content it's impossible for small or solo offices to effectively utilize any program they might deploy. Thirdly — and related to the first goal of offering the program to all advisors — the resulting workload for compliance needed to be manageable and fit into the existing workflow for their compliance group. Only Gainfully could offer this experience.

Results: Staggering Scalability

The Gainfully content algorithm works to always prioritize content that is A. already approved (or whitelisted) B. performing well with clients, and C. reinforcing value for the firm. This means that when you approve a content item, it's automatically prioritized for any additional advisors within the firm. The effect of these recommendations are to recycle the effort of your compliance team on any reviewed item, ensuring that the time and cost spent reviewing is leveraged many times over. The results of this are easy to see in the graph below, which shows how, even as advisors and content sharing activity increases linearly, the compliance costs [caption id="attachment_398" align="aligncenter" width="620"]

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Blue "shares" show the number of content items shared by advisors on the platform. Grey "advisors" are the total number of advisors in the program. Red "All reviews" are the total number of compliance ad reviews needed to support the entire program.[/caption] Recommendations also come into effect in sharing behavior: when a Money Concepts advisors build their personal libraries for automatic sharing, cards will first be prioritized to be shared immediately. Then, only as the queue ranking of unapproved cards rises will the card be "triggered" for review. Added together over the life of the program, and comparing it to the time required for any three models that Gainfully's content engine replaces, Money Concepts has saved in excess of 4 months of man-hour time over the past 6 months.

Breaking Down how Gainfully Helped

10,000 Shareable Content Items in 5 Minutes

The first step in configuring Gainfully for Money Concepts was to add a long list of their preferred providers and conditions for whitelisting these providers. Because Gainfully builds a master library as a service that draws on the content published by over 300 leading financial services companies, broker-dealers like Money Concepts can choose to leverage their expertise and experience in creating client-facing content to providing instant and ongoing access to a massive set of content resources. In this particular case, Money Concepts chose to whitelist content from 46 different FINRA-regulated firms if it was marked as non-advertising content, included a FINRA clean letter, or was broker-dealer use only. This set of filters enabled their over 600 advisors to discovery about 10,000 shareable content items without any additional prior-review.

Customized App Features to Accelerate Use

To streamline the publishing experience, Money Concepts chose to disallow the advisor-provided comments field, removing a step that can cause friction both for advisors and the compliance teams. The comments field is often treated as an open space for editorializing on content. By disallowing this field Money Concepts compliance could remove the "what to say" question while also reducing their compliance review by about 50%.

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Without an editorializing capability, the content is shared with one of a preset comments on the content and greater sharing activity and compliance adherence is the result.

Original Content & Content Discovery

In addition to the instant library of ~10,000 items, Money Concepts' marketing team leveraged their in-house content strategy to augment their advisors' experience and provided an additional layer of service.

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Their content includes shareable video profiles for dozens of their advisors, enabling the advisors to quickly share a personal video to any of their social media accounts and let prospective clients "face to face". If an advisor sought out additional content, they can also request that it be approved and made available, either by a direct "request" or by just adding it to their personal library.

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