Mass Affluent Consumers Active on Social Media, May Prove Key Target for Financial Institutions

With nearly all Mass Affluent consumers (about 90%) using social media, it’s not surprising that their expectations for financial institutions on social media have moved beyond simply having a presence. In order to provide value and differentiate from competitors, companies must now enable financial solutions through the content and service that Mass Affluent seek on relevant social channels. Family

A new study by LinkedIn classifies the mass affluent as consumers who have investable assets between $100,000 and $1 million. LinkedIn says that this group is active on social media and could prove a key market for financial institutions.

Of that 90% of the mass affluent that use social media, 44% engage with financial institutions on social media. LinkedIn reports that another 34% actively engage with financial institutions' content through social networking.

HOW & WHY MASS AFFLUENT CONSUMERS USE SOCIAL MEDIA

LinkedIn found that the mass affluent use social media primarily for professional reasons. The firm's study reported that one out of every two surveyed use social media to connect with other professionals. While one in three use social media to engage with professional content.

According to the report, 36% of the mass affluent use social media for discovery and consideration. LinkedIn classifies discovery as learning about trends, products, and services, while the firm denotes that consideration as actively seeking advice on the things they've learned through social media.

LinkedIn classifies the mass affluent in three categories. The firm says that the mass affluent is either acquiring wealth, about to retire, or already retired. According to the research, financial institutions must tailor their social networking campaigns differently for each group.

For those accumulating wealth, relevant content is the most important factor for financial companies using social media. Those soon to retire find that timely updates are the most important factor when using social media. While retired consumers care more about strong customer support through social media.

Across all consumer types, information about new product information was found to be very important. Those surveyed said that they would like to see new product information posted on social media for both brokerage firms and credit/debit card companies.

LinkedIn also recommends that financial institutions must be mindful to drive conversation through social media. The company says that proper discussion on social media leads to greater influence and improved lead generation.

[Source:  "Influencing the Mass Affluent: Building Relationships on Social Media."  LinkedIn/Cogent Research.  March 2013.  Web.  10 May 2013.]