Career Advice Jun 26 2012

What to Tweet If You're a Morgan Stanley Financial Adviser

By Julie Steinberg

Well, they may not be Kim Kardashian or Ashton Kutcher worthy, but soon the tweets of 17,000 financial advisers from Morgan Stanley Smith Barney will enter the Twittersphere under a new program at the brokerage.

The firm recently approved a program to let the FAs choose from a list of pre-approved messages and post them on Twitter. They can also provide pre-approved status updates to their LinkedIn profiles.

Now available as tweets are morsels such as:

What's an equity investor to do? Read these 5 key principles offered by MSSB strategists.

The more you know about the divorce process, the better equipped you will be to pursue your goals.

How much are you contributing to your 401(k)? What percentage of your salary? Consider these key factors.

Exiting your business can be the deal of a lifetime, but how much experience do you have? Read on.

It's MSSB Support Staff Appreciation Week – Thank you to my team for your dedication to first class service.

The advisers are limited to pre-approved posts under social media rules from Financial Industry Regulatory Authority and Securities and Exchange Commission. A year ago, only 600 financial advisers at Morgan Stanley Smith Barney were allowed by the firm to use LinkedIn and Twitter.

The posts tout and link to the firm's market analysis and commentary, wealth management subjects as well as some social issues, like commemorating veterans on Memorial Day, said Lauren Boyman, director of digital strategy and content at Morgan Stanley Smith Barney.

"We are expanding this program because FAs have found it useful in developing new business and staying in contact with existing clients," she told FINS.

Financial adviser Mark Scribner, who tweets under the handle @mscribnerMSSB, has around 10,400 followers. Another adviser, Chris Reedy, tweets under @ReedyatMSSB and has more than 1,000 followers.

Of the 600 advisers who took part last year, 40% said they brought in new clients through social media, the FT reported.

The firm is also experimenting with a pilot program that allows 20 advisers to compose their own tweets and send them to a member of MSSB's communications review group for approval before they are published. The firm is deciding whether to extend that program to the rest of the firm.

Write to Julie Steinberg at julie.steinberg@dowjones.com




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