(Detail of mobile screenshot, Hearsay Instagram support. See full image below.)
Hearsay Systems, the San Francisco-based provider of the Hearsay Advisor Cloud for the financial services industry, has announced the addition of Instagram to its flagship Hearsay Social solution. By providing Instagram support, Hearsay says it helps financial advisors and insurance agents take advantage of compliant, full-funnel engagement across major social channels in addition to text, voice, email, and websites. Through the Instagram capability, sales professionals are empowered to connect and build better relationships with clients and prospects, fostering early relationships with clients of the next generation, the vendor says.
Given an estimated $68 trillion will transfer over the next 25 years, according to Cerulli Associates (Boston), Instagram is a valuable addition to Hearsay Social, according to the vendor. Hearsay notes that until now, advisors and insurance agents have struggled to engage with younger, potential investors and clients. According to Corporate Insight, only 20 percent of advisors have targeted the younger family members of their clients—meaning that the other 80 percent are ignoring a massive opportunity. Hearsay characterizes its Instagram addition as opening the door to this opportunity for advisors and clients who use the social platform of nearly a billion users , 70 percent of whom are under 35 years-old. This demographic segment includes a younger generation of individuals who do not feel a need for insurance to protect their current or future assets.
“Advisors and agents have to connect with clients and prospects on their preferred network or channel, which for millennials and Gen X means being on Instagram,” says Donna Prlich, chief business officer, Hearsay Systems. “With the rise of the FIRE movement—Financial Independence, Retire Early—it’s easy to see that the next generation is eager to learn about concepts like fiscal responsibility, investments, and savings, and they would rather take this leap with a live person than a robo-advisor.”
“Hearsay arms financial professionals with everything they need to tap into this massive opportunity the right way while remaining in full compliance with financial regulations,” Prlich adds.
The FIRE movement represents a huge opportunity for financial advisors and insurance agents, as only 17 percent of younger people currently work with their parents’ advisors, according to BNY Mellon Pershing (Jersey City, N.J.). Hearsay argues that advisors’ and agents’ best bet is to engage and educate the next generation through a coordinated digital strategy across multiple channels (including Instagram and texting), then stand ready to deliver the responsiveness millennials have come to expect with an automated or team-based approach to follow-up.
“Advisors are at a challenging crossroads as they embrace the needs of a new generation of clients in pursuit of financial security,” comments Katherine Kirkpatrick, Director of Strategic Marketing, First Command (Fort Worth, Texas). “By enabling our advisors to engage our target market of career military families more effectively via mobile and social media with the level of compliance that our industry demands, it will vastly improve their ability to serve this growing client base.”
Building Credibility with a Younger Client Base
“In building credibility with a younger client base, it is critical to have relevant content to effectively engage them during a time they are experiencing many life changes, from marriage, to purchasing a new home, to having children,” said Kaitlin Lea, an agent with American Family Insurance. “Social media is the perfect place for me and my agency to reach them during these milestones, to build trust and help guide them through each step.”
Hearsay notes that, as a mobile-first platform, Instagram complements its own platform’s abilities to support field advisors and agents on the road. The vendor reports upgrading its mobile applications during the previous year; with the addition of Advisor Actions and Hearsay Relate, advisors’ devices now include more convenient workflows and features such one-click follow-up through text or voice and triggered actions. Advisors using Instagram can post relevant content about a particular trend in the market for example. Hearsay supports advisors or agents building a relationship with those who liked the post and drive follow up actions at key moments, such as sending a text on their birthday. Thus, the vendor asserts, personalized, compliant communication becomes instant within an environment that is comfortable for the client or prospect.