When I think of social media, I think of Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn. Having my email account notify me that one of my friends just got a promotion or child hit a home run in little league is nice to hear. With the benefits of the good stuff come the things I really don’t care about, like a friend the other day had to run to the store to pick up a plunger because her sink was clogged.
Then we have professional athletes tweeting that their coach is a moron for going for it on forth and twelve or who they just had a date with the night before… hmm, so that’s why he turned the ball over in the fourth quarter…
We at WS+B use social media to show our culture as a different kind of accounting firm. Google Withum Flash Mob and you will see a video of our firm, including our managing partner, Bill Hagaman and 150 of our employees dancing on Broadway. Or – just click here.
Well, it seems that registered investment advisors are jumping on the bandwagon, too. They are using social media to promote and educate existing and potential clients as well as recruiting new employees.
The use has caught the attention of the SEC staff, who are keeping an eye out for violators of the Investment Advisors Act Rule 206 (4) -1 “Advertisements by Investment Advisers”.
Care must be taken when using these media outlets that ensures an investment advisor is not inadvertently violating the Rules by making an off- the-cuff comment. Under Rule 206(4)-7, an investment advisor must have adopted policies and procedures to periodically monitor its use of media solicitation.
In an article published by the Office of Compliance Inspections and Examinations on January 4, 2012, they list factors a firm might want to consider when using social media.