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TODAY'S OTHER NEWS

Brokers can’t afford to ignore social media any longer

Mortgage brokers have been slow to adapt to social media with just over half using it for business purposes.

While two thirds regularly use social media in their personal lives only 56% use it in their job, according to new research from Accord Mortgages.

One third of brokers rarely use social media at all.

Yet those who do use social media claim it will be essential for brokers to develop a strategy in future.

The intermediary-only lender, part of Yorkshire Building Society Group, said the results suggest that many brokers are wary of using social media, or feel that it doesn’t offer any benefit to their business.

LinkedIn is the preferred platform for the majority of brokers currently using social media. They use the professional networking site to share views on market issues, and discuss best practice and offer advice amongst peers.

Just 7% of those currently using social media are active on Twitter, using the platform to garner information and read discussions.

Facebook was used by 7% of those surveyed as a means of gathering information, while 57% enjoyed reading discussions without taking part in conversations.

David Robinson, Accord’s national intermediary sales manager, said brokers thinking of taking the plunge need to have a robust strategy in place, know exactly who their target audience is and what they want to communicate to them.

“Our survey suggests that those who are on board with social media are using it as a platform to share with fellow intermediaries, rather than engaging with clients.

“This might be a shrewd way to utilise the platforms, as clients can prefer the personal touch of a face-to-face meeting when seeking advice.”

Andrew Montlake, director at London mortgage broker Coreco, said: “We have been using social media actively for a few years now and, whilst it will not change your business overnight, the benefits to those who persist with it are very clear.

“Not only is there is a whole generation growing up who will only ever use social media and peer recommendations to consume financial services, but there has been a massive growth in its use from a wide range of ages, many of whom are our traditional client base.

“Being able to communicate with our clients and introducers in this way has enabled us to develop deeper ties and attract new contacts which have directly benefitted our business.

“For brokers looking to grow in the future it will not be a question of “if” they develop a social media strategy but rather “how” they chose to do it. Ignoring it will not be an option.”

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