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Advisers divided over use of social networking sites

Two-thirds of intermediaries think social networking sites are an inappropriate way to communicate with clients, according to Opinium Research’s Independent Voice survey.

Twenty-two per cent of IFAs currently use a social networking tool, such as LinkedIn, Twitter, Facebook or their own blogs to engage with existing or potential clients. Yet 63 per cent say social networking is not always an appropriate means of client communication.

The survey also reveals that, following the banning of social network use by some IFA firms, 32 per cent believe that offering advice on such sites is risky and the use of social networks should be banned, while 47 per cent appreciate there is a risk but think a ban is a step too far.

Opinium Research associate director Matthew Webster says: “It is interesting to see opinion so divided between IFAs, especially when it comes to the risk of offering advice on these sites and whether or not IFA firms should ban the practice of social networking. There is clearly a fine balance to be struck about what level of engagement is undertaken.”

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