Some people say social media for advisors is a waste of time. Not so for Cathy Curtis, of Curtis Financial Planning, now a division of ClearRock Capital, LLC.
Curtis has her social media use to thank for the merger.
On Aug. 13th, Curtis officially merged her practice with the Sun Valley, Idaho based investment management firm.
Curtis was looking for a way to continue growing her practice, either through purchasing technology, creating a partnership or outsourcing. Merging with ClearRock was the answer to that.
For a percentage of assets under management, Curtis now has full back office and investment management handled by ClearRock.
But what's most surprising about Curtis' story is not that she merged with a bigger firm. What's interesting is that ClearRock found and pursued Curtis because of social media. "What attracted us to Cathy was her commitment and laser focus on social media," Mark Eshman, ClearRock's co-founder and chief executive officer, said in an email.
In February Curtis spoke on a social media panel discussion at TD Ameritrade's conference in Orlando, Florida. Unbeknownst to her, two of ClearRock's founders were in the audience.
After studying her website and social media presence, ClearRock followed up with Curtis in July to talk about merging her practice with the firm, she said.
According to Eshman, ClearRock is aggressively seeking RIAs looking to grow and hopes to use social media to recruit new advisors. "Weve doubled the size of our firm in the past five years and are extremely excited to see how leveraging Cathys expertise can help accelerate that growth rate," Eshman said.
"To me it's amazing that I was found the way I was found," Curtis said. "How else would anyone like them know who I was?"
While Curtis' story is unique, other advisors have also found success with their use of social media.
At the session, Social Media from the Trenches: Real Advisers Share Real Success Stories, at the FPA annual conference in San Antonio on Monday, all three panelists said they have landed clients through their use of social media.
Whether it was blogs, videos, Twitter, LinkedIn or some combination of social media sites, Jeff Rose of Alliance Wealth Management, Brittney Castro of Financially Wise Women and Cathy Curtis, have all succeeded in turning social media connections into real world clients.
Moderator Michael Kitces, partner and director of research at Pinnacle Advisory Group, who was tweeting live from the event as he led the discussion, said his firm has had success with social media too.
"The leads we get from social media are the warmest leads we get," Kitces said.
How has social media enhanced your practice? Have you gotten clients through social media?