Forty-five percent of certified financial planners use social media for professional purposes, according to a survey released Thursday by the Certified Financial Planner Board of Standards.

While 73% of respondents said they use social media personally, they are reluctant to embrace it professionally because of compliance prohibitions and limitations, uncertainty over compliance and regulatory requirements, and lack of time, the CFP Board survey shows.

Networking with other financial planning professionals, keeping up with professional news and trends, and marketing and business promotion were the top reasons CFPs use social media professionally according to the survey.

The most popular social media channel for professional use is LinkedIn (81.9%), followed by blogs (71.8%), Twitter (45.9%), Google (34.5%) and Facebook (19.6%).

"These results indicate that CFP professionals are interested in using social media as a platform to educate the public about the value of financial planning and why they should use a CFP professional – in addition to using it as a tool to network," said Kevin R. Keller, chief executive officers of CFP Board.

In response to advisor interest in and adoption of social media, the CFP Board has released their new “Social Media Guide for CFP Professionals.” From advice like “pause before you post” to “use a link shortening tool,” the guide provides tips and best practices for getting started with social media or enhancing a current social media strategy

The document, which can be found on the CFP board’s website, is meant to help advisors navigate the ever-changing world of social media.

"More work needs to be done though to help CFP® professionals and others better understand the rules of the road when it comes to the use of these communications tools,” Keller said. “This is why we are excited to provide a brand-new resource that will help CFP® professionals in their use of social media."

The CFP board survey of 3,532 CFP professionals offers a somewhat different depiction of advisor social media use compared to a recent study from Phoenix Marketing International which found that 58 percent of advisors (not just CFPs), use social media for business. Of those, the study found, 85 percent use Facebook though it was not specified whether it was business or personal use.

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