June 1, 2023

Hearsay Systems’ 2023 Financial Services Social Selling Content Study Finds Overall Engagement Across All Channels, Content Types, and Lines of Business Up 23% Since the Start of Pandemic

Original content publishes jumps 55% year-over-year as advisors grow more comfortable with social

Instagram is the most engaging social channel, but LinkedIn and Facebook remain the most actively used by financial services professionals; Twitter fails to make a mark

SAN FRANCISCO – June 1, 2023– Hearsay Systems, the trusted global leader in digital client engagement for the financial services industry, today announced the findings of its 2023 Social Selling Content Study. Now in its sixth year, Hearsay’s 2023 Financial Services Social Selling Content Study aggregates data from over 100 leading global financial services firms–including Asset Management, Wealth Management, Property & Casualty insurance, Life & Annuities, and Banking– and their cumulative 225,000 advisors and agents who used the Hearsay platform during the calendar year 2022.

This year’s study analyzed 16.3 million published social media posts, which garnered in excess of 22.3 million engagements across Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, and Instagram. The data was extracted from the Hearsay Systems platform and analyzed to uncover findings and insights from the behaviors of corporate social media program administrators, field publishers, and consumers. 

“Reviewing the data from one of the most comprehensive studies of its kind, it is clear that social selling is here to stay,” said Leslie Leach, Chief Marketing and Strategy Officer of Hearsay Systems. “Since the start of the pandemic, social media has become an indisputable source for information on news, finance, and investments. The 23% surge in overall engagement indicates two things: consumers are increasingly seeking information, guidance, and support from agents and advisors through social channels; simultaneously, advisors have grown more adept at using social channels for networking, requesting referrals, and conducting other business-building activities that used to be done in person, by phone, or over email.”

Topline Findings

  • Most notably, there was a 23% increase in overall engagement across all channels, content types, and lines of business from 2020 to today. 
  • In 2022, the percentage of original (vs. modified and unmodified) content rose from 3.9% to 6.6%, resulting in a 55% spike in original posts published.
  • Original content connected best with social contacts, generating engagement rates that average around 3.7—nearly eight times the average unmodified engagement rate of 0.4. 
  • In terms of social channels, LinkedIn and Facebook held steady as the most actively used networks, hosting nearly 91% of all posts in 2022 (51% and 40%, respectively). 
  • Instagram proved to be the most engaging. Average engagement rates were 1.6 on Instagram, 0.6 on LinkedIn, and 0.4 on Facebook. 
  • Twitter produced the lowest engagement rates. Its highest engagement rates ranged from 0.1 for P&C Insurance (text-only posts) to 1.5 for Asset Management (image posts).

Breaking Down Post Components

When it comes to best practices for social selling, regular publishing cadence and social reciprocity matter. Perhaps less intuitive—but worth considering—are post ingredients: the links, images, videos or text that comprise a post.

  • Across all lines of business, links were by far the most used, followed by images, video, and text. Links were shared at 2x the rate of images, and 11x the rate of videos even though they had the lowest average engagement rate, 0.3.
  • Text-only posts—without a link, image, or video—drove the highest engagement (4.4) across all lines of business, 6x more than images and 5.5x more than videos. In particular, LinkedIn text-only posts garnered the highest engagement rates for all lines of business. Text-only posts tend to be original—reinforcing the power of original and modified content.
  • Using a mix of high-effort, high-engagement content, along with corporate-provided, lower-effort library posts can help program owners and field teams meaningfully connect with clients and prospects.

To see all of the results, including specific line-of-business findings, download the full 2023 Financial Services Social Selling Content Study here.

Find out how Hearsay supports financial services organizations with their social programs by visiting www.hearsaysystems.com.

About Hearsay
As the trusted global leader in digital client engagement for financial services, Hearsay Systems empowers over 261,000 advisors and agents to proactively guide and capture the last mile of digital communications in a compliant manner. The world’s leading financial firms—including BlackRock, Charles Schwab, and New York Life—rely on Hearsay’s compliance-driven platform to scale their reach, optimize sales engagements, grow their business and deliver exceptional client service. Hearsay is headquartered in San Francisco, with globally distributed teams in North America, Europe and Asia.

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