LinkedIn Taps Advisor World With 'Finder' Tool

LinkedIn Taps Advisor World With ‘Finder’ Tool

LinkedIn has expanded its freelancer-finding tool to help financial advisors connect with the social platform’s user base, InvestmentNews writes.

The company is extending its search platform ProFinder to certified financial planners, chartered financial analysts and retirement planning experts, as well as accountants and insurance and tax professionals, according to the publication.

Advisors who sign up to the platform will be matched to requests submitted by users, have the opportunity to accept or reject the assignment, and go off LinkedIn to pursue future services with the clients they find on the platform, InvestmentNews writes.

LinkedIn launched a pilot of the ProFinder platform last year, according to Seeking Alpha. The service relies on LinkedIn’s staff verifying the qualifications of the professionals interested in participating and on an algorithm to match users seeking services with the right candidates, according to the publication.

The current platform has freelancers in design, writing and editing, real estate and software development, according to InvestmentNews.

LinkedIn is already the most popular social media platform for financial advisors, according to a Cogent Report survey in 2015 cited by InvestmentNews.

A separate report from compliance and e-discovery platform provider Smarsh found that the number of advisors using social media almost doubled in the past five years, going from 39% in 2011 to 72% in 2015, the publication writes.

But the pool of potential customers may be limited to less affluent investors, Crystal Thies, chief executive of social media consultancy Crystal Clear Buzz, tells the publication.

“For something like ProFinder, the people who are probably going to be using it are more middle market looking for a financial adviser,” she tells InvestmentNews.

One financial advisor who’s tried the service tells the publication that he came close to landing a client after a month and a half on the platform but that the post seeking services he could offer “closed out” before he could answer.

The advisor also tells InvestmentNews that signing up for the platform made sense because he used if often anyway.