Annie Shaw and a Journalist’s View of Financial Services and the Future – MPAF25

Journalists whether Trade or Consumer write about the good and the bad in Financial Services.

They develop a unique helicopter view of the market, companies, propositions, campaigns and individual industry personalities.

My guest has written for both consumer titles, notably the Sunday Telegraph and the Independent on Sunday, and trade publications such as Money Marketing Magazine.

Hear Annie talk about her view of Financial Services and advice gleaned from many years’ experience writing about all aspects of the industry.

Listen to her fascinating and funny stories about working for Money Marketing Magazine. Do you remember the great column, “A Shaw Thing” with Annie plus Esther Shaw and Sam Shaw?

My Guest on Episode 25 of the Marketing Protection and Finance Podcast is Annie Shaw.

Annie Shaw and a Journalist's View of Financial Services and the Future

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Who is Annie Shaw?

Annie Shaw is a writer and commentator, freelance journalist and broadcaster.

Over the years she’s worked for the Sunday Telegraph, The Independent on Sunday, Daily Express and Money Marketing.

Annie is a Director of CashQuestions.com – a unique service run by a panel of renowned personal finance journalists – a questions and answers service for consumers.

And Annie is also and Financial Agony Aunt for Saga Magazine and Website.

Annie’s’s Contact links:

Annie’s favourite books:

The Divide by Matt Taibbi.

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Steve Devine on the Protect Association – MPAF24

Industry Networking. Market knowledge. Expert speakers.

These are the benefits of belonging to a trade association.

If you work in, or are interested in the protection market then you should check out the Protect Association which puts on numerous events each year attracting speakers from all spheres.

My guest today is the Chairman of the Protect Association.

Hear Steve tell the story of how the Protect Association evolved from a dining club for underwriters into a hub for networking, business development and marketing ideas.

Listen to the challenges Steve has faced building an association offering high quality events which he describes as entertaining as well as educational.

My Guest on Episode 24 of the Marketing Protection and Finance Podcast is Steve Devine.

MPAF24 - Steve Devine

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Who is Steve Devine?

Steve runs Devine Connections after spending many years in senior management roles in the general insurance and the protection insurance industry.

He specialises in business development, PR, and communications.

Steve is the Chairman of the Protect Association – a trade body for protection insurance professionals providing networking, market knowledge and business development help.

Steve says that the association helps keep him at the forefront of what is happening in the protection insurance market.

He’s very much a practitioner and his focus is on achieving results and adding value.

Steve’s Contact links:

Steve’s favourite books:

The Three Levels of Leadership by James Scouller

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You Cannot Be Serious! 48 Hour Service Level Agreement on Tweet Approval

Do you think a company with a 48 hour turn around on Tweet Approval really “gets” social.

Social media is spontaneous. It’s one of the reasons for the name “social”.

48 Hour Service Level Agreement on Tweet Approval

I’ve described Twitter as chatting in a gigantic and crowded virtual pub. In a social setting you have spontaneous conversations in real-time.

Imagine for a moment you were in a real pub enjoying a pint. Someone approaches you and asks you a factual question about your product or your company. Would you reply straight away assuming you knew the answer?

Or would you say you’ll get back to them in 48 hours once the marketing, compliance and legal teams approve your answer.

Most would reply straight away. Why should social media be any different?

Chatting to a colleague from another financial services provider recently we got talking about marketing and social media. He told me his company operated a 48 hour Service Level Agreement on tweet approval.

I had to ask him to repeat himself.

Again he said his company operated a 48 hour Service Level Agreement on Tweet approval.

First the marketing team would check out the language making sure it was “on brand”. Then someone from legal gives it the once over. Finally compliance ensures adherence to the FCA rules and signed off  the Tweet along with documentation.

Processes like this exist for marketing literature with good reason. But for a Tweet? Couldn’t they have at least introduced a fast track lane?

The SLA means they can plan Tweets for a specific time, say for a product launch. But the process cripples spontaneity.

Is this risk aversion or good business sense? I would argue they should replace the Marketing and Legal checks for good old-fashioned common sense. Then simply be aware of the implications of the FCA rules to make sure you don’t promote a product or give advice.

Tweeting the benefits of a specific product without being able to consider the downside or include risk warnings is against the rules. So don’t tweet these with less regard for compliance issues than you would with your website.

This doesn’t stop you from commenting on issues. Warning about deadlines. Or suggesting that it’s wise to insure your sources of income as part of financial planning.

Let’s not use “regulation” as an excuse not to engage in social media. Don’t use it as a cover for not being on social media. Use the FCA compliance guidelines as far as possible and then use your intuition and common sense.

Now it’s your turn:

You can find more information about Compliance and Twitter in my Twitter Guide for Financial Services Professionals. For a copy just use the subscription form above. Do you agree with my views on this subject? Please leave a comment or a link to your own article.