My readers know that I am continually surprised, shocked, and amused by the true-life stories that I witness every day. Colleagues and clients provide the fodder, which is enough for an ever-changing backdrop. Sometimes, I think I should just write “Wall Street – The Musical,” or create a concept for reality TV but, until then, I will just use my guest post here on HuffPost.
Frequently, I am an invited speaker at a wide variety of financial services conferences. While interesting, it keeps me fresh and close to many advisors and firms, funds and fin tech vendors. But, one day a couple of months ago, I received an invitation to speak on a panel at a conference that I had never been to before. A Compliance conference = ugh. The presentations are enough to scare the bejesus out of anyone. Was I the sideshow? Would anyone listen? Would anyone attend? Remember that I have been doing this for 6 years now–a proverbial founding mother in the social media space in financial services. I have faced down many a compliance officer in my day- and won. It’s about the rules, they decree, and it’s about protecting investors, I respond. My “I Have A Dream – That Wall St And Social Media Become Facebook Friends” has been coming about slowly – very slowly. Where other industries have run with social, digital sound bytes, and community, the very industry that needs it most – to create more authenticity and transparency while improving its PR reputation – has been dragging its feet to embrace what the rest of the business world already knows. It’s targeted marketing, it’s thought leadership, it’s technology expertise, and it’s the best way to hyperlocalize a big global brand. Even the SEC and FINRA are slow in embracing technology themselves, and even understanding what their rules are about. The terms and regulations are dated and worn, and this is new stuff. There they are: waiting for rules: “We can’t do anything until they tell us what to do,” they cry to me. I will give you the rules, my children. It’s as easy as Dr. Seuss “Green Eggs and Ham:” Do not do it in a boat, do not do it with a goat, do not do it here or there, do not do it anywhere.”