Have a podcast in 30 days

Without headaches or hassles

Twitter is one of the easiest social media platforms to grow your following and business on. Unlike LinkedIn, Twitter is more authentic—which means, it could unlock a treasure trove of new clients to your business.

That said, I’m the furthest thing from an expert on Twitter. That’s why I invited an actual expert onto today’s episode: Thomas Kopelman.

In this episode, Thomas reveals how advisors can leverage Twitter, and make more than $16k per month from Twitter alone.

If you’re not using Twitter, or not landing clients from Twitter, this episode might just be the most profitable thing you listen to all year.

Listen now.

Show highlights include:

  • How to curate your social media feed so it helps you grow your business (without driving you mad) (3:13)
  • The dirt-simple 3-step plan to 8x your Twitter followers by this time next year (6:04)
  • How to unlock a brand-new revenue stream—to the tune of $16,000 per month—by simply sending out a few tweets per day (even if you don’t have a lot of followers) (7:34)
  • The weird way spending 90 minutes a month creating tweets can result in a surge of new clients (14:53)
  • How tweeting even “basic” knowledge can cause of meteoric rise in booked meetings with qualified prospects (24:48)
  • The “Employee Jedi Mind Trick” for making it almost impossible for your clients to part ways with you (33:17)

If you want to connect with Thomas, you can follow him on Twitter here: @TKopelman or on LinkedIn here: https://www.linkedin.com/in/thomaskopelman/

Need help getting more clients as a financial advisor? I created a free, 47-minute video outlining the steps to my “CLIENT Method,” which helps financial advisors land more clients. Watch the video before I take it down here: https://www.theadvisorcoach.com/theclientmethod.html

If you’re looking for a way to set more appointments with qualified prospects, sign up for James’ brand new webinar about how financial advisors can get more clients with email marketing.

Go to https://TheAdvisorCoach.com/webinar to register today.

Go to https://TheAdvisorCoach.com/Coaching and pick up your free 90 minute download called “5 Keys to Success for Financial Advisors” when you join The James Pollard Inner Circle.

Want to transform your website into a client-getting machine? Go to https://www.theadvisorcoach.com/website to get The Client-Getting Website Guide.

Want a masterclass training in running effective Facebook Ads? Head to https://TheAdvisorCoach.com/ads-training.

Discover how to get even better at marketing yourself with these resources:





Read Full Transcript

You're listening to “Financial Advisor Marketing”—the best show on the planet for financial advisors who want to get more clients, without all the stress. You're about to get the real scoop on everything from lead generation to closing the deal.
James is the founder of TheAdvisorCoach.com, where you can find an entire suite of products designed to help financial advisors grow their businesses more rapidly than ever before. Now, here is your host, James Pollard.

James: Financial advisors, welcome to another episode of the Financial Advisor Marketing podcast. I have been on a roll with these guest episodes recently. They have been straight fire because people are talking to me, and you, by extension, about things that haven't really been discussed on the Financial Advisor Marketing podcast—YouTube marketing. Instagram marketing is coming up in a few weeks. There's just different topics that I haven't talked about. Gen Z. [00:57.0]
Today, we're going to talk about Twitter marketing. It's amazing because we're 220-plus episodes deep and I haven't really brought up Twitter at all, because even though I have a Twitter account, I'm rarely on it for reasons I think we will discuss in the podcast episode, except for advertising purposes. But Thomas Kopelman is on Twitter and he is absolutely crushing it. We're going to talk about how he's using Twitter for his business, the benefits he’s seen from it, and some other cool stories along the way. So, Thomas, thank you so much for being here.
Thomas: Yeah, man, I'm happy to be back and I think it'd be cool to talk about, since the last time I’ve been on and what I really talked about, I’ve made a complete shift, and how it's been significant and a significant change for our business, the clients we bring in, the type of clients we bring in, the revenue we bring in, it's been really cool to see.
James: For people who don't know you, what is your business? Who do you serve? And what is a little bit of your background?
Thomas: Yeah, so I'm the co-founder of AllStreet Wealth. We've actually kind of shifted over the years, right? I mean, when I first began as a financial planner, my thought was, I’ll work with young people, hopefully, people that make six figures. Maybe it'll be dual income households. [02:07.7]
That has totally shifted to now who I’ve found I do the best work for and who I attract the most is still millennials, still young people in that phase of life, but almost mostly business owners, and then I have probably 25% of the people that are coming in that are like, Hey, I work in tech. I have equity comp. We're making a lot of money and we just need help on figuring out how to manage our whole financial life.
James: That's awesome, and we're going to talk about Twitter marketing, specifically, and we'll get into the marketing side of it and the content that you put out. But I want to ask you, do you curate your content at all? And if so, how?
Thomas: Just by who I follow?
James: Like, your feed, yeah, because one of the things that worries me is that social media is a wonderful servant, but it is a terrible master, and there was a period of my life where I started studying how social media feeds work and how the algorithms work, and Facebook and Twitter and LinkedIn. I want to be clear, it's not just Twitter, but the social media feeds. I mean, they’re call feeds for a reason. They're designed to elicit a reaction from you to get you to like, to comment. [03:11.1]
Unfortunately, what I have noticed, or based on the research that I’ve read about Twitter, is that it's designed to get you to be angry, to be outraged, and that's one of the reasons why I'm not on it. I'm just curious, when you go to your social media feed, how have you curated the feed itself to give you what you want?
Thomas: Yeah, I think it's funny, I saw somebody tweet yesterday that if you're somebody with thousands of followers, and you follow less than 1,000 people, you're a dick. That was the exact tweet he said, and I'm like, you couldn't be farther from the truth. I definitely see what you're talking about and I think there's pockets of that, but also my feed seems super positive. I'm not following news sources. The people who I follow are my friends.
I follow financial planners I can learn from. I have so many financial planners that follow me. If I don't feel like they are creating content that's educating me, not going to be a follower. I also don't want my whole feed to be finance. That's my world. That's what I talk about. I don't really need that. But I think there's other people worth following that I truly can learn from. [04:10.1]
Then I follow people in other areas that interest me. Health and fitness is one. Growing a business. I follow people who are professionals in real estate, and in all these areas where I use Twitter to learn. The reason why, I go back a couple years, I started using Twitter and I had an advisor reach out to me and say, “Dude, you're using Twitter wrong. You're talking way too much about personal finance. Nobody's going to want to follow you. Twitter is meant to network with advisors.” I was like, No, I think you're wrong. You’re 45 or 50 years old. You're trying to work with retirees. We have totally different goals. He's like, No, LinkedIn is where you should be.
I don't think that's true. I mean, LinkedIn really is a B2B platform and that was the goal out of it, and so, I mean, I always use the example like look at the comments, right? When I go post on LinkedIn, every comment on mine is “Good post.” “Great thought.” “I love that.” There's no real engagement there. It's all kind of just like, Hopefully, that helps you comment on mine, which, hopefully, helps it spread to another network, and hopefully, that helps me get followers, because I know I'm supposed to comment on five people a day. Those are rules and it's so fake. You see it’s so fake. [05:16.4]
You go to Twitter, nobody comments there, right? If I post about why I think real estate can be a great investment, but here's the downsides, every comment is going deeper into the conversation. You either don't comment, it goes deeper in the conversation, and then you have the pocket of people who try to argue with you and they try to demean who you are. Somebody tried to pull, go check my CRD number and say I only have one year of experience, which is not true, and so I just blocked those people. Anybody who's going to be a negative suck on my life and not add any value, I block. I mean, actually, I mute. I don't block because I think that gives them satisfaction. I just mute so I never see them.
But I think Twitter is truly where you go to learn. I go to learn there, and if I'm trying to attract young, successful people, like myself, I would say, in this situation, that's where I think that they're going to live. In January of last year, I said, “Let's test this. Let's live on Twitter and use Twitter as my channel,” and so I was like, I'm going to start in January and I'm going to do a thread every single day for 31 days and I'm going to see how that goes. [06:18.7]
I was at maybe somewhere between 800 and 1,000 followers at the start of last January. It started with a thread a day. That started to pick up and do better. I started to be like, Okay, I'm going to schedule out a tweet every day, and then throughout the year, I was like, I’ve always heard only focus on quality. Quantity does not matter. You need quality and quantity can destroy you, and I was like, I don't know if that's true. If I'm always putting out good content, it doesn't have to be Morgan Housel type blog posts and things like that, but good, helpful, short-form content for people, I think that's going to help me.
Then I started to escalate it to schedule three a day, every single day, and then I’d post any time thoughts come to my head. “Hey, I just had a client meeting. This was a really good thing I talked to them about. Let me go post about that,” and I just do that over and over and over, and so in those 12 months, I went from whatever, 800 to 1,000 followers, so I'm almost at 8,000 now. [07:10.6]
In 2022, I ended up doing last year, almost 10 million impressions, and this year, in these first 20 days, I’ve done 900,000 impressions, 700 new followers in those 20 days, and my thought really is, if I think about the funnel and I think about how you get clients in this industry, I always talk about it's not like I'm Nike and I put out this sweet new pair of shoes or this cool hoodie and people are like, Dang, that's sick, I'm going to go buy it. That's not how it works with an advisor.
How it works with an advisor is I'm nurturing people. I’m teaching them. I'm giving them free value. Maybe they see me talk about taxes and then equity comp, and then this and then that, and then they go get a new job, right? They get a new job at Metta and they have all this equity comp, and they have no idea what to do with it and they're like, Man, I’ve been following Thomas for a year and a half now. He's talked about all these things. He's the only financial planner I know that knows about this. He's never asked me anything in return. I'm going to hit him up, because I think he's going to be the one to help me. [08:09.8]
So, the more I'm in front of people, the more that they hear from me, the more that they see me, the more likely it is that I'm going to be the one they reach out to when they hit that pain point that they know I can solve. All I did was increase the amount of times I'm tweeting. Last year, I almost brought on a client every single week. Some months, like December, I took two weeks off, and that wasn't going to happen. Maybe one month, I brought on three versus four.
I had almost 100 prospects driven in from social media in that given time with a minimum fee of $450 a month working with millennials, so it's not like I'm a low-ticket item thing that “Sure, I’ll give this a try.” In the last four months, my average prospect is making over half a million dollars a year in their 30s. Those aren't easy-to-come-by people and all of that was driven solely from Twitter. I didn't drop LinkedIn, but all I do from LinkedIn is “This tweet did well yesterday.” That's going to be my post on LinkedIn, maybe edit it a little bit and change the form. But I probably spend 15 minutes a week on LinkedIn, and all my time creating on Twitter. [09:14.0]
But I schedule out almost two months at a time, so people think I spend all this time on Twitter, but I really don't. I probably spend 90 minutes a week creating content. I don't know if anybody can argue they can't find that amount of time.
James: Do you go back and repurpose your content at all? Or not repurpose, but, literally, just repost the content?
Thomas: Yeah, so actually, this will come out three months later, but I have a Kitces post coming out this month all about how I repurpose, because what I do is I go analyze all my stuff that's done well, because think about it. January, 1,000 followers. December, almost 8,000. How much of that audience has never seen any of my good posts?
James: Right.
Thomas: So, I’ve always heard the statistic that 20% of people of your followers will see each post, which is probably, honestly, not even true. Maybe it's less, and maybe 1%, remember. So, my thought is I'm rewriting. Sometimes I edit it and redo it. Sometimes I repost the same thing. [10:08.5]
I also have it where anything with over 20 retweets gets retweeted by me later throughout the year, and for me, I think that really works well. The argument everybody has for me is like, What happens if that one person reaches out and is like, Oh, you already posted that before? And I always say, like, I want it. If that person who scrolls Twitter, LinkedIn, Instagram, Facebook, every day, remembers my posts from one or two months ago, that post was killer. It was so good that it stayed in their mind that long that I'm winning. That is not a downside in any way.
I do see some financial advisors that post like this. Every week, they'll post a few of the same tweets. I don't think that's good. I don't think that's the way to do it, but I think you can revisit, right? Because all we're trying to teach people is a lot of very similar principles in different ways to actually reinforce it in their minds so that they can learn. [11:01.0]
James: I think reposting and I guess repurposing—repurposing, when I say repurposing, financial advisors, what I mean is using the same content in a similar way, but not the exact same way. When I say reposting, I quite literally mean copy-paste, use the exact same thing—both of those things
Thomas: Nice.
James: Yeah, both of those things save time. For advisors to say, “I don't have time to post,” commit first, if you have 365 posts throughout an entire year, according to the 80-20 rule, 73 of them should generate 80% of your results. You're telling me you can't take those 73 posts and just copy-paste, put them right back into the feed? You would lock in your results. But people don’t think that way.
Thomas: Yeah, I think I really tried to do both. I try to repost the things that have done really well, right? Especially going from Twitter to LinkedIn, that is an instant repost because that did well. If I had seven tweets yesterday, what was the best one? That's what gets posted on LinkedIn, because if it wins here, it's going to win here. That's what I’ve really found. [12:00.6]
But, also, I read a blog post. On LinkedIn, I’ll write an intro and then I’ll throw the blog post link there. Twitter, I turn it into a thread, so I’ll edit it and make the first part be really interesting, because I think that's where a lot of advisors fail is that they don't ever try to grab attention. They’re just like, Six ways to get ready for retirement. It's like, that's so boring. Nobody's going to read that. You have to hook them early on, so I spend that time there, for sure.
But I also go back. I go to old newsletters. I go to old blog posts, and I go find tweets from there that I can go schedule out. Then what I'm going to do in a year or two, maybe three, who knows what it’ll look like? Because I'm going to have an unbelievable amount of content. I already have written a blog post every week for two and a half years. I write a newsletter every month. I do a podcast every week. I'm going to hire somebody to repurpose all of it.
They're going to go to old podcasts. They're going to cut clips and repost it. They're going to go to old blogs and clean them up and write things about it. They're going to old tweets and write about it. Eventually, I'm going to have-- I don't think you can outsource marketing, especially in a service-based business when you're working with me, most of the time, content marketing, specifically, until you build that. [13:09.0]
James: A hundred percent.
Thomas: Once it's built, I think you can totally outsource it, but I don't think you can go hire somebody from day one and be like, Go talk about this, because what I'm attracting through this is people who really want to work with me and my beliefs and my personality, and if I don't create that through my content, I'm not going to attract anybody. My first job, we had Hearsay, which is like an auto-platform that posts your stuff. I think you're better off not posting than doing that nine times out of 10 because it's unrelatable. It's un-unique. It's nothing about you and all you're going to do is push people away from that.
James: That's an excellent point. I talked about outsourcing all the time, and I try to just explain to people, you can't multiply zeros. You're not going to wake up one day and say, “Okay, I have my LLC now. I just need to hire somebody to do everything for me.” That's not how it works. You have to hand off systems. [14:02.4]
And even if we had a world where everyone had to outsource, okay, the person who put in the effort to have the systems to hand off is still going to dominate, is still going to crush you. So, you having that library of content is incredible, and that's one of my secrets, by the way, which is that I do it through email, though, so the emails that had the most results are the ones I put on LinkedIn. What's interesting is that they don't get all the clicks and likes and comments and stuff, but they still get pretty good interaction.
Thomas: Yeah.
James: Speaking of them, I am curious, you're talking about putting links to blog posts, but one of the questions I have for you is I'm trying to think about the sequence. When someone sees Thomas Kopelman, and let's just say this person is in his mid-30s and makes $500,000 per year at a tech company or whatever, does that person go to your profile, or does that person go to your website?
Thomas: Yeah, so my funnel from the way that I see it is Twitter to website to book a meeting. That's how it is. I don't cold-DM anybody. I don't push anybody to meet with me. Yesterday I had six new prospects book a meeting with me, all of them either business owners or making above $500,000 a year. All of them at the right age range. Two of them have multimillion-dollar windfalls coming in this year. [15:19.5]
I’ve never talked to them one time before. I’ve maybe engaged with them on Twitter. I’ve never DM’ed them. I’ve never done anything along that boat. They were just eventually like, I need to book a meeting with him. And when you click on my ThomasKopelman.carrd.co or whatever, you have “Book a Meeting” and you have “Website”. I actually just had another prospect right now just book a meeting through the same funnel.
So, that's where I'm sure I'm missing out on some by not messaging, but part of my brand I think is not being a salesman, and I know content is sales, but I consider marketing and sales two different things. The world I started in was all sales, all number of leads, all pitch them, all these things, why you're the best. [16:01.4]
I want everybody to see through my content until the time they meet with me that my approach is “Let me get to know you. Let me let me tell you how we best work with people and what our process is, and if that's what you want, then we're here for you. But in no way am I convincing you to work with us, am I going to sit here and say, ‘Hey, this advisor does this. I do this. I do this.’ I'm just going to tell you what I do, and if that's what you want, then come work with us,” and I keep it that simple. So, I don't try to push anybody there. I've just found the natural funnel is they want to work with me, they check me out. Some people go look at pricing. Some people just book the meeting right away.
James: I wish more advisors understood that. You demonstrate tremendous anti-neediness where you don't need the business. You know there's always another one coming. You don't need the client. In fact, the client need you. I mean, that's really the mental state that I think you need to be in.
Thomas: But I think that confidence, the confidence that clients see in that first meeting are prospects of they don't need me, they're not going to just be all things to me, they're not going to convince me of this, that attracts them to want to work with you. [17:06.0]
James: Absolutely. Do you use tracking software at all to know which links specifically people come from?
Thomas: No.
James: I think you should. HYROS, a company called HYROS, actually, I think it was yesterday or two days ago, just released an organic tracking part of the business. It used to be all ads tracking, and YouTube and Google and Facebook and Twitter, but now they have an organic part of your business. I think that could be extremely helpful, especially if you put Link A in one thread Link B in another thread, Link C, because then--
Thomas: But I don’t put any links and threads. That's my thing. I don't drive anybody off platform from any content. It's literally that they just are like, Hey, I want to book a meeting with him. They're going to click my profile -
James: Oh.
Thomas: - and that's going to draw them to our scheduler.
James: Okay.
Thomas: I don't have them. Even on my blog posts at the bottom, I used to have like, If you want to work with me, here's a link to book with me. And maybe I'm missing and I'm maybe missing some prospects, but, I mean, I'm normally booked out two to three months with a household a week that it's more than enough that sometimes I'm sure there's ways to optimize, but it's kind of like, Am I actually going to go analyze and track these numbers or not? [18:13.5]
James: Okay, yeah, that's what I was curious about. It was, if you have any links, if you're posting in threads versus them going to the profile? Let's bring up, do you know off the top of your head what your profile says? How do you describe yourself on your profile?
Thomas: No.
James: I’m going to find it.
Thomas: But the one thing that I’ll add to what you that you were just-- Wait, what was the point you just made right before this?
James: About organic tracking, like tracking the links organically, because I thought this whole time that you were putting links in threads, like you were saying--
Thomas: Oh, no. Yeah, that's what I was going to talk about. Twitter hates links. The only time I ever throw a link is for my podcast where people will go. I’ll throw the video. I always throw a highlight video. I’m not just going to throw a link to my podcast. I might throw a video to try to get them interested and then I’ll drop a link underneath there. But my blog posts, I just write as a thread. I have no link to my blog. I would say, 99.9% of my posts have no links to it, because I don't want the demotion. [19:06.3]
James: I think I'm going to actually try that and I will give you credit. Everyone on the podcast here, if you see me start doing threads and do that approach, all credit goes to Thomas, though here’s--
Thomas: And I think it's worth [mentioning], people hate on threads because people throw garbage fake threads. If you are going to actually post a thread that's valuable, then there's no better way to do it, because you get long-form native content that people don't have to hop off the platform for, and I put one out yesterday. I had a blog post idea for this week. I was like, I don't have time to write this long one. I'm going to do something easy, so I did one literally on “How much house and car can I afford?” and I turned that into a thread and it has 30,000 views. It has 79 likes, 29 retweets, 11 comments, and 30,000 views, and something that the blog post took me 15 minutes and then it took me five minutes to put it into a thread, and probably 15 minutes to write the first part of the thread.
James: And does the blog post also do well by itself? Is that one of your top-performing blog posts or . . .? [20:05.5]
Thomas: No. No, I don't even expect people to go to my blog. I just know that I actually use my blog. I had, in the beginning, thought people would, and I still get maybe 1,000 readers a month, it's not like it's bad by any means, but the way that I have it is that it's so hard to go find old threads. So, when a client or somebody's talking to me about like, Hey, I remember you had a post about this, I can just send them to my blog for easy finding.
Then it's also a native place where people go look at who I am. They can see all the content I’ve ever posted, because search on social is bad.
James: Yeah, it’s bad.
Thomas: It's really bad, and so that solves more problems, but it doesn't take any work, because, either way, I'm going to have to go write it out somewhere.
James: That's a good point, too. That's another example of repurposing. And I want to walk people through what your profile says, so if you want to just read it off real quick. You can go, yeah.
Thomas: Yeah, so my mine says, “Co-founder at AllStreet Wealth. Helping equity compensated millennials and entrepreneurs build wealth. Top 100 advisor by Investopedia. Tweets are not advice.” [21:05.3]
James: And then, that’s it.
Thomas: And I’ve worked with that a lot, because I used to have it be really wordy and I needed it to say blog or podcast or all these things. I realized there's certain things that don't need to be in it. I just want people to go there and say, like, Oh, I'm an equity compensated employee or I'm an entrepreneur.
And then, obviously, top-100 advisor by Investopedia. People can argue about all of those things all the time, but it's not like I paid for that. You get voted into that. I got it. It's a stamp of approval. All content and branding, and everything is. It’s like, are you a vetted person? Can you initially build trust to make people want to work with you? All those things do that.
James: Your header also has a similar credibility mechanism. Your header is like, “Top 100 advisor by Investopedia. Top 23 millennial financial planner by Business Insider,” so your profile is a masterclass, in and of itself. It's just that you can see that you are credible, that you're competent, and people can immediately start scrolling down and just start viewing your content. [22:00.7]
That's one of the things I like about Twitter and that's one of the regrets that I have about not using it so much. It’s that people can just start scrolling directly from your profile. They don't have to click other links like they would have to do on Facebook to watch a video or on LinkedIn to get to all of your posts and activity. That is one of the regrets I have, not being like--
Thomas: Yeah, but I think somebody like you who already has a following, cross going platforms is an easier build than ever building platform number one. Even though you can't be like, on LinkedIn, if you say, “Go follow me on Twitter,” your post is going to get 400 views. You totally get that. But then as you start to build here, more people are like, Oh, I remember him from LinkedIn. Why would I not follow him here?
But, I mean, LinkedIn was my main focus. I think on LinkedIn—I don't know how many followers. Maybe I have 5,500 followers now—I was at 4,700 or 4,800 when I was at 800 on here. There's no arguing that being found, Twitter is the easiest. Besides TikTok, Twitter is the easiest one to grow because of retweets, because of comments. All of those things get pushed out, and it's really easy to click, go to the profile and hit follow. Then LinkedIn, do I hit connect? Do I send them an email? Do I do this? The friction is so much more in every other platform than Twitter. [23:13.2]
Hey, financial advisors. If you'd like even more help building your business, I invite you to subscribe to James' monthly paper-and-ink newsletter, “The James Pollard Inner Circle”. When you join today, you'll get more than $1,000 worth of bonuses, including exclusive interviews that aren't available anywhere else. Head on over to TheAdvisorCoach.com/coaching to learn more.
James: One of the things I'm curious about because you're talking about posting three times a day and scheduling out, and just being consistent, and that is a great thing that financial advisors can take away, but do you know or remember if there was any catalysts like a viral tweet that you had that just went to the moon and back? Just a huge tweet.
Thomas: I've had some tweets that have hundreds of thousands, in the hundred thousands of impressions, and Brendan Frazier actually found this website where you can analyze people's profiles and he analyzed mine, and my top five tweets were all one line long. [24:10.7]
Thomas: That's cool. That's kind of a thing. I get that.
Thomas: Yeah, I had one the other day that was “I bonds are not your path to wealth,” and I think it maybe has 50,000-plus impressions. I just think the one thing you learn real quick with content, like this thread I was just telling you about from this week, I expected to get nothing out of it. I just wanted to make sure I got content out there because that's most important, and it blows up, and almost everything of mine that's ever blown up has been the thing I thought I just barely put any effort into. That's why I just never-- the Carl Richards’ idea of “I’ve fired you from the job of determining whether what you think you're going to say is valuable or not.” I've really taken that to heart and I’d be like sometimes you don't know it's valuable. As your knowledge base grows significantly, sometimes you forget these things people have no idea about can be super valuable. [24:57.0]
James: I've noticed that a lot in my own life, just putting things out there. I used to have a personal Twitter account and I deleted it because of the social media stuff that I was researching. I was like, I’ve got to get this out of my life. I was like, I had the business one. The account I have now was actually just the Advisor Coach business page, and I was like, That's dumb, I’ve got to put my face on there. What I used to do that works well, I used a lot of current events, so like NBA Finals, Super Bowl, Wrestlemania, the Oscars. Do you do any of that? Do you capitalize on current events at all?
Thomas: Not really, because not that I think that's wrong, but I think that there's multiple different goals of how to use social. I know a lot of people who will talk about anything spammy, anything on headlines, because that gets them followers. But at the end of the day, the name of the game really isn't followers. To me, it's the right type of audience.
I get advisors reach out to me all the time, like, Hey, I’ve got this awesome opportunity, this account with 400,000 followers. They're going to retweet one of my tweets every day and I'm going to grow. I’ll get 6,000 followers as quick. I'm like, You understand, that's their job. They're doing this for so many other people that all of the people that follow you are kind of under this umbrella that doesn't make them any more qualified. [26:08.1]
Because the only way I'm getting followers is because they see my content and want to follow me, I'm nurturing an audience of people who are either going to learn-- They're going to learn from me in multiple ways. There's the DIY-ers, who are never going to be my clients, but are going to learn, and I'm going to have a course that I can sell to them, because they still want to learn. They just don't think they need an advisor. Then I have the people who are DIY-ers, but need help, and they're going to be one-time financial-planning clients. Then I have the delegators that are going to follow me and never read it, never understand it, but they're going to know the topic and they're going to reach out to me for that. So, I'll have a way to sell to each different type of person in my audience, but, basically, all of them fit the type of person exactly whom I'm creating towards.
James: That's a pretty smart way to silo your business that I think that's a good way to structure it, because you know the different types of people who are following you, like you said, people who are delegators versus people who are DIY-ers who just want a course. [26:59.2]
I think course-creation is a tremendous opportunity for financial advisors. There are two advisors out of Tennessee that have a podcast. I'm not really the name-drop guy. Anybody who's in the space listens to the podcasts, they know. They have a course that they sell that is incredible and I think it's incredibly well done, and I just appreciate that you're chasing that opportunity, too.
Thomas: I think it's a no-brainer. I think it's a way to add more impact to help more people because there's just so much bad knowledge out there, but even beyond that, what I’ve become, I’ve analyzed who follows me, who consumed my content in LinkedIn as advisors. I go look at who consumed my content. It's the vast majority of advisors.
This year, I mean, I'm on your podcast. I'm on a few other ones. I'm probably speaking at Jolt! Kitces’ blog coming out to advisors. I'm probably going to turn the LinkedIn channel into this selling to advisors, because the plan is I'm in the works right now of building content, like how to, not all marketing. It's solely how to use social-media marketing to grow a business, and the goal is, at some point this year, Samantha Russell and I will have that out. [28:03.6]
So, then I’ll turn that channel, because I don't want to convolute things. I want one mission, one goal on Twitter, and then I can use LinkedIn as another goal, kind of almost how Cody Garrett has pivoted to do it. Most of his talk on LinkedIn is about the things that he's putting out there for advisors, because that's where advisors live. But that's also why I don't focus there to grow my client base, because that's where advisors live.
James: Yeah, and then it's kind of sad to see people share something that is intended for clients and they say, “Comment this word if you want it,” and advisors are like, Give me, give me, give me. It’s like, no, that's not the intended audience. Go away.
Thomas: Yeah, exactly.
James: That's what they want. They all just come out of the woodwork. You have a good point, though, that there are a lot of advisors on there, and Cody Garrett does awesome work. By the time this podcast comes out, he should have his course or program or system out about creating a financial plan. I want to be the first customer for that. I don't know if I'm going to be the first customer, but we'll see. [29:00.0]
Thomas: I'm buying it because I have a full-time hire coming on this year who has a tax background. He does tax planning and tax filing for businesses, and he has a financial-planning side to learn, so in the first six months, that's going to be his deep learning, because maybe there's things that we're not doing that we could learn. He can learn there, and then we're going to have all of these. I mean, in six months, I’ll probably have at least 20 clients we’ll bring on, so he's going to get so much repetition to learn that planning side that, to me, there's not really a good “Here's how you learn about financial planning,” because most firms don't even know how to teach it.
James: Yeah, financial advisors can't really train that well and the ones who need the most help are the ones who say, “I don't have time. I don't have time to train somebody.” It’s like, that's the whole reason why you need to train somebody.
Thomas: Yeah, exactly. Or that's the reason why you hire somebody who's trained and be willing to pay more, because that's the other side of it. Either you hire somebody and train them and accept that, or you find somebody who knows their stuff, you pay them more, and this is the role that they want, which is to be a planner.
James: Yeah. Let's take it back to Twitter. What are some of your goals for the next six months, next year and beyond, on Twitter, specifically? [30:05.8]
Thomas: Yeah, so it becomes hard because I don't want to be the person who's only focused on impressions and followers, right? But what I will say is that most months where I'm getting good amounts of new prospects, it shows in the numbers. My followers are going up quite a bit. My impressions are above a million.
Basically, I go back to 2021, I did little over a million total in that whole year on Twitter. Last year, I’d have done just under 9 million. My goal this year will probably be 15 million impressions. I think that's pretty good growth-wise, and then I would like to double my following. My goal was 7,500 by the end of the year. I hit 7,500 on Jan. 2, so I was pretty close. The goal will be that I’ll be at 15,000. I don't know if I’ll get there or not, but as you grow, you typically get more followers a month, as you know, that gets pushed out more, so I'd say those are there. [31:01.3]
I think the goal would be that I'm getting at least four prospects a month in the door that are qualified from Twitter, if that's going to be my main channel, because my big goal this year, like last year, at the start of the year, my lowest model was 200 bucks a month. But then, by the middle of the year, we got up to 350. By Q3, it was 450. Now my average client coming on is a little over 600 a month, and so they're more complex.
And just all reality, I could probably take two or three a month, definitely not four, even with a CFP behind me who's helping do a lot of the work. So, the goal would be basically like, Hey, you get for a month, you convert three of them, and you build this really awesome business, because then my thought is, at that scale, in one to two years, I’ll be at capacity, even with two full-time people around me.
And then I’ll just do financial plans, because that's the other part of it that doesn't get talked about. I can have this whole ongoing model and I can take on one financial plan a month at $6,500. That's an additional 80k. That's a full-time hire paid for, and that full-time hire will do most of the work besides half the meetings that I’ll do. Courses, speaking engagements, all of those types of things. It's just thinking through like, what do I want beyond that? [32:15.5]
I also know I don't want to just be at capacity and just be a financial planner. I love building. I really love building, but I also love the freedom that I have, too.
James: I guess for your business, that's one of the things I was thinking about, as you were talking. I get your business goal is not just to hit capacity and then coast. I'm trying to figure out, do you want to grow, grow, grow, or do you want more of a lifestyle business?
Thomas: I’ll be honest and say I don't know. I look back four years ago and I didn't want to be a business owner, so I just don't pretend to know what, three to four years from now, I’d, for sure, want. And, regardless, the name of the game has hit capacity, and so I'm going to do that, and then what's going to happen is clients are going to fall off. [32:57.7]
Maybe 50% of my clients account for about 20% of the revenue, and then the other 50% account for 80, so those people will probably fall off. I’ll hand them to a different advisor or something. I’ll basically keep filling up my book with higher-income, higher-complexity, higher-fee clients.
In a subscription model, you're going to lose clients every year because they think that their life is more simple or things like that. But that's also why I made the shift to business owners and equity comp, because there's big decisions that need to be made every single year, and just because you're learning doesn't mean that you're able to do all of those on your own.
Again, we talked about this earlier, outsourcing, spending your time where it's best spent. Almost all my business owners understand and think of me as an employee. They say, “Hey, you are our cheapest employee, cheapest part-time employee that adds a significant amount of value and takes a lot off our plate. Why would we drop you? Somebody has to fill that role. I don't have the time. We're a multi-million dollar revenue business. That's not where my time is best spent.” [33:58.1]
So, it seems like a really good market for us to be in, and it's not that competitive. There's not that many planners who really are doing great work with 30-year-olds making a great amount of money running a business that know nothing about the finances.
James: I think you're an example of someone who is making the right moves in the right place with the right people, and I don't want it to make it sound like all the stars just magically aligned for you. No, no, no, you had to do stuff, so financial advisors--
Thomas: It kind of feels like it. Sometimes I feel like I look back and I'm like, I don't know if I just got lucky. I don't pretend that maybe I did, maybe didn't, and lucky timing and things worked out. I won't pretend that I didn't do the work on the marketing side or ever make excuses and not do it. But, I mean, I look back and I don't feel like I did anything extravagant or did anything that hard. I just did what I thought I should do and not really anything above that.
James: It's just one of those things, like, are you lucky to be alive in 2023? Yes. Are you lucky to be born in America at this time? Yes, in an era in which computers exist and Twitter exists. If you were born 50 years ago, you wouldn’t have been able to use Twitter. It's just one of those things. [35:07.0]
But there are a whole bunch of other people who were born in America, who are alive during this time who have access to Twitter who don't get the results that you get. So, it's both, to be honest, or at least, I think it is.
Thomas: Yeah, I mean, I don't know. It's worked out really well. You always have the fear in the back of your mind, like, all sudden, is that going to go away? I went two weeks at the start of this year without a prospect. I was like, Man, is my content bad? What is going on? Then, literally, in the last 24 hours, I’ve gotten six, and it's just like that's how it works. There's just no arguing the fact that there's ebbs and flows.
You're going to be worried. There's going to be good, there's going to be bad, and not every month is going to be the best. And sometimes you're going to lose a client because they don't understand your value and they don't use you in the right way, and other times, every client is going to be raving about you, and that's part of the journey.
James: I view it like investing. Investing, it's like you dollar-cost average, and if you've charted it on a graph, it looks like a linear return, but you're buying above the line and you're buying below the line. You have reversion to the mean and a moving average with business building as well. You’re going to have some months that suck a little bit more and some months that suck a little bit less. [36:10.5]
Thomas: Yeah.
James: And you just grow over time. So, that’s cool to see.
Thomas: And a lot of suck you might [get] early on, too, right? I mean, the excuse I always hear from financial planners is that marketing doesn't work, and everybody says, like, Oh, you're one of the best in the industry at doing this. It still took me a year of consistent content before I really got any okay leads, and they were okay leads. It took me about two years before I started to get really good types of clients through it.
Most advisors just give up. They say it's not working, blah, blah, blah. And think about it, that's with me doing a ton of posting. If you post every Monday, Wednesday, Friday on LinkedIn, and then you vacation a week every once in a while, and then Sunday, you're busy. Think about that. Even if every week you did 12 a month, 70 posts, and over three months, you're thinking, I don't know, 30 posts that you're also going to be getting all these clients. That's just not how it works. [37:02.7]
James: Yeah. Are there any advisors that you can think of or any advisor business styles that would not be successful on Twitter?
Thomas: I think that if you go to an older audience, I can see the argument. I actually still have a lot of followers that are older, that are 50s and 60s that engage with me, even though I'm not the right client, so I still think people live there. I mean, I just think if they're business owners, if they're millennials, if they're in tech, if they're in sales, if they're in health and fitness, almost all of those.
I had somebody tell me like, Hey, I work with chiropractors. It seems like they're only on Instagram. It's like, I don't know how you can just say that. I don't know how you could say 30- and 40-year-old chiropractors are just on Instagram, because I have chiropractor clients that found me from Twitter. There's a lot of them. Just because 60% are here and 40% here doesn't mean it's easier to grab that 60%, right? Just that platform might not be easier.
I look at some people I know that create on Instagram and that's their main channel. They've been putting out hundreds of videos and they have 700 followers on there. If your network isn't growing, you can only nurture those same people so many times, before you realize that there probably aren't going to be ones to buy. [38:11.4]
James: Yeah, and you don't have to be limited to just one platform, either, because as we talked about earlier, you can put something on LinkedIn and then you can repurpose to Twitter or vice versa. If someone isn't on Instagram, they can just as easily-- not just as easily, but with a little bit more effort, disproportionately less effort, go to Twitter and make it work and find the people there.
Thomas: Exactly. And let's say Instagram, you're like, Words don't really work that well, so I'm going to do a reel, right? I'm going to do a minute-long reel. You had to think of the content that reel beforehand. You probably even wrote an outline or did it. Why isn't that reel a thread? Then why don't you post that reel as a shorter video? Then why don't you cut up that thread into three to five points that you had in there? Those are all no-brainers, easy thing to do when you're already thinking about it, and it really wouldn't take that much more time, and even if it does take more time, it's part of your job. [39:04.2]
James: Yeah, you get paid to do it, or at least, indirectly.
Thomas: Yeah, yeah.
James: I have two more questions for you. The last one is going to be, how can people get in touch with you? But I really want to know if you could go back to day one on your Twitter account, knowing everything that you know today, what are two or three things you would tell yourself, the most important things as you get started?
Thomas: Number one would be to focus on the hook, first and foremost, because you can have an amazing post, an amazing thread, but if people scroll Twitter, they just kind of summarize, and if they don't get interested, they're going past it, so it doesn't matter how great that content is grabbing attention.
And that's where Samantha Russell really helped me on that. We talked about a few things. I was like, Can you give me advice on what I'm doing? What can I do better? and she's like, You’ve got to focus in on the first line. That's it. You have focus on the first line on LinkedIn, Twitter, whatever, because if you're just like--
I talk to advisors all the time. I had a conversation with a guy the other day and he was like, I started posting on LinkedIn and I just don't know if I’ve been getting very much traction. I'm like, Let me guess what one of your first posts were. You said, HSAs are great tax-advantaged accounts. [40:15.8]
James: Yes, yes.
Thomas: This, this and this, and I'm like, That's not interesting, if you start that. If you do it -
James: That’s exactly right.
Thomas: - you might start it with more like, “You might have no clue what the most tax-advantaged accounts that exist are. Maybe you guess Roth IRAs. Maybe you guess traditional IRAs. Maybe you guess your 401(k). You're wrong. It's an HAS. Here's why.” That, people are going to read that, right? If you skip those and you just go, “Here's an HSA,” nobody is reading, right? That would be first and foremost, my main focus.
I think another one would be like, I would never post links. I definitely used to say, like, Hey, here's my blog post, go there. Nobody's leading there and it would get 95 views, and then they wouldn’t even click it so it wouldn't even matter. [40:58.9]
I would follow people who have really good content in other industries, because if we look in our industry, archaic, right? I mean, most content is bad. Most video is bad. Most, just in general, not very good. There's other industries that are way farther ahead. So, what are those industries? Who are those best creators in that space?
I’ll see somebody's post and I’ll be like, That's a great framework, and I could talk about investing with that and then I’ll go use that framework and do it. Everybody is then like, That's stealing. It's like, you've never said anything original that hasn't been put out there anyways, but you haven't, so there's nothing wrong with doing that.
I would say, those would be my three main focuses. I guess the fourth one would be scheduling. People are like, Then if I schedule, I can't be as real-time about things. It's like, yes, you can. Just then tweet those real-time things in that day, but, at least, that guarantees you have income. I mean, not income. It guarantees that you have posts out there, because every advisor is like, I get busy, I stop. It's like, how do you overcome that? Schedule, right? That's the solution. That would be what my main focuses would be going into it, and those are just things that I learned by failing. [42:04.8]
James: I mean, the machine does the hard work for you. I think I would be super lazy. I would follow people in other industries, just like you said, and look at the framework, and if I saw a strong hook—and this is based on what you told me, because, again, I'm not super active on Twitter. My Twitter sucks, so nobody follow me for Twitter advice at all.
Thomas: Yeah.
James: But I would look at these hooks and I would just go to something like ChatGPT and I'd be like, Generate 10 similar hook ideas. I wouldn't have to be creative or anything.
Thomas: I've been trying. I've been trying that, and, one, ChatGPT, half the day, it doesn't let me on because it's at full, which always stinks. I was trying to write a blog post today and I was wanting a part from it. But then always rewrite it, right? You take it and kind of rewrite it and make your own. But even if that doesn't give you the one you post, it gets you stuck out of the mental words that keep coming, right? Because sometimes I can't think of anything else. And so, then it gives you other options, maybe you don't like it, but it changes some words that you can now flow through it better. [43:00.2]
James: Yeah, I've been doing a lot of experimenting and what's interesting is a lot of the A.I. stuff, I'm going to be using outside of the financial services industry and financial advisors won't see these businesses, but it's some very, very powerful stuff. And there have been tools. I think it's Hypefury. I know there's a couple --
Thomas: I use Hypefury.
James: Yeah. Hypefury has the automatic generator where you type in a keyword and it generates 10 ideas or something .
Thomas: I haven't used it for that. When I'm scheduling, it'll pull old tweets of mine, so sometimes that will give me. There I can go view all of my best tweets. There's inspiration, so there might be fitness and you can pull up -
James: Oh, that's right.
Thomas: - a bunch of top ones and you can look through it. I scheduled through there. I could set it where I'm like, Hey, I just released this great download blah, blah, blah. In the comments, do this. And I can set it, so if they comment that word, it auto-DMs them for giving them that thing. I don't use it. I know Cody Garrett has used it for that. I know Travis Gatzemeier has used it for that. I just don't do that many downloads or giveaways. Not for any specific reason. I just basically just give it all away, and because I think the more that I gate, the less people are going to go to it, and if it's driving so much business as is, for now, I just won't change it. [44:13.7]
James: Yeah, don’t stop what’s working.
Thomas: But I think it is a good structure.
James: Yeah. I wouldn't stop what’s working. I would keep doing what you're doing. This episode is scheduled to come out in April. We're recording in January, and you have just shy of 8,000 followers, I believe, when I looked. Your goal is to get to 15,000. I'm thinking you might hit 15,000 by the time this episode comes out, so we'll see. People who listen.
Thomas: I would love that.
James: And they'll pull up your profile and they'll be able to see. They'll be able to see the numbers. They’ll see the profile.
Thomas: I would love to be at 10,000. That'd be good. Crossing five figures would feel good, I feel. I remember when I started, I saw people at 3,000 or 4,000 and I was like, That's crazy. Then a couple of my clients have it in the 10s, and I'm like Dang, that's crazy. Then I have other people I work with or do podcasts with, and they’re in the hundreds. That picked up over time, and I just hope that mine has kind of that exponential growth, because that's how you really kind of get a lot. [45:08.6]
James: Yeah. I don't regret where I am today. I went hard with email and online ads and everything, and obviously, it worked out well for me. But I am interested, I want to play on Twitter a little bit more. The biggest fear that I’ve had you kind of squashed in the beginning of our conversation, and that is the content curation. I just am so paranoid and so . . . not afraid, but just I'm so guarded of my mental state. I want to be clear. I want to be positive. I want to be accurate at all times. I don't want to be influenced by someone like, Oh, my Starbucks coffee was cold and today's going to be a terrible day. I don't want to see it. I don't want to be near it. I don't want to even get it in my environment. I don't want it and that's why I don't take a chance. But you have inspired me. I think I'm going to do a little bit more, or at least, try to.
Thomas: Yeah, but also you might have made the right choice, because what if this whole Twitter fiasco goes down? Then I'm like, Man, where am I going to start building now? Email, you can always control that. [46:04.5]
James: Yeah. This has been awesome. This has been a great show. I'm glad that we finally got to talk about Twitter marketing on the Financial Advisor Marketing Podcast. How can people find you, if they want to learn more?
Thomas: Yeah, definitely, Twitter. I’m @TKopelman on there. And then LinkedIn is just Thomas Kopelman. The one thing I do is I do monthly office hours for advisors. I actually just did one this morning. Reach out or look on my profile. I actually have a newsletter. Subscribe to it. I don't email anybody, but I just let them know when those office hours are. I’ve done two. I have 70 advisors on it right now, and the goal is that we can come in and people can ask me questions, and we can all learn together.
James: That's pretty cool and it's awesome to see somebody sharing with financial advisors, like, Here's what I'm doing, here's what works, here's what didn't work, and just through the show. And office hours, that's an awesome opportunity for people.
Thomas: Exactly.
James: Alright, so financial advisors, I hope you enjoyed this episode all about Twitter marketing. If you're on Twitter, make sure you follow Thomas. Make sure you go to LinkedIn, follow him on LinkedIn as well, where you can see his tweets that he's going to repurpose, which is a great idea, by the way. And with that said, I will catch you next week. [47:13.5]

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