Quantipulation: Financial Advisors’ Use Of LinkedIn

LinkedIn recently published an infographic depicting financial advisors’ use of social media. Advisors’ use of LinkedIn exceeded their use of other networks like Facebook and Twitter. As Gomer Pyle would say, “Soo-prise, soo-prise!”

Infographic: How financial advisors use social media for their banking business needs

But seriously, LinkedIn’s findings on advisors’ prefered networks are consistent with my research. What caught my eye, though, was the following stat:

Advisors who prospected on LinkedIn achieved a 62% success rate.

My take: Quantipulation at its finest.

To refresh your memory, quantipulation is:

The art and act of using unverifiable math and statistics to convince people of what you believe to be true.

What exactly does 62% success rate mean?  Succeeded at what? Is it implying that 62% of the time that advisors used LinkedIn they “succeeded”? Does it mean that 62% of the prospects they found on LI became clients?

My guess is that it means that 62% of advisors said that they had success with LinkedIn, not that they had a 62% success rate.

If that’s the case, it’s hardly a remarkable finding. Advisors — and all marketers — generally find some success with every marketing channel they use.


The infographic also says that, of the advisors who had success with LI,  32% gained $1m in new assets.

Oh really? Was that $1m in assets from just the LI prospects, or $1m in new assets overall? How much in new assets did the other 68% generate? It’s entirely possible that those 68% grew their book of business more from other sources that the LI-successful group.

Here’s my contention: Advisors who are good at marketing use lots of different channels to prospect, and are more aggressive in prospecting than advisors who aren’t as good at marketing.

The channel doesn’t make the marketer, the marketer makes the channel.


Another interesting data point states that 52% of investors would interact with advisors on LI, but that just 4% do.

Hey, LinkedIn: If you want advisors to be successful using your network, you have to answer these questions:

  • Why the gap?
  • Why don’t more investors interact with advisors on LI?
  • What’s the secret to engagement on LI??


Bottom line: You can’t take statistics at face value. But you knew that already, right? RIGHT?

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