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Friday Fact: Wealthy On Facebook But Don’t Actually Use Facebook



I call this the Friday Fact section (which I reserve the right to not do every single Friday) because it sounds good but the reality is there are no real facts about the social media space. There is information and there is research but none of it should be held as the absolute truth.

Having said that today’s fact is about the wealthy and Facebook. The Wall Street Journal reports on a poll conducted by the SEI Wealth Network that found the following.

The poll from SEI Wealth Network, a wealth-advisory firm, showed that 70% of respondents with $5 million or more in investible assets are users of Facebook and other social media sites. That is more than the 61% of the broader population who use such sites.

SEI touted the results as proof that the rich are social-media animals. “Wealthy individuals are engaged with social media even more than the rest of the American public,” said David McLaughlin, Senior Managing Director for the SEI Wealth Network.

That would be true–if the wealthy spent time on the sites. But the poll also showed that only 17% of the multimillionaires use the sites on a daily basis. That is far less than the broader population, in which 38% use such sites at least once a day.

Pretty funny how even the Wall Street Journal is taking to calling out what headline research findings (the results touted in press release headlines) are actually saying (much like this post from yesterday).

Honestly, this does not come as much of a surprise to me. Most people don’t become multi-millionaires by twittering their life away. They also aren’t looking for networking opportunities through new social network connections. Why? At some point a stranger is a stranger is a stranger and when you are wealthy you have to be careful that you are not becoming a target. Sounds harsh but that’s the way the world rolls these days.

As is always good practice, if you want to see how this subject gets people going just read the comments connected to the article at the WSJ. Everyone has a theory as to whether or not this data is flawed and the theory the rich have plenty of time to play golf but not be on social networks etc, etc.

So what does this say in the end? Not much. If you are a financial advisor looking to find leads through social media, though, you may be fishing in an unstocked pond.

What’s your take on this week’s Friday Fact*?

*Research is not fact although we desperately want it to be. It’s just information.

  • Cynthia

    This reminds me of a comment Big Bang Theory star Jim Parsons made on a talk show recently. They were talking about Twitter and he said he doesn’t do it because he doesn’t have anything interesting to say. Then he corrected himself and said, I have plenty of interesting things to say, but not things I want the whole world to know about.

    So he found himself twittering about his meals, what I had for breaktast, lunch etc and finally gave up.