How Social Media Affects The Forex Market
By: Hillel Fuld
The Forex market, as you probably know by now, is the biggest market in the world. Yet, somehow, the average citizen, who is quite familiar with the Stock Market, has never heard of the Forex market. When you tell them Forex means the same as foreign exchange, you generally get a response similar to “Ohhh” followed by a “And what is that”?
With the size of the Forex market, and its potential for profit, you would expect it to be a much more popular and familiar market to the masses. A possible explanation of this phenomenon can be the fact that it was originally inaccessible to the average person, and only in the last decade has the Forex retail market taken off.
Having said that, the Forex market has managed to gain more exposure over the last year or two, especially on the global Web. This can be attributed mainly to social media and the presence of Forex brokers and traders on the various social networks.
It is true that the amount of Forex content on the Web continues to grow, but the way in which the primary Forex players make use of social media leaves much room for improvement. The three main social networks used in the Web community are of course Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn.
While LinkedIn and Twitter have an infrastructure in place enabling people to connect with others in their field, Facebook is intended more for people to connect with friends and relatives. The reason I say this is because, Forex as an industry is more suitable for the LinkedIn and Twitter environment then the Facebook one. It is true that there is the occasional Forex Facebook page offering Forex content, but both the contributor and the recipient of the content will benefit more from Twitter and LinkedIn and all the features they offer.
Although Twitter and LinkedIn might be better for Forex, all three social networks can be utilized to distribute Forex content, whether in the form of Forex news, Forex analysis, articles, or even signals. Social media, in general, is an unprecedented tool in its efficiency and effectiveness when it comes to exposure and communication.
Let’s examine how people and Forex companies are benefiting from the world of social media.
Before we discuss how Forex and Facebook merge, let’s take a quick look at the statistics of the largest social network on the Web. Facebook now has over 250 million users worldwide. As for content, over 1 billion new content pieces are uploaded weekly. Wouldn’t you say such numbers would yell to Forex traders all over the world to use this platform and connect with other traders?
On the other hand, Facebook was always intended not as a corporate platform but rather a place to connect on a more personal basis, so it is not as ideal as some of the other sites out there. Some of the Forex tools you might come across on Facebook include Forex groups, Forex pages, Forex traders, and Forex signals. I for one have not been exposed to any Facebook spam on the Forex topic, something I wish I could say about the Forex presence on Twitter.
As of today, Facebook is mainly used by Forex players to spread content, accumulate fans of pages, and share signals. With the advanced API and the ability to develop Facebook applications, the Facebook potential for the Forex world is much greater than what is being utilized today.
If you have been paying attention, or even if you have not, you have most probably heard the word Twitter in one context or another. It is the buzz word of the tech industry and the global Web. Everyone is talking about how Twitter is the ultimate tool when it comes to exposure, networking, and communication, yet somehow, the Forex players cannot get it right.
It is true that there are endless Twitter accounts that offer Forex content. However, generally speaking, Forex has become a word with very negative associations on Twitter, due to the tremendous number of Forex spammers on Twitter.
I recently read an article about the main Twitter spammers, and right on top of the list, above the pornography industry and the multi level marketing schemes, sat a proud mention of the Forex market. Not only are the major players missing out on a great opportunity with Twitter, they are also destroying the market’s reputation as a serious trading arena similar to equities and stocks.
In fact, when I first opened the DailyForex Twitter account, I was stunned to discover how almost none of our followers were interested in communicating. In fact, they were unable to communicate since their tweets (updates) were being generated automatically by what is known as bots, completely missing the point of Twitter.
The content being shared by most Twitter accounts is promotional. They are trying to sell Forex software or robots, and from the short research I have done, are not seeing results. Twitter is about communicating, two way dialog, not selling something and not spamming other users.
The potential in Twitter and its use in the Forex world is literally endless. Brokers can use it to offer special bonuses to their followers, while listening and communicating with their customers as part of their customer service efforts. Online Forex portals can share their insights in the form of news, analysis, articles, or reviews of Forex products with their followers, and pay attention to their users and how they suggest improving the service.
Traders can use Twitter to communicate with other traders, and make use of others’ experience and expertise in one aspect of Forex trading or another. The platform to connect to others like you is available; people just need to learn how to use it.
Like I said, the potential is endless, but as of now, the most important thing is for the Forex players to stop thinking “Sell, sell, sell” and start thinking “Share, communicate, and listen”.
If Facebook is for personal use, LinkedIn targets the corporate world. LinkedIn, with its 17 million visits per day, is the perfect place to expand your Forex reach, and so far, out of the three social networks, it is the only one that comes close, and is on the right path.
All the major experts in the Forex world run and maintain active profiles on LinkedIn, in which they share their insights and tips for other traders to see. Many big names in the Forex brokers’ arena have a serious presence on LinkedIn. Most of them have a group, in which they share all the details of their offering, content, as well as the latest developments in the market in general, and their company specifically.
However, the most important contribution of LinkedIn to the Forex world are the tens of Forex groups, which offer a perfect and spam-free (almost) environment for traders, brokers, and Forex companies to connect and communicate with one another.
As for Forex content, one of the best places to share your Forex articles or reviews are LinkedIn groups mainly because the members of the group are truly interested in Forex, and you are not posting an update for all your friends to see or tweeting something to thousands of people who do not even know what Forex is.
The audience is focused and the platform is designated for people who want to hear what you have to say. The bottom line is, while LinkedIn might not be the most user friendly or easy to use of the social networks, it is by far the most suitable for Forex updates.
In conclusion, social media has become one of, if not the biggest trend on the Web since its invention, and with the potential for profit in the Forex market, there is no reason these two superpowers should not join forces. The Forex world as a whole seems to have taken notice to the world of social media; you can find a Forex presence on any one of the social networks. However, as of now, the potential presented by social media, the one everyone is talking about, is not being utilized by the Forex world, not even close!