Financial advisers. While the advice won't be specific to your financial situation, you could pick up a few pointers by following financial advisers. You can also learn a little about an adviser's personality and financial philosophy before meeting him or her in person. "Twitter is a very inexpensive way to keep my name out in front of the public and potential clients," says Cathy Curtis, a certified financial planner for Curtis Financial Planning in Oakland, Calif., who currently has more than 3,700 followers. "It's turned into this wonderful way of connecting with great people who will become friends and/or clients."
The National Association of Personal Financial Advisors estimates that a "couple hundred" of its members are on Twitter, including Roger Wohlner, a certified financial planner for Asset Strategy Consultants in Arlington Heights, Ill. "I think Twitter is a great place to give and to exchange opinions about retirement planning and investing," he says. "To me it's a great news stream, and it's a great networking tool."
Advocacy. Twitter can be a valuable tool for nonprofits advocating for better retirement benefits and educating workers about existing retirement programs. The Pension Rights Center and the National Academy of Social Insurance both provide a steady stream of retirement-related news reports with the aim of increasing the retirement security of all Americans. AARP has more than 150 Twitter accounts managed by various employees, including accounts dedicated to AARP's advocacy objectives, run by employees at state offices, and even an account managed by David Certner, AARP's legislative policy director. In addition to communicating with its members, AARP is developing a relationship with people who are right on the cusp of AARP membership, says Tammy Gordon, a senior advisor for social communications and networks at AARP. "These people are just a few years away from being AARP members."