Vanguard's Facebook presence

Questions on how we spend our money and our time - consumer goods and services, home and vehicle, leisure and recreational activities
Post Reply
User avatar
Topic Author
segfault
Posts: 521
Joined: Thu Jun 21, 2007 4:51 pm

Vanguard's Facebook presence

Post by segfault »

I struggled with whether this was topical, but it seemed to fit under the category of Personal Consumer Issues, as it involves a way that I and many others spend time. One of the ways I waste my leisure time is by spending time on Facebook. I recently noticed the following:

Vanguard has a Facebook presence and approximately 146,000 people like them. Based upon a search of this forum, their Facebook presence was minimal prior to about 2011. By way of comparison, Vanguard News, an independent news outlet, has amassed over 1,124,000 likes, and Saab Cars, a defunct auto manufacturer, has over 155,000 likes, thus surpassing one of our favorite mutual fund companies.

This situation is not unique to Vanguard. Fidelity has 140,000 likes, Schwab has 128,000, T. Rowe has 94,000, and Edward Jones has 22,000.

For other points of reference, The Rolling Stones have over 19,000,000 likes, and Bob Dylan has over 6,000,000.

Do people in general lack the same enthusiasm for financial institutions as they do their favorite bands? Is it tacky to semi-publicly "like" an investment company, which implies one has ample funds to invest? Are financial institutions less aggressive in employing Facebook marketing to get people to "like" their pages?
KyleAAA
Posts: 8712
Joined: Wed Jul 01, 2009 5:35 pm
Contact:

Re: Vanguard's Facebook presence

Post by KyleAAA »

I certainly think it's more likely that people are emotionally invested in their favorite bands than in their mutual fund company, hence more likes. It's also likely true that investment companies in general probably aren't very good at social media marketing. Perhaps they think their target market doesn't spend much time these sites? I think that assumption is false, but it at least superficially sounds reasonable.
JoeJohnson
Posts: 443
Joined: Wed Jun 08, 2011 2:34 pm

Re: Vanguard's Facebook presence

Post by JoeJohnson »

The Vanguard "crowd" isn't necessarily engaged on social media. I would guess Vanguard puts forth little effort towards Facebook.
Gropes & Ray
Posts: 1094
Joined: Wed Jul 16, 2014 7:28 am

Re: Vanguard's Facebook presence

Post by Gropes & Ray »

I couldn't care less about Vanguard. I only use them because they are a vehicle for me to cheaply achieve my goals. If Fidelity came out with a series of 0.01 e/r funds, I would almost certainly use them instead. Also, Vanguard investors probably don't think too much about investing. Bogleheads are the exception. I'd bet most index investors don't think about it more than once or twice a year.

I also haven't liked any bands or anything else because I don't care about Facebook.
User avatar
greg24
Posts: 3972
Joined: Tue Feb 20, 2007 10:34 am

Re: Vanguard's Facebook presence

Post by greg24 »

segfault wrote:Do people in general lack the same enthusiasm for financial institutions as they do their favorite bands?
Do you really need someone else to answer this question?
User avatar
SkierMom
Posts: 237
Joined: Thu Nov 29, 2012 8:53 pm
Location: Northern CAli

Re: Vanguard's Facebook presence

Post by SkierMom »

Personally, I have fun on FB - Vanguards presence on FB mainly reminds me of upcoming seminars, webcasts, new book titles, etc.

And really, Ed Jones investors are not likely demographics to use FB.
jdb
Posts: 1699
Joined: Wed Dec 05, 2012 8:21 pm

Re: Vanguard's Facebook presence

Post by jdb »

I actually am fonder of Vanguard than my favorite band. But I do not discriminate as have never joined FaceBook and never intend to be a participant. Probably makes me an outlier but once I found out that FB limits number of friends to 5,000 figured did not want to disappoint anyone. :happy
User avatar
nisiprius
Advisory Board
Posts: 42613
Joined: Thu Jul 26, 2007 9:33 am
Location: The terrestrial, globular, planetary hunk of matter, flattened at the poles, is my abode.--O. Henry

Re: Vanguard's Facebook presence

Post by nisiprius »

Something--probably Vanguard--keeps planting cookies on me that cause me to see this ad before half the stuff I see on YouTube:

Image

It's very nice, but Gangnam Style it ain't.
Last edited by nisiprius on Tue Aug 05, 2014 8:06 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Annual income twenty pounds, annual expenditure nineteen nineteen and six, result happiness; Annual income twenty pounds, annual expenditure twenty pounds ought and six, result misery.
TheRightKost87
Posts: 303
Joined: Tue Aug 13, 2013 12:25 am
Location: Boston, MA

Re: Vanguard's Facebook presence

Post by TheRightKost87 »

I see the Vanguard ad Nisiprius mentioned everytime I log onto Youtube as well.

I don't think it surprises anyone that The Rolling Stones have significantly more Facebook likes/followers/whatevers than Vanguard.

One small factor in the difference could be the mutual exlusive tendencies of investment firms as opposed to bands. If I "like" Vanguard on FB, that probably means that I have a decent amount (if not all) of my assets there, and therefore won't like the Fidelity's and T Rowe's out there. Whereas if I "like" The Rolling Stones, I probably also will "like" The Grateful Dead, Led Zeppelin, and Aerosmith on FB as well.
"The problem with diversification is that it works, whether or not we want it to"
User avatar
Meg77
Posts: 2664
Joined: Fri May 22, 2009 1:09 pm
Location: Dallas, TX

Re: Vanguard's Facebook presence

Post by Meg77 »

Actually I remember reading recently that people over 50 or 55 (I can't remember which) is the fastest growing segment of FB users. So it makes sense that financial companies and other non-traditional social media participants who mostly target the older demographics are also raising their awareness on social media. I think in general though investment companies don't market very well or often on Facebook. Also, they way people use Facebook doesn't lend itself well to those sorts of companies.

Most of the stuff people like is an impulse click when it pops up on your screen because a) the company paid to have it do so as a suggested think you might like or b) one of your friends liked it. Neither of those is likely to happen at least very often with financial companies, although I did notice the other day a paid ad by Bank of America suggesting that I like their page. Um, no thanks. Also as much as I like Vanguard (and I did seek them out to like them on FB years ago), it's kind of pointless to have liked them on Facebook. Their posts are boring and infrequent. Further, it's just a tool or service I use; I really like my dentist and my insurance company too but I don't like their FB pages.

I have however liked certain books and sports teams. Facebook "likes" are generally used to say something about yourself, or to express what you are passionate about. That's why people like bands, politicians, TV shows, etc. Also originally on FB you were prompted to like activities like yoga or travel when you signed up, much like an online dating site. In the last few years companies have elbowed in as Facebook has decided it needs cash flow. As a result "likes" have morphed somewhat into functioning almost as a reader feed - you can like retailers in order to get updates on sales or receive coupons; you can like periodicals to get links to articles; etc. But most people still use them in a more pop culture self-descriptive way. More "here's my favorite restaurant or travel destination!" and less "here's my favorite airline and cereal brand!"
"An investment in knowledge pays the best interest." - Benjamin Franklin
Calm Man
Posts: 2917
Joined: Wed Sep 19, 2012 9:35 am

Re: Vanguard's Facebook presence

Post by Calm Man »

When I got my new computer a year ago, I have never subsequently logged onto facebook at all. I had found that once you use a computer for facebook, you can never get rid of various cookies or tracking things, and they seem to follow you all over. There are a few newspapers that one can't read comment on or make comments on without facebook, but so ve it.
mucho dinero
Posts: 160
Joined: Tue Feb 20, 2007 9:43 pm

Re: Vanguard's Facebook presence

Post by mucho dinero »

Folks,

I have never used Facebook at all. I am a senior citizen who is trying to go high tech. Over the last several years I have become somewhat computer literate, however I still have reservations about using Facebook because I do not want to increase my vulnerability to hackers. Earlier I saw Vanguards notice about a seminar this coming Wednesday discussing retirement at 12:00 Eastern Time. In order to ask the Vanguard Staff questions during this session one needs to have a Facebook account. I was thinking of registering with Facebook now and remain a member until the end of the Vanguard presentation.
Would this be on the side of over caution or would I increase my chances of being vulnerable to a virus or what have you?
Are there any websites that any one could recommend relative to the safety of Facebook.

Thnks in advance. :?:
aquifer
Posts: 326
Joined: Sat Oct 20, 2012 9:01 am

Re: Vanguard's Facebook presence

Post by aquifer »

They have a fairly active presence on twitter. I like twitter much more than Facebook anyway, so that suits me fine. I rarely tweet, but I follow a few Boglehead bloggers and some technology bloggers that I like. I also get most of my news and weather from twitter. I like the conciseness, lots of information that I can quickly digest.
User avatar
cfs
Posts: 4154
Joined: Fri Feb 23, 2007 1:22 am
Location: ~ Mi Propio Camino ~

Re: Vanguard's Facebook presence

Post by cfs »

Facebook?

Did I miss something? I have no Facebook or Twitter account.

Thanks for reading.
~ Member of the Active Retired Force since 2014 ~
User avatar
Topic Author
segfault
Posts: 521
Joined: Thu Jun 21, 2007 4:51 pm

Re: Vanguard's Facebook presence

Post by segfault »

mucho dinero wrote: Would this be on the side of over caution or would I increase my chances of being vulnerable to a virus or what have you?
:
You can always set up a fake account using a disposable email address and pseudonym as your "real" name. You could also use a separate browser (I.e., Firefox if you normally used Chrome) to keep the cookies separate. Finally, I would advise not installing any apps on your Facebook account. Used in this manner, I think it is a low risk activity, even for someone who is a novice.
KyleAAA
Posts: 8712
Joined: Wed Jul 01, 2009 5:35 pm
Contact:

Re: Vanguard's Facebook presence

Post by KyleAAA »

mucho dinero wrote:Folks,

I have never used Facebook at all. I am a senior citizen who is trying to go high tech. Over the last several years I have become somewhat computer literate, however I still have reservations about using Facebook because I do not want to increase my vulnerability to hackers. Earlier I saw Vanguards notice about a seminar this coming Wednesday discussing retirement at 12:00 Eastern Time. In order to ask the Vanguard Staff questions during this session one needs to have a Facebook account. I was thinking of registering with Facebook now and remain a member until the end of the Vanguard presentation.
Would this be on the side of over caution or would I increase my chances of being vulnerable to a virus or what have you?
Are there any websites that any one could recommend relative to the safety of Facebook.

Thnks in advance. :?:
Yes, definitely over-cautious. Viruses on facebook (or in general, really) aren't what you need to spend your time worrying about. You won't increase your chances of being infected by a virus at all by creating a facebook account.

On an unrelated noted, I've found Twitter to be BY FAR the best customer service channel to get things done. I've always had more luck getting an issue resolved by tweeting a company rather than calling their 800 number. I've even gotten a few significant discounts for future purchases just by tweeting (mediatemple.net gave me a $100 renewal voucher just for saying hello not too long ago). If you're not on social media, you're probably getting subpar customer service.
ajcp
Posts: 645
Joined: Fri Dec 13, 2013 6:44 pm

Re: Vanguard's Facebook presence

Post by ajcp »

KyleAAA wrote:
mucho dinero wrote:Folks,

I have never used Facebook at all. I am a senior citizen who is trying to go high tech. Over the last several years I have become somewhat computer literate, however I still have reservations about using Facebook because I do not want to increase my vulnerability to hackers. Earlier I saw Vanguards notice about a seminar this coming Wednesday discussing retirement at 12:00 Eastern Time. In order to ask the Vanguard Staff questions during this session one needs to have a Facebook account. I was thinking of registering with Facebook now and remain a member until the end of the Vanguard presentation.
Would this be on the side of over caution or would I increase my chances of being vulnerable to a virus or what have you?
Are there any websites that any one could recommend relative to the safety of Facebook.

Thnks in advance. :?:
Yes, definitely over-cautious. Viruses on facebook (or in general, really) aren't what you need to spend your time worrying about. You won't increase your chances of being infected by a virus at all by creating a facebook account.
Eh...phishing attempts are somewhat common on Facebook. A low tech senior who's worried about viruses could very well be at a higher risk than average.
User avatar
Go Blue 99
Posts: 952
Joined: Thu Oct 09, 2008 3:42 pm

Re: Vanguard's Facebook presence

Post by Go Blue 99 »

Vanguard did a free t-shirt giveaway a few years ago in order to increase their number of Facebook "likes". It was actually a high quality tshirt that I still wear often to the gym.
mucho dinero
Posts: 160
Joined: Tue Feb 20, 2007 9:43 pm

Re: Vanguard's Facebook presence

Post by mucho dinero »

I would like to think ajcp, KyleAAA and segfault for the advice they provided me on the Facebook question. I did sign up, but I followed the advice about guarding my identity and I also did a very thorough review of face books privacy and other policies regarding other issues relative to security issues.
:happy
User avatar
nisiprius
Advisory Board
Posts: 42613
Joined: Thu Jul 26, 2007 9:33 am
Location: The terrestrial, globular, planetary hunk of matter, flattened at the poles, is my abode.--O. Henry

Re: Vanguard's Facebook presence

Post by nisiprius »

KyleAAA wrote:...I've found Twitter to be BY FAR the best customer service channel to get things done. I've always had more luck getting an issue resolved by tweeting a company rather than calling their 800 number. I've even gotten a few significant discounts for future purchases just by tweeting (mediatemple.net gave me a $100 renewal voucher just for saying hello not too long ago). If you're not on social media, you're probably getting subpar customer service...
Thanks for the tip. It's bad news, since I actually have never figured out how to use Twitter at all, or why anyone would want to. Sigh... but thanks.
Annual income twenty pounds, annual expenditure nineteen nineteen and six, result happiness; Annual income twenty pounds, annual expenditure twenty pounds ought and six, result misery.
User avatar
VictoriaF
Posts: 19547
Joined: Tue Feb 27, 2007 7:27 am
Location: Black Swan Lake

Re: Vanguard's Facebook presence

Post by VictoriaF »

I created a Facebook account when I realized that it was the best way to communicate with a (specific) group of people with whom I wanted to communicate. So far, I have not felt the need to communicate with my financial institutions. My main point, however, is that it's tempting to feel self-rightious about using or not using Facebook, Twitter, smartphone, cellphone, or other services. But at some point, a stubborn adherence to the good old ways causes more problems than advantages. For example, when I tried to log in to my primary email account from Switzerland my provider refused the access unless I entered a code they sent to my other email account. I don't have access to my other account from here, and as a consequence, I can't check my email for two weeks. In general, it's not a bad thing to go on an Internet fast for a while, but there was a very important message that I had to send, which I ended up sending via a regular letter. Workarounds are frequently possible, but when you and others increasingly rely on certain services, resistance becomes silly.

Victoria
WINNER of the 2015 Boglehead Contest. | Every joke has a bit of a joke. ... The rest is the truth. (Marat F)
ab80
Posts: 112
Joined: Wed Jul 17, 2013 2:35 pm

Re: Vanguard's Facebook presence

Post by ab80 »

I wouldn't like investment firms on facebook and tell everyone where I keep my money.

Liking VG on facebook might get me some links to a few interesting articles. But I could still check their page periodically if I want to read their articles. Liking my favorite bands on facebook keeps me in the loop regarding new albums, tour dates, etc. Most of my favorite bands have more like 100k-750k likes anyway. Many people will click like on the pop artists with > 10m likes probably because it's the trendy thing to do and it doesn't mean so much. I don't care to like bands or anything else just to tell the world what I like.
KyleAAA
Posts: 8712
Joined: Wed Jul 01, 2009 5:35 pm
Contact:

Re: Vanguard's Facebook presence

Post by KyleAAA »

ab80 wrote: Liking VG on facebook might get me some links to a few interesting articles.
I got a free t-shirt by liking them a few years ago! Turned out to be a pretty decent shirt although it's become strictly a workout shirt at this point.
ab80
Posts: 112
Joined: Wed Jul 17, 2013 2:35 pm

Re: Vanguard's Facebook presence

Post by ab80 »

Fair enough, but I'd be even less likely to wear a VG shirt in real life telling everyone where I (probably) keep my money.
User avatar
Go Blue 99
Posts: 952
Joined: Thu Oct 09, 2008 3:42 pm

Re: Vanguard's Facebook presence

Post by Go Blue 99 »

ab80 wrote:Fair enough, but I'd be even less likely to wear a VG shirt in real life telling everyone where I (probably) keep my money.
Do you honestly believe your chances of having your money stolen will increase because someone knows you are a Vanguard client? Or are you just ashamed of people knowing you are an indexer :wink:
ab80
Posts: 112
Joined: Wed Jul 17, 2013 2:35 pm

Re: Vanguard's Facebook presence

Post by ab80 »

I honestly believe it's harder to steal money if you don't know where to look.
ajcp
Posts: 645
Joined: Fri Dec 13, 2013 6:44 pm

Re: Vanguard's Facebook presence

Post by ajcp »

ab80 wrote:I honestly believe it's harder to steal money if you don't know where to look.
Kind of like saying is easier to win the lottery if you buy two tickets instead of one. It's true, but... :wink:
Post Reply