Executive Summary: Financial advisor content marketing is growing in importance, especially as old Search Engine Optimization (SEO) practices fade away and become ineffective. Great content that speaks directly to the ideal client can help an advisor stand out, form relationships, and built trust — even before the first appointment. However, just publishing a few blog posts on your website won’t do the trick. This article walks you through some of the frequently asked content marketing strategy questions that can trip up an advisor. If you have a question that I didn’t answer, please add it in the comments!
We have all read plenty of long articles about why content marketing is a powerful tool for audience-building and business growth. Just on this blog, there’s a piece on financial copywriting, another on financial advisor email marketing, and social media marketing for financial advisors, which all mention the importance of content.
And yet, sometimes you just want quick answers. No trends, no 3 reasons why, no top 10 best practices … just tell me what I need to know!
Well, I have good news. Short answers are exactly what this article is all about!
I have pulled together over a dozen of financial advisor content marketing questions that I hear often, then answered them in 280 characters or less, Twitter-style. Some of these responses were inspired by Joe Pulizzi’s book Epic Content Marketing (which is a quick read and a good source of ideas).
First, understand the difference between content and content marketing strategy. A successful content marketing strategy changes someone’s behavior. If it doesn’t do that, it’s just content.
First, develop your content marketing mission statement. Who is your audience? What will you deliver? What’s the desired outcome? Next, decide on the specific action that you want your audience to take (or a specific behavior change you want). Finally, set up tracking so that you can monitor your results.
If you are at a loss for what action you want your audience to take, make a list of all possibilities. Make a budget, download a checklist, schedule a call, join a Facebook group, refer someone they know to connect with you, attend your event… Then, choose the most appropriate CTA (call to action) from the list.
Right content is more important than more content. Start by defining the pain points you want to address. Review your content marketing mission statement. Let those guide your next steps.
Most financial advisory firms do a mix of both. Assess your resources and skills and do what’s sustainable for your business. If you are curious about hiring a ghostwriter, check out this article.
One that you’ll be able to maintain. Some advisors prefer to write, which means articles, blog posts, white papers, books and e-books, and newsletters. Others would rather talk to the camera (YouTube video channel, Facebook Live sessions, webinars, podcasts, etc.) There is no silver bullet, so choose a mix that will work for you.
Think about your goals. If you are publishing content to build a lead list, then you must use a form to gather contact information at some point. The trade-off is less sharing and less awareness-building from behind the form. Otherwise, make your content easily accessible and searchable.
Because you can’t build a financial advice business by holding all your expertise close to your chest! To paraphrase Seth Godin, you can’t differentiate at the level of information. If you don’t help your clients see that you are the perfect choice to solve their financial puzzles, then someone else will.
No, you do not. However, consider where your clients and prospects are. And if you are using those channels, ask yourself why. Every distribution channel requires strategy, attention, and periodic maintenance. If you can’t commit, don’t waste your time.
In my experience, this is not an either/or proposition. You can have your content published across multiple channels, and there’s value in an implied endorsement of a well-known publication. However, remember that continued access to someone else’s platform is NOT guaranteed. Build an audience on your own platform.
Email is one of the few remaining platforms that you can control. You don’t need anyone’s approval to send an email to a list of people who want to hear from you. Firms that don’t use email to stay in touch with their audiences are missing an opportunity.
One, lack of faithful execution. Too many financial advisors view content marketing as an initiative or a campaign, not the long-term commitment that it really is. Two, content that’s inconsistent in frequency or a poor fit for the audience. Three, content that’s just not that good.
It’s a good idea to invest in design. Design inspires your audience to read/watch/listen/interact with your content. However, don’t let the idea of “perfect design” hold you back from publishing content. Your audience is looking for authenticity, not perfection. Don’t over-produce.
Three factors define great content that’s effective at marketing your firm. (1) It has a purpose. (2) It meets the client or prospect where they are. (3) It captures attention and adds value.
Ask your audience. Make a list of commonly asked questions that you hear from your prospects or clients. “Opposition research” works well, too, especially if you mine informative sites with a big audience and a lot of authority.
Do you want to go out of business? Content marketing works with your other marketing, not instead of it! It’s true that most advisors start from a point of “not enough content”, but don’t use content marketing as your excuse to stop all networking, outreach, speaking, and prospect outreach.
So, there you have it! Did I miss your question? Please share in the comments or email me directly [email protected]!