6 Content Marketing Must-Haves for Financial Advisors’ Success

by Shirley Hanson

There is no better place to start than with Seth Godin,

“Content marketing is the only marketing left.”

Our simple definition is: Content marketing is marketing that creates and shares content to attract and engage a chosen audience.

Here’s the content marketing formula:

Great Content Creates an Audience
Your Audience Creates an Opportunity for Marketing or Advertising

An example would be that on your website you offer a special report that prospects can sign up for. They receive helpful information and find out a little more about you. You gain the chance for future welcome communications — building trust on the way — so that the prospect selects you as his financial advisor.

Your content must be valuable. If your content is poor or off the mark for your audience, you will fail to engage them.

The underside of the formula:

Poor content creates no audiences.

“The State of Content Marketing 2015” report looks ahead: “What’s clear is that unique, impactful, differentiating content-driven experiences are becoming as important as product development itself.”

Sounds like a direction to head . . .

Ken Fisher’s Example

Ken Fisher is a visible illustration in the financial advisory field. He provides valuable “timely” information to attract prospects with his report “99 Retirement Tips from Ken Fisher.”

In return for this useful report, he gains contact information from a prospect. Then, he follows up again and again until his prospect takes the next step and becomes a client or he drops them from his list.

I want you, too, to benefit from what can be a productive form of marketing.

That’s why I just completed the training to become a Certified Content Marketing Specialist so that I could add the latest tested tools and tactics to my 25 years of direct marketing experience and study.

“Financial Advisors, 5 Vital Steps to Prevent the Frustration of Content Marketing That Fails”

How to attract more clients with the same budget

Click here to access the report

Now let’s hit the basics:

Start with your content marketing plan. What are the must-haves in your plan?

Must-Have #1 – Clarify your Goals

As we reveal in our book Marketing Power for Financial Advisors, “The more concrete your goals for your plan, the better you can measure them, and the more likely you are to achieve them.”

Also, here you will set the time period for your plan, perhaps 3-6 months.

Must-Have #2 – Zoom in on Your Audience

Unless you can identify and understand your audience you will NOT be able to create content that educates, inspires, and engages them.

Remember: Your audience can be as few as 12 (or even fewer) IF they are the right people.

Let’s say that your audience is someone you would like to attract to your practice — someone not yet on your list of prospects.

Begin with a description of your desired audience. In marketing terms this is your “avatar,” which portrays a deep knowledge of a person representing your chosen audience.

Nail down facts such as age, gender, location, and marital status. Also, include information such as education, occupation, job title, and annual income.

Questions like these will flesh out your avatar:
— What are their goals?
— What are their values?
— What are their challenges?
— What are their pain points?

Where do they look for information? For example, what books, magazines, blogs, conferences, and gurus do they turn to?

Can you come up with a quote that stands for that individual? Maybe it’s something he or she said. Maybe it’s a statement you’ve coined that speaks for them.

Okay, now you totally understand him or her. What’s Your Message?

Must-Have #3 – Differentiate Your Practice with Your Unique Content

Be Aware: Your content must speak directly to what you know about your audience.

It could be a special report:

One advisor offers the special report, “How to Create a Retirement Income Plan for Your Life.”

It could be an infographic

An advisor through an infographic reveals the trends, factors, and uncertainties in the world that together shape client needs.

It could be a simple two-page report that asks the question “Will I Be Okay?”

The brief report includes a list of questions that need to be answered. It concludes with the offer of a second opinion consultation to “help you gain financial clarity and simplicity in an increasingly complex and volatile world.”

It’s not surprising that in a report of April 2015 in contently.com, “25 Stats Content Marketers Need to Know,” we discover that “68 percent of content marketers back original content over licensed content.”

We can think of two stumbling blocks with licensed content:
— It does not speak specifically to your target audience and
— It is not in your unique voice.

Must-Have #4 – Zero in on Your Marketing Programs and Tactics

Here you develop a list of tactics to get your content in the hands of your audience.

These can range from seminars and webinars to direct mail, personal networking, meeting campaigns, social media such as LinkedIn or Facebook, and more. An ongoing referral strategy may be a key activity in your plan.

Caution: Avoid a one-legged marketing plan by embracing more than one way of achieving your goals.

Must-Have #5 – Select the Media that Will Reach Your Audience

Look for the most responsive and appropriate media from your range of options.

These could include suitable online and offline publications, direct mail lists, TV or radio commercials, your own lists, lists from other organizations and businesses, LinkedIn advertising, and much more.

Must-Have #6 – Track Results Relentlessly

Identify your key metrics and then track the information you need to measure your outcome.

It comes down to this:

You will want to know the results, especially revenue gained, and the cost of your content marketing campaigns. Other metrics you may want to know about include the number of qualified leads gained, the growth of your list, the number of clients added, and the increase in assets under management.

Now with the Must-Haves in place you can respond to these three content marketing challenges:

— How to create engaging content for your audience,

— How to get it to the right people, and

— How to measure your content marketing’s effectiveness.

And that’s how you can turn your content marketing program into a competitive advantage.

Check out our Content Marketing Report for Financial Advisors “5 Vital Steps to Prevent the Frustration of Content Marketing That Fails.” For the report Click HERE

Or contact Bob Hanson to gain a veteran content marketer’s insights, ideas, and inspiration at your side. Email Bob at bhanson@marketingplanfinancialadvisor.com or call him directly at 1-617-901-6886

About Shirley Hanson

Co-Author "Marketing Power for Financial Advisors"
In 1991 Shirley Hanson co-founded the Hanson Marketing Group, a direct marketing firm. Since 2005 she has focused her work on helping financial advisors take advantage of the same strategies and tactics that high-growth firms count on year after year. Advisors are able to attract more of their ideal clients, reach a Category of One, and raise their production. She collaborates with advisors to unlock their vision for their practice sooner with less hassle.

Contact Shirley
Phone: 215-753-2620 | Fax: 215-754-4165
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