A marketing plan propels your business forward with new clients and more income. Before you work out a marketing plan, make sure your business plan identifies the target market, your competitors’ strengths and weaknesses; this serves as an essential starting block.
A marketing plan should clearly define objectives. This makes it easy to identify the tasks that need to be done and the timelines necessary for completing those tasks.
Here are a few tactics suggested in the white paper released by American Portfolios to incorporate into your marketing plan.
In this digital era, if clients can’t find you online, they can’t trust you. Create a website that is customised for your brand. Also, ensure that your website has a mobile responsive design.
Gajendra Kothari of Etica Wealth Management believes a website is a cost effective marketing platform. He says, “Many clients do online research on advisors before doing business with them. A website gives them a brief introduction about your business. Also, if your website has rich content and is updated regularly, it ranks high in google ranking. Basically, it carries a lot of weightage and is a great marketing platform available at low cost.”
Create a blog
Content is the currency of online marketing and a blog acts as the wallet. Strategic content marketing offers enormous business upside across the entire customer journey. Creating a blog is an easy and free way to get this goal accomplished. With a blog on your website, you can organically crawl to the top of Google’s search results pages; this is how you earn credibility for both you and your business. Your blog should be set up in a manner that people can share articles with their friends, which can potentially score you a new referral.
PV Subramanyam, top trainer and author, believes that an advisor should write blogs only if he has the skill and understanding. “No need to use fancy language to write a blog. Write blogs in simple and easy-to-undertand words. Try to keep the content fresh and engaging. If you face difficulty in finding a topic, go to quora.com and see frequently asked questions on personal finance. However, make sure that the content is not generic and copy pasted.”
Set up a Google alert for your company. When something is posted online, you will be alerted via e-mail or a text message. So, even if you are busy with other tasks, you are aware of what is happening online.
Social media strategy
Advisory business is based on relationships and communication. Social media offers a way to communicate and maintain those essential relationships. Not convinced about using social media? Think back to when e-mail and the Internet were first introduced. These technologies were met with the same criticism and ambivalence that social media is facing today. Now, consider how essential those once controversial technologies are in your everyday life today. By not joining, you’re missing out on future growth and success. Embrace LinkedIn, Twitter and Facebook. Your present and future clients have already done so.
Videos dominate content marketing. Something special happens when a customer or prospective client sees a video of you; it creates credibility and trust. Have a video professionally created and add it to your website or you can shoot these videos on your smart phone.
Investor awareness programmes (IAPs)
Investor awareness programmes are an ideal platform for advisors to connect with clients at a personal level. Unlike the traditional way of meeting prospects individually, and spending 30-60 minutes, an advisor gets to address a group of investors (typically 30-50 people) through IAPs in one go. It is not only cost effective, but also a great way to build your credibility, your firm’s brand awareness and position yourself as a domain expert.
Show your current clients that you appreciate their business by hosting events throughout the year. Do not forget to follow up with a thank you card and a photo taken with your clients while attending one of your family-friendly events.
Take the time to acknowledge birthdays, anniversaries and festivals. Send handwritten notes; this small gesture goes a lot further than sending a hasty e-mail.
Through newsletters, IFAs can provide valuable insights on key trends and development affecting client portfolios. You can send newsletters either physically or through email. While physical newsletters may be an expensive affair for IFAs as it involves printing and despatching, switching to an e-newsletter is cost effective. In addition, you can encourage your existing clients to share your e-newsletters with prospective clients.