4 Ways to Capture Events For Your Marketing Effort

Conducting events in your community is an excellent way to support your current clients and reach out to a new group of prospects. Whether you are hosting seminars, conferences, parties, or lectures on timely financial issues, you can show off your personality and establish yourself as a thought leader.

But hosting events also gives you an additional opportunity to boost your social presence and cultivate engagement through email marketing and blog posts. Here are some essential steps to ensure you are maximizing the ROI on your event planning:

1. Create a new event using ALP’s Event Builder

The more information you can include, the better, but be sure to have the date, time (be sure to select the right time zone), location, and a contact who can handle any questions about the event. For maximum impact, let people know what they should expect to learn from the event and encourage them to invite their friends and family. The RSVP feature makes it easy to estimate a head count and ensure that you have enough snacks and drinks to cover all of your attendees! 

2. Get the word out early on social media 

 In the lead-up to your event, it will be essential to post multiple times on all social media channels. Posting on your Facebook, LinkedIn, and Twitter may be a given, but don’t ignore smaller channels like community pages and specialized groups. Craft a short sentence that describes the event, when it takes place, and what the public can expect to gain from attending.

3. Find someone to team up with

To really drive community involvement, consider a dual partnership with another local business to double your marketing efforts. You can reach out to the community to line up potential collaborators, guest speakers, or even just a popular lunch place to supply catering. Don’t forget to mention these partnerships in all of your marketing efforts!

4. Create a targeted email campaign

Reaching out to both existing clients and promising prospects is another excellent way to drive up attendance, and directing them to your website’s event page drives up your SEO. Be sure to send a series of emails as you countdown to your event. We suggest sending the first three months prior, then re-sending at 1 month, 1 week, and the day before to keep your event top-of-mind.

If you’re taking the time and effort to put together a company event, why not reap the benefits of your marketing strategy? Crafting an event on your website to drive traffic, sharing your event across all social platforms and through a dedicated email campaign, and drumming up community involvement all ensure that your event gets the attention it deserves! 

Creating Marketing Channels for Your Content

So you’ve mastered the first steps of your marketing strategy. You’re posting bi-weekly blogs, drumming up your following on social media, and emailing clients to share your new and exciting insights. You’re ready to expand your marketing efforts even further, and the first step is to find new channels to share your amazing insights. So where do you start?

Recycling is all the rage right now, so why not extend it to your marketing efforts? By giving your existing content a facelift, you can repurpose it to attract a whole new audience. Here are some fun, out-of-the-box ideas to put a more creative spin on your old whitepapers and blog posts:

  • Infographics: These bright animations are a wonderful way to attract an audience that is too busy to read more than a paragraph at a time. Hire a graphic designer, pull out the key talking points of your content, and create a work of art!
  • SlideShare: LinkedIn’s recent acquisition of SlideShare makes it a key component of a LinkedIn Marketing Strategy. Repurpose your content as a PowerPoint, then upload it to SlideShare to send it out into the world! For added impact, send it out to qualified leads and show off your industry knowledge.
  • Videos: Record a 2-3 minute clip explaining the key points of your content and share it across all of your marketing channels. As an added bonus, the camera gives you the opportunity to show off your personality and build rapport with your prospects before you even connect.

Rather than focusing on the constant creation of new content, ensure you are getting complete use out of the whitepapers and blogs you’ve already created. Putting a bright new veneer on your existing content is an excellent way to attract viewers who don’t have the time to read a full page of content, and it allows you to maximize the impact of your hard work.

Rocket Talk: How to Make Videos Your Customers Can’t Resist

 

You have probably heard how much potential there is to connect with your clientele through video. But how do you make your videos really stand out and attract an audience? Raudel Enrique and Kirk Faulkner join us for another episode of Rocket Talk and discuss 10 different things that anyone can do to make their videos irresistible.

4 Tips To Utilize Freelancers To Create Great Content

If you’re like most financial advisors, time is one of your most valuable assets. Hiring freelancers to handle your content creation frees up your schedule while bringing another expert set of eyes to your team. However, as with any other job, hiring the right person is the key to success. How do you ensure you’re working with the best possible writer? 

Define Your Style

The first step to hiring the right copywriter is to find someone who can match your rhetorical style. Take some time to consider your ideal client and what they will find most compelling. Are you working with an older demographic? Remaining factual may be your best bet. Do you want to attract younger generations? Then you will need to bring a sense of humor to the table in order to hold their interest. Once you have defined your company’s style, look for writers who fit that tone so your branding remains consistent throughout your website. Ask for samples of their work that fit your brand’s style so you can be sure they are up to the challenge!

Test Those Testimonials

When working with a freelance copywriter, you want more than just the end product. A great working relationship is just as important as the writing itself, and testimonials are the best way to judge what your experience will be. Was the writer timely in their communication? Did they deliver drafts right on schedule? Were they open to feedback and willing to make the necessary changes? All of these are questions that you should be asking a writer’s former clients. 

It’s Not Just The Copy

Though a compelling narrative is key, a competent freelancer also has to maximize the impact of your new content by using SEO keywords throughout the copy. Keep an eye out for freelancers who mention “SEO” on their resume, and ask how they have successfully incorporated this into their previous work. 

Quality Over Quantity

Chances are, your clients don’t have the time to read a 5,000-word blog post, so content needs to quickly deliver the info they need to know. In order to confirm that this is a high priority for your freelancer as well, ensure that you are paying by the project. Avoid freelancers that charge per word, as they are incentivized to make your content as wordy as possible. Your content should be clean and quick! 

Hiring a freelancer is a practical step for a busy financial advisor, but you need to ensure that you’re bringing on the right person. These tips will help you narrow your search and pick the best fit for your business! 

 

How to Define Your Content Niche

When prospects begin searching for a new financial advisor, they have specific needs in mind, and they know what services are most important for their financial future. Publishing content that is tailored to these unique challenges establishes you as a thought leader and confirms that you are the right fit for your new client’s needs. After all, you wouldn’t check into a hospital with a broken arm and ask to see a neurologist! Outlining your content niche highlights your expertise in every interaction with your prospects and clients, confirming that you are the right fit for their financial needs. 

1. Leverage Your Expertise

Bestselling author John Gordon notes, “Experts are not called upon because they are the smartest person in every room; they are called upon because they are the smartest person in a specific room.” Most clients aren’t looking for a “catch-all” advisor. They want someone with years of specialization in a certain area. Highlight your experience working with a certain demographic or strategy in order to attract more clients with the same needs. 

If you don’t have a specific specialty, take some time to think about what work you enjoy the most. This is a great way to decide what to focus on in your content marketing, but more importantly, it will allow to craft a career that you enjoy! 

2. Focus

If your area of expertise is something broad and sweeping, you may find that you have too much competition when prospects start browsing for financial advisors. Carefully focus your niche in order to stand out from the crowd. Do you offer tax services? So do thousands of other financial advisors in your area. What about tax services for new parents? Now you’re thinning out the competition! Highlight these niche areas of specialization in every blog post and social media campaign in order to reach the right prospects at the right time.

3. Testing, testing!

Now that you have some focused content, start sending it out to certain subsets of your contact list and measure the response. If a certain piece gets more engagement than others, you know you’re on the right track! Continue this testing with different content and prospects until you have a solid idea of what speaks to your core demographic. 

Creating content that truly speaks to your prospects helps you stand out from the crowd and attract the right client for your business. Take some time to consider the key needs of your ideal client and focus your content on that niche in order to prove that you’re the right advisor for the job! 

New Year’s Resolutions for Marketing Magic

2018 is right around the corner, and it’s the perfect time to optimize your marketing strategy for the new year. But where do you start? Before you begin setting new goals, take some time to consider what strategies worked best for you in 2017. Ask your team:

  • What specific marketing strategies were most effective?
  • What (if any) marketing strategies didn’t work at all?
  • Should you re-allocate resources to the more effective strategies?
  • Has your target audience or geographic location changed in the past year?
  • Were you able to stay within your marketing budget?

Having an honest conversation about your performance over the past year is the optimal way to pick the best path forward. Once you know what worked best for your team in the past, you are ready to create marketing resolutions for the next year. Focus on creating goals that are SMART.

  • Specific (targeted to a specific area of improvement)
  • Measurable (gives a quantifiable result you can monitor)
  • Achievable (a goal that is challenging, yet still completable)
  • Relevant (something that will further your marketing goals)
  • Timely (set a certain deadline for completion)

Here’s an excellent example of a SMART Goal: ”I will grow my social media presence to 250 followers by the end of the year, and post content on my social profiles twice a week.” Now that’s a SMART goal!

Though it can be daunting to draft out your marketing resolutions for the new year, these tips can help you focus your efforts and input a successful strategy for 2018.

Content Marketing: It’s Not Just For Leads!

You can’t even glance at a marketing blog nowadays without seeing two phrases: “content marketing” and “lead generation.” And for good reason! Content marketing costs 62% less than traditional marketing and generates about three times as many leads. But traditional content marketing is targeted mainly towards prospects, trying to expand your reach and draw in new clients. 

But why limit yourself to prospects? Focusing only on new leads can be a costly mistake, especially when you consider that the cost of converting a new prospect is anywhere from 3 to over 30 times higher than retaining an existing client. Here are some tips for creating content that will wow both prospects and existing clients in one go!

1. Quality over quantity

In order to establish trust with your audience, you want to ensure that every piece of content you push out is engaging and valuable. Think about the needs of your clients and share articles, videos, and whitepapers that help them navigate through their financial challenges. 

2. Tell a story

Humans are emotional and empathetic beings, even when it comes down to the numbers. Crafting a compelling mission statement and company narrative can inspire prospects to use your services--and remind existing clients of why they came to you in the first place. So what’s special about you? Are you a family-owned firm? Why did you become a financial advisor in the first place? Highlight your unique stories and share them with the world! 

3. Slow and steady wins the race

When you first venture into the realm of content marketing, it can be tempting to inundate the world with your content. However, a slow and steady stream of content is more likely to drive engagement. Schedule monthly emails and weekly social posts to ensure that you are connecting with clients in a timely and consistent manner.

4. Invite engagement

In every social post and email, encourage the client to start a conversation with you. Asking “What do you think?” or “How does this affect you?” invites the client to reach out to you. As always, be sure that you respond to their questions and concerns in a timely manner, and don’t forget to add a personal touch!

By following these key tips, you can ensure that your content is as relevant to your existing clients as to new leads. In the long run, this is key to establishing trust and credibility with your customers, and it can even lead to referrals down the line! 

 

Rocket Talk: Types of Visual Content

One of the most powerful ways to communicate with readers through your blog is to use different visual assets to get your point across. In this month’s Rocket Talk Raudel Enrique and Kirk Faulkner talk about the different types of visual content and how to best execute them.

 

Use Content Marketing to Appeal to Millennials

As the Millennial generation makes strides in the workforce and begins to gather their nest egg, it is exceptionally important for financial advisors to adjust their marketing strategies to speak to this up-and-coming demographic. This is easier said than done, however. Millennials were born between 1982 and 2003, growing up in an age bombarded by digital advertising on all sides. As a result, they are more skeptical of traditional advertising than any generation before. Their lack of trust in the business world as a whole requires financial advisors to use a light and gentle touch when trying to get their attention. So how do you begin?

  1. Socialize!

In order to reach a Millennial audience, you have to establish a presence on social media. The statistics here are astounding…The Pew Research Center reports that 88% of all American adults aged 18-29 are on Facebook, 59% are on Instagram, and 36% are on Twitter. Utilize these existing audiences by sharing social content that speaks to millennials. 

  1. Say what?

So you’re on social media…What now? You want to speak to the current financial priorities of your Millennial audience. Share content that is most important to this key demographic. Information on first-time home purchases, Roth IRA’s, and student loan repayment establishes you as a trusted source of information and emphasizes that you have the knowledge to address their financial dilemmas. Encourage your users to share your helpful content with their friends, and engage with all comments and shares to start a meaningful conversation. 

  1. Showcase your values

Being inundated by advertising at such a young age has created a general mistrust for corporations among the Millennial demographic. These feelings were amplified by the financial meltdown of 2008, which occurred right as they were entering the workforce. As a result, the “profits-over-people” mentality is extremely unpopular, and they want greater moral accountability from the companies they invest in. Crafting a meaningful mission statement, offering Socially Responsible Investments, and highlighting your volunteer work makes it clear that you are dedicated to making the world a better place…Something that Millennials will respond to. An astonishing 70% of Millennials will spend more on brands supporting causes they care about, so make sure your brand stands for something! 

  1. No mobile, no go

It should be no surprise that Millennials are the most mobile generation. Not only are Millennials more likely to browse the web on their mobile phone than any other generation, an astonishing 18% are mobile-only. Confirm that your website passes Google’s Mobile-Friendly Test and that all content loads quickly and easily on mobile devices.

Using these tips, you can ensure that you are including the next generation of investors in your marketing plan. Though they are less trusting of advertising than any previous generation, they can be won over by authentic messaging and engaging content. 

How to Use LinkedIn Groups to Become a Thought Leader

With more than 467 million users, LinkedIn is the new powerhouse for innovators, business professionals, and aspiring entrepreneurs. The ability to reach large audiences with a few clicks has created the opportunity for financial advisors to build a reputation as a “Thought Leader” and gain respect through an expanded network. But how do you begin?

  1. Personalize Your Profile

In order to garner respect from an audience you have never met, your profile needs to stand above the crowd. Ensure that you are personalizing every aspect on your LinkedIn profile, including custom backgrounds, banner images, and a headline. Create consistent messaging for your personal brand and ensure that it will grab the attention of your audience.

You have minimal space to make an impact, so every word counts. LinkedIn allows you to bring in a headline of up to 120 characters and a summary of up to 2,000. Use as many keywords as possible to ensure that you are attracting the right people from your industry.

  1. Better Get Blogging!

Blogs are an excellent way to expand your network, both with clients and other financial advisors. Pay attention to shifting trends in the financial services industry and try to be one of the first to report on them. Breaking news is an easy way to get likes and shares! 

If you already create blogs for your website, don’t just hit the share button to publish on LinkedIn. Bring in the same content as a new LinkedIn Article to give yourself a boost in their sharing algorithms. They want you to republish your content on their platform!

Share your articles in relevant groups and encourage conversation with your readers. Ask their opinions about the topic to increase engagement and foster a sense of community. 

  1. Expand Your Horizons

Though you should always join financial services groups throughout the LinkedIn platform, important connections can come from surprising places! Join groups based on your interests, education, and local pastimes in order to cast a wider net. Passionate about baseball? There’s a group for that! Volunteer at your local animal shelter on the weekends? There are groups for that, too! Reach out to new contacts in your community to establish yourself as a thought leader outside of your traditional industry.

  1. Treasure Your Connections

More than anything, people will remember how you made them feel. Be sure to engage with your contacts at every opportunity. Let them know that you value their input, especially when they comment on your posts and articles. Be quick to respond with insights and advice when the people around you ask for assistance! 

By standing out from the crowd and delivering insightful content, you can attract new clients and cultivate respect from your peers. The networking tools at LinkedIn are revolutionizing the way that advisors market themselves…Use them to your advantage!