Almost all advisors want to bring on at least five new clients next year and most aim much higher, according to a new survey by ByAllAccounts.
At the same time, most feel their marketing techniques are lacking.
A survey of 215 advisors found that 46% want to acquire 16 or more new clients next year. Another 41% want to gain six to 15 new clients. But a mere 12.5% feel their marketing strategies are effective.
Advisors who want to expand their business can take several steps to improve marketing techniques, according to ByAllAccounts. The first is to make a marketing plan--just as an advisor would make a financial plan for a client--by setting goals and the allocating the time and resources needed to achieve them.
The survey found that most advisors (62.4%) have websites, but only 15% use search engine optimization to determine who is looking at the website, and only 21.4% use other social media.
More than a quarter of the respondents have someone on staff handling marketing who has other duties as well. One solution is to outsource some of those duties.
In addition to websites, events, emails and newsletters are the top tools used by firms to enhance marketing, the survey shows. At the same time, website design, email marketing and event coordination are the top three items that are outsourced.
Several tools are available free or at low cost that can dramatically increase the effectiveness of marketing, especially in the use of websites. Data can be gathered on who visits a website, how long they stay, what links they use and how often they visit. This information can then be used to target new prospects.
In addition, a business listing can be created for the firm so that its name pops up when searches are done for financial planners in a particular area.
"There are many ways to address your marketing activities to deal with the challenges posed by a lack of time expertise, budget and technology," the survey concludes. "Creating a plan of action, tapping into the expertise of others and leveraging cost-effective technologies can help you reach out to prospects more frequently and more effectively to help meet client acquisition goals."