With the first half of 2019 already behind us, many financial advisors are taking stock of the progress they’ve made toward the objectives they set back in December or January.

During their midyear assessments, advisors should diligently review all aspects of their business operations to ensure they are positioned to support scalable growth, serve clients better and achieve other practice goals during the remainder of 2019. One area of practice management that is especially critical for enabling advisors to stay on track to meet year-end growth benchmarks they previously set is marketing.

If your firm isn’t communicating an effective message about its value to existing and prospective clients, your desired practice growth will remain a goal instead of becoming a reality.

Below are several ways advisors can optimize their marketing approaches.

• Strengthen Inbound Marketing Efforts: Digital marketing collateral that brings people to a company’s website, such as blog and social media posts and online contributed content, is known as “inbound marketing.” According to HubSpot, firms that primarily utilize inbound marketing obtain leads which are, on average, 61 percent less expensive to generate than their counterparts relying mostly on “outbound marketing,” which refers to marketing tactics such as commercials, direct mail, and outdoor and print advertising.

Inbound marketing is not only more cost-effective than outbound marketing, but also enables advisors to use search engine optimization (SEO) and social media strategies to reach target audiences with greater precision. Inbound marketing also allows advisors to track their engagement with existing and prospective clients. Tracking data helps advisors determine which content topics generate the strongest response from the targeted audience, and which methods of engagement lead to the most website visits or contacts from prospects.

Furthermore, regular blog posts, social media posts and emails, as well as contributed content at online media outlets, give advisors the opportunity to demonstrate their depth of their expertise for a potentially global audience. Thoughtful and perceptive commentary on wealth management, financial planning, or investing, especially in relation to recent market or geopolitical developments or trends, can reinforce an advisor’s value and insight among both existing and prospective clients.

• Tailor Messages For Specific Audiences: Just as no two people are exactly alike, existing and prospective clients have widely varying financial goals, investment preferences and risk tolerances, depending on their personal and familial circumstances. A small business owner approaching retirement has different concerns and priorities than a married couple whose first child is applying to colleges. Advisors need to craft different messages and engagement strategies for each type of prospect they wish to reach.  

Furthermore, if an advisor has branched out into new services and products—or plans to do so before year-end—this should be reflected in marketing collateral, and the potential benefits of the new offerings should be explained clearly to each type of existing or prospective client in a practice’s target audience.  

• Don’t Be Afraid To Ask For Referrals: Word of mouth is vital for helping all businesses obtain new customers, including advisory practices. In fact, people who hear about a financial advisor from a trusted source such as a family member or friend are far more likely to become clients.

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