Do you want to increase revenue for your financial advisory firm in 2019? Of course you do! If you’re aiming to get more from high-net-worth families with complex planning needs, then it’s time to ungate your content.
What do I mean by ungate? I mean that it’s time to get your marketing content out from behind your contact forms and share it freely with your prospects and centers of influence.
Let me ask you three questions:
- How many leads are you generating through gated content?
- How many of those leads are high-net-worth families?
- How many of those families convert to clients?
If you are pursuing a retail-driven strategy, then gated content will serve you well. You can put guides, white papers and checklists behind contact forms. Prospects on the lower end of the net-worth spectrum will trade their contact information for your content.
But what about people at the higher end of the income spectrum? They value their privacy. Nothing you can offer is worth giving away their identity to a stranger.
Develop a Marketing Touchpoint Mix
If gated content won’t drive revenue from high-net-worth families, then what will? Developing relationships with their other trusted advisers and plan on working your way toward your ideal clients through these advisers, who serve as centers of influence (COI). To do this, you will need a strong marketing touchpoint mix designed for a cohesive user experience.
What does a strong marketing touchpoint mix include?
- Pitch deck. Your pitch deck should cover who you are, who you help and how you help. Create a tailored version for COI meetings that speaks to how you help shared clients.
- Make it as simple as possible for prospects and COIs to learn about you and your firm. A positive experience with your website that is consistent with your other materials can greatly increase the perceived professionalism of your firm.
- Social media. For most firms, this will be the use of LinkedIn to maintain connections with COIs. Publishing your blog content here is an easy way to stay top of mind and demonstrate content cohesion.
- Email marketing. Create a consistent, ongoing touchpoint with your COIs by producing an informative, relevant and valuable email newsletter.
- Events and sponsorships. Present your firm in event programs and sponsorship materials in the same manner that you do across other platforms.
- Webinars, guides and expert-level content. This is the content that should be readily available. An acceptable bridge to cross is a registration form for a webinar. Beyond that, make it very easy for prospects and their trusted advisers to quickly see these demonstrations of your expertise.
How do you make this happen? There are two ways:
- Build a cohesive brand voice. Develop a voice for the firm that captures the spirit of its relationship-oriented business and the firm’s focus on helping people. Work with members of the firm to identify key characteristics for the firm’s brand voice. Define target client types so that your marketing touchpoint plan can be designed accordingly.
- Develop an ongoing marketing touchpoint plan. Establish a content calendar to ensure consistent publication of marketing materials across your website, blog, email and social media. Align the calendar with your community initiatives or sponsorships. Include timely supporting materials in your plan, such as an annual financial planning guide or a market outlook, so that these are available for COI and prospect meetings.
Why is Content Cohesion Important?
When you target more sophisticated clients, retail lead generation tactics won’t work. The gate between you and the high-net-worth client is not a contact form, it’s the client’s centers of influence. You need to break through that gate by showing COIs that you are the best fit for their clients.
Your marketing content must pull double duty, since the ideal outcome is that the COI shares your material with the client by way of introduction. Therefore, your content must be cohesive across all touchpoints.
When the COI shares your email newsletter with the client, the look and feel of it should match your website because the client will visit the site to vet you. At the pitch meeting, your deck must align with both pieces to further demonstrate your high degree of professionalism.
But What if You Don’t Have the Time?
For many advisers, the time demands of a sophisticated marketing touchpoint plan will be more than they or their in-house staff have capacity to handle. Firms are facing increased pressure to implement new technology platforms, streamline operations to protect profit margins and find growth opportunities through mergers and acquisitions. An experienced professional services marketing firm can help you stay on track and find ways to increase your firm’s revenue in 2019.
Editor’s note: Our July 2018 marketing cover story discussed how when looking for a marketing firm, it’s best to interview several firms and choose the person who shares your visions and goals and who is also a good fit. See that article here.
Katie Gilmore is the founder and CEO of KSGilmore Consulting LLC, a content marketing firm specializing in professional services. She has more than 15 years of experience in marketing, leading teams of creative professionals to support clients’ business development objectives. Prior to founding KSGilmore Consulting LLC in 2015, she served as director of marketing and business development at Ice Miller LLP. Gilmore is past-president of the board of directors of AMA Indy, the Indianapolis chapter of the American Marketing Association. You can email her at firstname.lastname@example.org.