Answering your marketing questions - Part 1

I’ve had the great pleasure of talking with advisers recently and asking them about their marketing activities, in particular what they’ve tried, what each has cost and what worked best for them. I really appreciate the openness I’ve experienced and I’ve been extremely surprised, shocked even, by what I’m hearing.

The common theme of every conversation has been that the adviser is trying to stay in contact with their client base and reach their target markets but what has surprised me is the amount of money being spent on this for the little or no return.

It is also evident that most are using a smattering of communication tools with all believing that social media is the best way to reach their markets - but the majority have no idea of how to make social media really work for them – and provide a suitable ROI on both money and time.

Over the next few posts I’m going to address some of the questions and comments I’ve received about marketing and provide answers and guidance. 

Let’s start at the beginning
When you’re busy trying to keep all of the balls involved in running a business in the air, it’s easy to say, “let’s just get this marketing thing going”. So you open a company Facebook page, Twitter account or LinkedIn profile and start sharing information from other sources that you believe is interesting to begin attracting follows, likes, etc. You then pay an SEO consultant an exorbitant fee for advice on “Search Engine Optimisation”, spend a fortune on a new or updated website with links to your social media accounts and it’s all done. Marketing accomplished. Now you can get back to the ‘important’ work.

By this stage you’re probably, at the very least, $10,000 poorer, and with no ongoing attention, that investment (expense) is never going to earn a return.

Do I really need to do a plan?
Ideally you should have a marketing plan but if that’s going to be the cause of more procrastination, start with a single campaign plan. It doesn’t have to be 20 pages long! In fact, the shorter the plan, the better chance you will have in implementing it.

Your marketing campaign plan needs to cover the following:

  1. Your goal/objective is to (generate leads; nurture existing leads; cross-sell services to existing clients; generate referrals; etc);
  2. Your message is to (introduce your services; introduce a new service; highlight your expertise in a particular area; etc);
  3. To reach target market (create a buyer persona for this particular offer);
  4. Using this marketing tool (content marketing; email campaign; paid advertising; radio; editorials; etc). The tool you choose will need to match your objective and message;
  5. By giving them (a free e-book; free initial consultation; referral gift; etc);
  6. You will respond by (email; phone call);
  7. Over this campaign timeframe (month; quarter; six months);
  8. With a budget of (relate this to your lifetime client value).

Then get started!

Content marketing vs paid advertising
If you choose to do any form of paid advertising such as Google AdWords or social media advertising to boost your campaign, your buyers must first have a need for your service. For example, they must have felt the pain of not being able to get on top of their debt or retirement is fast approaching and they don’t know how they’re going to fund it. That pain – or fear – is the best driver of action. Putting yourself in the right place (ie. identifying your buyer as specifically as possible) will have a huge impact on the success, or otherwise, of your campaigns.

If you have any questions specific to your situation, give me a call or send an email and I’ll be happy to share my knowledge.

Best wishes,
Julianne

 

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