Marketing for Financial Planners: Unlocking the Benefits of Integrated Financial Group
Learn actionable tips for marketing your independent financial planning practice to build your client base with ease and scale your practice to its full potential.
One of the many benefits and pitfalls of becoming an independent financial advisor is taking control of your own narrative. You are finally free from the shackles that previously bound you as a captive advisor and all the restrictive covenants that ruled over how you market your personal brand.
At last, a blank canvas on which to create your pièce de la résistance!
Marketing (def.) – A technique of creating and distributing valuable, relevant and consistent content to attract and acquire a clearly defined audience
So, now what do you do when that blank canvas is just vacuously staring back at you?
- What’s your marketing plan?
- Hire an agency?
- Hire content creators, graphic designers and social media coordinators?
- Do it all yourself? Don’t do any of it and say you did?
Unless marketing is your superpower, wrangling all the ideas and visions of how you want to be perceived in your marketplace into a cohesive financial advisor marketing plan to define and disseminate your brand message to the right audience can be overwhelming. Not to mention, doing it poorly will create a giant hole in your operating budget into which you pour money with no discernable results. Are we having fun yet?
Never fear…IFG is here! The Brain Trust is a team of advisors for advisors. We’ve been in the trenches and we know how to help. We can even help you ask the questions you may not know to ask.
Before we dive into how IFG can help you become a marketing superstar, let’s cover some basic ground. In this blog, we’ll help you understand exactly what it takes to market your independent financial planning practice.
Why Marketing for Financial Planners is Crucial
As a financial planner, marketing isn’t just necessary, it’s crucial to your success. By engaging in marketing activities, you can reach new clients and keep existing ones engaged – both of which are essential in building a thriving practice.
Marketing helps you in many ways, including:
- Identifying your target audience
- Establishing trust with potential and current clients
- Building a strong reputation
- Driving repeat business
- Differentiating your services from other advisors
- Retaining and nurturing relationships with clients
To get the most out of marketing, you need to target your efforts towards your ideal client. By doing so, you’ll attract more of the right kind of clients, ones who will most benefit from your advice and expertise. Digital marketing, which encompasses everything from your website and paid ads to social media and email marketing, is an effective way to create targeted content that will reach your audience and raise awareness of your services.
Marketing isn’t just about attracting new clients; it also enables you to retain existing ones by keeping them informed about latest industry trends, providing valuable financial advice and establishing a more personable relationship by sending helpful reminders or birthday messages. Email campaigns, newsletters, and regular blog posts are excellent content opportunities to achieve this.
Ultimately, marketing for any business is about increasing awareness, sales, and building relationships with customers. For independent financial planners, it’s about all of that plus: maintaining the freedom to grow your practice on your own terms, finding clients that will really benefit from your specific expertise and safeguarding your own financial future.
By doing this through powerful marketing, you can ensure that your services are known, understood, and appreciated.
The Basics of Financial Planning Marketing – What You Need to Know
Knowing the basics of financial planning marketing can make all the difference in attracting and retaining clients. It’s more than just advertising your services; it’s about positioning yourself as an expert in your field and building trust with potential clients.
This involves developing a clear brand message, identifying your target audience, and understanding what sets you apart from the competition.
From there, you can create a marketing strategy that communicates the unique value that you can provide and helps you connect with the people who need your services the most. With the right approach, marketing for independent financial planners can transform your practice and your future.
8 Considerations for Building Your Financial Advisor Marketing Plan
Creating a financial advisor marketing plan is an in-depth process that shouldn’t be breezed over. It requires careful attention to the “who, where, why and how” behind your business.
While every financial advisor marketing plan will vary depending on what your goals are, we’ve put together a list of key elements that should go into your strategy.
Here are the 8 top strategies that are absolutely necessary when it comes to marketing your financial planning practice:
1. Identify Your Ideal Customer Profile
Before you can approach any piece of your marketing plan, you need to figure out exactly who you are marketing to. That means identifying their needs, wants, motivations, challenges and pain points. It’s far too easy to fall into the habit of thinking what will resonate with you will also resonate with your potential clients. Remember, this isn’t always the case.
Defining your ideal client profile, (or ICP– marketers like to abbreviate) will allow you to tailor your offering to suit their specific financial goals, as well as inform your choice of marketing channels and messaging. Does your ICP spend most of their time on social media? Or do they use email more? The effectiveness of your marketing plan relies heavily on doing the right research and understanding your target client on a very granular level.
In short, the more precisely you define your ideal customer profile, the better equipped you will be to attract and retain the clients that are the best fit for your business.
2. Develop Your Brand Voice and Stay Consistent
Developing your brand voice is a crucial part of branding for financial planners. You want to strike a balance between being conversational and professional when communicating with potential clients.
As a financial planner, you have an important role in your clients’ lives. Whether your client is preparing for retirement or saving for their future family, you’re often handling very delicate subjects. That’s why it is important for your brand voice to be one that potential clients can trust.
Finding that sweet spot can be tough, but once you do, sticking to it consistently is key. Imagine if a potential client went to your website and saw one tone of voice in your branding, and then received a different tone of voice in an email or conversation with you. It would be disorienting, and they might start to question your authenticity.
Staying consistent in your brand voice across all channels will help you establish trust and build stronger relationships with your clients. So take some time to develop your brand voice, and keep it consistent no matter where your clients encounter your brand.
3. Build a Strong Website and Digital Identity
In today’s digital age, having a strong website and digital identity is crucial for financial planners to reach and attract clients. When it comes to designing a website, it’s important to keep in mind the user experience and ensure that navigating your website is easy and seamless for visitors.
In addition, investing in SEO, or search engine optimization, can greatly improve your website’s visibility and make it easier for potential clients to find you online. To ensure that your website stands out from the competition, it’s worth exploring the best financial planning websites and taking inspiration from their design, content, and overall online presence.
By prioritizing your website and digital identity, you’ll be better equipped to establish a strong online presence and set your financial planning business up for success in the long run.
4. Utilize Social Media to Reach Your Audience
In a world where social media has become ubiquitous, it’s important for financial planners to utilize these platforms to reach their target audience. Whether you’re offering financial advice, investment opportunities, or tax planning services, social media offers a powerful way to connect with potential clients and establish your expertise in the field.
By creating compelling content that resonates with your target demographic and engaging with your followers, you can increase brand awareness and ultimately drive more business. With the right strategy, social media for financial planners can be a game-changer. So, if you’re not already leveraging these platforms, it’s time to start exploring the possibilities and reaping the rewards.
5. Write Quality Content to Engage Prospects
When it comes to content marketing for independent financial planners, one thing is clear: quality content is key to engaging prospects. Gone are the days where a simple brochure or website would suffice in attracting new clients.
Today, people are looking for informative and educational content that helps them make informed decisions about their finances. It’s important to create content that is not only engaging, but also showcases your expertise in the industry. By providing valuable information, you can build trust and establish yourself as a thought leader in your field.
Writing value-driven content begins with researching the questions, phrases, and topics that are the most searched by your target clients. SEO tools, like Ubersuggest, SEMrush, AhRefs and MOZ, are all fast and easy ways to find the topics with the best search value and other performance metrics.
So, take the time to craft high-quality content that speaks directly to your target market. Not only will it attract new prospects, but it will also help keep your current clients engaged and informed.
6. Network With Other Professionals in the Field
In any industry, knowing and connecting with other professionals is crucial. This holds especially true for financial planners. Networking for financial planners is a vital part of growing your business, gaining new clients and expanding your knowledge base. It’s a chance to learn from others in your field, share experiences and discuss best practices.
Networking also exposes you to new opportunities and keeps you top-of-mind when referrals arise. The world is a big place, and it’s easy to feel isolated in your work. That’s why reaching out and connecting with others in your industry can be so fulfilling. So, get out there, attend events, join online groups, and don’t be afraid to strike up a conversation. You never know where it might lead!
JOIN THE BRAIN TRUST
Tap into a network of like-minded financial planners committed to helping you reach your full potential.
7. Email Marketing is Alive and Well
While it’s easy to think that email marketing is dead and your clients’ inboxes are overly saturated with spam emails, it is still a highly effective strategy for attracting and engaging with clients. The right email campaign that combines valuable content, attention-grabbing subject lines, and convenient call-to-actions can produce powerful click-through-rates.
Email marketing is one of the most effective ways to not only reach new clients, but also keep current clients engaged with your independent financial practice. By regularly sending out newsletters and emails containing informative and relevant content, you can establish yourself as a credible and knowledgeable financial planner, and keep your clients up-to-date on important financial news and updates.
8. Try Text Message Marketing As Well
Maintaining regular, direct communication with your clients is vital to building long lasting relationships and trust, which is crucial for any business but especially financial planning practices. Direct and instant communication is where SMS marketing really shines.
Utilizing SMS can help you connect with clients in a more immediate and personal way, providing them with updates on financial news and market trends, reminders of upcoming appointments, and helpful tips and advice. With SMS for financial planners, you can keep your clients informed and engaged while also strengthening your professional connections.
Text marketing is becoming more and more popular among client-based businesses. However, it is important to follow the right texting etiquette to ensure that you’re not sending the wrong message to your clients. Do your due diligence to learn the right SMS marketing tactics that work for your industry and to make sure you’re following compliance regulations properly before you start texting clients.
5 Key Marketing Statistics for Financial Planners
Here are the top 5 marketing statistics that you, as a financial planner or advisor, should know:
1. The majority of financial advisors are using social media. (Putnam Investments)
As per the latest data from Putnam Investments Social Advisor Study, the usage of social media by financial advisors has gone mainstream. It’s no longer a matter of whether an advisor uses social media, but how they leverage it for their business.
Almost all American financial advisors, that’s 98%, are now using social media for either their personal or business purpose, with 83% mainly using it for business reasons.
2. Email marketing has an open rate of 27.1%. (Campaign Monitor)
The financial services industry has an impressive open rate of 27.1% for emails. That’s higher than the average of 21.5% reported in a recent survey by Campaign Monitor. But that’s not all – for every $1 invested in email marketing, the average ROI is $36.
3. Only 17% of advisors have developed a marketing strategy. (FA Insights)
It might be hard to believe, but less than 1 in 5 financial advisors have a strategic marketing plan for their business. That’s right, a recent survey for FA Insights conducted by Design Study revealed that only 17% of advisors have taken the time to develop a financial advisor marketing plan to promote their services and grow their client base.
4. Mobile searches for financial planning and management have surged by 70% in the past two years. (Google)
Thanks to our world becoming increasingly mobile-first, mobile searches for financial planning and management services have increased by 70%! While on the brightside this makes it easier than ever to call an agent, this means it’s more important than ever to focus on your SEO and mobile website.
5. 63% of advisors report that they’re utilizing lead generation platforms more than ever before. (SmartAsset)
Advisors in 2023 are increasingly turning to lead generation platforms as a marketing strategy. In fact, over 63% of advisors report that they’re utilizing lead gen platforms more than ever before. Get ahead of the curve and discover how these platforms can help boost your business.
How The Brain Trust Can Help
The Brain Trust is a team of advisors for advisors. We’ve been in the trenches and we know how to help. We can even help you ask the questions you may not know to ask.
The vision at IFG is to create a support network to provide the infrastructure you need to fill in the gaps just in case you’re not an expert marketer. Here are just some of the resources you’ll find…
- Branding – Graphic Design experts can help you bring your new firm’s public persona to life with a new name and brand strategy
- Website Construction & Launch – Your digital identity should be one of your best salespeople and we offer options from templated designs to fully customized websites produced by IFG’s in-house team of experts at reduced rates
- Marketing & Consulting Services, which include:
- Marketing Calendar Creation – Determine the right timing and frequency to deliver your brand message
- Social Media Campaigns – Content creation and channel management o Specialized Campaigns for Niches – Awareness, education and nurturing campaigns custom designed for your target audience
- Client Appreciation Events – IFG will help you do the heavy lifting from invitations to content creation to catering
- Brand & Website Refresh – Sometimes all you need is a little polish o Video Marketing – Communicate your brand message in the manner your audience wants to consume it
- Compliance Submission – IFG will even submit your marketing productions for compliance review and approval
One of the main benefits of associating with a dedicated marketing team is that we take the extra steps to ensure that your message is on point and reflects your true personality and projects your firm brand your way.
The whole idea behind tapping into the IFG Brain Trust is that you’re not alone. You have access to successful advisors. Learn, firsthand, how they have grown their practice. What’s worked, what hasn’t and what’s likely to work best for you and your company.
There are no limits when it comes to how you want to market your advisory firm. Whether you need a little help or a lot, IFG can help create exactly what you are looking for in your marketing plan.