Financial portfolios are unique, and so are digital strategies for lead generation. Advisers have different options for marketing themselves online, and those options can be tailored to meet your unique goals.
The first concept that every adviser needs to understand is that there are two methods to drive online traffic to your business — organic and paid.
Let's start with organic traffic. The ability to connect, build relationships and generate trust with potential clients is easier than ever through social media.
Organic traffic is free, and it's either achieved through search engine optimization, or SEO, or proactive activities. The one issue with using organic strategies is these methods take time to implement and results might seem slow to come.
SEO can be done through websites, blogs, YouTube or podcasts. Finding the right keywords so your firm pops up during people's online searches can be a time-consuming challenge but if it's done right, it can produce big results.
Certain organic marketing strategies are quite proactive but require you to consistently engage. These include posting to social media, chatting with others online, commenting on social media posts and writing to people via private messaging.
The key to seeing results is consistency and commitment. This kind of activity takes time and patience, along with an ability to connect to your audience and build real relationships.
Paid traffic costs money, but social media platforms allow business owners to target their ideal client on a 24/7 basis, quickly and cost-efficiently. The best part is this constant marketing can be automated, freeing up your time.
Understanding which platforms your ideal client tends to frequent is crucial. Learning how ads work on different platforms and how to test and scale those ads is also very important. And if you decide to spend money on advertising, you absolutely must have the ability to capture leads and nurture them over time. Otherwise, you'll just be throwing your money away.
While different strategies exist within the organic and paid methods, advisers need to first be crystal clear about how to engage.
Do you want to rely only on free organic methods? Do you want to invest advertising dollars? Or would a little bit of both work the best? Just as you need to efficiently manage a client's portfolio, you should also be clear on your own goals, have realistic expectations on time frames and returns, and be committed to your digital footprint.
If you're an adviser on a tight budget, you could start with organic traffic and commit to a disciplined 30 to 60 minutes of proactive lead generation activity every day. Consider SEO if you're blogging, podcasting or using YouTube. Once money begins to flow consistently into your practice, then move into automation through ads that will scale your business to the next level.
Clarity. Commitment. Consistency. These are the keys to growing an amazing digital footprint and dominating online — because it doesn't happen by luck but through clear and focused intention.
(More: 5 pillars of marketing for advisers)
Margie Shard is a business scaling and sales funnel strategist. She can be reached at www.margieshard.com.