5 Marketing Ideas for Financial Advisors: Tactics to Attract Your Ideal Clients
Not all financial advisors are natural sales people, yet establishing trust with prospects and earning their business is part of the job. Because you’re asking prospects to trust you with their most personal, sensitive information, there’s generally a high threshold of trust that must be established, making the sales aspect of this business a challenging one.
Savvy financial advisors realize that smart marketing can do much of the legwork for them, establishing credibility and building trust – so that when the time comes to close a sale and sign a client, it’s more of a nudge than a hard sell.
But what marketing tactics should you employ? The digital world has opened a whole new marketing landscape, creating a variety of channels and opportunities for financial advisors and other businesses to reach their target audiences, attract prospects, and nurture leads. While there’s no one-size-fits-all marketing strategy for financial advisors, these marketing ideas will help you establish authority in the financial world and attract your ideal clients.
1. Identify Your Ideal Client
Speaking of ideal clients, it’s important to clearly identify who your ideal client is before embarking on any marketing strategy. Think this is an unnecessary step? Think that your ideal client is “anyone in need of financial advice”? If you don’t take the time to define your ideal client (and your target audience), you can’t properly refine your messaging.
Financial-Planning.com outlines a very simple, effective way to accomplish this. List your top 10-15 clients in the following categories:
- Clients you enjoy working with
- Clients who like you
- Clients who refer you to others
- Clients with the most assets
- Clients who produce the most revenue
Then, review your lists and identify the clients who are on all five lists (or at least 3-4 lists). Identify the characteristics that these clients have in common, such as demographic, psychographic, or financial traits. Armed with this information, you can determine if there is a specific niche that seems to work for you. Are most of your top clients small business owners, entrepreneurs, investors, or retirees? Think about how you can further develop this niche and target more clients who match your ideal-client criteria, and frame all of your marketing initiatives to meet this goal.
2. Develop a Story
One of the most effective ways for financial advisors to connect with prospective clients is by sharing a personal story that they can relate to. Whether it’s the story of your own financial struggles and subsequent path to financial freedom or personal stories from previous clients you’ve successfully helped, crafting a story around your services helps to create a personal connection with prospects and facilitates trust.
Additionally, stories can frame complex financial concepts in language that’s easy for the layperson to understand. Instead of filling your social media posts and website content with industry lingo, present real-world scenarios and outline how your services enable clients to overcome common financial challenges.
3. Host a Client Appreciation Event
So much marketing now takes place online, but that doesn’t mean you should ignore the value of real-world connections. Client appreciation events can take many forms, from the simple and casual to the elaborate and formal. Wine tastings, golf outings, and lunch-and-learn events (where clients get together for lunch while learning valuable financial tips presented by you or a guest speaker) are just a few ways to show your clients how much you value their business while setting the stage for referrals.
4. Hold Seminars and Workshops
Live events aren’t just a way to earn referrals by showing your existing clients that you appreciate their business; they’re also an effective way to generate new leads. What are some of the most common questions new clients ask? What are the top financial priorities among your ideal clients? Create educational material around these topics and host a free seminar or workshop to provide some basic financial guidance.
If you don’t want to deal with renting space and working with A/V equipment, or if you simply want to reach a larger geographic area, host a webinar. These events demonstrate your expertise, and by giving your target audience a sampling of the guidance you can offer, they’ll be more likely to remember your name and call you first when they’re ready to work with a financial advisor.
World Equity Group has a slightly different take on the usual free workshops, suggesting smaller events with a select group of clients who are invited to bring a friend or relative. “Avoid making any pitch whatsoever; keep the session interesting, fresh and relevant,” they explain. “You could try running a monthly series, for example, and marketing it as a complimentary service that you offer to clients. This allows you to add value for your extant clients and help you grow an organic referral vine.”
5. Give Your Expertise Away for Free
Does it seem contradictory to give your valuable expertise away for free when you’re trying to attract paying clients? Many financial advisors get hung up on this and therefore don’t take advantage of the many effective ways to generate new business in the digital world, such as:
- Starting a Facebook or LinkedIn group to answer financial questions
- Participate in community discussions on LinkedIn or Quora, offering advice to users asking financial questions
- Start a blog featuring helpful articles that address common financial questions or news of interest to your ideal clients
- Produce a report or in-depth how-to guide on one of the most pressing challenges for your ideal clients
The key to every one of these marketing strategies is to focus not on the services that you’re selling, but on the needs of your ideal client. They’re not buying services; they’re seeking the best way to meet their personal financial needs. When you take the focus off of you and start looking for ways to offer value and build authentic connections with your target audience, getting new clients becomes easy even in the highly competitive field of financial advising.