If you do any sort of marketing, you’ve probably heard the words content marketing a lot. And for a good reason! Content marketing is incredibly effective- if it’s done right! There are tons of suggestions out there and it can be hard to decide which strategies are best for your firm. While content marketing strategies may vary based on your firm’s values and goals, there are some basic guidelines that you should always try to follow when it comes to content marketing for your financial planning firm.
Today, we’re going to introduce you to the five E’s of content marketing. Creating great content is the best first step, but you need to step up your game if you want people to actually pay attention to your content. Nowadays, there’s more content being produced than ever before. Consumers are stuck with an overload of information. This leaves marketers scrambling to stand out from the crowd. By following a few general guidelines, you can create a killer content marketing strategy that’s sure to get you the results you’re after!
The 5 E’s of Content Marketing
First things first, make sure that you have a blog section on your advisor website. It’s crucial to have this in order to drive traffic to your site, boost your online presence and increase your SEO rankings. Twenty Over Ten client, Gary L. Watts, CFP®, EA, keep an updated blog section to help their clients informed, answer questions and topics that they may have and boost their traffic and online presence.
If you want people to notice and pay attention to your content, you have to keep your audience engaged. Consumers want to be reading useful, relevant information that they can relate to. If they find your content boring or too generic, they’re very unlikely to use you as a resource in the future.
In order to be most effective at engaging your audience, you first need to have a very clear understanding of who you’re targeting. This way you can be sure you’re offering content that they will be interested in. Spend some time thinking about what kind of consumers you want your marketing to attract then ask yourself what kinds of questions they need to be answered. This will give you much more direction when creating content. Figure out your niche and create content that will best answer the questions that they have.
A great way to generate engaging blog topics is by simply asking your customers! One idea is to ask your followers on social media to answer polls or you could consider sending out surveys through a service like Mailchimp or Google Forms to your email list. This will ensure your blog topics are what your audience wants and get them excited about being able to directly contribute.
As far as keeping your blog content engaging, try to ask your reader questions throughout to get them actively thinking about the information they’re reading and how it relates to them. When you’re asking them questions, they’ll keep reading so you can answer it for them.
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You can also try including related “freemiums” in your blog posts. Everyone loves getting something free, especially if its helpful. Freemiums like this can include white papers, Ebooks, downloadable templates or anything that will help your audience further understand or interact with your content.
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Offering your prospects something that is not only engaging and useful but free is a great way to engage with them and nurture them down the sales funnel if they aren’t already a client.
As an advisor, you’re a trusted resource for many people. You want your business to continue to be seen as credible, professional and effective. This will keep people coming back to you as one of their first resources when they have a question. When it comes to content marketing, some companies still see it as a way to make a sales pitch. This is not a great way to approach it. Sales pitches only serve to annoy consumers. Treat your content marketing as an offer of valuable advice that will earn you new leads because it contains high quality, trusted information.
We often use guest blogs to expand ourselves as a resource for our clients by inviting partners to post content to our blog within their area of expertise. In the above blog Zoë Meggert, the founder of Perfectly Planned Content wrote the blog, “How to Create Continuously Engaging Content (When You’re Feeling Burnt Out).” Guest blogs give a different point of view and provide useful information to their readers.
When you’re creating content, use stats and well-known references to back up your information and further educate your readers. According to HubSpot, we know that 96% of B2B buyers want content with more input from industry thought leaders. If you can, partner with some well-known industry influencers for guest blog posts. This connects your firm with them and vouches for your credibility.
Another key point is to make sure you’re talking about things your company can actually help with. You want to keep your firm’s brand focused on the unique services you offer, which may not be what every consumer is looking for. If consumers have questions or topics that aren’t your area of expertise, it is also useful to direct them to other helpful resources. This shows you can be useful for many different reasons and they’ll likely be back to your company when they need a service you can provide.
3. Be Effective
At the end of the day, there’s no point in putting all this effort into your content if you’re not getting the results you’re after! The effectiveness of your content marketing really boils down to the who, what, when and where. Essentially, having a comprehensive understanding of who your target audience is will be the biggest question you have to answer. But that’s just the first step. You have to figure out what they want to read and where they go to find information. Depending on your audience, they might be more inclined to visit social media, blogs, newsletters, etc. You’ll have to do some research to figure this out, but the results will be well worth the effort.
After this is established, you can begin to regularly post content that is getting seen by potential customers. According to HubSpot, companies that published 16+ blog posts per month got about 4.5X more leads than companies that published 0-4 monthly posts. This shows that, once you’ve got a good understanding of your target market, creating consistent content will get you noticed!
You can also start going into further detail, such as what time of day you are posting and how you are promoting your content across social media and on your website. The more specific you can get, the more effective your content marketing will be.
We encourage all of our advisors to continuously monitor and check their analytics, so that they can see how their social channels are performing. You can see what type of blog content you should be sharing across your
This may be one of the most important E’s to focus on. Think of your favorite authors, newsletters or blogs. Chances are, they’re a mix of funny, relatable and informative. Why? Because everyone loves to laugh. People are much more likely to pay attention to the information presented in a unique and entertaining way. Always look for ways to stand out.
Once you’ve identified what kind of content you’re going to produce, go a step further by asking how can you do it in a different way? Get creative with your marketing! Depending on your branding, it’s okay to add some personality to your content. In fact, most readers will prefer it. However, don’t try to force it. Trying too hard could come across as awkward and drive people away. Just let your firm’s unique identity shine through.
Twenty Over Ten client, ClearPath Capital Partners, has an intriguing video image for their hero image. Right when you land on it, you are captivated and can tell you are going to be working with strong professionals in the financial industry.
Another idea is to use a mix of media, such as pictures, videos and podcasts to answer customer and prospect questions in a new way. This prevents the reader from being potentially overwhelmed by long articles. Video marketing and podcasts are becoming increasingly popular, so see if you can come up with new and more entertaining ways to present the information.
5. Encourage Action
You’re not just creating content for fun- you want readers to react to it. In general, you want your audience to take some sort of action with every piece of content. This may be scheduling a meeting, visiting your website, following your social media pages, etc. Whatever you choose, it should be made clear without being too pushy.
Adding social media follow buttons and calls-to-action at the end of blog posts are a great way to subtly encourage action. They are also helpful for the consumer who, after reading your content, will often want to learn more about your company.
Twenty Over Ten client, New Gen Financial, has social media buttons at the bottom of their blog so that readers can easily share the blog on Facebook, Twitter or LinkedIn.
Does your advisor website have the 5 E’s of content marketing? Including these things is crucial to creating the type of content that will drive traffic to your site to find the type of information that they want and are in search of. Check out the content on your blog and make sure that it meets the above criteria so it can boost your lead generation!
Struggling With What Content to Share on Social Media or via Email?
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About the author
Blair is a digital marketing assistant at Twenty Over Ten and has a passion for uncovering what drives online traffic and the highest engagement. She follows more animals on Instagram than humans and her greatest achievement is her daughter, Grey.