Social distancing, isolation and working from home have become the new norm for most and the shift is forcing companies to reevaluate many aspects of their business plans for the foreseeable future and most importantly – to reassess their marketing, communication and growth strategies. For financial advisors, making adjustments during this time is critical to ensure you are there for your clients and prospects.
To help steer your advisor business through these uncertain times, below are nine steps on how you can be relevant to your audiences at this time and how to keep up the momentum.
Step 1: Update Your Advisor Website and Contact Information
The first thing you want to do is update your website and contact information. Because you and your team members are likely working from home, you may be operating under different hours and/or using phone numbers to communicate with clients. Communicating this pertinent information in a timely manner is important so that they can quickly and easily get a hold of you. This is a stressful time for everyone, and if your clients and prospects are unable to contact you when they need help, that will only add on to their stress. It’s important to also include an email address that clients and their families can use (an important point: elderly clients may end up having families contact you if they become ill. Make sure the right info is easy to find).
In addition to updating your contact information, you can also consider adding a call out or pop-up right on your homepage that links to your updated contact information, letter/blog posts with updates, a COVID-19 special resources page, etc. Ultimately you want to show anyone visiting your website that you are aware of the situation and you’re here to help. In the example below from Sequoia Wealth Advisors, they chose to add a link to their COVID-19 response page right on the homepage of their website. This is a great approach to ensure the most important information is upfront and center for everyone.
Lastly, take a look at your website’s blog and consider increasing your posting cadence. Adding blog posts to your website with market updates can be a great way to stay in touch consistently during uncertain times and are also great for thought leadership.
Step 2: Optimize Your Google My Business Listing
When people are searching for your advisory firm online, the first thing they will likely see in a Google search is your business listing. Your Google My Business (GMB) listing is the profile that appears on the right side of Google when someone searches for your business or keywords related to your business. Your listing includes pertinent information to searchers such as contact information, hours of operation and more. Therefore, it’s critical that this information gets updated as well to reflect any changes in your hours of operation and/or contact information. If you don’t have a GMB profile, now is the perfect time to claim yours.
5 Ways to Completely Optimize Your Google My Business Listing in 2020
Step 3: Create Content
At a time like this, it’s important that you are continuously pushing out content to update your clients and prospects. Using visual components like infographics, charts, and/or graphs is crucial because there’s just so much content and information being pushed out right now, and the content that is most memorable and appreciated is visual content. Make it a goal to write at least one article per week on current events, send weekly emails to clients and prospects, and share on social media.
struggling to create meaningful content during COVID-19?
At Twenty Over Ten, we’re committed to assisting advisors with their marketing and communication strategies and providing timely, relevant content and digital tools to communicate efficiently with clients and prospects. Which is why we’ve assembled a special content team, relevant to the current pandemic and market downturn and are releasing 3-4 new communication pieces for advisors to use each week relevant to the pandemic and markets. This content can be deployed from our content library via blog posts, social media, email, or broadened into more automated, comprehensive campaigns. Additionally, we’re offering this content free for 30 days. Learn more about our commitment to helping advisors during COVID-19.
Step 4: Use Video Strategically
Social distancing is really taking a toll on how much we are able to see and interact with others. With that being said, video is a great way for your clients and prospects to be able to see you and feel engaged. You might think that it’s probably better to hop on a quick phone call, but giving others the ability to physically see you through video offers more relief and can create a greater impact when people are in isolation. In fact, Global Web Index found that over 80 percent of consumers in the U.S. and UK say they consume more content since the outbreak, with broadcast TV and online videos (YouTube, TikTok) being the primary mediums across all generations and genders.
I know what you’re thinking – being on camera doesn’t come naturally to you or you don’t have the necessary tech tools. But recording videos doesn’t have to be a difficult endeavor – all you really need is a smartphone. Once you’ve got your video recorded simply upload it to a service like Vimeo or YouTube and share, share, share! The more places you share your videos, the more visibility it’s likely to get.
How to Record Marketing Videos on a Shoestring Budget
Step 5: Send Weekly Emails to Clients
Email is another great low hanging fruit way to stay connected with your clients and keep them up to date during uncertain times. The goal with your email sends should be to get your clients to look to you for updated information rather than turning to other sources that may be unreliable. Consider summarizing the “best of the best” from the week and send articles that are level-headed and rooted in data.
Step 6: Send Weekly Emails to Prospects
It’s equally as important to stay in constant contact with your prospects. However, the main difference in your emails to prospects is that they should have a different CTA (call to action). With prospects, your CTA should be specific to how people can get started working with you or how they can connect with you if they are concerned or confused and need help during these trying times.
Step 7: Increase Social Media Posting
People are stuck at home and tied to their phones to kill time and seek a sense of community. Social media has become a primary source of information right now. Moreover, social media is one of the few ways people are able to stay connected during isolation to make sense of what’s happening. Right now it’s important to have a presence where your clients and prospects are, and this means being on social media. Now is the time to increase your social media postings- in fact you should be aiming to post daily. Secondly, you should be sharing helpful information – a combination of your thoughts and curated information is best. Also, think about posting visual content like graphs and charts because people engage much more with visual content.
Step 8: Discover Which Content Resonates
Figure out what resonates with your audience. The most important thing right now is to focus on what your clients and prospects find interesting. What do they actually want to read and click on? This is the question to ask yourself before producing any content. Doing this will allow you to provide content that actually matters to your audiences.
You can glean insight into what your audience wants taking a look at your Google Analytics reports. Google Analytics will show you things like where your new visitors are coming from, what your top-visited pages are and so much more.
Step 9: Discover What People are Searching For
Alongside looking at your specific website analytics say, take a look at general analytics to discover what people are searching for worldwide. This will help you create content that will resonate with the people you hope to connect with. A great tool to do this kind of research is Google Trends, which allows you to discover global search trends and uncover what investors are searching for amid the pandemic.
For example, the below chart from Google Trends shows how the query “what should I do with my 401k” really spiked in the middle of March when the coronavirus became more widespread throughout the United States and people were beginning to worry more financially. Armed with this kind of information you can use it to create a blog post, infographic, and/or video using these keyword terms.
Now is the time to make sure you are doubling down on your digital marketing efforts. This is the most amount of time people have ever spent online and not being where clients and prospects are spending their time is the biggest mistake you can make right now. People are online and on social media now more than ever, so it’s the perfect opportunity to step up your digital marketing efforts to stay connected and actually grow your advisor business.