Welcome to this edition of the Weekend Digest. I am sure I’m not the only one who is delighted to see the natural and (un)timely death of SuperClean share classes this week, the idea got what it deserves really! Good to see market forces are alive and well, even in platformland. Moving on then…
This edition is all about marketing – online and offline – with our 4 main articles on the subject, including how to come up with a great elevator pitch that resonates with clients, top tips on SEO for advisers and the magic of word-of-mouth marketing.
But first we look at a very short piece on industry developments; specifically FCA’s views on behavioural finance.
Click on the title to read the full article (opens new window.) Enjoy…
The FCA has published two occasional papers on consumer biases when buying financial products and how it intends to apply this in its policies and regulatory work. The regulator recognises that consumer biases such excessive self-belief when it comes to investing , immediate gratification and following financial advice because “an adviser is likeable” can cause problems in the way financial products are bought and sold.
So what is the regulator’s remedy for this? Intervention to protect consumers where necessary, requiring firms to provide information in a way consumers are most likely to understand, controlling product distribution and banning products altogether.
That the regulator made it clear that the principles of “Buyer Beware” becomes hard to defend when unsophisticated customers are buying seriously complicated financial products and therefore the onus in placed on financial firm to ensure suitability.
This article by Steve Wershing in Financial Planning Magazine looks at why having a great elevator pitch can avoid rambling when you get asked the inevitable question “what do you do?” He observes that ‘an effective elevator speech is succinct and highlights the difference from other advisors’ and it’s an integral part of getting your clients to refer you.
Wershing suggests writing down your elevator pitch and saying it loud to yourself (in front of a mirror?). Make sure it’s unique but sounds natural, preferably less than 10 seconds! You should also consider seeking your clients input and checking with them if it resonates with them.
This fantastic article by Campbell Macpherson in MoneyMarketing points out that advisory firms are missing the trick with social-media minded consumers, particularly Gen X/Y and thankfully, he provided some suggestions on how to change this, with some great examples of services in this space.
Take a look at some of the following points/stats;
- Around 88% of customers start looking for financial advice and services online, according to recent research by Google
- Research by Ernst & Young indicates that 16 per cent of financial services consumers now use online blogs and communities for researching future purchases, an increase of 355 per cent in just one year!
- Two thirds of today’s investors are looking for a mixture of advice and execution-only, according to research by The Platforum
- 86% of investors in a recent survey said that they would like to sack their parents’ financial advisor – according to Nutmeg!
The implication of this is that firms must develop a strategy to capture the growing market of digitally minded investors, ideally by offering a combination of online execution-only alongside the traditional advisory services. “If they do not, clients will end up using one of the pure D2C businesses – and the adviser may never even know” he noted
The first step to achieving this, according to Macpherson is to hire the brightest of the next generation to lead this charge. ‘You need the next generation to sell to the next generation’ he wrote.
This article by Craig Faulkner in the Financial Planning Magazine looks at some simple tips on Search Engine Optimisation to help your website move up in search results;
- Create keyword-rich content by using relevant keywords (what people are likely to type into search engines) throughout your page or article
- Use keywords in the first few lines of your page. This is because search engines scans a page’s content from top to bottom and gives more weight to the first few lines on a page than the lines at the bottom of the page.
- Use keyword-rich page titles and section headers
- Update your content regularly because search engines love fresh content
- Use internal and external links: An internal link is a link on your page from another page from within your site, and external links, or backlinks, are when another site links to your web page from their content., although this is harder to control.
This article by Dave Kerpen on LinkedIn looks at the concept of loyalty and word-of-mouth marketing. Citing his own experience with a New York based company Just Salad, which created a simple yet clever campaign around rewarding loyal their loyal and influential customers. This generated a lot of attention on both among their existing customers but more importantly on social media site, reaching thousands of people.
Kerpen offers what he called ‘timeless formula; of word of mouth marketing success:
Great Product/Service + Loyalty Marketing + Influencer Marketing = WOM Magic
By creating a great product/service that clients are happy to shout about, rewarding loyal customers in a fun way and giving your influential clients (e.g chair of the local business group, your clients with high Klout Score or Twitter followers) something to talk about, you effectively create the atmosphere for word-of-mouth magic to happen.
I hope you have enjoyed this and hopefully it’ll make you job a little easier! As outsourced paraplanners, that’s what we do best! As usual, thoughts and comments are welcome. Enjoy your weekend!