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How To Step Up & Serve During and After COVID-19 Part 3 of 3

It’s a crazy time in the history of the world. A health and economic crisis for the ages. 

Your marketing will have to change, this time faster than most of you would like. Marketing has evolved but the time you have to embrace just evaporated. 

Let me explain. 

  1. Seminars have been increasingly difficult on growth and budgets. How many people will be lined up to greet you and others in the coming year? 2 years? 
  2. Networking events including conferences and breakfast meetings will stop. Who knows when and how they will resume. 
  3. Meeting clients and prospects face-to-face will continue to change as virtual meeting will be a preferred method going forward. 
  4. The way you stayed top of mind with your COI’s will evolve too. People will be less inclined to stop by with treats or just to say hi, at least not for a while. 

Why do you do any of these things?

You have planned to conduct seminars, attend events, and connect with people face-to-face so you can expand your network, start new relationships, establish credibility, and hopefully inspire advocacy or engagement. 

Marketing is about to change drastically. Are you prepared?

If you don’t already know it, you compete in the Expertise Economy. People expect you to share your expertise generously, and on their terms. This is just a simple fact. 

One of the hottest new marketing strategies to market yourself in the expertise economy is the Micro-Influencer Strategy.  

A Micro-Influencer is an advisor who owns a specific expertise, with a specific audience, in a specific region. 

We developed the micro-influencer approach. That is why our micro-influencer program is a perfect tool to put in place now, to continue your marketing, education and client acquisition. 

For many years several marketing tactics have dominated the ROI conversation; seminars, mailouts, referral programs, cold-calling or lead buying. Tactics that didn’t make measuring easy got overlooked, such as thought leadership, blogging, social media, video and podcasting. The micro-influencer approach is proving to be the best method of attracting, engaging, and building ideal relationships for mid-to long-term success. In fact what it does best is scale your credibility

Consider this as you prepare for a new marketing reality – scaling your credibility. 

Take the money you have allocated to all of the in person marketing strategies and re-allocate it to a strategy that will have long term results. For a third of the cost of a seminar/workshop, you can begin your Micro-Influencer Strategy. Begin creating momentum and begin taking control of how to market in the expertise economy. 

#RiseAboveTheNoise, #BeYourOwnLoud

You now know you need to reduce costs and increase your ability to attract, develop, and nurture relationships with ideal clients, in the medium they prefer – while they are there.  

Over the last two years, we have developed and tested this proven solution. 

Click here to arrange a brief conversation with either Matthew Halloran or Kirk Lowe. 

To your health and continued success,
The Team at Top Advisor Marketing

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How To Step Up Serve During and After COVID-19 Part 2 of 3

Your clients need you now more than ever. How are you communicating with them?

At Top Advisor Marketing, we’ve been helping advisors be their own loud. We produce and promote podcasts for them. Last week, we offered all of our advisors the opportunity to record a free C-19 podcast episode. Most took us up on it. Their clients were extremely grateful, reassured, and response rates were very high. That’s what advisors are supposed to do – communicate and guide. In fact, half (1.5%) of the 3% alpha advisors add to their client relationships are based on behavior management, as per Vanguard Advisor’s Alpha Report

It might seem strange but, this is one of the important reasons behind why we created this podcasting service; so advisors can communicate and educate clients (panicked or not) in a personal and intimate medium – when they have time to listen. 

This is what advisors get paid for and very few advisors have invested in a communication system that helps them provide consistent, timely, intimate and credible information for their clients, advocates and followers. 

“…so advisors can communicate and educate clients…when they have time to listen.”

For many advisors, their current approach isn’t working like it could. I’m not trying to be hard on your here, just realistic. You can’t be great at, or have time for, everything required of you to run a high functioning practice (business). 

  • Email is personal but it might not be getting opened and read enough unless you send one at a time versus through an email tool such as Constant Contact or ACT. You’ll need both. 
  • SMS doesn’t work well as a content vehicle. It’s great for alerts but noting of substance. Although, a quick, “Hope your family are healthy and safe!” would work perfect. 
  • Video can be highly effective, especially if shared on social media but many advisors don’t seem to have the confidence, know-how, or budget.
  • Blogs can be moderately effective but most advisors don’t do them consistently, nor are they typically skilled enough at writing to efficiently do this and convey personality and concern. In my 20 years in financial marketing, there are only 2 advisors I’ve seen consistently publish blog posts; James E Wilson, and Andrew Rosen at Diversified. 

“…very few advisors have invested in a communication system for their clients, advocates and followers.”

  • Did the C-19 episode amount to new clients or new assets? Not immediately, but it may. 
  • Does it really matter? No. Communication is meant to establish credibility and enhance relationships. 
  • Did it achieve that? Yes, and then some. Will that result in retention and referrals? Absolutely. 

Now imagine you scale your credibility using this same system. It’s no longer a communication system, it’s a business development system. One you own. 

“Podcasting is a boom. And that boom is only getting louder.” – Miranda Katz, Wired.com

Now is the time to communicate with your ideal audience, in the medium they prefer, while they are there.  

Click here are several podcasting resources when considering it as a possible communication system for your business going forward.

We can have your C-19 podcast done in 24 hours from the day you sign up and then you can send it to your clients.  That is a great way to kick off the use of this wonderful medium.  

To your health and continued success,
The Team at Top Advisor Marketing

 

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How To Step Up & Serve During and After COVID-19 Part 1 of 3

The federal, state and local authorities are acting appropriately in the interest of public safety for all, however, these precautions also carry grave social and economic implications for businesses, including your own.

Your clients need you now more than ever.

We’ve been assisting advisors who we produce podcasts for to create a short-term communication strategy for COVID-19. They all have a long-term communications strategy we implement for them but in this global health and economic crisis, we need a short-term action plan.

Here are some of the best practices we’re seeing from advisors we’ve been working with.

  1. Know Your Client
    • Talk only about what’s relevant to them, not you, or your practice, or your other clients
    • Make sure their families and communities are safe first
  2. Establish communication across multiple mediums:
  3. Content for Communication
    • Understand the facts of COVID-19 – don’t downplay crisis, focus on controlling what you can
    • Express your operational plan for coming weeks and months
    • Confirm how they can reach you and when 
    • Create FAQs on all the above
    • Interview a local Doctor about what they see and what they think you should do. Be resourceful if possible and find relevant experts who can help provide perspective and reassurance – who will also be honest
  4. Add COVID-19 FAQ page to your website
    • Lean on your broker dealer for approved messaging – they should have provided
    • Make it a link in your main menu (highly visible)
    • Reiterate information from “Content for Communication” above
    • Link or embed to podcast/blog/video
    • Add local and national links to trusted COVID-19 resources (3-5)
  5. Work your ass off 
    • Find opportunities to help clients recover
    • Don’t be too proud – ask for help 
    • Keep a journal of what this felt like and what you could have done better to prepare your clients, practices, employees and your own family
    • Be available to all who need your thought leadership and guidance
    • Mentor other advisors – help each other
    • Ask if your clients or their friends and family have had the same level of communication from their advisor. If not, call you. 
  6. Support local businesses, not national chains
    • Buy gift cards
    • Get take out
    • Take advantage of deliver or curb side pick up
    • Share your list of local businesses you’ll be supporting in your social networks – profile them, tag them

To your health and continued success,
The Team at Top Advisor Marketing

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Answers to Financial Advisors’ Top Podcasting and Compliance Questions

What’s keeping you from starting your own podcast? For many financial advisors, the resounding answer is “compliance!”

You might consider compliance to be “the business prevention department.” I used to feel that way. I can remember times when a client and I would come up with a great idea for a podcast only to get a lengthy delay for approval or, even worse, a big “NO” from compliance. 

What I’ve learned is that compliance is practically a non-issue if you know how to work within their rules. 

To help you learn the rules and clear away your compliance concerns, I’m answering advisors’ top questions about compliance and podcasting.

Let’s get to it…

 

Question #1: Before I record a podcast, do I have to submit a full script to compliance for their approval?

Answer: No, you don’t need to submit a script for approval. However, most compliance departments want to have an outline of what you will talk about before you record so they can guide you on which topics (if any) to avoid.

In your outline, include your main topic and then list your subtopics. A super organized outline is more likely to get your compliance’s stamp of approval quickly.

Question #2: How do I archive a podcast?

Answer: If you use our done-for-you podcasting service, we will provide you with a transcript of each podcast episode for you to submit to compliance for archiving purposes. 

Giving compliance access to transcripts also gives them the ability to point out anything that they want to be edited out. Let’s say you slip up and say something compliance doesn’t like. They can then tell our editing team to edit out that section of the audio. If we can remove it and still make that part of the podcast sound smooth, we do it! If not, we find the best edit-point and take out even more — and compliance won’t complain about that!

 

Question #3: How do I get a podcast episode turned around quickly if I need to talk about something that’s timely?

Answer: Many of our clients podcast about current events or seasonal topics, like tax planning, Medicare, and new laws. If needed, our team can rush your podcast episode through editing and post-production so it can be released as soon as humanly possible. Hopefully, by this point, your compliance compartment has gotten into the flow of reviewing and approving your podcasts in a quick timeframe. 

Do keep in mind that podcasting isn’t a substitute for picking up the phone and updating your clients. For the most part, podcasting is for timeless, evergreen material. 

 

Question #4: How do I stop people from commenting on my podcast and potentially saying negative things about my company? 

Answer: Certain podcast channels, as well as YouTube, will allow you to turn off the commenting function. Since we have produced hundreds of podcasts, we know which players allow what level of listener interaction. We have the ability to turn off comments and ratings on different players for you.

 

There you have it — your answers to the top compliance and podcasting questions. I hope you feel encouraged to pick up that podcasting dream again and don’t let compliance-fears stop you!

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Should Advisor-Podcasters Talk Only About Financial Topics?

When you start your own advisor podcast, what approach will you take as the podcast host? 

More specifically, should you position yourself as the financial expert who then talks only about financial topics, should you interview other financial experts, or should you interview people that are not financial experts but whose expertise will add value to your audiences’ lives? 

This is a multi-faceted but important question that I will help you answer in this blog. 

Let me start by introducing three shorter questions that I will walk you through:

  1. What are your goals: leads or relationships?
  2. What format will work best for you: interviews or solocasts?
  3. How frequently do you want to record: monthly or weekly? 30 minutes or 60 minutes?

What are your goals: leads or relationships?

Your first thought is likely, “What’s the difference between a lead and a relationship?” 

Leads are typically the outcomes of a quick connection and offer. They are the result of “ask-based” marketing. 

Marketing is about finding people and then making them an offer. When that offer doesn’t work, those “prospects” typically drop off. 

Relationships, on the other hand, are “give-based” marketing. Give-based marketing seeks to add deep and ongoing value whereas ask-based marketing dangles value in front of people and then quickly switches to the “ask.”

What you should focus on.

If you want leads If you want to build relationships
  • Stick to financial topics and guests. 
  • Have a clear audience, advice, and calls-to-action. Make it easy for people to listen and say yes. 
  • Have a paper or checklist with podcast topics) that listeners can access by giving you their contact info, and then work the lead. 
  • Find a balance of financial and non-financial topics and expertise. 
  • Assess which topics and episodes get more plays and better social engagement, and then do more of those types of episodes. If that happens to be more non-financial podcasts, then run with that when it makes sense. 
  • Engage listeners in other content such as blog posts, papers, books, and checklists. Find ways to be their go-to source for advice in keys areas that relate back to financial planning. 

What format will work best for you: conversation or solocast?

Personally, I prefer conversational podcasts. Solocasts can be engaging but can also seem ranty and also require the podcaster to be well-seasoned and well-organized to pull it off. 

Two-person podcasts work best because they can read off each other’s verbal cues. When there are three people in a podcast, it can be tricky to time verbal cues unless the two guests are in the same room and can read off each others’ body language. 

What you should focus on.

If you prefer a solocast format If you prefer a conversational format
  • Stick to financial topics unless you have expertise in other areas. You can combine financial and non-financial topics but don’t go solely non-financial, as you may end up being known more for that than financial —unless that gives you an obvious vertical marketing opportunity.
  • Be incredibly organized so you can stay on topic and be intriguing to your listeners. That’s not easy to do alone. 
  • Have complementary content available as a companion to your podcast topics. 
  • Find a balance of financial and non-financial topics and expertise. In most cases, the guest should be the expert. 
  • Share an outline of the episode in advance so you can keep each other on track during the recording.
  • Relate non-financial topics back to financial planning when it flows. Don’t push it. 

How frequently and how long should your podcasts be: monthly or Weekly? 30 minutes or 60 minutes?

There’s some debate about this subject. 

Standard frequency protocols suggest that the more frequently you podcast, the shorter your episodes should be. If it’s a daily podcast, 10-15 minutes would be an appropriate length. If it’s monthly, 60-90 minutes would be enough. 

Meanwhile, standard lifestyle protocols suggest that podcast length shouldn’t be determined by how often the podcaster podcasts, but by how much time the listener has to listen. Commutes average 30-45 minutes. With this in mind, 25-30 minutes is a valid best practice. I’m in the 25-30 minute camp but while we aim for that length in our Top Advisor Marketing Podcast, Matt and I often go over by 5-10 minutes. 

The topic and dialogue will ultimately decide the length of your episodes, but from the outset, aim for shorter as opposed to longer to keep people interested and to fit with their busy lives. I’d rather someone have the opportunity to listen to a second and third episode than one long one.

There is also a debate about the frequency of podcasting. 

There are more factors at play here than optimizing for your audience. Most podcasters have to juggle time commitment and budget when thinking about establishing a podcast frequency. One can’t forget about their podcast supporting other marketing tactics, such as social media, either.

Recording weekly is a lot of work but puts advisors and companies in better positions to create awareness and excitement. At the same time, finding guests and producing, publishing, and promoting episodes on a weekly basis might put a strain on your time and budget. 

Doing a podcast bi-monthly can alleviate some of the demands on your time and budget. If you podcast at this frequency, your audience won’t be waiting too long between episodes, you will have enough episodes to establish yourself as the expert and bring on expert guests, and you will be publishing enough new episodes that you can continuously promote your podcast on social media, which is critical to your success. 

Yet, if you want to expedite your podcast and brand awareness, try podcasting weekly or four times per month. It’s the perfect frequency for keeping your audience, social media and area of expertise happy.

What you should focus on.

If you prefer monthly frequency If you prefer bi-monthly (every other week) frequency
  • Stick to financial topics because you’re not podcasting frequently enough to dabble outside of your core topic. Maybe over the course of a year you can branch into other topics once or twice. 
  • Create an editorial calendar of timely topics since you need to maximize each episode (e.g., tax episode in March, charitable giving before year-end).
  • Aim for episode lengths of 45-60 minutes. 
  • The more frequently you podcast, the more topics and varied expertise you can introduce. You can also bring on more guests and create hype around getting onto your podcast as a guest. 
  • With this frequency, you generate more content, which builds you greater credibility. 
  • To shorten prep time, have go-to questions for each guest and make sure the topics and expertise don’t become redundant. 
  • Aim for episode length of 20-30 minutes.

As you can see, there is no set way of approaching your podcast. Take the best of what you have learned here and apply it to yours. Aim for quality over quantity. Be as consistent and interesting as possible. Keep your audience top of mind when planning your podcast format and theme. And, have fun.

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5 Ways Podcasting Makes You a Better Advisor

Yes, podcasting will make you a better advisor in many ways. I’d go so far as to say that podcasting makes our lives better, one idea at a time. But today, I’ll start by telling you how it can make you a better advisor. 

It Makes You a Better Communicator

Being a good podcaster not only requires you to be knowledgeable about the subject you’re going to talk about, but it also requires you to practice how you communicate your what and your why

A productive podcast draws people into your world or, better yet, you into their world. It makes you find ways to connect with your audience, understand their challenges, and find opportunities to solve their concerns. 

It’s easy to understand that improving your communication skills has benefits, while not improving these skills will keep you from advancing professionally. 

Podcasting will inspire you to implement strategies that can further develop your skill of communicating the expertise you’ve learned. Any time while producing a podcast, you will ask yourself questions like:

  1. How can I best explain this topic?
  2. How does the topic impact my target audience?
  3. What can my audience do to resolve or avoid their challenges? 

It Makes You a Better Marketer

Speaking about and understanding what your ideal clients want to hear about can make you a better marketer. Podcasting forces you to consider your ideal clients’ needs, your unique strengths, and the synergy between the two. 

Also, if you think you “sound” like everyone else, it will be more obvious when you start podcasting. Podcasting allows you to hear yourself, analyze the way you tell your story, and improve your delivery. It will inevitably push you to become better at positioning your strengths and your ideal audience’s needs. Now, that is a tremendous impact on your marketing!

A few questions that you’ll want to consider:

  1. What’s your story? What separates you from other advisors?
  2. What does your audience care most about? 
  3. Which channel(s) does your audience engage in the most when you share your podcast?
  4. Where does your podcast traffic come from?

It Makes You a Better Leader

Leaders start important conversations and then speak intelligently about them. Podcasting is steadily becoming a household-friendly media platform to discover and engage in thoughtful insights and perspectives. People are listening. In fact, 70% of Americans have heard of podcasting

Consider these ideas on becoming a financial leader through podcasting. Podcasting will inspire you to:

  1. Search for trends in society and how they impact people’s financial decisions.
    • Sign up for news alerts or social listening tools such as Google Alerts, Awario and, BrandWatch. You could track keywords such as “new retirement” and “changing retirement.” 
    • Read news, listen to clients’ stories about life, and listen to podcasts. Be a lifelong learner and use that to power your thought leadership.
  2. Stay tuned to regional and global events and their potential financial impact.
  3. Plan ahead for calendar events that have life or financial impact.

It Makes You a Better Networker

One of the best podcast tactics is to search, qualify, and invite other experts and influencers to be guests on your podcast. The process of how you do that, and the tactics you employ, will make you a better networker. You will also build a richer, larger peer network. 

Here are a few steps to finding the right people and then expanding your network.

  1. Log onto LinkedIn. Click on the search bar and select “content” from the options that appear.  Now, search for different keywords to see who’s talking about subjects your clients care about. 
  2. Create an invite message on LinkedIn that’s conversational, not promotional. No offers, just an introduction. If possible, refer to something in their profile or activity stream that brought you to them. 
  3. Consider the people who are talking about subjects that matter to your clients. Are there any trends within this group? Can you create a search to find more people like them? If yes, that’s gold right there. 
  4. Recognize that your LinkedIn audience only really cares about themselves. Find ways to add value to their lives and work and they’ll share your ideas. 
  5. Look for LinkedIn connections who have similar audiences. You don’t want to build relationships with the largest influencers; they won’t have time for you. What you want is to connect with micro-influencers who have ideal and engaged audiences. 
  6. Design a one-page promo sheet that highlights your podcast focus, ideal audience/listenership, and stats. Share this with centers of influence that you’d like to have as a guest on your podcast. 
  7. Share an onboarding email with centers of influence that outline guest expectations, podcast and promotional best practices, and potential launch episode dates. Here at Top Advisor Marketing, we provide a four-page podcast promo guide to help our guests promote their episodes. 

It Makes You a Better Human

Empowering people and communities with knowledge is one of the most rewarding experiences one can be a part of. Being a member of the podcast community makes you part of a groundswell that’s making its mark on history. While your podcast may not change the fortunes of the world, it can certainly help one family after another understand the financial realities of life events and decisions.

By participating in podcasting and sharing what you know and have experienced, you’re not just spreading your generosity, you’re building your brand. 

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How to Plan Your Podcast Topics (And Never Run out of Ideas!)

Have you made the exciting decision to start your own podcast? Or maybe you’re a little hesitant. Many aspiring podcasters wonder how much work will be involved — specifically, how will they ever come up with enough topics for every single episode? 

I have written this short guide to provide you with useful tips so you will never run out of things to talk about on your podcast.

Let’s jump right in…

 

Listen to the people around you

Are your clients asking you the same questions frequently? If so, address those questions on your podcast. If your clients are often asking about mutual funds, for instance, plan to have a “Mutual funds 101” episode. As another example, if your clients are constantly asking you about the differences between wills and TODs, build an episode around that topic. Of course, you can also ask your clients directly about what they would like to learn and use those requests to form topics.

Topic ideas abound outside of the office too. Think about the industry events you’ve attended recently. What were the presentations and workshops about? Grab those topics and run with them! And you don’t even have to have attended the event; check out an upcoming conference’s website to see what topics they have lined up. Those ideas are yours for the taking.

Now think about networking events. What were the hot conversations topics amongst your centers of influence? Are they offering a new service or product? What client challenges are they solving right now? Consider having COIs on your podcast as a guest and let those hot conversations unfold.   

Use your expertise

Part of what makes you a great advisor is the vast array of financial knowledge you possess. If there is a particular area of financial planning you enjoy the most and have solid expertise in, use it as inspiration. For example, if you specialize in estate planning, think about what you enjoy the most about that aspect of planning.

What do you offer your clients that other advisors don’t? What do you excel at? What makes you different? Share that knowledge with your clients. People love to know what other people are passionate about.

Keep an eye on current developments and new laws

Tax season, new bills, and other developments will generate many questions from your podcast audience. Put yourself in their situation and think about what questions you would have about that subject. Next, plan a podcast episode that answers these questions and offers solutions during times of change. 

On a similar note, consider how people need to prepare for significant personal-finance events, like tax season. Develop a checklist for your audience, lay it all out during your podcast, and become your audience’s go-to source for getting prepped.

Think outside the box

What do you and your clients have in common outside of financial services? If you enjoy golfing and you know your clients do too, talk about that in your podcast. How does golf resemble financial planning or business opportunities? What lessons can you learn from golf that also apply to your financial life?

Another idea: Have you watched any of your acquaintances make bad financial decisions due to market volatility? Make a podcast about the emotional cycle investors experience and how to make better decisions.

Organize topics and subtopics as you go

Topics like budgeting, 401(k)s, and retirement are pretty broad. These are examples of main topics that you can draw millions of subtopics from. 

For example, if you would like to talk about budgeting in your podcast, here’s an example of how you can make the most of that topic:

Main topic: 

Budgeting

Subtopics:

    Benefits of budgeting

–     5 reasons people hate budgeting (and how to overcome them)

     Top 10 things a budget should include

    How to balance savings vs. fixed expenses

    How to manage debt (does the debt-snowball method work?)

To stay organized, plug your main topics and subtopics into mind maps through MindMeister. Alternatively, you could simply keep a list on your computer or in a notebook.

 

My parting words for this guide? Whatever method you use to brainstorm podcast topics, always keep your audience in mind. This is your opportunity to educate people, help them solve their biggest challenges, and showcase your expertise.

 

Related: 4 Things Really Great Podcast Hosts Do

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Podcasting Stats Every Advisor Should Know

Podcasting is an engaging medium and the recent advancements in podcast analytics are confirming what many have thought —it’ll be a cornerstone tactic in any relevant marketing strategy for advisors and fincos for many years to come. 

Here are some of the most important podcast stats you should pay attention to.

There were 550,000 podcasts as of June 2018
There are 750,000 podcasts as of June 2019
There are over 30 million episodes as of June 2019

Podcasting is here to stay. Podcasting has experienced steady growth for many years now. It’s become a safe marketing tactic and is slowly but surely taking its rightful place as a part of powerful marketing strategies. 

Podcasts aren’t a bubble, they’re a boom—and that boom is only getting louder. (2)

While 750,000 podcasts and 30 million episodes are big numbers, podcasting truly is unsaturated at this point, especially financial podcasts.

49% of podcast listeners tune in at home
22% of podcast listeners tune in from their car

Podcasts Listening Statistics

Where people listen to podcasts is a game-changing marketing breakthrough for businesses and, specifically, financial firms and professionals. Imagine having the opportunity to talk and share ideas with your ideal audience while they are sitting in their living room, walking their dog, or cooking dinner. Your favorite client fully immersed in listening to you.

Advisors have spent years and lots of money vying for the attention of their ideal audience. It’s never been easier. It’s never been more appropriate that the most valuable advisors with the best communication skills now have a distinct advantage over their less experienced or less comprehensive peers. You can’t fake a podcast. It’s proof that you are the expert your marketing says you are. Your podcast is proof that you get your ideal audience. 

80% of podcast listeners listen to ALL or MOST of the podcast

Over 80% of podcast listeners are listening to most of the podcast. Even though they could easily turn off or move on without the social pressure that’s so evident in live seminars or webinars, podcast listeners keep listening on their terms and, for the most part, are prepared and happy to listen to most of each podcast episode. This is just one more validated reasoning that supports the podcast marketing enthusiast and their (our) push for better financial marketing. 

47.9% of podcast listeners also follow the podcaster on social media

I wouldn’t say this stat is surprising or earth-shattering, but it points to the power of podcasting’s dynamic nature; podcasts are perfect social content. Podcasting provides what social engagers want — rich, authentic content. Research shows that LinkedIn is by far the best place for professional-content engagement: LinkedIn users are 11 times more likely to engage professional content than users of any other social network. 

41.3% of podcast listeners have made a purchase as a result of a sponsored message

There is a small percentage of financial podcasters I’ve worked with that aspire to having a revenue-producing podcast. Regardless of the current podcast revenue model, it’s good to hear that sponsors are seeing podcasts’ advertising activity. 

Podcasting Ad RevenuePodcast ad revenue as of 2016 was $119 million
Podcast ad revenue as of 2017 was $314 million
Podcast ad revenue as of 2018 was $402 million
Projected to be $659 million in 2020 

It can’t hurt that sponsors are lining up to spend money on podcast advertising to engage these audiences. This trend certainly expands the opportunities for advisors as they build their podcast audience and expected outcomes. 

70% of Americans are familiar with podcasting, and 50% have listened to a podcast

Do you remember back when investors didn’t necessarily research advisors’ websites? I predict podcasts will be almost as important as a website within the next five years. As podcasts become more accepted, they will be heeded for their credibility and easygoing nature. The cost of doing business will soon have to include having your own financial podcast. And guess what, the best time to start a podcast was four to five years ago. The second best time is today. 

Podcast listeners are 45% more likely to earn $250,000+ income 

This stat confirms what most advisors want to hear: that podcast listeners are higher-income earners. This generally means that listeners are also more educated and probably more willing to look for and accept professional advice. It’s yet another positive for podcasting being part of your financial marketing strategy.

In summary, podcasting is an incredible medium for advisors that is unsaturated, brings your voice into your clients’ and prospects’ worlds, captivates a high-earning listenership, is ideal content for a LinkedIn audience, and shows no signs of slowing down in popularity. Podcasts are a boom that is only getting louder. Now the question is — are you ready to start podcasting?


ORIGINAL SOURCES:
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How to Write Social Media CTAs That People Actually Respond To

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What is a call-to-action (CTA)?

Frankly, a call-to-action tells people what you want them to do.

Sound bossy?

It isn’t. Or maybe it kind of is, but people want to be told what to do, especially when they’re going to benefit from taking that action.

Worried about being too sales-y?

Don’t be.

Focus on creating high-quality content that offers people value. And then direct people to it.

How to know you’re bringing value

Before you create any content, whether it’s a podcast, blog, or infographic, create it with the purpose of solving your clients’ internal issues (i.e. pain points). The bottom line is that people don’t buy services — they buy outcomes.

To pinpoint your clients’ internal issues, consider how they feel before enlisting your services. They might be anxious, overwhelmed, or bored.

How do they feel after receiving your service? They are confident, relieved, and reinvigorated.

To learn how to articulate what your clients HAVE and FEEL before and after working with you, I strongly recommend that you go through an exercise called “The 8-Question ‘Before/After’ Grid” in this article.

Keeping your clients’ before-and-after experiences at the forefront of your mind is not only important in your approach to content creation. It’s essential for writing social media posts that people actually act on.

What does a CTA look like?

No one wants to write a blog that doesn’t get read or record a podcast that people don’t listen to. I reiterate that nobody wants that! So don’t let your efforts drop after creating high caliber content that solves your clients’ internal issues.

Go all the way. Lead people to your content with a compelling CTA.

When you start using CTAs, you will be in good company.

CTAs are everywhere, prompting us to act. They’re on website landing pages, email newsletters, and social media posts. They often appear at the end of webinars, seminars, and podcasts when the host encourages their audience to contact them and tells them exactly how to do it.

Here’s a little roundup of CTAs you’ve likely seen before…

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Most of these examples hail from social media posts, which is what I’ll focus on in this blog. The first and last examples are from our friends at Twenty Over Ten who know their way around a good CTA. Check out their website and any of their social media channels for CTA inspiration.

Did you catch that CTA I just gave you?

(Ten points for me if you click on the links.!)

Your CTA vocabulary

Can you spot the CTAs that appear in the images above?

A few of them are Get started, Join now, and Get Tickets.

Here are CTAs that financial advisors and their marketers are probably familiar with…

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Call our office today

Let’s talk

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Book your appointment today

See how we plan

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Discover our planning process

Find a financial advisor

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You may have included some of these CTAs in your digital communications, especially on your website. And I bet if you’re an advisor, you’ve sent an email or LinkedIn message that said something like, “Let’s set up a time to meet.”

Right?

That’s definitely a CTA.

Now let’s expand your CTA vocabulary. These are keywords that you can use in your social media posts, but don’t feel limited! There are hundreds of CTAs out there, but I think these ones are most relevant to advisors.

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Call today

Click for more

Comment below

Download for free

Download now

Click here

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Find out more

Get exclusive access

Get your copy today

Immediate download here

Learn more

Listen now

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Register today

Reserve your spot now

Start here

Tune in today

Visit our

Visit us at

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State the benefits of following your CTA

Write social media posts that pass what conversion copywriter Todd Clarke calls the

“So what?” test.

Your audience only cares about how they can benefit from your content. What’s in it for me?

So don’t waste valuable space by using jargon or talking about what your business does.

Tell people what they will get out of whatever it is you want them to do — read your blog, listen to your podcast, download your new white paper. So again, focus on how people will FEEL, plus what they will HAVE after they follow your CTA.

In other words, highlight the incentives for people and then give them a clear direction to click on your link.

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In this example, business coach Kelly Roach piques her audience’s attention by asking a question that addresses what people will get out of joining her Facebook group: They will learn how to write a book, which will enable them to generate passive income and attract high-end clients.

And then Kelly tells her audience how she’s going to deliver that information: “I’m opening a popup Facebook group to help you…Check it out!” ←CTA

Nice one, Kelly!

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Spark a sense of urgency

Plug in power words that inspire people to act NOW.

For example, instead of saying Call us, say Call now.

If you’re promoting your webinar, seminar, or e-course, create a sense of urgency in your audience by saying, Register now and save your spot.

After all, no one wants to miss out!

Here’s a post that urges people to act quickly and brings into play some of our favorite tech concepts — emoji .

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Writing CTAs for your podcast

Now I want to talk specifically about writing CTAs for your podcasts. It is not enough to post your episode on social media and then just use a quote from the podcast as your copy (in other words, no CTA).

I know, a lot of people do it.

But would you click on that link?

Maybe if the podcaster is a celebrity you like (or love to hate) or someone you know.

Otherwise, you probably wouldn’t.

Instead, tell your audience what they will learn from listening to your podcast. How will they benefit? Remember, your post must pass the “So what?” test.

Let’s Practice

Do you write outlines for your podcasts before you record them? These could be in the form of mind maps (perhaps by using an online tool like Mindmeister) or in a series of bullet points in a Google document.

Or if you’re the type to wing it, we can make that work too.

Just jot down your key points after the recording. If you have a mind map or transcript, highlight them.

At the end of the day, all you’re looking for is a collection of deliverables (i.e. How will listeners benefit? What will they learn?), which you will incorporate into your social media posts.

Keep in mind that you will write multiple posts to promote each podcast episode. So mix things up with your copy; experiment with listing ALL of the benefits a listener will receive in one post and emphasize ONE big takeaway in another.

Let’s try a couple of posts…

Example #1: Your podcast is about allowance and at one point in your recording, you give guidelines for how much allowance to give children based on age.

Listener’s point-of-view: “I feel stressed because I don’t know if I’m giving my teenagers a realistic amount of money for their allowance. One of them is 14 years old and the other is 17. Is $10/week reasonable? Agh!”

Social media copy: Put your hand up if you’re a parent who’s trying to figure out how much allowance to give your kids. As parents, we wonder if we’re giving them too little or WAY too much. Solve your dilemma once and for all. Tune in now and learn how to set your kids’ allowance: [add your podcast link here]

Example #2: Your podcast is about options for employees who’ve maxed out their 401(k)s. You emphasize that people can continue saving money for retirement and then discuss pros and cons for each option.

Listener’s point-of-view: “I maxed out my 401(k) for the year, but I want to keep saving for retirement. I don’t know what to do now. Help!”

Social media copy: Have you maxed out your 401k for the year? Congratulations! Now it’s time to explore other retirement-saving options. Click the link to discover your next strategy: [add your podcast link here]

Be a problem solver for your listeners. They will appreciate it and keep coming back for more!

What now?

Dive in and start adding CTAs to your social media posts! Remember to clearly express how people will benefit from your content and what they should do next. You’ve got this!

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Marketing Using Podcasting

We are going into some uncharted waters for financial advisors. Realistically, the reason you went into financial planning involved a lot of personal characteristics, but one of them was likely that you’re pretty good with numbers. Heck, you may have even been the “numbers-kid” growing up.

As a result you understand your value and your worth because you’ve got the bottom line to prove it. However, you’ve likely learned from experience that those values simply don’t draw in customers the way you would have expected.

So that leaves you with marketing. Which in all likelihood hasn’t been your area to shine (think of the arts kids from your grade 5 class… you didn’t understand them then, and it’s likely you don’t now).

However, this is where you will take your ability to prove me wrong to the next level.

For many years you’ve heard that CPA’s and estate planning attorneys are the key to a steady stream of referrals. But most of you have never been able to really break into that market.

Guess what? We have the golden key to open those doors and getting you in front of and top of mind with any COI you want to woo.

There are five steps to make this key open doors:

  1. Create a list of COIs you really want to connect with
  2. Create a list of FAQs about the service you provide to clients
  3. Invite COIs to be on your podcast
  4. Tag them in the podcast on social media
  5. Send them the link to the podcast, thanking them for being a guest

You might be thinking, this is crazy talk, no one will be on my podcast.

WRONG!!!

Remember that saying, all news is good news? Well COIs in your area crave that same exposure you’re looking for. But, very few of them, if any, have their own podcast.

You can use this podcast to deepen those connections, as well as create a simple marketing piece that’s shareable across so many platforms. Tweet about it, email it, heck, if you’re really craving the good old days, burn it onto a CD and blast it in your retro car.

Remember those bottom line numbers you wanted to market with before. While they may not have pizzazz on paper, you can make them come to life through stories and discussions with your COIs. Adding real world scenarios helps you sell your services and confirms your expertise.

Now if you’re asking yourself… who do I invite?

Well, I believe in practicing what you preach. And at Top Advisor Marketing Podcast we’ve had incredible success with all types of guests, and so have our clients.

To scratch the surface, here are few ideas to get you rolling:

  1. Estate planning attorneys
  2. Divorce attorneys
  3. Auditors
  4. CPAs
  5. Mergers and acquisitions specialists
  6. Small business coaches
  7. Real estate agents
  8. Car dealers
  9. Insurance professionals
  10. Board members of favorite charities

We love working together with our guests. And our advisors do too.

Podcasting is marketing that works.

(PS. If you’re looking for more information on how to leverage COI relationships with podcast, head over to Kirk Lowe’s latest blog post!)