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Good VS. Bad Advisor Marketing: Tactics to Stop and Start Doing Immediately

Do your marketing tactics strengthen your credibility and amplify your expertise? Or is it possible that your tactics are actually damaging your reputation and costing you time, money, and opportunities?

Financial advisors don’t deliberately use bad marketing tactics. That’s why I’m about to show you the differences between good and bad marketing. 

Let’s begin…

 

What does BAD MARKETING look like?

  • No clear audience
  • No clear benefits
  • No empathy for what ideal audience is going through
  • No clear story 
  • Inconsistent messaging
  • Inconsistent execution
  • No clear marketing mindset or an undefined strategy
  • Tactics that change without a clear why
  • Focuses on selling versus educating and building credibility
  • Focuses on converting leads versus building relationships
  • No one owns its execution and outcomes
  • Annoys more people than it attracts and engages
  • Creates a “sea-of-sameness” name for yourself in your industry
  • Constantly searching for the next big idea because most of what you touch loses effectiveness quickly or never really worked, or you didn’t stick with it long enough to experience the benefits
  • Focuses on short-term gains
  • Focuses on short-term ROI: direct measurable results that don’t account for long-term marketing benefits

Good marketing is good for your business. Good marketing takes time and requires effort and planning. There are no shortcuts. It builds your credibility, most importantly –– the basis for trust. 

 

What does GOOD MARKETING look like?

  • Clear audience
  • Clear benefits
  • Clear story 
  • Empathy for what ideal audience is going through because you researched and know your niche
  • Consistent messaging
  • Consistent execution
  • Clear marketing mindset and a defined strategy
  • Tactics that evolve in alignment with a clear purpose/outcome/strategy
  • Focuses on educating and building credibility
  • Focuses on building relationships
  • One person/team owns its execution and outcomes
  • Attracts, engages, and endears people to you
  • Creates a reputable name for yourself in your industry as a person who brings real value to the relationship
  • Focuses on building momentum over time and understanding the direct and indirect benefits of good marketing
  • Understands that keeping a client or inspiring them to refer is often more effective than just focusing on attracting new opportunities
  • You are bought into a long-term strategy and you stick with it
  • You create more value within your niche than other advisors because you are focused; they aren’t

 

You might be wondering how to jump from good marketing to great marketing. Great marketing can only truly be measured over many years. Great marketing is measured by the momentum it builds year after year. Good marketing done consistently over time keeps getting better and produces more and more results. 

Ready to learn more? Tune into our Top Advisor Marketing Podcast for strategies that you can use right away to shift your marketing into the good category!

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Advisors’ Best Practices for Creating a Clear Message and Building an Audience

The two consistent elements to successful marketing have always been, and always will be, a clear message and a clearly-targeted niche audience. Eventually, you hope your message will become your brand with the people you ideally want to attract. 

WHAT COMES FIRST:
THE MESSAGE OR THE AUDIENCE? 

Your message and audience are interlinked and, therefore, should be considered and developed together. 

For example, if you are great at estate planning but prefer working with 45-55-year-olds, your approach to messaging for estate planning would be significantly different than if you were targeting a 65+ audience. For people 65+, your message might revolve around getting it right, saving taxes, protecting your spouse, and leaving what you can for the next generations. For 45-55-year-olds, you might focus on purpose, living a legacy, and using the ideas and planning strategies to achieve something now.  

CREATING YOUR MESSAGE

Your message should focus on what you want to be known for and what you deliver to your ideal clients: outcomes, experiences, and feelings. 

If you offer “holistic planning,” you need to not only ask deeper questions, you also need checklists and a story that proves your holistic approach doesn’t end after the first meeting. When your clients hear your message, experience a process, and enjoy the outcomes that reflect your holistic approach — that’s a brand. But it has to start with a better message because that’s how you capture your audience’s attention long enough to prove your credibility and engage them in your expertise. And that’s how you start relationships — with marketing. 

Your message moves into brand status when what your audience knows becomes their new expectation, and, ultimately, it’s when they talk about your product or service with others while using that same language as you. 

Nurturing a brand and message is a long-term commitment but when done properly, it will produce momentum and opportunities — outcomes that make it all worthwhile.  

If you need help defining your message, and ultimately your brand, I highly recommend this free branding guide

And here are podcast episodes that provide further insight into the creation and implementation of your brand:

 

 

IDENTIFYING & BUILDING YOUR AUDIENCE

The only way to build the right audience is to share your expertise and attract people to your thought leadership. This takes years, not months. Some of the most successful financial advisors and influencers have spent 10+ years building their audience and brand. Do not expect to compete with their influence in a significantly less amount of time — unless of course, you hire Top Advisor Marketing (shameless plug). 

Ideally, the audience you want to replicate most should be a vertical or identifiable group you can access and communicate with. If you don’t know how to identify your ideal client/audience, I recommend using this Ideal Client Profile worksheet. If you don’t know the value of having a niche or how to start creating one, start with these podcast episodes:

 

 

There are many tactics and tools to define and search for ideal prospects including targeting AI apps, social media advanced searches, or simply finding an in-person niche network such as a chamber of commerce with local businesses, a specific trade conference, or a center of influence.

 

TARGETING OPPORTUNITIES TARGETING TOOLS
Networking Groups

  • chamber of commerce
  • Hobby groups (runners, yachting, etc)
  • Trade associations or conferences
LinkedIn Sales Navigator

Sales Navigator allows you to create search profiles to find, message, and connect with your ideal audience. 

Centers of Influence

These are typically people you want in your network because they know your ideal audience and add value to their lives. 

LeadCrunch

LeadCrunch finds and engages ideal client/prospect lookalikes, making it easy for you to find new prospects just like the ones you’re already working with. 

Online Influencers

Getting your expertise (i.e. thought leadership) mentioned, published, and shared can have a huge impact on your exposure and credibility.

CrystalKnows

Crystal enables you to know more about a prospect’s personality, interests, and values so you can connect better with them. 

Trade Media 

Getting your expertise (thought leadership) mentioned, published, and shared by an outlet that focuses on your niche audience can have a huge impact on your exposure and credibility. 

AdvisorStream

This content aggregation and distribution tool uses AI to adjust content deployment and recommendations. AdvisorStream offers unique content from paywall providers without the paywall.  

  Seamless

Seamless helps you find everyone you need to sell to and it gives you emails and phone numbers. You can use hundreds of insights to build profitable relationships at scale and import directly into your favorite CRM.

 

Read these articles to learn about more AI tools:

 

Build your audience, share your message, and #BeYourOwnLoud:  

  • Discover and define your key strengths and your audience’s needs. 
  • Define your ideal audience by personality, age, interests, dreams, careers, family, education, fears, concerns, not just basic demographics and AUM.
  • Create keywords and phrases that introduce key concepts and points that are important to understanding your brand. Leverage those phrases and words in your marketing, processes, papers, articles, podcasts, etc. 
  • Develop a marketing strategy that starts relationships instead of only attracting leads.  Relationships are built on sharing expertise, leads are based on trying to sell. 

Leverage the tools and resources above to help you build relationships effectively. And if you don’t have time to do it right, find help.

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How Good Advisor-Marketing Happens in the Expertise Economy

A visual representation of how and why good marketing happens.

 

Have you considered that you’re competing in the expertise economy?

All financial advisors are. 

You have the expertise to solve the challenges that your ideal client needs help with. You fill that gap, as illustrated below, by offering financial planning services of your design: investment planning, retirement planning, estate planning, business succession planning, and combinations herein. 

In simple terms, this should mean that prudent advisors would employ “expertise marketing,” also known as Micro-Influence. But in my 20+ years in financial marketing, expertise marketing has not been the accepted mindset nor has it been well executed when it is. 

Over the years, many forms of “expertise marketing” have succeeded, failed, and evolved. 

As you can see below, marketing has evolved. Most of you have used many, if not all, of these tactics in your careers. Alone, these tactics have probably had vastly different degrees of success for each of you, which is largely a product of consistency of implementation (or lack thereof), efficacy of tactics employed, synergistic tactics, momentum created, your ability to close, and the revenue generated. 

Two very important terms above are “synergy” and “momentum.” 

What’s critically important to the success of your marketing comes down to the coordination and consistent implementation of your marketing. Simply put, synergy plays an important, if not critical, role. 

Can you make 1 + 1 = 3? You can. There are many variations. These are a few. 

Momentum is equally important, especially for advisors or firms who want high efficacy from their efforts. Momentum marketing has two sides: sunk or lasting. Does each marketing input and output result in a sunk cost or lasting momentum? And, how long will each marketing output last and produce?

Sunk marketing is a singular marketing tactic that, once completed, generates ongoing value that declines significantly or becomes nil. That doesn’t mean it’s a worthless tactic. Some forms of sunk marketing are the most powerful strategies that advisors have ever employed, such as seminar marketing.

Sunk marketing examples include:

  • Seminar marketing (highly effective but its value typically dies once completed)
  • Digital ads
  • Email blasts
  • Postcard or letter mailers
  • Public relations (if it’s not done frequently or consistently)
  • Brand or value proposition (if it’s created but not executed)
  • Referral marketing (when you need to ask for referrals)


(FYI, I  don’t count “brand awareness” as a worthwhile outcome because effective brand awareness rarely happens in advisor marketing.) 

Sunk marketing is the most common form of marketing execution among financial advisors and RIAs. Most advisors have good ideas. Many employ sunk marketing tactics that are individually executed. Few advisors have coordinated strategies that create synergy.

 

Momentum marketing is when each marketing output creates lasting value and, when combined, compounds over time. 

Momentum marketing tactics create more value when they multiply. For example, 50 podcast episodes on your podcast channel are worth more than 10 episodes. You could say they’re worth at least five times the credibility, which has an important impact on your audience. The more expertise marketing you do, the greater each episode’s (i.e. piece of content’s) value. 

Momentum marketing examples include:

  • Authentic content creation
    • Vlogs
    • Blogs
    • Podcasts
    • Books
    • White papers
  • Social media (when done consistently)
  • Search engine optimization (SEO)
  • Website
  • Inspiring referrals (when you don’t need to ask for referrals)

 

The macro-strategy that I use for my Top Advisor Marketing clients is centered around synergy and momentum. There are many combinations that financial advisors can use, but don’t overlook the synergy and momentum your strategy generates. Synergy and momentum are two defining characteristics that drive great marketing for sustainable results over long periods of time. 

What’s really important to note is that the best sunk marketing tactics and the best momentum marketing tactics can make for an incredibly synergistic macro-strategy. For example, consider one of the most powerful tactics advisors have known — seminar marketing. Combine the influence-nurturing power of podcasting along with social media and you have one of the most powerful short- and long-term strategies this industry will know for decades. 

My firm has recently partnered with White Glove (seminars) to do just that — employ a synergy-rich, kick-ass marketing strategy that builds incredible momentum year after year by using seminars, podcasting, and content multiplication (i.e. snippets of long-form content) on social media.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Expertise marketing, or Micro-Influence, as introduced and described above, are really just how we define “marketing” these days. 

If you own a successful practice, you likely have a number of tactics in place but no real strategy. Consider adjusting your tactics by looking first for effective synergies and then cost-efficient synergies. 

Ask yourself:

  • What tactics best complement each other?
    • Which tactics (existing or new) will feed one another? For example:
      • Podcasting feeds social 
      • Podcasting becomes a nurturing tactic for seminar attendees 
      • Seminar attendees attract warm-hot prospects in the short term
  • What tactics best fit my ideal client’s (MIC) needs and style?
  • What tactics can I be consistent with for 24+ months? 
  • What tactics best fit my business model? 
    • Do I need more staff/talent or should I outsource?
    • What can my compliance handle?
  • What tactics offer the best value for effectiveness?
  • What suits your marketing style? What should you leverage or avoid?

 

By answering these questions, you’re on your way to launching a synergistic, powerful marketing strategy that builds momentum and, most importantly, positions you as the indispensable expert to your ideal client. 

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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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The Truth About Marketing ROI for Advisors

Marketing is often critiqued or questioned about its ROI. But to be honest, it can be very difficult to measure the TRUE effect of marketing. 

In the past, advisors got consistent results with marketing initiatives like seminars, running ads, or launching referral campaigns. But as marketing evolves, advisors are faced with the reality that one marketing tactic does not make for an effective marketing strategy. Advisors need to look at more metrics and the wider impact of marketing. 

advisors spend too much time chasing the next best marketing tactic because they didn’t allow time for the other tactics and strategy to work.Measurable marketing initiatives like seminars have been successful in the financial industry for a number of reasons. However, as marketing shifts into a more personalized, relationship-focused experience for consumers, more advisors are adopting digital and content marketing initiatives to reach their audiences and bring value to their clients 24/7. 

But because new marketing initiatives do not always equate to provide immediate measurable results, advisors often abandon them before they can see the results they were expecting. In other words, advisors spend too much time chasing the next best marketing tactic because they didn’t allow time for the other tactics and strategy to work. 

The absence of marketing results backed by hard numbers is why many advisors flock to tactics that they think are most measurable. Even if the ROI isn’t remarkable, they know (or think they know) what they can expect. 

 

Try synergistic tactics

 

In many cases, advisors need to consider synergistic tactics that together create more momentum in their businesses: some which create obvious ROI and some which create better businesses. For instance, just doing seminars when you need to fill the pipeline doesn’t generate long-term momentum. Why not pace the seminars, build better credibility by having attendees listen to a specific podcast episode before the event, ask them for topics on a form during a break at the seminar, connect with them on LinkedIn before they leave (or the next day by invitation),and then update them through social media and email every time you publish a new podcast. 

There are tremendous synergies from combining successful traditional marketing tactics with content marketing, social marketing, and email marketing. They complement and build off each other. 

In all my years of doing financial marketing, I’ve seen that the biggest indicator of success is a well-executed idea that is consistently deployed. Even good ideas won’t succeed if there’s no commitment to keeping it going long enough to yield the ROI you need. 

 

This is the truth about marketing ROI: 

 

There are different approaches to marketing for today’s advisor, and you should not expect the same kind of results from all marketing strategies. Some strategies will create short-term results, but if you take the time to see your marketing through the long term, the outcomes will be much more significant.

What can advisors do to get into the right mindset and generate more successful outcomes for their relationship-oriented marketing initiatives? 

 

    • Think beyond the numbers.

When you implement certain digital marketing initiatives like websites and blogs, you might not gain significant revenue from those mediums, but you’re getting a different kind of ROI. You are portraying yourself as a professional, building your credibility, and telling people who you are, what you do, and who you work with. You are enhancing the client experience just as you would by having a nice office reception.

    • Be consistent and patient. 

It takes time to build a recognizable brand. If you are consistently creating content that is unique and resolves your clients’ biggest challenges, it’s only a matter of time before you start seeing results. Even when you think you are not getting results, there is someone who is listening to your podcast or reading your blogs. They are getting to know you and your expertise, and they’re likely to tell their contacts about you.  Consider the long-term results that will come from your consistency.

    • Be proactive and involved. 

Don’t shy away from promoting your work. If you have a great blog, a podcast that you’re proud of, or a resource-filled for your clients, let them know. Take every opportunity you have to promote yourself and your brand. If you meet someone new, add them as a contact to your social networks. If you’ve decided to start a blog, a podcast, or host webinars, find ways to interact with your audience and make them feel like they’re part of the process. For instance, you can ask new contacts about what topics they would like to learn about in your blog and podcast. 

Of course, not all marketing strategies will work for everyone. But before you decide to quit, ask yourself these questions: 

  1. Is your strategy helping prospects experience what it would be like to work with you?
  2. Is your strategy helping you stay top of mind with your contacts? 
  3. Are you providing something that’s useful to your audience? 

If the answer is yes to any of the above, then you should probably keep doing what you’re doing.

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4 Reasons Your Podcast Doesn’t Need iTunes Syndication

Podcasts offer an incredible medium for consumers (i.e. investors) to develop relationships with potential advisors.  Remember, sourcing a new financial advisor is a massive decision for consumers to make. In the same vein, podcasts provide advisors the opportunity and platform to influence those consumers’ buying decisions.

The reason for my post is, more than anything, to help advisors understand the expected outcomes of their podcast. Your greatest outcomes do NOT require you to syndicate your podcast through iTunes

It would be nice to think that once you’ve created your podcast, you can simply syndicate it to iTunes and your pipeline will immediately fill up. But this is not a “build it and they will come” situation. iTunes and other podcast communities are busy marketplaces. I wouldn’t say they are saturated, but they are busy. Consequently, you’re not likely to find ideal listeners effortlessly.

The good news is —the financial podcast space is undersaturated, which presents advisors with a great opportunity. But the gold is not in the existing communities, it’s in building your own community: a highly engaged group of people who are connected to each other and the ideas your present in your podcast. 

Isn’t it incredible to think that you could have access to your own community by using a marketing tactic that’s affordable, fits your business and life, and builds sustainable momentum for your business? 

Here are five reasons you don’t need iTunes to build a successful podcast community that translates into sustainable opportunities for your advisory practice.

1

YOU ALREADY HAVE A COMMUNITY TO MARKET TO

Your existing network (i.e. community) is a great place to share your podcast. In fact, it’s where your biggest outcomes should be generated. You know people who understand you, are already working with you, have considered working with you, or have referred people to you. Those are the people most likely to engage in and share your podcast right now. Leverage them daily.

 

2

YOU CAN PROACTIVELY GROW YOUR COMMUNITY

Most advisors have less than enviable digital networks. Often times these networks have many peers, not ideal prospects and centers of influence. Most of the time this reality limits advisors’ early wins and lengthens their path to success. It’s more difficult to grow your audience and grow by influence. 

Boost your network size by consistently inviting ideal prospects to connect with you on LinkedIn. You’ll need a conversational introduction (i.e. invitation-to-connect message) so you don’t come across as needy or pushy. Once you have your ideal prospect’s attention, make sure they know about your podcast — send them a link to the episode you’re most proud of. Few advisors are pushing their podcast because few have one. We’re talking .0001% if I were to guess.

iTunes will NOT help you grow your listenership with an ideal audience. LinkedIn absolutely will. You can try other social networks if that’s where your preference lies. 

My company has a LinkedIn Connection Boosting service. We invite 300 ideal prospects (validated through Sales Navigator’s Advanced Search, especially their boolean string). Our advisors typically get 20% of ideal prospects accepting invitations to connect. We typically see 1-3% conversation engagement too; these are people who ask a question or book an appointment. 

This proactive approach keeps seeing results while they patiently wait for the better results: ideal referrals and a growing listenership that will turn into sustainable opportunities over the next 2-3 years. Yup, great marketing takes time but that’s where the best results are — in owning expertise in a specific audience and in a specific region. 

 

3

YOU INSTANTLY BECOME MORE REFERABLE

Guess what, your podcast is likely the “coolest” marketing you’ve ever done. Share it daily and through every medium you control: email, face-to-face, voice-to-voice, events, your newsletter, and any speeches. People will start talking about you — finally. You’ll get more ideal referrals than before all because you’re conversation-worthy now.

 

4

YOU WANT TO OWN THE MEETING PLACES

When you syndicate your podcast, prospects will get introduced to your brand on whichever digital platform it resides on; in this example, iTunes. Consider that your iTunes profile is nowhere close to the powerful marketing they’d see on your website, and, to a lesser degree, your podcast channel. 

Obviously, it’s a good thing to gain listeners via iTunes, but you’ll have less control over the experience they have. Is it worth the trade-off? More listeners, less brand experience control. The best answer is, it depends. 

If you expect the podcast community to search for your podcast’s topic and you’re not particularly concerned about who those people are, I’d lean towards using iTunes versus not. Right now Apple does not allow podcasters to target listeners outside of search. However, they do allow you to pay to have your podcast featured. 

 

 

BUT, SYNDICATING TO iTUNES DOES HELP

There are three reasons, albeit not incredibly powerful, that could merit iTunes syndication. 

 

1. SEARCH ENGINE OPTIMIZATION (SEO)

iTunes is a powerful hub for users and providers. Search engines, no doubt, give you better search scores if you’re listed there. That’s worth something, especially over a few years. But, there are plenty of other free ways to create positive SEO outcomes. 

Plus, people search within iTunes for financial podcasts and don’t necessarily use Google. I don’t know the number of searches because Apple doesn’t share those stats  (hopefully they will sooner than later). 

 

2. CREDIBILITY

“You can find my podcast on iTunes.” has a nice ring to, it doesn’t it?

 

3. WHY NOT?

Syndicating your podcast to iTunes is easy to do once you have your RSS link. The point of my article isn’t to keep you from syndicating to iTunes, it’s to manage expectations. I find advisors’ expectations play a large role in their long-term marketing success and how efficiently they get there from a cost-and-efficiency standpoint. Not sticking with marketing because your expectations were misaligned or inflated typically means jumping from one thing to the next, which is not only expensive, it’s time-consuming.

 

“Fragmented marketing is the leading cause of poor marketing performance. It’s akin to an investor buying high and selling low.” - Kirk Lowe

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Podcast Uncategorized

Ep 179 – The Power of Podcast Marketing — with Ben Jones

Nobody knows the power of a podcast like a podcast host.

Today, Matt Halloran welcomes Ben Jones, the host of the Better Conversations. Better Outcomes podcast and the managing director and head of intermediary at BMO Global Asset Management. At BMO, Ben leads a team of sales and service professionals to deliver investment solutions to intermediaries such as RAI’s, broker-dealers, and other investment managers.  

To get the word out about the great work his team does, Ben hosts a bi-weekly podcast called Better Conversations. Better Outcomes, where he provides listeners with actionable content to help propel their practice in different areas of wealth management. Today, Ben shares more about his strategies behind his podcast, and how he makes it as valuable as possible for listeners.

In this episode, you’ll learn:

  • About Ben’s role at BMO
  • Why Ben believes that better conversations lead to better outcomes for advisors and their clients
  • Three areas of conversation Ben and his team aim to enhance
  • The importance of putting the content you’re marketing first
  • Why Ben believes financial services is a noble profession
  • And more!

Tune in now to learn more about Ben, BMO Global Asset Management, and the power of podcasting with great content!

Resources: Top Advisor Marketing /  BMO GAM/Better Conversations/ Tickle Monster

Brought to you by: Iris.xyz

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Podcast

Episode 181 — How to ask for Referrals without Begging — Referrals Mini-Series Part 2

Categories
Podcast

Ep 178 – Show Your Clients How to RetireReady — With Ed Dressel

Today, Matt shares the mic with a guest who has a substantial amount of experience in the finance industry and ideas to help you solve problems and make your life that much better.

In this episode, Ed Dressel, president and owner of RetireReady Solutions, shares how his company helps advisors educate their clients about what retirement can and will look like. Most importantly, you will find out how Ed’s processes can be applied to your experience.

In this episode, you will learn:

  • How the reports that Ed’s company provides breaks down retirement plans in a way that everyone can understand
  • What it means to take a smaller step towards retirement and other important questions to ask your financial advisor
  • What Ed likes to do for fun to blow off steam
  • Ed’s go-to piece of advice or life insight
  • And more!

Tune into this episode of the Top Advisor Marketing Podcast and learn how to help your clients RetireReady!

Resources: RetireReady Solutions

 

Brought to you by: Iris.xyz