Many people think that earning their financial advisor credential automatically leads to a comfortable lifestyle. While your licensure opens doors, you still have to do the hard work of building a viable practice. Doing so begins with getting the word out about who you are and what you do.
However, it isn’t sufficient to hang a shingle and book advertisements. You need a defined approach to maximize benefits and minimize potential headaches and pitfalls. Here are five marketing tips for financial advisors.
1. Stay Compliant With Regulations
Have you ever noticed how attorney advertisements always include the phrase, “non-attorney spokesperson?” That’s one way savvy law firm marketers comply with American Bar Association rules that dictate what they can and cannot say when advertising their services.
Financial advisors likewise need to adhere to compliance rules. Additional credentials may differentiate you from the competition but create a nightmare if you don’t have an established plan. If you don’t have the cash to hire a compliance officer, consider outsourcing your efforts to a recognized firm that can help you navigate the rules.
Failure to remain in compliance can cost you big time. The Securities and Exchange Commission recently levied several huge fines ranging from $100,000 to a half-million to firms they deemed falsely advertised performance claims. Affected companies rank among the most well-known in industry circles, proving that your organization’s reputation won’t spare it from the investigative eyes of the authorities.
2. Find Your Differentiator
What sets you apart from every other financial advisory firm out there? Look at yourself from a consumer’s point of view. You all wear suits and carry briefcases, consider going jacketless for your “casual” Friday attire, and occupy desks with fashionable green bankers lamps affixed. Why should they choose you – especially if you’re new – over the organization down the street?
The trick is finding your differentiator. There are as many approaches to this as there are personalities. For example, some mutual funds attract new clientele by investing only in green companies or those that support various causes near and dear to their clients’ hearts. Could you set your offerings apart by promising to invest your customers’ money only in companies that adhere to their moral code?
Once you identify what sets your firm apart, you need to broadcast it everywhere. It isn’t sufficient to include it only in radio spots or web advertisements. Dedicate the “about us” portion of your corporate website to what sets you apart. Design a brief slogan – the financial firm with a heart, perhaps? – that entices people to learn more and use it as a tagline on business cards and letterheads.
3. Diversify Your Strategy
Technological innovations provide more ways to market your services than ever before. However, they also present a challenge: determining the best avenues for getting your name before potential clients.
It’s tempting to emulate your last firm’s strategy or follow others you see or hear about in daily life. However, the media you enjoy might not be the same used by today’s consumers. For example, Facebook recently reported its largest user drop in history, whereas other platforms like TikTok have exploded in popularity.
Your best bet is to visualize your client base – try to put yourself in their shoes. If you specialize in helping older individuals make their money last through retirement, you might not spend much, if anything, advertising on social media. It could be more lucrative to concentrate on radio and television spots.
Conversely, more and more young people have cut the cable cord to slash their household bills, relying on free services like YouTube for streaming. You could target more Millennials and Generation Z folks who find paying $80 a month for limited programming choices an extravagant waste of money.
4. Develop Healthy Relationships
Lee Iacocca once said, “Business is, after all, nothing more than a bunch of human relationships.” As a financial advisor, your reputation is your best marketing angle. Networking with others and forming business alliances can skyrocket your client list growth.
Here’s an angle – could you offer your services as a potential fringe benefit to an associate in an unrelated field? You get the perk of their entire staff’s attention when you pitch your firm. You also gain trust, as people are more likely to place their hard-earned money in the hands of someone whose reputation they can confirm through others, like their boss.
5. Analyze the Negative, Focus on the Positive
Some of your marketing efforts will succeed; others will fail. You could spend hours ruminating over what went wrong – it still won’t bring in any new revenue. Instead, focus on what works, striving to replicate and exceed those results.
Hit pause and assess your strategy after every campaign. Consider factors like the resources required – could you achieve similar results with fewer? Analyze what actions people took by conferring with your team. Did a particular advertising outreach produce incoming calls but few conversions? If so, is the problem with your closers or the wording of the initial attention-grabber?
Marketing Tips for Financial Advisors
Earning your financial advisor credential is only the first step in a lucrative career. You still have to do the hard work of establishing your expertise.
The right plan can fuel your success. Heed these five marketing tips for financial advisors and enjoy growing your business.