7 simple ways advisers can engage new clients with content through online and social.

Advisers now more than ever need to reach out and communicate with their clients and potential clients through channels such as social media, blogs, e-letters, newsletters, videos, podcasts and via their websites.

Content = getting to know you

Why? Well firstly because the consumer landscape has changed. Marketing research shows that customers are turned off by direct attempts to sell to them. What they appreciate more is reading or engaging through content that gives them information they are looking for before they make a buying decision. If that content is delivered to them from you, then they get to know and trust you and your company, and are more likely to do business with you.

Or to put it another way; “Marketing is telling the world you’re a rock star. Content marketing is showing the world you are one”. Robert Rose, The Content Marketing Institute.

Sharing is caring

Delivering empowering, educational and compelling content through your comms will place you as an expert – as someone who’s across what’s current and who cares about sharing knowledge with their customer base.

But given most advisers are not trained writers and don’t have a huge amount of time to create content – here are seven tips to help you deliver content that will perform as a sales tool.

  1. Tell great stories: Your clients are busy so grab their attention quickly. Give them headlines that make them sit up and take notice. Got a success story from a client? Don’t be afraid to ask for personal endorsements. That helps build your brand. Using real life case studies are great ways of showing what you can achieve for a client.
  2. Cover hot topics: Write about subjects that are current and that you know people are talking about. It may be SMSF’s or BitCoin. Try searching Google Trends or news sites for ideas. Remember, you don’t just have to write about what you sell. Go wider with your topics. General finance or money stories are of interest to most people.
  3. Add value: Show your clients you are a great resource for information. People like and appreciate free content that is informative and useful. It builds trust and they might share it, which is free advertising! If you’re stuck for ideas, try using www.stumbleupon.com to gather links to stories around certain keywords.
  4. Find your voice: Stay true to yourself when you create content. People want to read/ see/ hear what you have to say. It helps create a more human, emotional connection. Don’t be afraid to give personal opinions.
  5. Know your customers: The best content matches what your clients are looking for. Would they appreciate you sharing the occasional cat video from Youtube? Pictures from your company’s charity fun run? Or just common sense advice? Whatever it is, use language and content they will connect with and understand. And remember it’s okay to use humor now and then. Whitepapers tend not to go viral!
  6. Keep it short: Don’t overwhelm your clients with too much information at one time. Attention spans and spare time are getting shorter so keep it simple. Choose one topic, one message. It will have more impact and it means you don’t use up all your subject matter at once.
  7. Use third party content: You don’t have to write everything yourself. Has someone else written a brief article, analysis or blog related to your area of expertise? Showing a willingness to point to other experts demonstrates your own greater understanding and awareness of the field you are in.

If you need more help in figuring out what ‘content marketing’ is all about, there is a great free e-book with short and simple examples at this website- http://contentmarketinginstitute.com/what-is-content-marketing/.

And if it still feels too overwhelming that’s ok, you can always hire a content marketing agency to take care of it all for you.

(Originally written for and published by BT Financial, Australia, in November 2014)