Wednesday, May 1, 2024
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5 Top Lead-Generation Strategies For 2024

Yes, advisors who want to market well need a well-designed website, an engaging social presence, and responsive communications. But those things are just the beginning. Standing out means doing more.

That’s why I’ve come up with five of my favorite lead-generation strategies to help you discover new or unexpected ways to attract ideal clients.

1. Don’t Underestimate Your Copy

What’s the first thing people look for on an advisor’s website? You might think that it’s your services and resources, but one of the most viewed pages on these sites is actually the “About” page.

That’s because your site visitors want to see themselves—something that resonates with them and their goals. Yes, your services might be unique, but prospects can likely find similar ones elsewhere.

So, how do you highlight your brand and make it resonate? My suggestion is that you hyper-focus on your website text. It’s your words that remind people about your brand and value proposition, so the ones you choose are critical. Here are some things to keep in mind:

• You want to use the language on your “About” page to tell a story. Focus on the “why.” What made you want to become an advisor? What are your values and interests? These elements can serve as conversation kick-starters for people still considering your firm.

• You should avoid buzzwords: Words like “holistic,” for example, lack precision. Comb your site for language like this and remove it, or replace the words with something more engaging.

• You should also keep human behavior in mind: Rather than focusing on your exact services, consider the emotional payoff you’ll get when you bring up certain topics. The more specific they are to your audience, the better. For example, instead of saying, “We manage client investments,” you could say, “We help grow wealth so you have the freedom to enjoy life.”

If your copy is strong and supported by a well-designed site, you’re in a great place to improve both the volume and quality of your leads.

2. Encourage Reviews

There’s a concept called “social proof,” where people look to others to figure out appropriate behavior and courses of action—at which point they feel free to join in. That’s a good way to start talking about people’s online behavior, especially when they’re seeking help.

Most people looking for services first check online reviews to make their decisions, and advisory prospects are no different. Many of these would-be clients come from referrals, but there’s a good chance they’ll seek reviews before taking any of the next steps.

That’s why I recommend you set up and maintain your Google Business profile. This is going to be a hub of business information about you, containing your hours, description, website and social media links, and reviews. A positive review here can raise your profile in Google searches, which is especially important for advisors, since many of the people looking for them want someone local.

Naturally, the way you acquire reviews will depend on your firm’s policies and procedures regarding the new SEC marketing rule. So before you take any further steps, I recommend checking with your compliance team first to make sure you’re not running afoul of regulations.

3. Start Running Webinars

Webinars are underused by advisors looking to generate new business, even though many advisors who do use them find them to be effective. The reluctance might be due to the fact that webinars feel more complicated or intimidating than other strategies. Yet they don’t necessarily have to be. They’re easy to set up once you’ve learned the ropes of a chosen platform, and they require few resources to run. Here are a few ideas to help you overcome your worries:

• You’ll want to come up with a good topic for the webinar, perhaps a case study in which you tell a story that illustrates the advice you’re giving. You can make it about something timely that was in the news. You can address the problems of specific niche clients (perhaps doctors or business owners who have a problem). You can touch on evergreen topics (such as taxes or Social Security). Or you can talk about service-gap topics (things you do for clients that they may not be aware of).

• If you’re nervous about being on camera, consider bringing a subject matter expert along as a guest. That way you can share the focus, and both of you get a chance to promote your services to each other’s networks.

• You’ll want to schedule your webinar for a time that works best for you and your audience, which tends to be midweek. You can promote the webinar with an email and social post the week before the events, then send an email three days before and one more the day of.

• After the event, send an email to attendees to thank them for joining you and to all non-attendees to say you missed them. Offer a link to the webinar in both cases so your clients can replay it. Also, add the webinar recording to your website (perhaps in a “Resources” section under “Webinars.”) That will allow you to differentiate your website and let prospects see you in action. You can also repurpose the clips to build out your social posts for the week and check the chat for viewer questions. You’ll also likely get new webinar ideas that way.

4. Referrals From Unexpected Places

Referrals from other high-profile professionals are still one of the best lead-generation strategies for advisors. Many of you likely start with attorneys and accountants, but you might want to consider going outside the box, looking for anybody who handles large sums of money or makes financial decisions.

• Consider college admission coaches. Besides helping families prepare for the college application process, they also often help families with the financial elements of admission, such as finding scholarships and filling out the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (or FAFSA) form.

• Also consider life coaches. These people are often working closely with clients seeking personal growth and change. Such people are also likely going to be thinking about financial planning as a key element of their goals.

• Career coaches are also good referrers. They also are often working with career changers, people who are likely in the middle of managing severance packages, investing for retirement or planning for business ventures.

• Next, think of divorce attorneys. While all attorneys are good referral sources, divorce specialists can connect you with people who need guidance at a trying time.

• Geriatric care managers, meanwhile, those who work with aging individuals and their families, often have clients who need help with financial planning for retirement, long-term care, and estate planning.

• Elder law attorneys are similar to geriatric care managers. These attorneys deal with legal issues affecting seniors, and they might need financial planning assistance.

• HR professionals at large companies can help you as well. Many companies offer financial wellness programs, and their HR professionals might connect you with employees seeking individual guidance.

• Mortgage brokers are also a good option. Homeownership involves major financial decisions, and brokers might be able to connect you with clients needing planning advice.

• Real estate agents also work with a range of clients, from first-time home buyers to real estate investors, and they can offer you insight into the real estate market.

• Business consultants are a good resource because businesses frequently require financial planning and investment guidance.

So, what’s the best way to reach out and build these relationships? There are several. For instance, you can connect with people on LinkedIn, follow them, and comment on their posts, or you can message them, noting that you frequently come across people looking for these professionals’ services and have been looking for someone to refer them to. Ask them if they’d be open to a quick introductory meeting.

You can also add these other professionals to your email distribution list to share timely, relevant information that keeps you at the top of their minds and establishes you as a thought leader and expert in your field.

To build on the relationship once the door has been opened, invite them to partner on a webinar with you so you can both benefit from each other’s connections.

But keep in mind, when you’re trying to build relationships, you have to think about what’s important to them, not just to you.

5. Host Virtual Client Appreciation Events

Client appreciation events can be a wonderful way to engage with prospects and receive referrals. But they can also be expensive and difficult to coordinate. I’m not recommending that you abandon in-person client events (they’re very helpful), but what if event hosting was easier and more economical?

That’s where virtual events come in. These offer similar benefits, including referral opportunities when your clients invite guests. You might expand into new demographics this way.

Several companies, such as Confetti, Rockoly, Board and Brush, and Bar & Cocoa, host virtual events such as wine and chocolate tastings, charcuterie board classes, trivia nights, craft parties, and holiday gift exchanges. Besides being a great lead-generation strategy, virtual events are also fantastic for surprising and delighting your clients.

Before selecting a virtual event, keep your clients in mind. What are their interests? Is there something they shared in a previous meeting?

Elevating Your Brand

It’s important to keep in mind as you consider these five strategies that you’re hoping to make your brand resonate—and make people think about you first whenever they’re seeking solutions to whatever problem.

As you look to lead generation opportunities in 2024, I hope that this list gives ideas to help you elevate your brand and grow your business.



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