October 16, 2023
As the year-end approaches, it’s a perfect time for financial advisors to reflect on their 2023 marketing plan. Financial advisors should review all marketing activities to see what worked and keep those for 2024, but also make changes to the ones that did not work out so well and decide if they should be replaced with a better option. Remember, marketing is a process, not an event, so to ensure you don’t miss anything in your year-end review, here are some best practices to consider:
- Reflect and Set New Or Update Existing Goals
Before diving into marketing initiatives, take some time to reflect on your performance over the past year. What worked well, and what could be improved? Set specific, measurable goals for the upcoming year, such as acquiring a certain number of new clients, increasing assets under management, or expanding into a new niche market. To help you implement new ideas in your plan, read the previous blog I wrote on the 80/20 rule. And while you are at it, review your marketing budget and see where you need to make any adjustments.
- Update Your Website and Online Presence
Your website is your digital store front and the first point of contact for potential clients. Ensure it’s up-to-date, easy to navigate, and mobile-friendly. Make a list of enhancements you want to implement in 2024 by quarter so it’s manageable. Be sure to update your bio and any new credentials or awards you obtained. With the new SEC marketing rule, consider which client can give you a testimonial to post on the site. And as always, ensure you are up to speed on optimizing your website for search engines to improve your online visibility and check your website traffic as often as possible.
- Content Marketing
Develop or update a content calendar by each month for the coming year, covering topics that address your clients’ pain points and interests. I have found to make the calendar content more manageable, work on Q1 and Q2 2024 now, but wait until the Spring to work on Q3 and Q4. Also think about new ways to communicate your content. For example, try using videos. You no longer need expensive equipment to get started.
- Social Media Engagement
Actively engage with your audience on social media, but think about the content. Look back to see what had the most engagement and try to do more of that type of content. Also try to respond promptly to comments and messages, and consider running targeted ad campaigns on platforms like LinkedIn or Facebook to reach specific demographics. Last but not least increase your connections. I best practice is within 24-48 hours after you meet someone new, send them a LinkedIn invite.
- Email Marketing
Email marketing remains a powerful tool for nurturing client relationships and generating leads. Send regular newsletters and timely campaigns that provide valuable insights, financial tips, and news about your firm. Segment your email list to send tailored content to different client segments based on their interests and needs. If you are already sending emails, like social media, look to see what content received the most engagement by reviewing open and click-through rates.
- Networking and Partnerships
Consider establishing or strengthening relationships with complementary professionals such as estate planning attorneys, accountants, or insurance agents. But don’t stop there. Reach out to real estate agents, business owners and philanthropic organizations in your market and offer free consultations or host a financial wellness workshop for their organization. Also think about joining local associations and chapters to get to know more Centers of Influence in a collaborative environment.
- Virtual Workshops, Webinars and client events
Review all events you hosted, both in-person and online and see how it went this year. If you haven’t hosted any events, think about hosting online events like webinars or virtual workshops to attract potential clients. Year-end is also a great time to express gratitude to your existing clients. Host client appreciation events, either in person or virtually, to strengthen relationships and encourage referrals going into 2024
Last but not least, it’s essential to stay compliant with industry regulations, especially when marketing your services. Please check with your compliance manager and/or your firm to keep up with the necessary compliance standards.
Effective year-end marketing can set the stage for a successful year ahead. By reflecting on your past performance, setting clear goals, and implementing these best practices, financial advisors can enhance their online presence, connect with clients, and attract new business in the coming year. Remember, marketing is an ongoing effort, and consistency is key to building a strong and reputable brand in your local market.