3 Financial Marketing Topics Advisors Can’t Afford To Ignore
Keeping up with the latest marketing trends is difficult. After all, how do you research and implement new trends when your main goal is to combat the market volatility that you are currently facing?
It’s hard to be proactive with marketing when you’re stuck in reactive mode. We’ve identified three topics that financial marketers can easily tackle, even amid the unpredictability of the market.
1. Testimonials – Updated SEC rules now allow testimony from financial advisers. The tools advisors use to determine what financial investments to make on behalf of their clients have evolved over time.
More and more investors have focused on researching online and comparing results with their peers before asking an investment firm questions. By the time this type of awareness has occurred, a potential client has largely made or is close to making their decision.
With this natural evolution in the way that individuals search, there is a change in the SEC rules, which now allow financial advisor testimonials (with appropriate restrictions and caveats, of course).
It is important to note that â93% of consumers say online review impact their buying decision, âand until recently these 1970s SEC restrictions left the financial industry in the dust. By enabling valid testimonials, this additional insight into the performance of a financial firm and its brand can provide a new level of authenticity and potentially build trust.
2. Environment, social and governance – It’s more than just a passing trend. While ESG isn’t a new or revolutionary idea (in fact, it’s been around since the 1970s), it has gained a lot of investor attention over the past few years.
In fact, the most recent report from the United States Forum for Sustainable and Responsible Investment (US SIF) noted that investors held $ 17.1 trillion in selected assets using ESG criteria at the start of 2020, which is an increase from $ 12 trillion two years earlier.
For those not as familiar with the subject, ESG criteria help provide a yardstick by which to measure how well a company conducts its business, focusing on its environmental, social and governance efforts.
For example, investors research how companies monitor their carbon footprint, how they manage the well-being of their employees, and their leadership and ethical standards. Sustainable investing will continue to gain in importance.
According to an ESG survey conducted by the Institute of Internal Auditors (IIA), 85% of asset managers consider ESG a high priority and expect to ESG allowances in their portfolios to drop from 26.7% to 43.6% over the next five years.
3. Personalized marketing – It has become the norm, not the exception. There are many sophisticated, data-driven marketing strategies that guide businesses in how they interact with their customers and prospects. Face-to-face interactions were once the basis of how financial institutions engaged with their target audience, unfortunately 94% of banking companies are unable to respond to the ‘customization promise. ‘ The answer is simple: the mindset of the average customer has changed.
They prefer the flexibility of researching financial topics and brands online, at their convenience. By the time they contact you, they may have already made up their minds and are just looking to compare your responses to those of the competition. So how do you beat the noise of the competition? It starts with research and data.
There are a number of things that can help provide customers and prospects with the personalized experience they expect.
The Buyer’s Journey – This tool tells us where customers and prospects are in the buying process and where they are looking for information.
Website Traffic and Keywords – These help us understand what our customers are looking for. What products do they need? What services do they check?
Marketing Channels – Multiple channels produce more touchpoints for your brand to be remembered by a customer.
Thought Leadership Content – Customers and prospects aren’t cookie cutters, so neither should your content. Identify topics that interest them and provide content that will resonate with the interests or challenges they face. You can get a lot of information about your target audience through primary and secondary research.
Not only will personalized marketing help to elevate your brand above the noise of financial institutions, this will also help:
Increase engagement and conversion rates
Improve customer loyalty and retention
Improve the customer experience
Consistency of messages across all channels
Create a better return on marketing investment
Focusing on personalized marketing is a worthwhile investment, especially when you realize that 89% of consumers would be more likely to do business with a company if it offered personalized experiences. There is room for improvement within the financial marketing industry with just 59% of consumers believing the industry is nailing the personalized marketing experience.
There is no shortage of emerging trends in financial marketing. Instead of covering them all at once, focus on one or two each quarter.
Develop messages and campaigns to support each trend. Over time, you will position yourself as an expert and raise your institution above the competition.
Caroline ramseyer is an account manager at ddm marketing + communication.