As the landscape for marketing changes inside and outside the financial services space, content marketing is becoming increasingly important in differentiating a brand and offering potential customers and clients the opportunity to interact with you, your company and your ideas before signing on.
I’ve been a convert to the content marketing philosophy for a while and am now even more convinced that it’s the way to go in the wake of attending the American Society of Journalist and Author’s Conference last week. The content marketing panels were excellent, and I learned about a number of companies, including IMB, Coke and Nike, that are pursuing innovation in this space.
The point of content marketing isn’t to sell potential clients on why they should hire you as their financial advisor. The point is to offer your thought leadership so you are perceived in the marketplace as an authority on specific issues who understands a specific client demographic and offers appealing solutions.
But for content marketing to be effective, it must tell a story. And that story must be framed by a well defined brand. The more specific the brand, the better the story.
When you focus in on an ideal client type and draw a very detailed picture of that client, that type of client is one that you know — or should know — inside and out. Typically, that client type is one that you know well and have interacted with for years, so you have the ability to understand their situation and offer tailored solutions to their problems and challenges.
What niche you occupy doesn’t really matter as long as you have one and it’s well defined. A recent slideshow in at financial-planning.com identified eight successful advisor niches; there are many more.
When work inside a very specific niche, creating a content marketing campaign is, or at least should be, a piece of cake. That’s because you know your audience so well that you can easily think of issues that concern them, which are exactly the areas that you should be creating blog posts, white papers, case studies, commentaries, articles and social media posts around.
When distributed widely and consistently, that kind of content will attract clients to you. It will also cut the conversion process because the clients who do get in touch will be doing so after they know something about you and are interested in learning more.
It’s exciting for me as a journalist with knowledge of the financial advisory space that content marketing is coming of age because it offers me so many opportunities to help my clients shape compelling narratives to help their clients and potential clients. That’s why they are in business in the first place — to help people achieve financial security.
In my blog posts this week, I’ll focus on other aspects of content marketing and how it can help you frame your story and attract clients to you. Stay tuned.