Top marketing strategies for financial services companies
August 22, 2019
Without marketing, not even the best products can survive. After all, if nobody knows about your small business, how will customers find you? Financial services companies are not exempt from this rule.
Since the financial services industry is special in many ways, businesses large and small have to develop a marketing plan specifically tailored to their needs.
Depending on the segment of the industry you work in (i.e. offering small business loans, financial analyst services, financial planning, developing a small business accounting software, or providing financial services education), your marketing strategy may end up very different from other financial planners’.
Most of the following tips come from the domain of digital marketing. Although the financial services industry seems to be slower to adapt to digital marketing than others, it’s crucial to incorporate these elements into your marketing mix. Why?
The youngest generations, aka Millennials and Generation Z are increasingly relying on the digital world. In fact, 92% of Millennials pick a financial services company based on their digital presence. This means that if you opt out of digital marketing, you’re also opting out of doing business altogether in the not-so-long term.
Here are the most important marketing strategies a financial services company can pick from.
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Knowing your target market is the basis for any business in any industry. Without the crucial knowledge of who you’re selling to, your marketing messages could very easily get lost in the ether.
Creating customer personas is one of the best ways to get to know your target market. According to the definition, a persona “is a semi-fictional archetype that represents the key traits of a large segment of your audience, based on the data you’ve collected from user research and web analytics.”
Gather data from your customers and create personas that embody their most important traits. The number of personas should depend on the size of your target market and the amount of data you collected.
Give your personas real names to help them come to life. Sean the small business owner, Gabby the financial advisor, and Mercedes the web development freelancer sound a lot better than simply Personas A, B, and C.
Use these personas to better formulate your marketing messages and increase conversion rates.
In today’s digital age, your website is the main gateway for customers to your financial services company. Think of it as your calling card. Your website’s design and content has to be user-friendly (don’t forget mobile-optimization), easy to navigate, pleasing to look at, and represent your company’s image.
But that’s not enough. On top of all that, you have to make sure that your website is search engine optimized (SEO). This means that throughout your website, you have to use content with the exact keywords and keyphrases (yes, even sentences like “how to find the best financial advisor near me”) people type into their search engines when they’re looking for financial services.
Good SEO means that your website will pop up in potential customers’ searches (preferably within the top five results), leading them to your site. Since you don’t pay for this listing, it’s called “organic” or “free”.
SEO usually takes a minimum of 4-6 months to really kick in. While you’re waiting for organic SEO magic to happen, you may want to consider using paid search to give a boost to your marketing efforts.
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SEO goes hand in hand with content marketing. You need to upload fresh SEO optimized content to your site on a regular basis to help catch the attention of search engines and through them: potential customers.
Run a blog about topics your target market is interested in. Besides drawing traffic to your website, it helps to demonstrate your knowledge and cement your reputation as a financial manager.
What kind of content to publish? Anything that helps spread financial literacy. Financial news, studies published by financial institutions, or simply articles on small business credit cards or how to get small business startup loans will help get the attention of your target audience.
You can experiment with less traditional forms of content. Video marketing, for example, is very popular at the moment. Alternatively, you can design eye-catching graphs or use pictures to draw interest for your site.
In our age, social media is an unmissable marketing platform. Its uses are versatile: from customer service to sharing marketing messages, social media is one of the best ways to reach your target market.
For a financial services business, your best bet would be LinkedIn and Facebook. However, depending on your target audience, you may need to consider other platforms like Instagram, Snapchat, or even YouTube.
Regardless of the platform, you have to make sure that your company image stays the same. This doesn’t mean that you should post the same thing on all of your social media accounts. In fact, it’s best if you tailor your content to the platform in question (i.e. don’t post lengthy articles on Twitter or share pictures of models in swimming suits on LinkedIn). However, all the messages should adhere to your overall company image.
You can also consider teaming up with an influencer. Influencer marketing has grown exponentially in recent years. Pick an influencer whose target market’s in line with yours and develop a plan for cooperation.
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While many say that email marketing is dead, it’s in fact one of the most effective ways to attract and retain customers. With a 4400% of potential ROI, email should certainly be at the top of your marketing list.
With a little help from tools like MailChimp or Drip, you can streamline your email campaigns and maximize efficiency. Keeping in touch with your customers and getting the word out about new content and promotions has never been easier.
Whether you work with an in-house marketing manager, employ a marketing agency, or do a combination of both, your financial services company needs a sound marketing strategy. Use these elements to create a killer strategy and get ready for an influx of potential clients.