Financial brokers and inbound marketing must be an acceptable change for lead generation. As with all changes in marketing or web design activities and methods, such as the change from a standard desktop to mobile responsive or adaptive websites, many brokerage owners try and buck the trend as they simply see no real value in the return from their products.
For example, how many times do I hear “Oh my website…I don’t get anything from that, I just need one you know!”
That statement is like pulling teeth and simply the most frustrating throwaway comment when it comes to how a financial brokerage should conduct itself online.
Why am I talking about websites when the title says Inbound?
That’s a simple question to answer, the website is the crux of your inbound activity and if not just your website more specifically your blog. But before I proceed with this content I need you to ask yourself a real validating question.
What is the value of your website to your business?
I ask this because I want to show how much value a well thought out website can add to a well thought out Inbound Marketing campaign. Although in truth they both go hand in hand see here.
So, in the UK the typical median salary for a Financial Advisor is £30, 923 (or $47, 246.48 at today’s exchange rate). That’s just salary add National Insurance, Holiday and Sick pay, training, expenses and losses to that and that package has a truer cost nearer £45,000.
Taking that into consideration and the position that a well-structured website will cost you around £2-3000 to develop if you outsource, we’re already at a 10% investment to get off the floor. Take the £3000 from the £30000 salary, the website is 10% of the start-off hiring cost.
Now factor in that a website doesn’t get sick (unless of course it gets hacked but that’s rare), it takes no holiday and needs no training plus it works 24 hours a day 365 days of the year. A focused financial broker could apply him or herself and really do well by feeding the site good quality informative content. Alternatively, you can outsource your financial services marketing to a reputable agency to act on your behalf.
If you apply yourself to your marketing activities it’s only a time cost, but you can and will increase traffic and turn those into leads. If you hire an agency, yes there are costs, but those costs will be lower than a salaried salesperson and marketing person or indeed a sales team and marketing team.
With that in mind, I’ll ask you again…
What is the value of your website to your business?
Well for most of you, your website can effectively be the difference between success and failure, it’s really that simple. There’s no magic formula, there are however proven methods of increasing traffic to your website whilst of course ensuring that the site itself is visually appealing, let’s look at our own landing page for instance
Here we have a relative and contextual background image (video), our logo is pronounced so you know with whom it is you are visiting, we are clearly labelled by service and we have our first call to action.
What’s a call to action
The CTA or call to action is a prompt for your visitor to do something, immediately we have an offer for our visitor to get a FREE Inbound Marketing assessment which drives that user to a landing page where they can swap their data in order to get something in return, the consultation.
If the visitor registers their details then we’ve already generated a lead as typically people don’t register their details for products and or services they have no interest in.
The Website structure
As you scroll through the website, you clearly see our about us page stating who and what we are, plus some of the more renowned financial institutions we have worked with creating authenticity and again another call to action with the Inbound Assessment.
We then break out our business services with calls to action to click into those services and find out more followed again by a call to action to get in touch.
Do you see a pattern developing here?
The pricing page has several CTA’s and the inbound marketing page also has a CTA and links to relevant case studies.
At this point are any of your financial service providers thinking, “Yeah, my site has all of that stuff”?
If not, it’s about time you think about adopting some of this into your own strategy.
The next part of the process is to look at the content that is displayed in your site!
- How much effort has gone into the copy
- Is that content keyword optimised
- Do you have contextual images
- Is there a blog? Are you using it?
Let’s look at the copy on your site, what exactly does it say? Is it short, sharp and to the point or is it long-winded, boring and easily dismissed maybe the content is talking in the first, rather than the third person?
There are a number of factors to consider when producing the copy for your website pages and if you aren’t good at copywriting, invest in your business and hire a professional it will pay dividends in the long term.
Below we have an example of bad copy and call to action
Image from blog.market8.net
Check out the wording, spacing, spelling and grammar. Would you buy from this company? I think most would save $150 by keeping it in your pocket.
Tip: Inbound marketing is about setting yourself up as an expert in your field, never sell your business short by cutting corners on the website or its copy
Writing a business blog
Blogging, most of you just sighed in the thought of having to write blog articles for your business website, but it’s not as daunting as you first think. Those of you working in the financial industry have sat numerous exams to qualify for the position you hold. Along the way, you most certainly gained some quite technical information about products and services you or your business retail.
Most of your potential customers may know what type of product in general that they need, insurances, mortgages, loans, stocks, pensions whatever the product, but they don’t always really understand them. YOU DO!!
You know how to take those complex products and simplify them so that the regular Joe can understand what he or she is buying into. So in fact, you already have the skills and capability to produce great educational and relevant content for your blog, you just need to remember that you are writing to educate, not to sell. Almost like you were explaining your services through writing to your teenage niece nephew son or daughter.
Inbound marketing and social media for financial services
Now that you’ve established where you are with your website, with your website copy and your blog, you need to know how to share the great educational content you’ll produce across social media. To do this you must first map out exactly what you can and can’t talk about and then once you have done that set the tone of your conversations.
But you haven’t explained why I shouldn’t avoid it
Well, let’s look at real businesses that have adopted Inbound Marketing and break down their results. The first business is PTT Financial Research, their biggest claim was a 700% increase in leads generated by adopting Inbound.
They increased leads sevenfold, doubled their annual revenue targets and had a tenfold return on their investment into inbound and the Hubspot platform.
"HubSpot set the standard for how SMBs use content to drive business. We simply followed their inbound marketing program blueprint and ended up with an efficient and incredibly effective and powerful sales system of our own."
Jeremi Karnell, CMO PTT Research
Another financial services related business that saw an instantaneous change by adopting inbound is DeNovo Strategy. An advisory business to the banking industry they saw a 430% growth in leads with Hubspot by registering 422 new blog subscribers in the first 3 months of inbound marketing.
So in closing, I’ll ask you, financial service professionals, what’s your close rate on your leads and how would a potential 700% increase in warm pre-educated leads affect your bottom line if you closed that much more business every year?
We advocate inbound marketing for the financial service industry because it works.