Most advisors stick their head in the sand when it comes to search engine optimization (SEO). It’s confusing, complex, and they don’t want to spend money on something they don’t understand.
I’ve spent the last two years studying SEO. I want to share everything I know about how SEO can double the organic traffic to your website!
In this exclusive webinar, we’ll review:
- What is SEO and why does it matter for advisors?
- Demystifying how SEO really works
- How can you tell if your website needs help?
- 11 steps you can do today to get more traffic
- Your guide to do it yourself for free!
- Your free SEO Audit Report
Space is limited, so join us now to qualify for the free offer!
Meet Your Webinar Host
Claire Akin, MBA
Claire Akin runs Indigo Marketing Agency a full-service marketing firm serving top independent financial advisors.
She works closely with several of Barron’s Top 100 Financial Advisors to grow their AUM using digital marketing.
READ THE TRANSCRIPT BELOW
Hi financial advisors. I’m Claire Akin with Indigo Marketing Agency. Thank you so much for joining me for this month’s webinar, Search Engine Optimization for Financial Advisors. Now, in this webinar, I’m going to tell you my story of how I worked for two years to create the best search engine optimization plan for financial advisors that will deliver actual measurable results within the first 30 days, that doubles the traffic to your website of people finding you online. I’m going to teach you everything that so you or someone on your team can do this process on your own for free or I’ll give you a coupon at the end of the webinar so that you can hire us to do it for you. Let’s get started.
All right. For search engine optimization for financial advisors, at the core, what we’re really going to talk about is, how to show up higher on Google and how to get more traffic to your website, both of which are really important for not only getting new prospects that find you online, but also for getting more referrals from your existing clients. First, let me give you a little bit about my background. A whole lot of you know that I’m a former investment advisor representative and I worked with my dad in his business. He’s been an advisor for 37 years and so that’s how I got into this industry. I have a degree in economics from UC Davis and MBA in marketing from UC San Diego. I also worked with a company called FMG Suite, who helps advisors with their websites.
I created Indigo Marketing Agency to give advisors more consistent and custom marketing help. Advisors hire us to do their marketing for them and take it off their plate. I also created Indigo Marketing Academy, where you can do all of your own marketing. For a monthly fee of $39 a month, you can get access to a weekly step by step marketing coaching program that allows you or someone on your team to do all of your marketing on your own. I’m really excited, I just got word yesterday that I’ve been accepted as an instructor at UCLA Extensions CFP Program. If you’re going to be in Southern California this summer and you want to enroll in their CFP program, join us. It’s going to be an amazing curriculum and an amazing course.
Let me start by telling you a story about my first client. When I was a financial advisor, I was really hungry for clients. I was so excited because my first client that I brought to the firm by myself, on my own, was Barbara. It was a really hard sell because she was a 57 year old woman, and she had about $780,000 invested in three Vanguard Bond Funds. She thought she didn’t need any diversification because she had three different bond funds with three different names, so she was all set from a diversification perspective. All she wanted to talk about was Social Security, whether or not she could retire on time and she wanted to clarify some things about her required minimum distributions and do some budget planning for when she was retired.
She didn’t want to pay for investment, management or an advisory fee, but of course, we had to talk to her about her investments because they were not diversified. The S&P 500 back in March of 2012, was that around 1800, and so think about where it is today and how far it’s come and if Barbara had stayed in bond funds for the last six years as she approaches retirement, the gains that she would have missed out on. She just wasn’t interested in hearing what we had to say, because she already had a financial advisor. That financial advisor was her brother, who is my favorite type of advisor. He wasn’t trained at all, he had no formal education in financial advice. He actually had never worked at all. He lived for free with their elderly mother and spent a lot of time on the internet. He was the person that she had listened to about her finances. We had to really have a keeping it real moment with Barbara and tell her, “You need somebody education to prepare yourself for retirement so that you can make informed decisions to have a secure retirement. Otherwise, you’re not in a situation that is protecting you from bond market shifts and you’re not prepared for a secure retirement.”
We explained and educated Barbara and finally, we brought her on as a client. It was a success story and, of course, her account was much more successful than she would have been on her own. This is just so much like SEO for Financial Advisors, because, so many advisors because they don’t understand search engine optimization, they really put their head in the sand and they don’t want to think about it. It’s so important for building your business and it’s as important as diversifying Barbara’s portfolio was. Let’s talk about your background and how you may be feeling about SEO today. You may not understand search engine optimization, maybe it’s kind of Hocus Pocus to you and maybe you’ve even spent money on the past that didn’t pay off and so you’re really skeptical of it. Maybe you don’t have time to do it yourself or to really learn about it.
If you do understand that it’s important, maybe you keep putting it off and you just haven’t had time to actually jump in and make the investment and get your search engine optimization going. I am a firm believer that you actually can’t trust SEO companies. Most SEO companies are making a lot of money. It’s a billion dollar industry, and they’re not held accountable. You really can’t trust a major SEO company and SEO companies out there don’t understand our industry. The first thing that a big search engine optimization company is going to want to do for you, is get client testimonials. Well, we can’t have those in our industry, so there goes half of their scheme to work on your SEO. We really need a better solution and that’s why I created my SEO package.
I’ll tell you a little bit about why I care and why I’m passionate about this subject. Back in 2015, I was working as a junior advisor in my dad’s firm and I needed clients. I knew that the internet was growing and that people were finding financial advisors online, they just weren’t finding us online. I did some research on SEO and I realized that this is what we needed to do to help people find us online. We invested $4800 on search engine optimization that year. Guess what happened? I was so excited for all these new clients that were going to find us on the internet and nothing happened. Zero zilch nada. It was a big disappointment for me, because we’d wasted this money and the person in our contact at the SEO company, kept telling us that we just need to be patient, we just need to wait longer. I was tired of throwing good money after bad and so we fired them and I decided I was going to learn about SEO on my own and figure out what to do to get more traffic to our website.
You can see even if you go into your own spam filter, your spam folder in your email today, you can see all of these SEO emails. It’s like the biggest industry in the world and people are making so much money on it and they’re really taking us all to the cleaners. I wanted to figure out an SEO package that actually delivered and wasn’t going to rip people off. Here is the kind of the things that I set out to do, developing my SEO package that I started creating two years ago. It took a lot longer than I expected. I wanted to have it up and running in two months. It took a full two years. My goal was to have people pay a one time fee. I didn’t want advisors paying thousands of dollars each month and waiting for results that may or may not ever come. I wanted to spend less than $1,000.
Now, it just couldn’t be that complex. Right? I wanted advisors to be able to invest less than $1,000 and do the most important things from an SEO perspective, to give the biggest payoff. I wanted those results to be measurable and to take place within the first 30 days. I didn’t want to be telling people, “You have to wait longer or you have to be patient.” Because if we’re really doing something that’s impacting the internet and your search engine optimization, I believed that we would see immediate results within the first 30 days. My criteria for success would be double the number of people finding you on Google each month. That would be within the first 30 days and then as we went on, that would increase.
I talked to several SEO experts about this and they all laughed, and they said, “It’s not possible. You could never do it for that price point. It’s too complex. It just wasn’t going to happen.” No one would work with me. I went through several SEO specialists. I tried people in the United States. I tried people in China. The result was the same. They couldn’t do it for this price point and it was too hard for them. I understand why now. It’s because they’re busy getting paid millions by companies that are throwing away their money and so doing the hard work that provides results for a little bit of money was too much for them. In any case, I hired a SEO consultant who was really well known nationally and I said, “I know that you can’t do this for this price point, but can I hire you for your hourly rate and can you teach my team how, that we can do it for our clients?” He said, “Sure.”
We worked with him over the course of months and we developed this SEO package that actually delivers these results for less than $1,000. Within the first 30 days, we doubled the number of people finding you on Google. Now, it wasn’t easy, and I’m going to walk you through exactly what we did and everything that’s included, so that you can get the impact and get more people finding you online.
Here is one of our clients that we just completed this process for. This as a client and we finished just a couple of months ago. This is Richard Archer with Archer Investment Management down in Austin, Texas. He’s had great results. It’s really changed the way that his business is working and he’s an amazing advisor. I know he cares about his clients so much. I’m really proud that we’ve made such an impact so that he can help more people in his community. He said, “Since you completed the SEO work, we’ve been busy. I think the money we spent has already paid off. I’ve had four meetings from people who found us via the web.” That’s the kind of results that we’re looking for.
Here is the actual measurable results from Richard Archer’s Google Analytics. Google Analytics is a free technology that will show you the traffic to your website each and every day. You can see that people finding him from a Google search were about 17 people per week on average before. Then, when we did the SEO package at the beginning of January, that doubled to 34 visits per week after the SEO project and that’s continued to double as time goes on.
I’m going to teach you exactly what you need to know, to do this process on your own. Today, we’re going to talk about, what is SEO and why does it matter? We’re going to demystify how SEO really works, because I think the SEO experts like to have it shrouded in secrecy and complexity, but at the end of the day, you guys are financial advisors, you’re intelligent people. If you can understand financial markets, you can certainly understand how this works. We’re going to talk about how you can tell if your site needs help, 11 steps you can do today to get more traffic to your site this month and your guide to do it yourself. Of course, I know you’re busy, so if you’d rather just have us do it for you, I’m going to give you a coupon to save $100 on our SEO package.
First things first, what is SEO? Search engine optimization or SEO is the practice of increasing your website’s traffic by helping people find your site online. We know that 93% of searchers don’t go past the first page of search results on Google. Often, people will search for a financial advisor near me and maybe they’ll take a look at the top three or five results and maybe interview two or three advisors and go with the one they liked best. If you’re not in the top three to five results, you’re not going to get new clients from the internet.
The most common search is often for your business name. That’s because, people who are referred to you by one of your existing clients will type your business name and Google to see what comes up. It’s critically important that you actually come up for your own business name. What we’re doing with SEO is, helping people find you when they need you most. Instead of selling to people who aren’t motivated to take action, you’re sitting back and letting these very motivated people who are actually proactively searching on Google, we’re helping them find you so that they can actually take action.
Let’s talk about the business of search engines. Now, you may not have ever thought about this, but it’s pretty obvious when you do think about it. What are search engines trying to do? Well, they’re trying to do the best at helping people find information that is relevant. There’s actually huge money in these industries and there’s huge competition between the top big search engines. What Google, and Yahoo and Bing are trying to do is, they’re trying to finish your search. When you type in, why do I have insomnia at night? They’re trying to give you an article that will answer that question and you will conclude your search and be done with it. That’s how they basically figure out if your search has been successful.
If you’re trying to find a financial advisor in your area, the way that they know that you’re successful, is if you click on the site, maybe you spend a lot of time on the site, and maybe you click to schedule an appointment, or you call or you send an email. They’re trying to give you a credible result that basically solves the problem that you have. It’s a lot like the three credit reporting agencies because they have a big challenge. How does Google know if a website is credible or not? How does it know that it’s actually providing the information that it says it’s going to provide? What if somebody who says they’re a financial advisor actually is a conman? They use clues to make sure that your site is credible. How can they tell if your site is credible? It’s a lot similar to these credit reporting agencies, of course, maybe not that first one who caused us so much trouble last year, but it’s pretty similar to the credit reporting process.
They use clues to determine whether or not you’re a legitimate business. How old is your site? That’s similar to the length of credit history that you have. How long have you had your website? How much traffic does your site get? That’s a lot like your credit balance to limit, that gives them a clue of whether your site’s legitimate. How long do people stay on your site? That could be your payment history? Do people go to your site and they leave right away because it’s not what you’re purporting it to me? Or does it provide a lot of good information for them, and they take a lot of time on your site and view a lot of different pages of your site? Is your business listing accurate? This is your address history for your credit report. Is your business listed accurate across the many hundreds of different business listing agencies that are out there? Or do you have old addresses clogging up the searches? Do you have bad email addresses and phone numbers? We want all of this to be accurate and consistent.
Do you have social media profiles? Because think about it, if you were a legitimate business, that’s a thriving financial advisory firm, you probably have active social media profiles and so that is just another clue that Google uses to identify reputable businesses. This is where things get complex. You would think that there’s some place that you can just go to update your business listing. If there were, then scammers or hackers could just go in and create fraudulent business listings and get away with crimes. It’s actually a complex process that Google uses to verify whether a company is legitimate or not and it depends on a lot of different interconnected data points. There’s all of these different local business listings that we need to make sure that your site shows up accurately on, everything from Google to Yelp, to the Yellow Pages, to Yahoo, to Facebook to all of these different listings, that they want to see the exact same information across all of these internet listings. It’s important to make sure that your information is consistent across as many sites as possible.
What do search engines really want to see to tell that your site is credible? They want to see a well functioning and up-to-date website. They definitely want your site to be mobile-friendly across devices. That’s really important to Google because we know that more than half of traffic these days is from a mobile device. If your site doesn’t display well, they know that people aren’t going to have a good experience on your site and so they won’t return your website as a search result because, like we talked about before, they’re trying to return the most satisfying search results. They’ll only return mobile responsive websites.
We want to see activity across social media profiles associated with your website, consistent traffic to your site, the use of targeted keywords throughout the text and titles on your sites, so not just in your homepage, but throughout your site, consistent addresses, phone numbers and business name listings across a lot of different directories, multiple verified listings. They want to actually verify via US Mail that you’re at the location you say you’re at, and local listings like the Chamber of Commerce, the Better Business Bureau. Finally, we want to see your address listed on Google and Apple Maps and more than 20 identical local listings. This just gives you an idea of what search engines are really looking for to tell if a site is credible.
Why does SEO matter at all? First of all, we want to make sure that you show up for a financial advisor in your city. We want to make sure that because financial advisor is the most common search for local search results that you’re actually coming up for that specific keyword, not for another similar keyword. We want to make sure for clients and prospects, that you show up for your business name, so it’s easy for them to find your site and find your address or phone number, et cetera. We want to make sure that you’re well branded and that you look good in search results. In other words, we want to get more traffic and leads to your website. We want to have credibility and consistent branding, when people do a search for your name or your business name. We want to support your referral process.
We know that nine out of 10 referrals, who are referred to you by somebody that they know and trust, will still type your name into Google, before they make an appointment to see what you look like online. They’re going to check out your LinkedIn profile, they’ll check out your website, they will check you out on Google, they want to just see what’s out there and make sure there’s no red flags and so we want to control what they see.
What’s the value of good search engine optimization? Now, we know that Google Ads are basically ads where you can pay Google a price per click to get traffic to your website. That’s what we’re competing against. Some of the large national financial planning firms actually pay for their advisors to get traffic to their sites. If you paid for the traffic for a keyword search, a financial advisor in San Diego, you would be paying $23 per click. Now, that just isn’t going to make sense for most advisors, because not all of those clicks to your website are going to convert and that price adds up in a hurry. Search engine optimization for those keywords will get you easily 10 to 25 clicks per month, which over the course of a year 100 additional clicks would be worth $2394 and so it’s only almost $2400. If you’re able to invest less than $1,000 in your search engine optimization, but deliver these kind of results year after year, it starts to be beneficial. The goal is to spend less than $1,000 to double your organic clicks.
Let’s talk about what your business looks like in search results. Here is a website where we’ve not done any SEO work. This is one of our before pictures. You can see that some of the information comes up, it doesn’t look great, and there’s no pictures, there’s no logos, there’s nothing on the right-hand column and nothing shows up on maps or anything like that. This is what your firm may look like now. After we do some SEO work, you can see that the Google My Business Page is automatically displayed on the right-hand side with photos of their office, of their team, their headshots, map information, their address, the hours of operation, their phone number, and then people can click to see our website or to get directions. You can also see on the left-hand side, there’s all sorts of information about contact us, what they do, how to get a quote, and things like that. This is what a proper listing looks like on Google.
Also, we want your search results to be showing up in what’s called Google’s local three pack. That’s on the left-hand side here. You can see, it is the search results that Google suggests for local businesses. You can click to get directions, go to the website, and it has the phone number displayed right there. We want to show up in the local three pack, and if you do a search from your iPhone or from your smartphone, we want you to show up on the map that is automatically embedded in your smartphone, so that people can find you from their phone, maybe they forgot your office address, or maybe they want to give you a call to say they’re running late. They can look you up from the map function of their phone and click to call you.
How can you tell if your site needs SEO work? In general, your site probably needs SEO help if any of the following are true: If you’ve never done any SEO work, you’ve never registered your business with search engines, if you have recently changed your address or your phone number. You do need to do SEO work every time you move your physical location or if you update your phone number. If you have multiple websites or multiple firm addresses, Google can get confused easily, so you’re going to want to straighten those out. If your site is old, outdated or is not mobile-friendly, it’s time to make a change and to work on your search engine optimization.
The first step to tell if your business needs SEO help, is to search for your business name and see what comes up. Here is an advisor that is in Troy, Michigan and you can see he actually has a Google business page, but his name isn’t capitalized properly and there’s actually some bad information in there. We’re going to want to update it. Check out if you have a Google My Business Page and if you’re listed accurately. If it shows your logo, your photos and things like that, is your website listed accurately? That’s the first step. The second step is to search for financial advisor in your town and see where your website comes up. We definitely want to see you on the first page if not in the top three to five search results. Where does your site come up? Are you in the local three pack that’s listed right here on a map? Are you showing up on the map? That’s really important so people can find you.
Then the third step is, to search on maps from your phone. Does your business even show up on Apple or Google Maps? Is the information and the phone number accurate? Is your phone number connected so people can click to call your office and do the directions actually get them to your office? This will save a lot of headaches for your clients who are trying to find your office and may go to the wrong place if the information is bad.
If you’re confused about whether your site needs SEO help, we are offering a free SEO audit report in the month of February and here is a little visual of what that looks like. We will show you exactly how well you’re doing if you’re listed on Google My Business, Bing, Apple Maps, Facebook, et cetera, and we’ll show you what your listings look like and whether or not they’re accurate. 25% of advisors don’t need SEO work, so it’s good to just check in and see whether or not this applies to you and whether or not you do need to invest in your SEO. Go to indigomarketingagency.com/seoreport and we’ll give you a free SEO audit. You can take it and do whatever you’d like with it and maybe use it to help guide your SEO process in the future.
Let’s move on and let’s talk about 11 steps you can take today to get more traffic and to show up higher on Google. Before we get started with this part of the webinar, I want to make a distinction between onsite and offsite SEO. Now, this is something that people, I think, try to make more complex than it is. Onsite SEO is the things that are on your actual website, so things like your homepage, your title tags, your metadata, and I’ll go through what all these things are in a second, the sitemap, your images, your geolocation, your Google Search Console, all the things that have to do with your actual website. Offsite SEO is things like your listings, your Google My Business Page, your Bing Places listing, Apple Maps, Facebook Business, Infogroup, local citations. These are all things you do with other websites to help you register your site.
We’ll talk about these two, onsite and offsite SEO factors a little bit differently. Let’s first get started with how to improve your onsite SEO. Here are the four most important things you can do today to improve your onsite SEO. The first is to update your homepage copy. The second is to make sure your site is mobile responsive. We talked about why that’s important, because Google wants to give people a satisfying search result. Update your title tags and optimize your meta descriptions and I’ll talk to you about how to do each of these things. First, let’s decide which keywords you should target and I get this question a lot from advisors who are wondering, “Which keywords should I actually put on my homepage?” Well, let’s think about the search volume for these specific keywords that you might think about using. Financial advisor is the clear winner here. When you compare a financial advisor, financial planning, financial planner, wealth management, financial advisor is by far, the thing that people are searching for more often and so, that is the keyword that I recommend to use there.
Then you’re also going to want to choose a keyword for the services you offer. You can see college funding doesn’t get a lot of searches. Long-term care only gets a few. Retirement planning is the clear winner here. If your financial advisor who specializes in retirement planning, these are the two keywords that I recommend using. If you need help on tackling your keywords, and that’s part of the SEO audit report, is we’ll help you figure out the best keywords to use.
Then you’re going to take those keywords and we’re going to update your homepage copy because this is what Google uses to tell what your website is about. We’ll type in the name of your city and your keywords. We want to make sure those are front and center on your homepage, so it could be Fee-Only Financial Advisor in San Diego, California, Retirement Planning in Roswell Georgia, Financial Planning for Business Owners in Newark, New Jersey. Whatever it is for you, I want that front and center on your homepage. Here you can see a homepage that’s done perfectly, Independent Financial Advice and Tax Planning in Louisville. That’s a great example.
The next step is making sure your site is mobile responsive. You can actually use tools online to decide whether or not your site is mobile responsive. Go to your site from your iPhone or from your tablet and make sure that the way that it is displayed on that device actually changes, that it’s not that it’s just shrunk down to appear on that device, but that the configuration changes so that it displays perfectly no matter where your traffic’s coming from. Most of your websites are going to be mobile responsive if you have an FMG Suite, and advisor website, Twenty Over Ten. Those are all going to be mobile responsive, but if you have a different site or an older site, you’re going to want to double check that.
Then the next step is your title tags. You may not even know what title tags are and I didn’t before I started my SEO journey. That is the title of each page on your site. Every page on your site has a different title tag, and it tells Google what that page is about. These are important because, on the left-hand side here, you can see that they actually show up in the search results. My page about search engine optimization for advisors shows up as SEO for Financial Advisors: Optimizing Your Online Presence. That is my title tag. It also shows up on the right here at the top of your web browser and so some advisors come to me and they’re confused about how to change what’s on the top of their web browser on their site. That is your title tag. When you change your title tag, that text will be updated.
In WordPress, you can actually use a plugin called Yoast SEO to change your title tags and this is what it looks like. It’s really easy to do. You can ask your web developer to do it or you can do it yourself in WordPress. If you have an FMG Suite website, you can actually change it. At the very bottom of each page, there’s an SEO toolkits section, and the title tag is listed right here. You can type in what you’d like it to be and you can actually add a description. This is how you do it in FMG Suite. It’s in the dashboard, under the page of your site, at the very bottom, SEO toolkit. For advisor websites, if you have an advisor website site, you can go to page title, that’s what it’s under. It’s at the very bottom of each page, under page title settings, and you can type in your title tag there and use your keywords for that.
The next step is to talk about your meta descriptions. Underneath your title tag, which is Financial Advisor in Austin, Texas, Archer Investment management, that’s the title tag. Underneath that, are these meta descriptions. These talk about what each page is about and they also have a goal to get people to click and so this is your area where you can write copy, to try to get people to click on your site. If your site shows up in Google search results and more people click on it, Google gives that preferential treatment because they think, “Wow, this is a valid or a relevant search result.” And so they’ll return it higher. We want to make your site as clickable as possible through these meta descriptions. Each of your meta descriptions for the different pages on your site are going to be different because they’re going to appear underneath your key search results. We see that about client login services and insights, all have different meta descriptions.
Here’s some information on the ideal meta descriptions. They should be less than 320 characters, because that’s all that Google will display. They should be unique for each page, they should have a description of the actual page content, they should include your keywords and a call to action to get people to click. You want to update your homepage meta descriptions and at least your top five most visited pages. You can learn what those are and Google Analytics. If you don’t know which pages your site get the most traffic, that’s easy to find out using Google Analytics. You’ll want to update these meta descriptions to make sure they look great so that when someone sees this search result, all of the text makes sense.
Let’s talk about the next step. That’s how to improve your offsite SEO. We’re going to talk about your Google My Business Page, your Google Maps Listing, Bing, Apple Maps, Facebook, Infogroup and Acxiom. Let’s get started on your offsite SEO.
First, and the most important thing if you only do one offsite, SEO thing, please verify your Google My Business Page. It’s incredibly important. If you google Indigo Marketing Agency, you can see where I am in the world, you can see my photo, my logo, my website, my phone number, all of these things, you can see that I only work till 4:00pm apparently. I urge you to update your Google My Business Page, make sure to include your logo, your photos, your business hours, your phone number and your website information. They will verify your business by US Mail and so it’s important to do that and that gives you huge credibility online to actually be verified. You can’t verify with a PO Box and so this is a big step to get people to actually verify their business via US Mail and to be where they say they are.
The next step is your Google Maps Listing and this is actually through Google My Business. This is, once you’re verified, you will put in some information, and Google will display you on Google Maps. They’ll send you a PIN code to put in to verify your business. That’s the next step that I recommend that you do. Then you want to claim your Bing Places Listing. It’s about the same process. You just want to make sure that all of your information matches Google exactly. If you type Suite and one, but you put ST and other, you’ll want to make sure you correct that and then all of your phone numbers, your addresses in the way that you write your business name, all matches exactly.
The next step is to do your Apple Maps Listing. This is important, like we talked about, because this is a basically built-in app for iPhones and iPads. 43% of people use Apple Maps as their go to map search engine, so you’re going to want to make sure that you’re verified on Apple Maps. Then when you do that, is just go to Apple.com and verify your business. Then your Facebook Business Page. It’s important to use your Facebook Business Page, connect it to your website, so that you get that credibility from Google of your business being legitimate. You actually use your personal Facebook profile to create a Facebook business page and then you’re going to want to list your website, your phone number, all of that information, make sure you get it approved by compliance and claim your Facebook Business Listing.
Then updating your Infogroup Listing. You actually go to their Express Update thing, you can just type into Google Infogroup Express update, and you can do it for free. It’s quick and easy and you can update your information there. That will feed into the local search ecosystem that we talked about and update a lot of those listings online for you. The other huge listing out there is Acxiom. This is the one that you can actually update yourself. They’re going to verify by phone number and so you’d actually need to be at your office for them to call you with a pin code. This is the one, the big one that really fills out a lot of those other ones in the local search ecosystem and really verifies your business. Infogroup and Acxiom are the big ones you want to hit there.
What’s the payoff of doing this search engine optimization work? It sounds like a lot of work. Right? I’m sure you’re not dying to dig into that today. Maybe if you have a team member that you can delegate this to, and you’ll get it done, but let’s talk about the payoff and why it’s so important. When you think about your website traffic each month, and you think about your website conversion rate, that’s how you convert traffic into leads. Your website conversion rate, maybe 3%. That’s common for financial advisors. That could be from 3% to 7%. If you get 300 visitors per month, that’s nine leads per month that you would get off your website. If we can increase your traffic to 500 per month, that will really significantly increase the leads that you get every month from your website.
Let’s talk about the results that we had in Richard Archers based on his SEO package that we did before. We increase his organic search traffic. In the first 30 days, we doubled it. This is going to continue to increase, though it’s a pretty conservative estimate, but I don’t like to over promise. Just like financial advisors shouldn’t over promise, I don’t like to over promise either. Say we only get you 17 more visits per week on average from organic search. That’s 884 per year, and that’s 26 new leads per year at a 3% conversion rate. Now, Richard’s pretty good when he meets with people face-to-face. He closes over 50% and so that’s 13 new clients per year just from this increase in search traffic. That’s one new client every single month from now, years into the future, that you get from this SEO investment. We know that Richard has even had more success because he’s already had four in the first few weeks after his SEO process was complete.
What’s the value? How much is one new client per month worth to you? Think about that and think about your revenue, and do the calculations and figure out, what’s your payoff? What’s this worth in the first year and maybe the first two years? Can it wait? You think about a lot of advisors. The main barrier to doing SEO is that, they just put it off. It really is important because SEO is like your credit report. The length of your credit history is important and so, how long has your site been registered with search engines? That is what Google decides, it uses to decide how much traffic it’s going to give your site and so the longer your site’s registered, the more traffic you’ll get. In organic SEO search results always increase over time because of the length of credit history there.
What do your referrals see now when they search for you? If you search for your business, you may be embarrassed or shocked to see what they do find and so you may want to clean that up in a hurry. Can clients find you your contact info quickly to refer you, if they’re having lunch with somebody and they want to show them your website? Are you coming up for your business name? My favorite expression, when is the best time to plant a tree? The best time to plant a tree was either 25 years ago or today. If you put off your SEO this long, I urge you to get started and just get it done today. It’s really important and I’ll help grow your business in the future.
You can do it yourself for free with all the information that I’ve given you here or if you need more support, for $39, you can enroll in Indigo marketing Academy where we have step by step videos that walk you through all of these pieces of the puzzle things like doing your Google My Business Page, claiming your Facebook business page with videos for all of that if you really need some extra support there. You can do it yourself with SEO checklist that I’ll send after this presentation.
In Indigo Marketing Academy, we also have samples and resources for you. If you need help, say, writing your Facebook about page or adding things to your site that will help drive more traffic there, that’s all included in Indigo Marketing Academy for just $39. You can enroll at indigomarketingagency.com/academy, or if you want us to do it for you, because you’re busy, you could save $100 on our full SEO package. Remember how I created this package to be less than $1,000. Well, it’s normally $975, which I can tell you is a really good value for everything that we provide. What we’re giving through the next 48 hours only, we’re giving $100 off and so get started now to get the best pricing ever for SEO package.
It includes everything you’ve seen in this presentation and additional technical items that will really help your SEO and so we create your Google My Business Page all of these listings, we update your homepage copy, we write and add three services pages to your site, to help you rank for those service keywords. We optimize all of your title tags and meta descriptions, we connect Google Search Console, we submit your sitemap to Google, we integrate Google Maps to your website, and we add at least 20 local citations and then we also include your Schema markup on your pages, which is a more technical thing that I didn’t have time to review today.
You can pay only $875 in the next 48 hours only. I urge you to go to indigomarketingagency.com/seo to sign up today. Like I said, when’s the best time to plant a tree? Well, 25 years ago or today, so get started today. I wish you the very best of luck in your future with your business. If you’re interested in more marketing tips, connect with me on LinkedIn at linkedin.com/in/claireakin. You can email a question anytime and I’ll answer you personally, [email protected] and sign up for my news letter because I do a new webinar every single month and I send out helpful articles and blog posts every single week that help financial advisors with their marketing. Thank you so much for joining me. Keep in touch and good luck with your search engine optimization.
Amanda Laskey works with clients one-on-one to develop and implement marketing strategies that help spread the word about who they are and how they help. In her role, Amanda strives to deliver outstanding customer service to our clients. She is tech-savvy, an independent problem-solver, extremely organized, an excellent communicator, and thrives on helping others. She appreciates the ability to work remotely in a collaborative team environment while supporting her family.
Amanda holds a Bachelor of Arts in Education and a Master of Arts in Inclusive Education from Seton Hill University and has over 10 years of experience in secondary classroom teaching and over 3 years as an Executive Assistant. A proud Army spouse, Amanda resides in Pittsburgh, PA, with her husband, Brandon, their two sons, Jackson and Harrison, and their sheepadoodle, Waylon, and goldendoodle, Cash. Outside of work, Amanda enjoys spending time with her family, relaxing at the beach, traveling to new places, dessert, and all things Disney.
Leading the Indigo team with heart, Hugo Fernandez is passionate about helping our financial advisors attract a flood of their A+ clients with sustainable marketing campaigns. He enjoys running companies that are wildly successful and wearing a black t-shirt every day of his life. When his two favorite things come together, you have an average day at Indigo.
Hugo Fernandez is also CEO of Indigo’s partner company, Just Digital, and author of The Client Acquisition Blueprint. He has personally helped hundreds of entrepreneurs grow their business through his proven blueprint for creating an EPIC marketing strategy and online presence.
Kelli McLeod plays an integral role at Indigo while overseeing the Account Services Team, providing customer service, getting financial advisors onboarded and in serving as their primary point of contact during that process. Her team looks to her for her leadership and decision-making abilities For Kelli, the most rewarding part of this role is working with clients one-on-one to ensure they’re happy and that their needs are met.
Kelli has a bachelor’s degree in communications and public relations from Pacific Lutheran University. More recently, she’s done extensive work in the corporate housing and property management industries.
Kelli currently lives in Colorado Springs, Colorado, with her husband, Ian, who is an officer in the U.S. Army, and their two sons, Zachary and Cameron. When she’s not working, you can find her running or hiking, attending group fitness classes, and cooking. Kelli’s also an avid book club enthusiast, so be sure to reach out to her if you’re looking for a new read.
Sara Dressler manages all systems and operating processes while overseeing several departments. Sara is responsible for supervising many activities within Indigo and identifying areas of improvement to better meet company goals. She functions as the bridge connecting management to every department.
Sara has a bachelor’s degree in business administration and a minor in communications from Pacific Lutheran University. She leverages this degree, along with her years of experience as a virtual assistant, to keep our company running like a well-oiled machine. Sara is happiest when spending time with her family. Her three young boys and life as a military spouse keep her busy, but she wouldn’t trade it for the world. She lives an active lifestyle and loves working out, getting outside, and watching sports with her family (whether it’s on TV, at her kids’ games, or in the backyard).
Elizabeth Reider is a woman of many talents. She spent 10 years as a Chief Marketing Officer for a top-level independent financial advisor, and since her entry into financial services, she has networked and become friends with many advisors. Elizabeth admires their empathy, knowledge, and passion for their work, and has seen how independent advisors are more than professionals providing investment and planning advice; they are trusted confidants, life coaches, and guides. Over time, they become a part of their clients’ extended family—and she loves coming alongside that. (Check out this video to hear directly from Elizabeth about why she loves working with financial advisors.)
As Director of Marketing, Elizabeth helps get the word out about how partnering with Indigo can take an advisor’s marketing to the next level and beyond to grow their business and increase their productivity.
Elizabeth earned her bachelor’s degree in management information systems from the University of South Florida Muma College of Business. She also holds a life, health, and variable annuity license, which gives her a special understanding of the many products and services advisors offer. Originally from Clearwater, FL, Elizabeth loves to travel and has visited 12 countries, including extended visits to eSwatini, Africa, to visit family and assist with humanitarian relief programs. She has seen firsthand how independent financial advisors are providing advice to their clients that outpours into the lives of their own families, staff, community, and sometimes across the globe. When she’s not working, Elizabeth enjoys attending orchestral and theater productions with her husband, David, and taking their son, Julian, to art museums, as well as family evenings in the backyard playing baseball with her son and shih-tzu poodle, Wrigley. She is also an active participant in overseas humanitarian work—using her skills to make a difference in the lives of others.
It’s Katie Cress’s mission to help financial advisors reach their ideal prospects through custom digital marketing. On any given day, you can find Katie meeting with new financial advisors to learn more about their marketing goals, who they love working with, and why they’re passionate about helping others. Her favorite part of her job is meeting new advisors every day and continuing to learn how each firm and individual advisor is different, and using her marketing and small business background to help them craft a game plan that empowers them to grow their business and enhance their services. Often described by loved ones as a “helper” and “caretaker,” Katie is passionate about advocating for her advisors’ needs and supporting her coworkers to help them succeed.
Katie holds an MBA from Xavier University and a BA in Economics from Ohio University. A Midwest girl for life, she lives in Cincinnati, Ohio, with her husband, Brandon (who’s also a marketing guru), and their three kids, Charli, Lucy, and Teddy. She and her husband also own Clean Eatz Cafe, where they use their collective marketing prowess and love of food to create a welcoming space for employees and hungry customers alike. Katie is passionate about and for small business owners, being raised by her father who was an entrepreneur, being one herself with her husband, and working with them every day at Indigo. She loves the spirit, creativity, and drive of entrepreneurs. When Katie’s not working or helping run the family business, she enjoys working out with her husband at Orange Theory, loving on her three kids, and cooking delicious food.
Lori Koepke plays a major role as a liaison between Indigo Marketing Agency and its wonderful clients. She works directly with our advisor clients on their marketing strategies, marketing calendars, article creation, editing processes, compliance approvals, deployment of their content, and more. Lori enjoys helping strategize and be a support to her clients, and loves the camaraderie among the Indigo team members. Before joining the Indigo team, Lori was a schoolteacher for 10 years. She has a Master of Education and Bachelor of Arts in Elementary Education from Concordia University in Portland, OR. She was born and raised in Vancouver, B.C., and lived in Vancouver, WA, for 25 years before moving to Boise, Idaho, where she currently resides with her husband, Jeremy, and four wonderful kids, Sophie, Tanner, Jonas, and Violet. In her free time, you can find Lori reading, watching football, and driving her kids to all their activities.
Heidi Wilson thrives on helping advisors create an online voice and streamline their marketing efforts. With her mother being a retired financial advisor and her brother-in-law currently a CFP® professional, she’s passionate about taking the marketing pressure off of advisors so they are able to focus on their clients. She loves when advisors tell her something we did for them helped; it can be as simple as taking something off their very busy plate or helping them land a new client with one of the articles we wrote. With broad-based consumer and B2B marketing experience, Heidi is constantly thinking outside the box and brings a fresh perspective to the Indigo team.
Heidi holds a bachelor’s degree in public relations from Florida State University and hails from Tampa, Florida. Her husband, Chris, is in the U.S. Army, and as they are constantly moving, they take every opportunity to explore the new areas where they’re living. Some of their favorite places they’ve called home include Hawaii and New Orleans. Heidi is thankful for the opportunity to work remotely with Indigo, which allows her to take her job with her, no matter where the Army moves her family next.
Jillian Segrue acts as a liaison between clients and the Indigo team, using her 12 years of customer service experience in fields such as healthcare, financial services, and risk management to help hone their message and deploy it effectively and efficiently. Jillian enjoys building unique relationships with each of her clients as she uniquely helps them reach their ideal target audience.
Jillian has a bachelor’s degree in healthcare administration and a minor in business administration from SUNY Brockport. Originally from Rochester, NY, she currently lives in Columbus, GA, with her husband, Tim (an Army captain), daughter, Macie, son, Henry, and two cats. As a military spouse, Jillian appreciates the flexibility Indigo provides—allowing her to juggle motherhood and excelling in her career—and its unmatched positive, supportive, and uplifting company culture. In her free time, Jillian loves to read, shop, and go running outdoors (just not in the Georgia heat!).
Beverly Anderson is the go-to contact point for advisors to create a targeted and cohesive marketing strategy that is unique to their specific goals. She loves seeing her clients experience positive results from their marketing efforts, and as a world traveler, she appreciates the ability to work remotely and connect with clients from any country.
Beverly holds a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration from Oregon State University. In addition to traveling, she enjoys making music as a singer/songwriter and anything outdoors (she’s an avid snowboarder and rock climber). She and her partner have a rescue pup, Toro, a former street dog in Cabo, Mexico, before they adopted him. Beverly has three older sisters, with whom she is very close, and they all, along with her mother, live in the Portland area. Although she spent the first half of her childhood in Fountain Hills, Arizona, Beverly considers Portland to be home.
Adrian Bachini works on tasks requiring technical knowledge and other various administrative tasks. A software developer by day, prior to joining Indigo, Adrian had very little knowledge on how nontechnical positions operate. His position at Indigo allows him to both learn and experience a variety of platforms and gain more knowledge about how to maximize marketing initiatives.
Adrian holds a bachelor’s degree in computer science with a specialization in software technology from De La Salle University Manila. Adrian considers himself somewhat of a workaholic, with a full-time day job in addition to working with Indigo. When he’s not working, he enjoys watching documentaries, action movies, and anime, and also loves cycling on muddy downhill trails or cross-country rides, playing video games, and simply resting when he can. He is also a licensed commercial pilot and flies in his free time; he obviously also enjoys traveling. Adrian lives with his family and more than a few pets (11 dogs, 6 cats, a few birds, and fish)—he has more pets than humans in his home!
Kasey Yhap’s commitment to her clients is the driving force behind her work. Her diverse educational background (a bachelor’s and master’s degree in vocal performance from the Peabody Conservatory of Music and a master’s degree in communications from Syracuse University) has equipped her with the unique skill set required for success. Kasey’s strong communication skills and creative mindset, combined with her passion for helping her clients, make her a valuable asset to the team.
In her free time, Kasey stays active and maintains a healthy lifestyle through yoga, CrossFit, and spending time outdoors. These hobbies complement her professional life by allowing her to recharge and bring new ideas to her work at Indigo.
Dan Corcoran enjoys being on the front lines of financial advisor marketing, working directly with advisors to help them build a strong marketing plan to get their firm’s message out. Working remotely can be a challenge as talking to others, brainstorming, and sharing experiences recharges him; he maximizes touchpoints to connect with others to make every day at Indigo rewarding.
Dan holds a bachelor’s degree in journalism and mass communication from the University of Wisconsin-Madison. He enjoys drone photography and videography (he owns his own drone business, Forward Focus Photography), sports broadcasting (he was a hockey broadcaster for four years prior to COVID), spending time with family, camping/hiking, running, swimming, and road biking.
Originally from Sun Prairie, WI, Dan has three siblings, and prior to joining Indigo’s team, he worked for an RIA in Madison for two years.
Anne Wheeler is responsible for a variety of administrative tasks as well as updating social media pages for clients. Anne enjoys the creative side of her position and the ability to collaborate with the team to help advisors get started with Indigo.
Anne holds a bachelor’s degree in communication from the University of Tennessee. Outside of work, she enjoys walking, baking, spending time with her husband, Rick (a structural engineer), and two sons, Thomas and Turner. Anne loves being a full-time mom, and appreciates that Indigo gives her the opportunity to work part-time while still caring for her boys.
Lisa Gaines spends her work days uploading blog posts to our clients’ websites and LinkedIn profiles, drafting emails, and making adjustments to content as advisors request. Lisa has learned a lot as a long-time member of the Indigo family and has enjoyed seeing the processes evolve to become more streamlined and efficient over time. And she loves working with the amazing Indigo team! Lisa is a proud alum of Texas A&M University, where she received a Bachelor of Business Administration in Finance. As a military child, Lisa feels as though she grew up everywhere; however, she claims central Texas as home where most of her family is originally from. She currently lives in Fort Hood, Texas, with her husband, Korey (an active-duty Army officer), and two kids, Madelyne and Jameson. As a military family, Lisa moves quite a bit—often to areas where the job market is small. She loves that Indigo provides her with a steady job she can take with her wherever she goes. When she’s not working, Lisa enjoys dabbling in interior design, binging a good Netflix series, and spending time with friends and family.
Jennifer Farrior is Indigo’s go-to for all things proofreading and editing. Her attention to detail is unmatched, and she takes pride in making sure every article is clean and concise before it heads out to our financial advisors. She says, “Even a single typo can affect an advisor’s credibility, and we strive for perfection when it comes to how they’re presented online.” As Lead Writer, Jennifer trains and manages the team of writers, and also writes and collaborates with team members to create Indigo’s blog posts and promotional material.
Jennifer holds a bachelor’s degree in English from UCLA. In addition to her role at Indigo, she runs her own copy editing and proofreading business, She Proofreads LLC. Jennifer hails from San Diego, California, but now lives in Louisville, Kentucky, with her three kids, Joshua, Julia, and Joel, and goldendoodle, Dexter. She loves working at Indigo because it provides her with the income, flexibility, and the community she needs as a stay-at-home mom. Outside of work, you can find her spending time with her kids, friends, boyfriend, or working on a puzzle while watching Netflix.
Sarah Robichaud uses her love of spreadsheets to create engaging content calendars for our clients’ social media pages. Sarah holds a bachelor’s degree in psychology from Salisbury University and a master’s degree in marriage and family counseling from Liberty University. In addition to her role at Indigo, Sarah volunteers as a virtual administrator for Army Wife Network, a nonprofit organization that aims to empower and educate military spouses through blogs, podcasts, and various other resources.
Born and raised in Maryland, Sarah currently lives in Rochester Hills, Michigan, with her husband, Andrew, two children, Emily and Logan, and two fur babies, Penny and Chewbacca. As a military spouse and mother, Sarah loves working for Indigo because of the flexibility it affords her, allowing her to continue to build her career while frequently relocating around the globe and working on her own schedule to accommodate a busy lifestyle. Sarah also loves Indigo’s supportive team atmosphere. Outside of work and volunteering, you can find Sarah enjoying time outdoors with her family, typically running, camping, or traveling. An avid traveler, she’s visited 16 countries and is always planning her family’s next great adventure.
As a natural problem-solver, Peter Wardenaar uses his skills to help financial advisors find new ways to grow their site traffic and attract more clients they love. Peter enjoys the dynamic nature of his role; the challenges are never the same as every situation is unique and requires a different approach. But don’t let Peter’s technical prowess fool you—he also has quite the creative side! Before joining the Indigo team, he worked as a first-grade teacher and university English professor in Cali, Colombia.
Peter has bachelor’s degrees in education and in music from Portland Bible College and a master’s degree in music production and technology from Berklee College of Music. In his spare time, he loves writing and recording music, graphic design, engaging with people, and studying leadership and theology. Peter is also one of the most well-traveled people you’ll ever meet! He was born and raised in the Netherlands but lived in the Pacific Northwest for over 12 years. Today, he resides in Cali, Colombia, with his wife, Gloria Isabel, and their three kids, Emanuel, Paloma, and Violet.
Kourtney Kearney is a data-driven woman with a knack for coding. On any typical day, you can find her building web pages, troubleshooting bugs in code, and setting up automations to make life easier for our clients. Thanks to her technical background, Kourtney has a vast understanding of the inner workings of websites and the data associated with them. She’s always on the lookout for new technology that will help us improve our workflows so we can focus on what we do best—helping financial advisors grow their business. Kourtney enjoys the variation of tasks and loves the challenge of taking an existing website and making it better without completely rebuilding it.
Kourtney is originally from Newark, CA (Bay Area), but currently resides in Antelope, a suburb of Sacramento, and holds a Bachelor of Arts in Art History and Curatorial Studies. Outside of work, Kourtney spends her free time reading, playing volleyball, baking with her two sons, and hanging out with family.
Hugo Fernandez acquired ownership of Indigo Marketing Agency from founder Claire Akin in 2022. Leading the Indigo team with heart, Hugo is passionate about helping our financial advisors attract a flood of their A+ clients with sustainable marketing campaigns. He enjoys running companies that are wildly successful and wearing a black t-shirt every day of his life. When his two favorite things come together, you have an average day at Indigo.
Hugo Fernandez is also CEO of Indigo’s partner company, Just Digital, and author of The Client Acquisition Blueprint. He has personally helped hundreds of entrepreneurs grow their businesses through his proven blueprint for creating an EPIC marketing strategy and online presence.
To get in touch with Hugo, email him or connect with him on LinkedIn.