Advisors ask me every day, “What should I include in my financial advisor marketing plan?” The truth is, “should” is a relative term. The answer depends on two things:
- What are your marketing goals?
- How much are you willing to put into your marketing?
Similar to attending a conference or working out with a trainer, you can expect to get out of your marketing what you put into it (as long as you use resources in an effective way).
We’ve had our financial advisor marketing program for years now, and we’ve found one thing to be true — the outcome you’ll receive from your marketing is a function of the goals you set and the time and energy you put towards those goals.
In this article, we’ll go over:
- How much you should invest in your marketing
- 10 building blocks of the perfect financial advisor marketing plan
- How to find financial advisor marketing plan examples
- A free financial advisor marketing plan template you can use for your own marketing
How Much Should Advisors Invest In Their Marketing Plan?
If you would like to grow your AUM by 15% next year, I recommend investing at least 5-7% of your revenue into your marketing budget. However, if your goal is to help support your referral process and double your referrals next year, putting 2-3% of your revenue will likely suffice.
Most advisors understand that marketing is important, but many have been burned in the past by marketing “experts” and expensive schemes that did not deliver results. For this reason, many want to build their marketing plan slowly over time.
How To Create A Financial Advisor Marketing Plan (10 Building Blocks To Follow)
If you’re looking to create your ideal financial advisor marketing plan, here are the most important building blocks you should follow, in order of importance:
1. BUILD A BRAND THAT CREATES TRUST
Your DBA and logo are basic marketing elements that impact all other aspects of your marketing. Creating a name and logo that speaks to your specific niche makes all of your other marketing efforts more effective.
For example, one of our financial advisor clients works exclusively with pilots. Because of this, his DBA is Aviation Wealth Solutions and his logo includes an airplane. The moment you land on his site, it’s obvious who he serves.
It’s mission-critical to have an updated logo that inspires trust — it’s at the very heart of your brand. Consumer brands update their logos every 3-5 years to stay current. If your logo is cluttered or busy, get a new one. If it’s outdated, a facelift will only cost you a few hundred dollars and will go a long way towards improving your overall brand.
Cost: $400 for a new logo, $200 for an updated one.
2. HAVE A WEBSITE WITH HORSEPOWER
Advisors need a great website to compete online. But before you get too hung up on design and content, think about function. Your website should be mobile responsive, have built-in “forms” that capture leads, include blogging functionality, and have event registration capabilities. This well-built engine will make your marketing more powerful and will save you time and energy in the long run.
One of the biggest marketing mistakes I see is spending thousands of dollars and months on perfecting a new website. When we look at the before and after statistics, as long as your site looks good and functions well, additional time and money will give diminishing returns.
Cost: $300 for a basic website to $6,000+ for a custom site.
If you’re feeling stuck on what to do with your website, sign up for one of our free webinars on websites. We also have a case study on how we helped an advisor overhaul their website and marketing strategy to fully embrace a specialty.
3. AN AWESOME LINKEDIN PROFILE
Because Google gives preferential treatment to LinkedIn when returning search results, your profile is as likely to come up for a name search as your website. For this reason, your profile should look as great as your website and maintain your branding. Optimize each of your social media profiles for SEO and match them to the look and feel of your website.
Cost: About $200.
If you need help mastering the art of LinkedIn, check out my book, The LinkedIn Guide For Financial Advisors.
4. VERIFIED BUSINESS LISTING ON GOOGLE
Verified business listings show up on Google Maps, include photos and business information, showcase client reviews (thanks to the new testimonial rule), and can be dialed from a mobile phone with one click.
This improves your website’s SEO and helps prospects find you. Registering your business with search engines is the fastest way to improve SEO and does not need to be updated unless you change your business address.
5. BEAUTIFUL EMAIL CAMPAIGNS
By using an email marketing engine, it’s easy to create great-looking, mobile-friendly email campaigns that include powerful features like A/B testing, targeting, automation, and analytics. I recommend MailChimp or Constant Contact as a CRM for financial advisors.
Cost: $0-$100 per month, depending on how many contacts you have.
6. ORIGINAL CONTENT
You’ve read to this point in this blog post because I wrote it specifically for you, someone seeking a marketing plan for financial advisors. If it was for a dentist or a musician, you wouldn’t be reading. I didn’t purchase it online or copy it from another blogger. The bread and butter of an effective marketing plan are quality, custom content that your prospects find interesting and valuable.
Luckily, you’re the natural expert on the financial topics your clients and prospects want to know more about. Turning that expertise into consistent content marketing is where the magic happens. I recommend at least monthly custom articles that go out via email, blog, and social media.
Cost: $695 per month.
The above tactics are an excellent baseline to jumpstart your financial advisor marketing plan. If you want to make a big impact on your business, I recommend taking those steps over the next six months.
Next, we’ll cover some advanced techniques you can employ if you already have the basics in place or if you are motivated to take your firm to the next level.
7. LIVE AND ONLINE EVENTS
Webinars and live events are effective in generating referrals and prospects. I recommend a minimum of two annual live events and quarterly webinars. By promoting these on an ongoing basis, you give prospects who come across your firm a way to get to know you better. One of our advisors landed his biggest client ever with a custom webinar.
Live events also help support your referral process by encouraging existing clients to bring friends. I’ve seen advisors have awesome events for a few hundred dollars and very expensive events that still provide a positive ROI. If possible, get partners and sponsors to help you foot the bill.
Using video increases email open rates and keeps people on your website longer. You can expect about double the views for a video than a similar blog post. Featuring a compelling video on your homepage can significantly increase your website conversion rate.
There are two ways to do video.
- You can hire a videographer and produce professional on-location videos, which are awesome but expensive.
- You can buy some equipment and produce your own videos in your office.
If you are somewhat tech-savvy and want to create videos on a regular basis throughout the year, I recommend the do-it-yourself approach. One of my favorite tools for recording videos is Loom.
Cost: $350 for DIY equipment, $4,000 for professional shoot.
9. WHITEPAPERS OR AN EBOOK
Lead bait encourages folks to download something of value in exchange for their email address. Featuring free downloads on your website is a great way to capture email addresses and introduce prospects to how you can help. I recommend a whitepaper, checklist, or eBook available for download on your website. You can view a bunch of whitepaper and eBook examples for advisors here.
10. THE HOLY GRAIL: A BOOK
Writing a book sets you apart as an expert in your field — especially if you have a unique niche. Completing your book is less expensive than you may think and can help you get speaking engagements and media exposure.
All of my top advisors have written books and successfully incorporate them into ongoing marketing. If you have been in this business for over 10 years, you certainly have a book’s worth of expertise, stories, and insight to share.
Cost: Depending on how much existing writing you can use in your book, the cost ranges from $5,000-$25,000+.
Financial Advisor Marketing Plan Examples
By this point, you probably want to see all these marketing steps in action. I don’t blame you! It’s too much to share in one article, so I put them all in a free webinar on How to Create Your Financial Advisor Marketing Plan & Grow Your Advisory Business by 25% This Year.
I use a ton of real-life financial advisor marketing plan examples in this webinar and even give you a free checklist and sample marketing calendar to help with your own marketing.
It’s my top-requested webinar of all time, and it’s one you definitely don’t want to miss if you need help with your marketing plan.
You Ready To Build Your Financial Advisor Marketing Plan?
Before you invest in your marketing, take some time to think through your long-term goals and consider which pieces of the puzzle you may already have. There are plenty of effective financial advisor marketing techniques to get more mileage out of existing content, videos, and publications you have already created.
Fancy websites and marketing materials are only as powerful as the traffic that you drive to them. By building a cohesive marketing framework and using existing collateral, you’ll be able to get the most out of your marketing budget.
Download Your FREE Financial Advisor Marketing Plan Template
If you don’t know where to start when building your marketing plan, don’t worry. I created a free financial advisor marketing plan template to help you get started.
It’s a strategy checklist that coincides with the 10 building blocks mentioned above — and it’s chock full of financial advisor marketing strategies you should implement today.
I recommend downloading the checklist below, printing it out, and using it as a guide when building your own marketing plan.
DOWNLOAD YOUR FREE FINANCIAL ADVISOR MARKETING TEMPLATE HERE.
Need Help With Your Marketing?
Need help building your ideal financial advisor marketing plan? Learn more about our Total Marketing Package or schedule a free strategy session to discuss your marketing.
Not ready to start building your marketing framework just yet? Stay in touch by connecting with me on LinkedIn, visiting my blog, and watching my catalog of webinars.