In the financial services world, we are faced with issues of not being trusted and then of prospects receiving an avalanche of indistinguishable blurry marketing messages. How do you overcome this and stand out from the marketing noise? And how do you avoid making your marketing all about you?
First of all, understand this harsh reality check: No one cares about you. They just don’t. They want to know how you can solve their problems. You can tell them that through customized messaging, which lets you stand out while also allowing you to work more efficiently.
The first thing you want to do to separate yourself from the clamor is to differentiate. There are two types of differentiation: the enhancement differentiator and the never-before-seen differentiator.
Enhancement differentiators promise to enhance the client’s life with the services you provide. Here are some examples of what enhancement differentiators look like:
- “Planning for your future”
- “It’s about planning for your future”
- “Business or personal — invest for your future”
It’s essentially the same exact message over and over and over again. There is no emotional hook, and you’re immediately forgotten.
Now let’s flip over to the never-before-seen differentiator. I’m going to use a personal example from Sweet Financial Partners: “It’s your dream. We’ll help you get there.”
As you click further on the website, you’ll see that we help you “create the life you can’t wait to wake up to” by working with not just a financial advisor but a dream architect.
You can see and feel the difference between the planning commentary and the emotional hook.
Generating leads and setting yourself apart through websites
From a survey we did of approximately 2,500 financial advisors, we found that 63% of those with more than an average of $3.5 million in production had a custom website. And only 31% of those within the $1 million production range had a custom site. Instead of a customized website, they used a template from their broker-dealer, which provided them with zero differentiation.
Then we looked at which sites had a way to contact the advisor. For those in the $3.5 million production or higher range, 42% had an opt-in or contact us form. Only 15% of those within the $1 million production range had one that was visible or accessible.
Why your website matters
The greater the level of success you reach, the greater the investment level you make into differentiating your business. Not only do you have more control over messaging to get out of the marketing maelstrom, but by having a customized and differentiated website, you get higher search engine optimization, or SEO, in Google rankings. And you can use the available technology to quickly discover what’s working and what’s not.
By having your own customized website that includes tools on the site that people can opt-in to or download and by consciously differentiating yourselves, you can dominate the top portion of the Google search page when a prospect is looking for financial services in your area. And this is exactly what you want!
When generating leads, your website is both your greatest asset and largest vulnerability. It’s important to note that your homepage will not generate clients, but it can cost you clients. So, does your website create a bond or is it simply a business card?
Bryan Sweet, of Fairmont, Minnesota, USA, was a 27-year MDRT member and a Top of the Table member and founder of Sweet Financial Partners. He’s also an author, co-founder of Dare to Dream Enterprises and creator of The Dream Architect, which helps people create a life beyond wealth.
Brittany Anderson, of Sherburn, Minnesota, USA is also a co-founder of Dare to Dream Enterprises and the author of four books. She is the president and partner at Sweet Financial Partners. This blog post was excerpted from the 2019 MDRT Annual Meeting presentation “Magnetic marketing and operational mastery.” [MDRT members only]
For more ideas for finding clients through marketing: