by Tony Vidler
For any individual adviser becoming “the trusted brand” in your target markets mind has to be the main marketing goal. The importance of great engagement with prospective customers cannot be over-emphasised here…it is THE fundamental shift in effective marketing techniques over the last decade because it is the solution to the fundamental shift in consumer behaviour over the last 15 years.
Great engagement is the difference between converting a small proportion of prospects into customers, or converting a large proportion of them. And you don’t have to be Einstein to work out that doubling or tripling your conversion of leads generated produces a lot more profit for your business (and probably dramatically redcuces your marketing costs).
Engaging with prospective customers means more than just “staying in touch” – it means educating them.
While every prospective client these days has a library of information at the end of their fingertips, the very volume of information available to them creates a barrier to effective education.
There is simply too much stuff for most people to wade through, and it becomes difficult for them to work out what is relevant. This is where great marketing steps in…Great marketing resonates with your target market because it is hitting the very issues they are concerned with. It is relevant to them.
Todays sophisticated and reasonably impatient consumer still goes through the same process of behavioural change that yesterdays consumer did, but the difference today is how consumers move through the consideration phase. They typically begin by conducting their own research when they recognise there is a potential issue they may have to address. They google it, and read a fair bit about it. They Youtube it, and watch & listen to what others have to say about it.
The more they Google and Youtube, the more information there is to be found…an endless amount of it. So they settle into reading or watching a limited number of sources that seem particularly relevant.
That is where our marketing needs to aim, because that is where engagement begins.
Providing relevant information that educates and assists consumers who are contemplating the issues and possibilities is where we have the greatest chance of establishing a trusted brand. Understanding that many, if not most, prospects will want to research and contemplate at their own pace and then are likely to settle into following relatively few sources of information which seems particularly relevant is what drives the creation of an engagement marketing strategy. At the centre of the engagement marketing strategy is the philosophy of “educating prospective customers”.
People will seek professional advice when they have established to their own satisfaction that they have an issue which they themselves cannot quite resolve. In the complex areas of personal financial or business planning issues good education leads to the majority seeking advice or assistance in some form.
We just need to become the logical and trusted choice because we have already been assisting them via our content and engagement. Great education via consistently good content which is relevant to your target market leads to becoming a trusted brand before they even meet you.