Client Services and Operations Director
Posted on October 31, 2016
Marketing has always been about aligning our communication with the landscape we find ourselves in. Given that the financial landscape continues to evolve and change so quickly, the marketing processes we use to reach our customers keep shifting too.
Roll back only ten years and large-scale print runs, with costly direct mail and advertising campaigns, were the only way to reach your prospects and build your brand. Now, however, many, many more audience touchpoints are available to us. The opportunities are vast and exciting, but with so many more options, how can you be sure you’re on the right track?
Here are the five pillars to a successful financial marketing campaign. They’ll help you look at the big picture of modern-day marketing and stay focused on what matters, without getting bogged down or overwhelmed by changing trends.
1. Be where your prospects are
It sounds obvious, but it’s amazing how many brands in a rush to be progressive miss this foundation. The increasing spending power of millennials, the changing role of intermediary services and spaces, and the impact of the Retail Distribution Review have all affected where we can find our prospects and how we can best approach them. We need to find ways to meet audiences where they already are, and that means using a mix of both on and offline marketing methods.
2. Choose channels to match your goals
Are you brand-building or developing sales leads? Once you’ve worked out where your prospects are AND established the particular outcome you’re aiming for, you’re ready to think about channels.
Using multiple channels is a must, but it’s essential that you tailor your approach to suit the channel and outcome you’re focusing on.
Effective brand-building messages on one channel might not work on another, and certain channels might be better at generating sales than others. You need to hone in those sweet spots that come about from having the audience, channel, message and outcome perfectly aligned.
Try to break your channels down into three areas;
- Traffic drivers
- Brand builders
Remember to stay focused on your outcome. Highlight those channels that will best help you achieve your goal and then split your budget according to your priority for the campaign.
3. Use creative, consistent messaging
Remember: We’re aiming for a unified, multi-channel campaign, not a uniform one. By keeping your branding and messages consistent, creativity can be allowed its freedom through the mediums you choose.
Experiment with different mediums to see what your audience responds to. Video, infographics, audio and blogs are all worth trying, but keep them all short and sweet. Break down your content into bite-sized chunks wherever and whenever possible.
Lastly, bear in mind that your messages shouldn’t always directly reflect your end goal. You’re not the target here: your audience is. Think about what your prospects are interested in. How will you help them achieve THEIR goals?
4. Build relationships and trust over time
When facing a problem or a challenge, most people now browse the internet to look for potential solutions. This means that your solutions need to be easy to find and to be credible, persuading and trustworthy.
By developing Inbound and Content Marketing strategies, you can optimise your website for this kind of search. Create content that focuses on the pain points your potential buyers experience and then offer helpful solutions, rather than only pushing your product or service onto them.
Case studies provide an excellent way to achieve this. In our last blog, we highlighted why case studies are so good at building trust and connection, and why you should be using them.
Use case studies wherever possible in as many interesting and engaging ways that you can. There’s no need to stick to simple quotes from clients: feature your top clients in video and infographics to show your audience exactly what it is you made possible and why it matters.
However, it’s also important to remember that people aren’t always ready to buy or commit there and then. Building trust takes time. Offer your audience opportunities to build a relationship with you slowly and consistently, by tapping into their interests, being relevant and helpful, and earning their respect through great quality content that makes a difference to their lives. Prove yourself first, then when people are ready to take the next step, they’ll be much more likely to take that step towards you.
Take a look here for more ideas on how to integrate inbound and content strategies into your marketing.
5. Partner with people who understand you and your business
Does all this sound like a lot to think about? Working with one agency will help to reduce your workload significantly. The right agency can help ensure consistency of visual ID and messaging across each channel, as well as helping you analyse the results from beginning to end.