Financial advisors all over the country are blogging in order to build their online reputation, form relationships with potential clients, drive traffic to their websites, and earn credibility from other financial professionals. These are all worthwhile goals which will help you to gradually expend your practice. But with your financially-focused mind, you’re probably wondering about the bottom line of your time investment: Exactly how does blogging turn website visitors into clients?
While blogging can accomplish many different goals at once, this three-part series of articles will explore, in depth, the concept of converting visitors into clients.
Step One: Get to know your audience.
The first step to writing any blog article is to always ask yourself this question: Who is my audience? Seek to understand your readers by asking yourself questions such as:
- What is their age range?
- What types of articles interest them?
- What are their fears and concerns?
- What is their lifestyle? Are they married? How much money do they make?
- How can my practice help them?
Once you ask yourself these questions, you might realize that you have more than one audience. Sometimes you might want to write blogs directed at current or prospective clients; at other times, you are reaching out to other financial professionals. There is nothing wrong with this approach, just so long as you’re aware of the differences in how you should communicate your thoughts.
Once you understand your intended audience, as yourself what style of language you should use. Do you want to sound friendly, approachable, and helpful? Do you want to make complex financial topics easier for the layperson to understand? Or do you want to impress your peers with your level of expertise? A blog piece that works perfectly for prospective clients might be overly simplistic to your peers, while a blog aimed at your peers could be overwhelming and intimidating to your average client. Understanding your audience’s needs and experience level is key to capturing their interest.
Step Two: Seek to solve problems.
The most effective blogs are usually the ones that are written from a problem-solving approach. For example, you don’t need to tell prospective clients that they need to save for retirement. This is common knowledge, and your readers are already concerned with these issues. But if you seek to solve specific problems such as how to budget, how to reap tax benefits, or how to protect themselves against inflation, your audience will find your blogs to be compelling and valuable. They will listen to what you have to say, and will be more likely to call you for an appointment to learn more.
Of course, you don’t want to provide so many answers that your clients don’t need you at all! Financial planning is a complicated field. The point of blogs directed at prospective clients should be to demonstrate possible solutions to problems, while reminding them that one-on-one consultation is the best way to tailor their retirement plan.
Include a call to action in your blogs, offering something valuable to readers in exchange for deepening their relationship with you. It might be a free download, an invitation to a Social Security seminar, or a complimentary budgeting tool. In exchange for your gift, prospective clients should be asked to enter their email addresses, so that you can continue to contact them at a later date.
Now that you’ve begun to build a relationship with your audience, read our next blogs in this series to find out how they will eventually convert into clients.