3 Steps to Reaching Prospects Online

The advisor whose words register on social media attracts not only the reader but that reader’s entire social network

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Financial advisors are performing their jobs in a strange new world.

Technology has reshaped the landscape of networking that has always been key to how advisors build their businesses.

Advisors who used to give a speech at the local Rotary Club or captain their neighborhood watch today sense a lot of the action taking place among their target clients is occurring in the ether of social media.

While face-to-face encounters remain valuable, it is understood that a click of the mouse can reach and potentially influence a far broader audience.

You have confidence in your knowledge of investing, but you need to tell your story, effectively and to the right audience. This is today’s challenge: communicating your expertise, via technology, to your target audience.

Indeed, a recently released survey by the consulting firm Accenture highlights the disconnect between chief marketing officers and chief IT officers. The two groups apparently have frequently conflicting priorities, reflecting the confusion about how to employ technology to drive sales.

In a digital age, most would agree that content is key. Whether you’re tweeting or blogging or participating in LinkedIn discussions, developing a reputation for imparting value is crucial in a crowded Twittersphere. That is because the advisor whose words register attracts not only the reader but that reader’s entire social network.

An article published Friday on the Pushing Social blog candidly addresses the rarity of successful content strategy. The author kindly offers that it is not because people are lazy, stupid or slow that they fail to make the connection. “The Achilles heel in every circumstance can be traced to a common factor —  underequipped, underutilized, and uninspired people.”

Pushing Social wisely recommends converting your “content strategy into the day-to-day tasks and habits needed for success,” and recommends three broad steps:

First, determine where lie the bottlenecks to getting out an effective message.  Is it in idea generation? Or is it in execution? Maybe you have the ideas, but you need someone with the ability (and time) to execute the strategy properly.

Another common problem is the necessity of getting clearance from your compliance department. For this, Pushing Social has no attractive solution, alas — but maybe gaining your compliance officer’s trust that you never cross any red lines will foster effective collaboration and quick turnaround time.

Pushing Social’s second step is retooling for today’s digital reality. That means using a single piece of content across multiple platforms:

“For example, turn a blog post into a podcast, a script for a video, and a presentation for Slideshare. Pin illustration graphics used in the post on Pinterest. Use the headline of the post as an idea starter for a question and answer session on LinkedIn or Facebook.”

The third step is to make content strategy part of your firm’s DNA. This is done by rewarding any actions that advance your goals, tracking the metrics that are meaningful to your goal, and weaving “the effort of telling their unique story into every decision and action.”

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Check out What Does Social Media Marketing Do for You? on ThinkAdvisor.

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