The financial services space is one of THE most competitive spaces when it comes to digital marketing. Keywords on Google Ads can easily hit six digits per CLICK in some financial verticals. If you’re a financial advisor, lawyer, insurance broker or operate in any other financial field, you might have been struggling at seeing an ROI from your digital marketing efforts. In this post, I will cover what I think are the top 6 ways to market yourself in this space in 2020 and beyond…
1 – Spruce Up Your Website!
This is the foundation, and yet many companies in this space still have websites that look like they were made in the late nineties. Before you spend a single dollar in paid ads, you need to spend some money on re-designing or sprucing up your website. Here’s what you need for a competitive website:
Easy and non-overwhelming navigation. This doesn’t mean you should only have a small number of pages on your menu. It means you should focus on your most important pages. e.g. Services, About, Contact, Get a Quote. You can have as many internal pages as you want, and in fact we encourage you to create tons of those, but don’t link them all from your main menu.
Signs of Trust. Why should the reader trust YOU and not the dozens of others that are offering the exact same product or service? List your memberships, awards, press mentions, certifications, etc. Don’t have any to show? GET SOME. Get some reviews on Google and a BBB Badge for starters. It helps more than you think.
Show happy client testimonials. I struggle to understand why so many websites in the financial space DON’T display any testimonials from their clients. This is a space that is entirely based on trust, and showing some positive reviews will put you miles ahead of the competition.
Make sure it’s Super Mobile Friendly. Many companies assume their website is “good enough” on mobile devices, because they use WordPress or some CMS theme that automatically adjusts to the users’ devices, but that’s simply not good enough. You need to ask your website designer to take extra steps at ensuring your UX is above-average on mobile, such as large easy to read fonts, large easy to tap links, and tables should be responsive as well.
2 – Build Content that Focuses on SEO Questions (forget about short-tail keywords, please!)
People are increasingly typing questions instead of short keywords on search engines, especially in the financial space. Using a tool like ahrefs, you can figure out what sorts of questions and long-tail keywords your audience is searching for online. When I say long-tail keywords, that’s because it’s completely pointless to target short-tail keywords when you’re starting out. They’re simply above your league. Wait till you get more authority and organic traffic, first. It might take you a couple of years of constantly producing quality content, before you can aim for those highly competitive short tail keywords.
Using a tool like ahrefs, find keywords with a low KD (Keyword Difficulty). I like to aim for those under 30. Then build content on your site that answers those keywords. If the keyword is a question, you can get away with short answers, and you can even build a FAQ section that targets all the questions people are searching for. This might give you a chance at getting a featured snippet, aka position zero.
3 – Create a YouTube Channel or Podcast
Video and Voice are the two marketing channels that are skyrocketing in popularity this year, and will grow exponentially in the coming years. Have you considered producing videos, or a podcast, to answer people’s questions and position yourself as an authority in your field? If you aren’t camera-shy, I would strongly recommend getting on YouTube. Even if you simply use your smartphone to shoot videos. Recent smartphones are good enough for HQ video production. Just make sure it’s still and that you are in a quiet room with a nice monochrome background so we can see and hear you clearly. You really don’t need to spend a fortune in hiring a professional production company, especially when you’re starting out! As long as your videos are giving people value. Bonus tip: using a speech to text software to automatically convert all your video content into text that you can use for a blog post. Feed two birds with one scone! 🙂
4 – Make 5 Star Reviews Your Mission in Life
If you don’t feel comfortable producing videos, then a podcast might be a good alternative. You won’t become Joe Rogan overnight, but if you can eventually get a few hundred subscribers, you’ll be seeing a substantial ROI, and you might even find a new way to generate revenue as you can include ads in your podcast. It’s all about consistency when it comes to podcasts. Produce one per week to get started, and you can either cover the usual questions or events in the world or economy that people should pay attention to. You can bring in guests occasionally to help cover specific topics that you aren’t an expert in but that are related to your niche. (e.g. if you’re a real estate agent, you can bring in a real estate lawyer to help answer your audience’s questions that are relevant to both your niches) Promote your podcast on your social media, by email through your contact list, on your website, and I guarantee you’ll get a decent amount of subscribers to get started off with.
People will go out of their way to seek businesses with 5 star reviews when searching online. They’ll even go to page 2 of the Google Search Results or beyond to search for the highest rated business in some cases. Your job is to make sure you follow up with every happy client to ensure they leave you a good review on Google. Sure, you’ll occasionally get a bad review, but that’s the name of the game! I always tell clients, who obsess over those 1 or 2 star reviews, that what matters is the overall score, not those individual bad reviews. If you have 50+ four or five-star reviews and 3 one-star reviews, you’ll still have an overall score of above 4.5 stars! That’s what matters. It’ll help your local SEO profile tremendously, and it’ll help your conversion rate as a whole, as it’s been proven time and time again that people are more likely to fill out forms and purchase from businesses with higher ratings. You’re spending a lot of money to get people to see you. The last thing you want is for them to land on your site, then decide to go find a competitor, because they had better ratings than you, or simply because they displayed their ratings and you didn’t. Remember, this industry is all about TRUST.
We’ve seen some clients substantially increase their revenue with affiliate marketing at zero dollar cost per acquisition. How is that possible? Well, Affiliate marketing is the idea of creating a partnership or referral program (aka affiliate marketing program) that rewards people for referring leads or sales. In other words, you’re ONLY spending money when a commercial action has taken place. (unlike other forms of marketing where you spend money for views or clicks, with no guarantee that those will generate a qualified lead or sale). Now, affiliate marketing can all done digitally using affiliate tracking software, or a WordPress plugin if you are using a WP based site. If it’s too overwhelming for you to set it up yourself, consider working with an affiliate network that specializes in financial services (e.g. Golden Leads) or a more general network (e.g. CJ.com) and they’ll handle it all for you, including promoting your affiliate program and bringing on affiliate marketers to join and promote your products and services. Again, we’re talking zero dollar cost per acquisition here. You only spend money when you make money, essentially. Isn’t that a no-brainer?