The sales funnels used in most financial advisor marketing are not exactly the same as those used by professionals in other industries. In particular, financial advisors’ digital marketing sales funnels are fairly unique. Ideally, inbound and outbound marketing efforts will move prospects through these digital marketing sales funnels, resulting in positive conversions when they exit the funnel.
Digital marketing sales funnels have advanced to the point that the data they collect can help financial advisors pinpoint where client interest is going (up or down) and determine how their funnels can be enhanced to produce better results.
Following is a look at the three main types of financial advisor digital marketing sales funnels.
Lead Generation Funnels
Financial advisory firms need their online visitors to heed their call-to-action, be it in the form of signing up for a newsletter list, filling out a contact form, scheduling an appointment, downloading an eBook, or making a hiring decision. The ultimate goal is to convert as many of these prospects into revenue-producing clients as soon as possible.
Lead generation funnels are the solution. Lead magnets such as eBooks and white papers are a couple of examples of the positive reinforcement that financial advisors can offer to convince prospects to sign up for an email list or even better schedule an interview.
Maximizing the impact of a digital marketing lead generation funnel starts with raising awareness. Awareness can be heightened through email marketing, search engine optimization (SEO), content marketing, social media, and advertising campaigns to reach your ideal types of clients.
This initial stage of the funnel casts a wide net in an attempt to boost your online visibility and traffic. Contacts established during this initial “awareness” stage provides the opportunity to gather and organize prospects’ names and email addresses. This information is used to generate a database of prospective clients to move through the funnel.
The next step of the lead generation funnel process is to convert contacts into legitimate prospects where there is an established mutual interest that is based on positive contact. There are several ways to make this conversion happen, ranging from a webinar to a newsletter sign-up. Contact with prospects during this stage is particularly important for building interest and awareness in those who are willing to next step in the lead generation sales funnel. You should continue to engage contacts so they will have increasing interest in your firm’s advice, services, and other offerings.
Once legitimate contacts are in the fold, your next goal is to convert them into interested parties. This is your opportunity to determine whether a contact is interested in financial information or selecting a financial advisor.
These contacts/leads/prospects must be prioritized and nurtured. Lead scoring along with several other key metrics help pinpoint leads that your financial advisory firm should zero in on.
Now that the leads have been scored, it is time to implement your Inbound Marketing strategies. Seize the opportunity to market to leads inclined to convert into revenue-producing clients with carefully crafted email messages and other calls to action that are custom-tailored for this part of the potential clients journey. The end result of this effort will be a narrowing of the contact pool to high-quality clients along with an improved conversion rate: contacts to leads, leads to prospects, prospects to clients.
Some prospects respond better to information in webinars as they are presented through the medium of video as opposed to the written word. Featuring one of your financial advisory firm employees in the webinar makes the presentation of information feel that much more personal for investors. Webinars are not a digital representation of a financial advisory firm’s conventional seminars.
Webinars require comparably less work and cost less yet generate a considerable number of leads. Many financial advisors advertise their webinars with Facebook Ads. The ads on this social media platform are clearly some of their most impactful marketing tools. Zero in on those who are most likely to be interested in attending a webinar and connect with them through Facebook, a different social media channel, or another platform they are most likely to use when they are seeking financial information and services.
Be sure to gather their email addresses when presenting the opportunity to register for your webinar. Even if email addresses are the sole piece of information collected from your audience during the registration period, they will prove quite helpful further down the funnel. Keep in mind, the point of hosting a webinar is to produce leads based on their interests (the reason they attended). If you don’t collect email addresses during the registration process, you won’t have the opportunity to follow up with those leads to maximize the relationship’s potential.
Certain leads will convert without delay while others will take some additional time. Email addresses make it easier to assemble a comprehensive contact list and nurture those prospects until they become revenue-producing clients.
Why email addresses? Investors feel safer providing this information. Too many have had bad experiences with telemarketers.
However, the mission is not accomplished by merely hosting a single webinar. Take some time to think about how you can guide these contacts from the point at which they think about your financial advisory services to the point that they convert into actual clients. This approach to building the webinar funnel maximizes the conversion of contacts into leads as well as leads into active prospects for your services.
Appointment funnels are best described as the digital marketing automation tools that expedite and facilitate the scheduling and tracking of interviews. The challenge lies in motivating leads to heed your call-to-action to schedule an appointment or take another action that moves them through the funnel. However, convincing a targeted contact to proactively contact your financial advisory firm is easier said than done. The challenge is facilitated by providing contacts with easy ways to schedule informational calls to enhance the results of the lead nurturing process.
Though the target prospect decides when he or she will reach out to interact with your team, you have the power to establish an expansive window of time for availability. Try to be as flexible as possible, creating the impression that the target prospect is in full control of the interview process. Empower prospects in such a manner and they will think that much more highly of your financial advisory firm, ultimately enhancing your relationship from the very beginning.
Above all, your financial advisory firm website, social media, and other components of your online footprint should make it easy for prospects to find you and contact your firm. Prominently feature email signup forms, contact forms, your firm’s phone number, and your email address. Steer prospects toward these communication channels, ensure someone from your team responds to prospect inquiries in a timely manner, and you will be on your way to maximizing conversions that pass through the top of your digital marketing funnel.