22 Feb How Financial Advisors can Generate Qualified Leads via Facebook
Facebook can be a great way to connect with qualified prospects – if you know what you’re doing. Unfortunately, most of the post we see from RIA’s are executed poorly and generate little interest. This leaves many advisors feeling as if their time and energy in both creating and publishing a post is a waste — as their efforts lead to no results and more importantly, no new AUM. In fact, many advisors we’ve spoken to have come to the conclusion that social media/Facebook does not work and can’t possibly generate new clients. Unfortunately, this experience isn’t unique and is more common than you might think. Fortunately, if this is you – there is hope.
For starters, it’s important to know that Facebook isn’t a conduit to a hard close. Meaning — if you’re expecting to get a prospect to convert into a client through a Facebook post, you’re setting the wrong expectation and positioning yourself to fail. Rather, Facebook should be used to capture interest in your services and to bring qualified clients into your pipeline. And if your post is good – it will generate lots of ‘Likes’ which will serve to establish trust in your brand and post – potentially earning you more traffic to your website. Just like ratings for a product on Amazon – the more people ‘Like’ your post the more others will trust what you are saying (ie; wisdom of crowds, confirmation bias).
Second, many advisors share articles and information from websites other than their own – ultimately directing traffic to 3rd party sites. This may be a good way to establish your awareness of current trends and events, but if this is your only method of activity – you are simply sending traffic to everyone but yourself. This is why creating content on your own website is a must. And remember, not all content is equal. Publishing articles in your blog regarding specific challenges your prospects face or goals that they seek to reach is by far the best content you can publish – in terms of ROI.
Many advisors struggle with writing good articles or simply do not understand how creating a library of articles can convert a prospect and generate AUM. It’s important to understand that publishing problem solving blogs are a part of your digital marketing pipeline and are often conduits to triggering an inquiry from a qualified prospect. Your ability to demonstrate how to help a prospect avoid tax pain, probate, or save enough for retirement is often the burden of proof a prospect requires in order to want to learn more about your services (ie; fill out a contact form on your website).
It’s important to be timely, topical and interesting when writing and publishing a blog. Boring your audience with sausage making will only serve to push prospects away, especially on social media sites like Facebook. Consider choosing topics that are trending in the news – as prospects often need help making sense of what they are being told. Once you have a worthy article to share – publish to your blog first – then post to Facebook. Remember, when sharing your article on Facebook you want to preface your audience on what they will learn if they click on your post. This isn’t the time to promote your services – so avoid the temptation to turn this into a call to action or an outright promo for your business. Your only goal at this stage of the process is to get readership and ‘Likes’.
Getting your article in front of the right eyeballs requires that you ‘sponsor’ your post. A sponsored post is basically a form of advertising. Facebook provides a sophisticated advertising platform (set of tools) that enables you to target prospects based on demographics, interest and other profiling factors. Understanding how to get the most from your sponsored post requires that you gain an understanding of all of the options available to advertisers. At first glance, this may seem intimidating – but figuring out how to target your niche audience will save you from wasting marketing dollars in the end. Alternatively, hiring an experienced digital marketing company who knows the ins and outs of Facebook could save you time, money and bandwidth.
Unlike a business that is selling jewelry, tickets or lodging via Facebook – your prospects need to be convinced/converted through knowledge, process and trust. If used correctly, Facebook can help you connect with qualified prospects that ultimately lead to net new AUM. It may require several campaigns, A/B testing, and advertising dollars to be successful – but once you have your niche dialed in, the cost of acquiring a client is significantly less than many other options.