Most advisors want to grow—and realize that if they want to grow, they have to get personal. Or hyper-personal.
According to the January 2022 Advisor Outlook Study by Charles Schwab, 93% of firms expect to grow over the next five years, and 63% expect to grow by acquiring new clients. In order to achieve this growth, the study found that most advisors are targeting more personalization.
“We see precision and personalization increasing in importance for advisors,” said A.J. Boury of TIFIN Clout. “Many of them are looking to stand out, and one of the ways they are doing that is by focusing on niche client types and personas. For example, in the Bay Area, advisors are focusing on the tech community. We’ve seen other advisors come through who are faith-based and are focused on church communities, while others are focused on specific professions like doctors.”
Clout is designed to help wealth management firms get the right content in front of the right clients and prospects using artificial intelligence to make sure the content is hyper-personalized to both the advisor and more importantly the interests of specific clients or prospects.
While some level of evergreen and baseline content, like talking about tax planning and rolling over retirement plans, can apply to a broad swath of clients and prospects, drilling down to a hyper-personalized content marketing approach allows advisors to target the best clients for their practice.
“If their firm or their book of business is focused on a specific persona or a handful of personas, it gives advisors the ability to develop expertise tailored to a specific mindset,” said Boury. “Many advisors we work with have a good idea of what their best clients look like. So we help them engage with content that speaks to the unique needs of that persona and establish thought leadership in that area.”
While large, diversified financial firms don’t typically go into niches as a business, individuals and groups of practitioners within those firms often do, said Boury.
But advisors who develop a niche are also able to create repeated processes to serve their specific clients, leading to a more efficient firm and a higher return-on-investment from their marketing efforts.
Catalyzing Webinar Content
Take Nathan Brown of MyPersonalCFO as an example.
“He wanted to take a webinar-specific approach,” said Boury. “Our team helped with the promotion of the webinars and custom messaging that targeted two groups of clients specifically at target firms with complex yet valuable employee benefits.”
Brown’s webinars were intended to help directors, management and executives avoid mistakes when selecting employee benefits.
Brown approached Clout with lists of the clients he wanted to target, Clout automatically trimmed the email lists for relevance and tested for deliverability, and spaced out email campaigns to allow for proper notice, to create urgency and to help Brown stay top-of-mind with prospects. The technology sent three emails prior to the webinars, and then automatically followed up for Brown helping to create multiple touch points with prospects.
“We saw strong performance, both in engagement with emails and in the conversion rate, and most importantly ROI fromoverall attracting new clients,” said Boury. “There were over 200 webinar attendees which ended up as 50 meeting requests and 10 new clients for Nathan. We also helped him with the post-webinar roundup, sending the recorded webinar to prospects who couldn’t attend live, and wrapping up any additional emails that had to go out to prospects who wanted to set up more meetings with him.”
Crafting Targeted Messaging
Another advisor began using Clout’s technology in the second quarter of 2021 to target employees of pre-IPO technology firms in California.
Clout helped the advisor develop a tailored prospect list and generate email campaigns with relevant content to reach those clients with content discussing markets, products and strategies relevant to them.
“Once an advisor has established a footing or at least a perception of what the persona of their next-best client they want to target, we are able to use content tailored to a specific mindset,” said Boury. “We were able to provide and send that kind of content out, allowing this advisor to connect with prospects whilst creating and maintaining a presence in the target audience.”
Clout created a consistent social media voice by helping this advisor push out at least one social post and one email per week. The campaign helped attract a response from the founder and CEO of a fast-growing Bay Area startup, who was converted to a client in September of 2021.
Instead of putting the onus on firms to source content and find the right prospects to target, Clout does most of the heavy lifting to make sure the most effective pieces are being placed into newsletters and social media posts on behalf of advisors.
“I think technologies like Clout—we’re able to help advisors from a content query perspective—save a lot of time and effort for advisors in finding the right content to share,” said Boury. “Once we know thematically what they want to speak towards, Clout can scan across millions of pieces of content and find the right content relevant to their target clients with precision.”
Clout screens content not just for relevance, but also for quality. It does not suggest generic news stories, describes Boury, and won’t send daily reports about the movements of stock indexes to clients and prospects. Instead, it focuses on content that it deems most relevant to a financial services audience and their clients.
Clout also helps identify the most promising prospects, said Boury.
“The Clout score is a mechanism to identify the most engaged clients and prospects you have,” said Boury. “It scores at an individual level how many times these people are clicking, engaging and commenting. It records if they fill out requests for more information and pushes them to the top of the list of prospects that an advisor should reach out to.” The Clout score helps advisors segment their audience and hone their tactics to continually move prospects closer to becoming clients.
Making the Most of Clout
But advisors need to develop a well-defined editorial calendar and their own credible, responsive voice in the marketplace, said Boury. With those in hand, Clout can handle the work of reaching a broad network of prospects and clients and creating a digital presence for advisors.
Clout allows for marketing campaigns to come together quickly with testing and experimentation at the ready to optimize campaigns. As the advisors become more comfortable, they can expand beyond their native niche audience into other types of potential prospects to see if they can create engagement, said Boury.
“I think Clout can be a catalyst for the network effect,” said Boury. “Once you drive engagement within your audience, the way these social platforms work, if you engage with something, your friends see that as well. You can scale to reach thousands of people, friends of friends, in your audience that share common interests or lifecycle stages.”“