To Market or not to Market?
June 30, 2017

A number of Financial Advisers we have met in recent months have been very proudly anti-marketing and have considered it to be a weakness if they were to market their business. Their clients have all come from successful referrals and they actually consider advertising as a sign of desperation or worst still, as lacking integrity because of course if they were doing their job well, the clients would come surely?

Just as financial advice has encountered challenges in terms of its reputation, marketing suffers the same. Sometimes it is referred to as the ‘colouring in department’ and due to the sometimes intangible nature of results it is difficult to justify – and worse still, not everything works!

This blog covers some aspects of the role of marketing for a Financial Adviser, and why they are invaluable in taking the business forwards:

Generation of new business
Sometimes there is a need to generate new business. You may have scope for some additional capacity by bringing on new advisers or having improved systems. You may even just want to build a steady pipeline of new business.

Advertising can be one element in the armoury you use, however there are other options and this involves creatively looking at your connections and positioning to identify what will raise your profile and generate new business. For instance, it could be about building your local profile. The most successful new client development is based on nurturing relationships. This isn’t typically seen as marketing activity; however it could well fit under the marketing umbrella especially when planned strategically with the end goal of increasing the client base.

Creating a brand experience
This is all about adding value to your team and your clients by creating an amazing and excellent brand experience and really knowing what your brand stands for. Again, this is a strategic marketing activity as working together and identifying what the brand represents then you are able to make key decisions knowing whether or not they are “on brand”. Your brand experience builds consistency for clients and differentiates your firm.

Product Development
This refers to being marketing focused and determining where there is a gap, a need or opportunity and then working to find a way of meeting that need and rolling it out. This involves looking at every client touch point in order to create a solid service proposition that really satisfies the customer need.

We would argue there is a role for marketing in evolving a dynamic financial services business. The term marketing can be misinterpreted as advertising, which is more of a marketing tactic. Even without fully being aware of it Financial Advisers are naturally marketers, by taking the offering out to the market, understanding what is required and tailoring what they provide in response.