Is your marketing helping in a time of crisis? – By Jenny Pearse
The media is in a frenzy at the moment. You and your client’s are feeling a range of emotions. We are witnessing great moments from selflessness and empowerment to the absolute ridiculous and shame on how humans can behave.
The challenge in these moments is, do you turn away from the white noise and put our head in the sand and do nothing OR do you lead from the back seat and adapt to the situation. As financial advisers, there are many of you fielding calls from clients and you probably have been for some time. Environmental impact has a massive influence on your clients and how they feel, from droughts, bushfires and floods to property slump and stock market rollercoasters and now a pandemic. Your clients are experiencing the buffeting of a world that is more than just a little crazy.
To some degree it should be business as usual for you and your client; let’s face it you’re their calming voice of reason. It is important at these times that your marketing reflects the situation your clients find themselves in. Your marketing strategy should be taking into account how your clients and potential clients are being impacted.
Marketing is about communication and providing an experience to allow your audience to engage and connect with you. This applies for a traditional marketing approach and if you have invested in a digital strategy. So what should you be doing with your marketing?
Key steps you should be investing in right now:
- Who you are talking to. Financial advisers often use a broadcast approach in their digital marketing to speak to the masses. Remember, when you broadcast you aren’t always speaking with the people who you actually do business with. Be targeted in your approach and speak with the people that are part of your community.
- Apply active listening and be engaging. Whether it is through your social media activity, via email or over the phone. Listen to the pain points of the people you are engaging. These are indicators for what your content should be addressing.
- Content is still king! Don’t sensationalise but inform and educate. You are part of your client’s circle of trust, be the calm voice that they may not be hearing from anywhere else.
- Curate content. Don’t have time to whip together an article or video? Share content that is from a valued and trusted source and add your commentary to it.
- Images tell a story and we use them as a key element in all forms of marketing. The key to this is to use the power of your images to set the tone for the message you want to convey.
- Email – get your message across in more than one way. Email allows you to provide a personal message and get to the heart of things.
- Don’t be generic. People like to receive communications that address them and their situation. It elevates you and your client and provides a sense of intimacy.
- Know the role you play. When it comes to predications, just don’t! You are not a medical or environmental expert so whilst it is important to be a conduit for information; in this you are not the expert on what’s next.
- Be honest, be transparent and be consistent. If you don’t know something that’s okay. Your clients will respect you more if you communicate it. Communicate often!
- Action. If you are taking action on behalf of your client, use the above steps to take them through what that action looks like. When you set out your intentions, your clients know what to expect. Use your communication channels to keep them informed.
No one can predict the future but we can prepare for it
Have a plan not only for your financial advice but for your marketing. Invest the time to prepare a communication strategy that allows you to move swiftly when dealing with a crisis. Make sure you are aware of the technology you have at your fingertips that can help get your message out and make changes quickly. Finally, be prepared to think outside the box if you need to. It is in times of crisis that we must innovate in the way we communicate.
Stay well and keep calm.
Jenny Pearse. Managing Director, Jenesis.