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Marketing

6 Reasons Your Logo Is More Important Than You Think

A logo may seem like a small detail that doesn’t need much attention after the initial design phase, but it’s actually a crucial element of your branding and very beneficial to many aspects of your business. 

Like it or not, your logo is the face of your business. It represents your company and its values. It’s a symbol that your clients associate with you and your company. 

You want your logo to leave a good impression on everybody who sees it, so it has to be well thought out and eye-catching. 

Having a great logo is also an extremely useful promotional tool that can help you market your brand much easier. Just think about your favorite brands and how iconic their logos are. 

Still not convinced? Let’s take a closer look at some more reasons below. 

Builds up Your Brand’s Identity

Your company logo says a lot about your company. A great logo requires more than just good graphic design, it has to represent who you are and what you do. It not only has to catch people’s attention, it also has to tell your story at a glance.

If your logo comes off as just some random design, people won’t be able to identify your brand or make any associations with it in their minds. 

Your logo is going to be seen by a lot of people. With a great logo, you can make the most out of every opportunity it gets any exposure, and increase awareness for your brand. 

Helps You Stand Out From the Competition

It’s hard to make your mark in an established market, but a good logo can help you distinguish your company from your competition. 

Your logo is going to be one of the first things that people see, so it should be good enough to hold their attention and pique their interests. 

A good logo conveys your brand’s message and shows clients why you’re better than your competitors. A bland looking logo will easily get lumped in the mix and will likely not get any exposure. 

Reinforces Trust

Relationships are built on first impressions, so your logo has a huge role in how your company is perceived by others. If someone has no idea about you or your services, a high quality logo will at least give them the impression that you have high standards. 

A great logo also fosters brand loyalty among already satisfied customers. If your customers already have positive experiences with your company, your logo becomes a positive signal that gives them the assurance that you’ll be able to take care of them in the future. 

Creates a Connection with Your Brand

A company’s logo helps build a sense of connection between you and clients. When your clients see your logo, they’ll automatically associate it with your products and services. 

Think about your favorite car brands. Most people don’t really know anything about the company or its history, but they’ll know the logo and what their best vehicles are. 

People only need one good experience or memory of your company, and your logo helps reinforce those positive thoughts about your brand. It’s a consistent reminder of the quality you can deliver. 

Helps Marketing Efforts

When you’re reaching out to new and old customers, your logo is going to be an essential element of your brand messaging. People can take just one look and know that the message is from your company. It’s much easier to notice an image than try to comprehend wordy sales copy or titles. 

If you’ve built up enough trust with your audience, they’re more likely to take a look at your marketing collateral as soon as they see your logo. They see it as a signal that you’re telling them something important that demands their attention.

Inspires Stakeholders and Employees

Your logo is also an important symbol that can help unify your team towards reaching your organization’s targets and goals. It reminds your employees and partners of your company’s mission and values, and what you are all trying to achieve. 

Just like how a flag represents a country and its people, your logo represents your brand’s identity and everybody working behind it. 

Key Takeaways

All the largest companies in the world are well aware of how important their logo is. It’s not only a key element of their brand’s identity, but also symbolizes the success and growth of their company. 

You won’t see an established company change their logo every time they feel like it. Logos only get updated when there’s a radical shift in the company. Whenever you change your logo, you’re diluting the social capital you’ve built up using the old one. People may still recognize who you are, but a new logo might not invoke the same feelings they’ve formed and associated with a previous iteration. So it’s important to start with a good brand logo from the very beginning to make the most out of every marketing opportunity that comes across your way.

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Marketing

5 Ways to Boost Your Website’s Organic CTR

Trying to reach the first page of the search engine results page (SERP) is a noble goal. 

Sure—You’ll definitely see a spike in traffic whenever your SEO ranking moves up. But there are also a lot of things you can change on your website and its existing pages to make people click on your link even if you don’t move up the (SERP).

What is Clickthrough Rate (CTR)?

CTR is a metric that measures how many people click on your link or ad whenever it’s displayed. 

Organic CTR is the number of clicks you get when people search your target keyword and see your link in the results page. 

You can also get more clicks through Pay per Click (PPC) ads that search engines and website display. But we won’t be considering clicks from these campaigns as organic CTR.

Think of organic CTR as a measure of how effective your site is at catching people’s attention no matter where you are in the SERP. A low CTR could mean that a particular page is just not that relevant to the keywords you are targeting. There could also just be minor issues in how the link and its information is presented.

So let’s take a look at how a couple of web design tweaks can give your organic CTR a boost.

Optimize Your Content for Humans Not Google

Too many SEO professionals try to trick search engine algorithms into placing their site higher in the results pages. 

Many of their methods do work. This is why you’ll often see lots of affiliate review sites, top 10 lists, and other marketing fluff with the right mix of keywords on the first page of SERPs. But when search engine updates occur, all their proven methods suddenly become useless. 

You can take a more honest approach and simply give your target audience what they’re looking for, if you want your site to be more resilient in the long term. 

If you can show that your site and your pages are a valuable source of information, more people will click and share your content. Increasing CTR will also make your site more relevant in the eyes of search engines, which will eventually rank you higher in SERPs.

Better Titles and URLs

You only have a short amount of time to catch people’s attention when they’re scrolling through search results. Your titles and meta descriptions are going to be the first things they’ll see, so it has to be good. 

Be descriptive and use the right words that will resonate with your target audience. You want to pique their interests as they scroll by your link. 

It’s also important to make sure that your titles and descriptions aren’t cut off abruptly by the search result format before you’re able to make your point. Any missing words at the tail end of the title could be the dealbreaker that will make a large segment of visitors click on it. 

Short descriptive URLs are another way for users to identify the content of your page. URLs share the same space as your title and meta description on the search page—albeit in a smaller and lighter font. So it’s better to use short URLs with the same primary keywords used in your title instead of a bunch of random letters, numbers and symbols, to make it a little more descriptive.

Keep Your Content Relevant

If you’re wondering why some of your most popular pages are not generating the same amount of traffic anymore, it may be outdated and needs some sprucing up. 

While it’s important to keep updating your site with new pages that follow current trends, you should also regularly check how your pillar pages stack up against the competition. 

Start with the title and see if a minor edit can bump up your CTR. If the content itself is not useful anymore, plan your content strategy around it. You don’t want any bad or incorrect information on your site since it will affect your credibility and authority in the subject.

Make Your Site Stand Out

Don’t just try to copy what the top ranking sites are doing for your target keyword. By the time potential visitors reach your link after going through the first few search pages, they’ll have seen your angle on the topic written a million different ways.

However, if you have an original and interesting take on the subject, people are more likely to click and check out your site.

Research long tail keywords to find new ways to cover a tired old topic. Use numbers to add more context to your titles. Try out a bunch of different methods to make your search result stand out and catch people’s attention.

Use Rich Snippets

Rich snippets are not required or applicable to every page on your site, but can dramatically boost the CTR numbers of the pages that can use them.

Search engines have been using rich snippets for the past couple of years now to give users faster access to the information they’re looking for. Rich snippets are just basically extra bits of information you can add to your page’s HTML to let search engines know exactly what content your site offers. 

Try searching for a product or a recipe and you’ll see the extra information that rich snippets can provide in some of the results. You might see review ratings, stock availability, prices, a list of ingredients, or prep times.

Without the rich snippets, all you’ll see is the page title, meta description and URL. If the title and description don’t look interesting, your target users will probably move on to the next result that has a more detailed overview of what their page is about.

You can add rich snippets to your home page to show the most important sections of your website as site links so that prospective visitors can just go directly to your services, FAQ, about, or contact pages. 

You can also add rich snippets to your site so that your target audience can immediately see your phone number, operating hours, and address when it shows up in local search results.

Final Words

It’s been widely proven that increasing your CTR numbers will lead to higher conversion rates. It’s all about optimizing your site so that people will feel compelled to click on your link as soon as they see it. 

Some of the tips we’ve discussed don’t require a lot of work and can be implemented quickly. But if you find that your page content and its intent is way off the mark, you might need a complete overhaul of your website and content strategy.

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Marketing

Use Retargeting to Increase Revenues for Your Financial Services Brand

If your business is experiencing stagnant growth or a downward trend in revenue, you might want to rethink your marketing strategy and open it up to new and past prospects.

All organizations have to constantly evolve if they want to avoid getting left behind by the competition. But you don’t need to completely overhaul your current business model to get ahead of your targets. 

You can try retargeting your ad and marketing campaigns, which is much simpler and more cost-effective, if you want more sales and conversions. Even if your retargeting efforts don’t deliver the results you’re looking for, it can at least increase awareness for your brand, which you can capitalize on in the future. 

Let’s take a look at how retargeting can give your business a much needed boost.

Touch Base with Past Clients

Just because you’ve already concluded your business with old clients, doesn’t mean you’re over and done with them. 

Your past clients and the relationship you’ve built with them are an extremely valued asset you may have not yet tapped into. 

If you’ve already established a successful business relationship before, you’ve already earned their trust, loyalty, and support. The hard work is already done, all you have to do is check back in with them again. 

Your old clients might not be aware of your new services or promotions. They might not be entirely happy with their current financial advisor and are just too preoccupied to find another one. 

Tweak your email campaign to include personalized messaging for past clients who are inactive. Looking for a new financial manager may not be their top priority, but maybe a gentle reminder that you’re still open for business is all that they will need to send some business your way. 

It may only take something as simple as posting a heartfelt thank you message to all your old clients on social media to generate new buzz among this very valuable audience. Keeping in touch with past clients also helps increase word of mouth referrals since your business is always fresh in their minds. 

Seek Out New Markets

Your business will see a huge boost in new conversions if you refocus your marketing efforts on new audiences and new platforms. Your brand will get more exposure and there’s always a possibility and there’s always the possibility of getting a conversion out of someone who has come across you before.

Studies have shown that roughly 60% of online users are more likely to stop and check out an ad or a link if it’s something that they’ve seen before somewhere else. 

If you think about it, it actually makes sense since the idea of your brand has already been established before. You’re just reinforcing your brand into their consciousness. 

If your prospective leads can see different aspects of your business from various sources, you’ll gradually gain their trust and confidence in your brand. 

Be Creative With Your Messaging and Ads

If you want to widen your reach, you don’t have to go all out on a full-blown retargeting campaign. No need to revamp your entire marketing strategy or put tons of effort into trying out new marketing channels. Just put a new twist on your traditional marketing efforts and put a bit more creativity into it. 

You can, for example, focus on the more human and emotional side of your company or the industry to target a different demographic. 

Your audience may have already gotten used to a particular tone from your brand messaging. If you switch it up every once in a while and present them with something new and exciting from time to time, there’s a higher possibility that they’ll check it out because you’re showcasing it through your messaging.

Think of it as marketing to the same exact people, but talking to a different side of them. This slight deviation in messaging and tone can put your company in a different light that your followers haven’t seen before, which helps add value to your brand. Sooner or later, if you’ve built up enough brand value in their minds, one of your prospects may turn into actual revenue for your company.

Final Words

Retargeting isn’t really that complicated. It’s all about increasing brand awareness and showing the different sides of your company to a much wider audience. If your brand is getting a lot more exposure, you can slowly earn people’s trust and turn more leads into long-time clients as long as your messaging is on point.

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Marketing

5 Psychology Tips to Improve Your Copywriting

Does it feel like your web copy is not hitting its mark and is mostly falling on deaf ears? Do you feel like your site should have a higher conversion rate?

You might need to spruce up your messaging and make it more compelling for your audience. Your web copy shouldn’t just be professional and grammatically correct, it should also hit the right notes and pull on the right heartstrings for potential leads to make a leap of faith. 

Writing compelling copy requires talent, skill and experience, so don’t be disheartened if you’ve only been doing this for a while. You might need to rethink your entire content strategy from scratch or it could just need a slight change in tone. 

The single most important aspect of good copywriting is its ability to tap into the emotions of the reader. You need to bring in a bit of psychology and think about how your audience will react to your brand’s messaging. You have to convince them to take action using the words on the page. 

Does it sound difficult? 

It’s really not. You just have to shift your mindset and put yourself in your customers’ shoes. 

Here are a few psychology ideas you can incorporate into your web copywriting to make it more compelling and effective.

Use Positive Language

Positive words and positive reinforcement go a long way in making your readers notice your copy and keep coming back for more. You want people to feel comfortable and make them think that you’re offering them something good. 

People are more likely to engage and do business with you if you keep them in a positive frame of mind. When you’re nice to your audience, they’ll be more receptive and act nicely towards your brand in return. Being positive in your messaging also helps readers associate positive feelings about your brand. 

Give People Reason to Take Action 

When you ask people to do something, you always have to include a reason why they should do it. Your reason doesn’t even have to be a very compelling one—it just has to be valid and logical.

In psychology and persuasive copywriting, this concept is called ‘justification’. 

If you don’t justify your request, people will have to rationalize and decide for themselves before taking any action. When you provide a reason, you’re doing the thinking for them. This makes the decision-making process easier— whether you’re asking them to buy a product or sign up for something.

Freedom to Choose

People generally don’t like being told what to do. If your readers feel like you’re forcing them too much to buy into something, they’ll develop negative feelings about you taking over control. When this happens, there’s a good chance that they’ll just flat out refuse so that they can feel like they’re in control of the situation.

No matter how great your offer is, you should always emphasize the reader’s freedom to make the decision for themselves in your copy. You’re not forcing them to complete the desired action, but you’re indirectly asking them to take it into consideration.

You want people to feel good about their final decision. Let them know that they are free to accept or refuse the offer any time they wish.

Add a Sense of Urgency

If you can make people believe that they’ll never have the same opportunity again if they don’t take action now, they’ll feel compelled to make a decision much sooner. 

When people only have a limited time to process information, they’ll make more emotional decisions that they would normally consider as irrational. The idea of a time-limited opportunity triggers your audience’s fear of missing out or FOMO. In many cases, it also suggests that there’s a scarcity in supply which feeds into their fears even more. 

Serial Position Effect

With so much information and media that people consume every day on the Internet, your words have to fight their way into your customers’ minds. 

Many visitors who’ll come across your site will only spend a couple of seconds scrolling through it and just pay attention to the first and last parts of the page. This behavior is known as the Serial Position Effect. 

Even if you present readers with a list to make comprehension easier, they’ll often take note of the first and last items on the list and completely ignore everything in between. 

This requires you to carefully think about what information you should be putting in the first and last sections. Ideally, it should contain the most compelling, attention-grabbing, and important messages you have in your copy. When readers skim through your content, their eyes will naturally gravitate to these sections and whatever they contain will likely be the only things the reader will remember.

Final Words

This list is just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to creating persuasive copy. If you’re new to sales, marketing and copywriting, you’ll probably have to test out different ideas and strategies before you begin seeing any significant results. Once you master it though, you’ll have no problems bringing in new customers and clients. 

 

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Marketing

Creating a Brand Identity for Your Financial Advisory Firm

Financial advisors don’t normally focus too much on branding and design. Take a look at a couple of financial advisors’ websites and they’ll usually look not that much different from a lawyer’s website. Many of these types of websites can be described as bland, boring, and dated.

Even larger financial advisory and asset management firms will stick with more traditional and subdued colors and designs that they’ve been using for decades to appeal to a more mature market. These established firms rely more on reputation, referrals, and word of mouth to fuel the continued success of their organization. Radically changing their branding would be the last thing on their minds—unless they plan on revamping their entire business model.

If you’re starting up a new firm or trying to turn around an established one, you should spend some time on planning and creating a well-defined brand identity. 

Your brand identity or corporate identity is not just about looks, it should also reflect your values as a company. 

Brand identity is a powerful marketing and communications tool. When people see your branding elements, they should immediately associate it with your organization and have an idea about how it’s run.

Brand Identity consists of many different elements:

    • Company name
    • Logo
    • Color theme
    • Design language
    • Choice of words and tone of messaging

 

Let’s take a closer look at how you should go about planning your brand identity.

Distinct Brand Name and Logo

If you want to stand out from the rest of your competition, your brand name and logo should be easily distinguishable. It has to be attention grabbing, unique, and professional looking. 

Both your brand and logo should also say something about who you and your company is. Remember—these are the first things that people will see on all your channels of communication.

Use symbols and ideas that are relevant to your target market, company philosophy, or your own history. Choose a name and logo that can easily represent or communicate the image your brand wants to project. 

Define Your Strengths and Uniqueness

Don’t be vague about what you do and what you’re good at. If your brand identity does not showcase your company’s unique abilities, you’ll get easily mixed in together with other financial advisors in your market. 

You want your brand image to stand out by carefully crafting a strategy around your brand identity. 

Have a Consistent Design 

For your brand identity to do its job well, you need to have a unified look and feel on everything you publish. A persistent and pervasive design philosophy makes it easier to identify your brand whenever your audience sees it. 

Some brands are so ingrained in people’s minds that they can immediately identify it just by seeing a particular color palette or part of a logo.

Think of Your Target Market

Before finalizing your brand identity, make sure that it speaks to your target demographic. 

Conservative and older clients might be slightly put off by bold colors and fancy graphics. On the other hand, traditional designs might not look sexy and exciting enough for a younger audience. 

While promoting your brand identity, you want to cast a wide net. But you also want to make sure it has a good chance of hitting its mark. If you don’t have one yet, think of the ideal type of client you want to work with and find out what makes them stop and give something a second look. 

Dare to Be Different

If you want to make your mark and set yourself apart in a new market, you have to be creative and be willing to take risks. Don’t just follow current trends—try to sniff out new and upcoming ones that most people haven’t seen before. 

You want your brand identity to make your firm appear relevant today, as well as in the future, so that people will take notice. Your brand identity needs to make a big splash so that people will remember what it is and who you are.

Key Takeaways

Coming up with a great brand identity takes a lot of thought and planning. If you’re trying to be seen and noticed, your brand identity needs to be effective at putting your firm in the best light possible at all times. Brand identity goes hand in hand with your brand image, which makes it an essential part of your business and its potential for success.

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Marketing

How to Pick the Right Copywriter for Your Financial Website

A great website requires more than just excellent design. You’ll also need professionally written web copy to fill in all the pages. 

Your website is really just a place for your content. If you don’t have great copy and content that visitors will find valuable, your website isn’t going to generate any organic traffic and leads that successfully convert into clients. 

Well-written web copy should resonate with your target audience and compel them to take action. It should pique their interests, answer questions they haven’t thought of yet, and give your brand more credibility. 

Finding a good copywriter is not as easy as it sounds. Your writer needs to have the experience, professionalism, and writing skills that match well with your brand identity. 

To get you started in the right direction, let’s check out a couple of tips that can help you pick the right copywriter for your financial advisory website.

  • Check Their Portfolio

Not all writers are the same. The first thing you should do when looking for or interviewing a web or SEO copywriter is to check the work they have done for their past clients. Make sure you like their work before even considering someone for the role. 

A web copywriter doesn’t necessarily need to have decades of experience. Even someone who’s only been copywriting for a couple of months should at least have a handful of past projects that they can showcase. 

  • Look for Specialists in Your Niche

Not all writers are the same. A blogger or an academic writer doesn’t necessarily have the skills to make good copy. You need to verify whether your copywriter knows how to develop and create awesome copy for the web.

Your best bet would be someone who specializes in copywriting for financial advisory and wealth management firms. If the choices are too limited or you don’t particularly like their work, you can also look for generalist copywriters whose writing style matches well with your own tastes and brand.

  • Make Sure They Know Your Market

Even if you find a good copywriter who ticks all the right boxes, it’s still important to verify whether he or she is familiar with your target market. 

You might end up choosing a copywriter who’s from a different country or even someone who’s halfway across the world. This will likely mean that they’re not very familiar with the financial regulations and jargon used in your target market. This could lead to copy that doesn’t hit the mark with the type of clients that you’re aiming for. 

This doesn’t necessarily mean you should limit your choices to writers who are local. A versatile copywriter can quickly adapt to your specific requirements and develop outstanding copy that will resonate with your audience even if they’ve never been to or even heard of your city. 

  • Widen Your Search 

As mentioned earlier, you shouldn’t just limit yourself to local copywriters or referrals from your personal business network. It’s always a good idea to cast a wide net and look for copywriters using different channels. 

You might end up with a gem of a copywriter just by running a quick Google search. In most cases though, you’ll end up with more viable candidates by checking out freelancing sites,  copywriting agencies, or even by posting local job ads. 

Summary

Before hiring your next copywriter, don’t use pricing as the only deciding factor. It’s possible to find a quality writer who’ll undercut the competition and charge much lower just to get their career started. But it will take a lot of luck and due diligence to find that diamond in the rough. 

It’s ok to ask the copywriter lots of questions. You need to verify whether he or she can actually deliver what you’re looking for. Otherwise, you might just be throwing away money and wasting valuable time to get your website off the ground. 

Whether you’re dealing with an agency or an individual freelancer, you still need to find out whether it’s actually them who’ll be doing the work. Many copywriting service providers have a stellar portfolio to impress clients but subcontract other people to work on your project. This is still acceptable though as long as your provider is directly involved with the development, editing, and curation of the copy. Some unscrupulous copywriters may just take your money and farm the work off to someone with little or no experience in the financial advisory industry.

Good copywriting takes a lot of talent and hard work. It’s the key to making an effective website that helps you land big clients, so it shouldn’t be taken lightly. Take some time to do your due diligence beforehand. Make sure you and your copywriter are on the same page. The payback will be tremendous if you get it right from the very beginning. 

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Marketing SEO

15 Stats That Prove How Important Local SEO is to Your Business

When people think about SEO, the first things that come to mind are usually page ranks and search results. There’s nothing wrong with this type of thinking though since it’s been the main goal of SEO ever since the Internet became mainstream. 

However, over the last decade, local SEO has become more and more important – especially to businesses that have a local presence and those that conduct business face-to-face.

In a nutshell, local SEO is a branch of SEO that takes into account the location of a search so that results can be matched with sites and pages from the same area. Search engines will display both organic SEO and local SEO results, and will rank one higher than the other depending on its relevance to the keywords being used. 

Optimizing your local SEO or local search strategy becomes even more important once you consider how much people use mobile devices nowadays and use the Internet while on the go at any given time. Mobile devices can accurately pinpoint exactly where someone is currently located, and search engines use this data to make localized search results even more relevant and powerful. 

If you’re still focusing all of your digital marketing efforts on traditional organic SEO, and you’re trying to compete with every other business in your niche no matter where they’re located, you’re losing out on a huge chunk of the market and giving up lots of qualified leads who may be right in your backyard. 

Don’t believe us? Take a look at these local SEO key statistics and see for yourself.

  1. 46% of Google searches have local intent. (Search Engine Roundtable)
  2. 97% of people use the Internet to learn more about a local company before even attempting to make contact or visit a store or office. (SEO Tribunal)
  3. 88% of users who search for a local business on their mobile device will visit it within a week. (ThinkWithGoogle)
  4. 72% of users who search locally end up visiting locations that are within five miles. (SocialMediaToday)
  5. 60% of smartphone users have contacted a business directly using the ‘Call’ button that shows up in search results. (ThinkWithGoogle)
  6. Mobile searches that contain the search terms ‘near me today’ or ‘near me tonight’ increased by 900+% from 2015 to 2017. (ThinkWithGoogle)
  7. In the same time period, searches that don’t have the ‘near me’ qualifier have grown 150% since people know that search results will always be relevant to their location. (ThinkWithGoogle)
  8. 75% of smartphone users expect information instantly when using their mobile devices (ThinkWithGoogle)
  9. 64% of consumers have used My Google Business listings from search results to find contact information or an address. (BrightLocal)
  10. 44% use Google Maps to find addresses and contact information. (BrightLocal)
  11. 49% of consumers use local business websites for addresses and contact information. (BrightLocal)
  12. 56% believe that a company’s website has the most accurate information. (BrightLocal)
  13. 50% of people say they are less likely to use a local business if the information on its website is incorrect. (BrightLocal)
  14. Online reviews are one of the top local SEO ranking factors. (Moz)
  15. Yelp appears in the top five search results for 92% of Google searches that contain a city and a business category. (FreshChalk)


Here’s another statistic from Google that’s quite eye-opening for financial advisors:

  • Mobile searches related to financial planning and management have grown 70% over the past two years. (ThinkWithGoogle, 2018)


What Local SEO Means to Your Business

Looking at all this data, it’s abundantly clear from the numbers that local SEO is not something that should be taken lightly, or put off for later. If you don’t have a solid local SEO strategy, you’re giving up potential customers to your competitors. We live in a fast-paced world where people expect to find all the information they need online. If you’re not prepared to serve up that information using the proper channels, your target market will just move on to somebody else who will. 

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Marketing

Why Social Media Engagement is Important to Your Business

Social networks have undoubtedly taken the world by storm. Over 3.6 billion people, or almost half of the world’s population, use social media with the average user spending almost 2.5 hours on social media per day. By 2025, the number of social users around the globe is projected to grow even more to 4.4 billion. 

These figures are quite amazing – especially considering the fact that just over a decade ago, online social networks were still in their infancy. 

What started as a new and fun way to connect and communicate with friends and family has evolved into a collection of online platforms that can quickly and easily influence people’s behavior. We’re now living in a world where social media has the power to blur the line between the online and offline worlds. 

What does this mean for your business? 

You may have already come to the conclusion that social media is a tremendous advertising and marketing opportunity. You may also already have Facebook, Instagram and LinkedIn pages, a Twitter account, or even a YouTube account. But if you’re not seeing any traction from your social media efforts, you’re probably not handling it the right way. 

If you approach social media merely as an extension of your traditional advertising and marketing efforts, you’re not taking advantage of its most powerful features — facilitating user engagement with your brand. 

What is social media engagement?

Unlike traditional advertising and media, social media platforms break down the wall of communication between companies and their customers. It gives people the ability to interact with businesses and brands just like they would with their friends or loved ones. Instead of just being a faceless commercial entity, companies can become more relatable in people’s eyes simply by embracing the interactive nature of social media. 

Valuable Feedback Loops

Two-way communication and different forms of interaction are the cornerstones of social media. As a business, you can take advantage of these features to consistently receive valuable and authentic feedback from your target audience. 

Feedback can come in many forms such as comments, likes and shares. If used correctly, you can use this information to better understand what people are looking for and continually tweak your brand messaging to give them more of what they want. 

Build Relationships and Foster Loyalty

When people see that you have an active social media presence, they’re more likely to reach out to you for questions or react to your posts. The more effective you are at responding to people’s requests and giving them what they want, the faster people will see you as a reliable and trustworthy brand. Building trust is especially important in the financial management and planning industry because people are looking for reliable partners when it comes to dealing with their hard-earned money. 

Additional Exposure for Your Content

You can post all sorts of business-related content like news updates, promotions, and in-depth analysis about current events and trending topics on your social media pages. Compared to posting content on your own website that people have to actively search for, your followers can get your updates in their social media feeds as part of their regular social media activities. 

If your social media posts manage to hit the right notes, your followers can also repost or share your content which gets even more eyes on your posts resulting in increased awareness for your brand. Posting regularly also helps your brand stay relevant and on top of people’s minds. 

Thought Leadership

With the right content and brand messaging, you can also establish yourself as a thought leader or an authority on a particular subject. This helps you distinguish yourself from your competitors and gives your brand more credibility.

Reputation Management

Another benefit of having an active social media presence is the ability to actively manage your brand’s reputation. One thing to note though, you have to be prepared to respond to both positive and negative reactions. 

Everything you do on social media is visible to the public. It’s a double-edged sword that can make or break your reputation in an instant. It’s imperative that you wear your public relations hat at all times whenever you deal with social media. One mistake can leave a lasting negative impression on your audience. The better you are at handling negative feedback on social media, the more positive impressions you’ll leave on the general public. 

Key Takeaways

The power of social media is something that any modern company shouldn’t ignore. On top of offering tons of value, creating a social media presence only takes a couple of minutes and doesn’t cost any money. In fact, lots of online businesses exist and thrive purely off of their social media pages. To take advantage of its benefits, you have to take an active role and deliver compelling content that can invoke emotional responses among your audience. 

Categories
Marketing SEO

10 SEO Copywriting Tips for Financial Advisors

Copywriting for financial planners and financial management websites is no walk in the park. It’s one of the most competitive markets out there and it’s growing larger year after year. In fact, by 2024, the personal finance market is expected to grow to over $2.6 billion worldwide.

You’re not only competing with large and established organizations, there are also tons of freely available online resources and user-generated content that promote financial literacy. 

If that’s not enough, Google has also made it more difficult for financial content to reach the top of its search results ever since the ‘Medic’ update in late 2018. This update puts ‘pages that could potentially impact the future happiness, health, financial stability, or safety of users’ under much more scrutiny than before. Sites that fall under the category of YMYL or ‘Your Money, Your Life’ need to have more ‘Expertise, Authoritativeness, and Trustworthiness’ or ‘E-A-T’ in order to show up in search results pages. 

Does this mean your financial planning website has nope of ranking on Google and other search engines? 

No. Updates like these merely reinforce the fact that your site needs to always provide high-quality content. It severely penalizes pages that rely on keyword stuffing, misleading information, and poorly written content that try to ‘game’ the system to get higher ranking pages. 

Check out these tips if you want to make your financial copywriting more effective.
  • Start with great keywords.

Before even typing your first sentence, you should make a list of keywords to target. Defining the keywords you want to rank for will guide your overall content strategy and content writing process. If it’s a highly competitive keyword, you’ll have to make more of an effort to create content that will offer more than what your competitors have already published.

  • Include LSI keywords in your content

LSI keywords refer to the use of Latent Semantic Indexing so that search engines can better understand what your web copy, article or blog post is all about. When a search engine crawls your content, it keeps track of synonyms and semantically related words to figure out the message you’re trying to convey. This way, users can find your content even if they don’t type in the exact keyword you’re using. 

Someone looking for information on ‘car loans’ can find your content even if your target keywords are ‘auto loans’. If you sprinkle in more related keywords, or add more sections related to the main topic, there’s a higher chance that people will see your content. 

  • Write content for people 

It’s easy to fall into the trap of writing content specifically to satisfy a search engine’s requirements. Content like this tends to look awful and unappealing to regular people. 

Writing content that people will want to read is much more effective overall. It also has the added effect of giving your website more credibility in the eyes of the search engine. 

  • Identify your target market

Figuring out your target market is a key component to writing compelling copy. As the old saying goes, ‘You can’t please everybody’. It’s much easier to create outstanding content when you can put yourself in your readers’ shoes because it allows you to focus on their most pressing concerns. 

For example, retirees will have different financial goals compared to young families who are just starting out. 

If you want to see higher conversions, you’ll need to adjust your tone and style to appeal to specific markets. This applies to all aspects of your brand identity and messaging, which includes your web copy, emails, blog posts, and social media. 

  • Prioritize local SEO

If you’re not a huge organization that already serves different markets nationwide, it’s best to focus on topics that concern people in your local market. This will allow you to narrow down your target keywords to a more manageable list that are less competitive. Discussing local events and regulations will likely lead to more page views from people you can actually offer your services to.

  • Create an emotional connection

When you choose the right words, you can make a great lasting impression that will benefit your brand. When talking about financial planning, you can either fill your pages with numbers and statistics, or focus on how people can improve their lives. The latter is more effective if you’re just at the beginning of the customer journey. In many cases, even clients who have already signed up with you won’t bother too much about the nitty-gritty details. That’s what they’re paying you for anyway. You’ll get more attention and inquiries by showing people what you can do for them rather than how you’ll be doing it.

  • Use the Bucket Brigade 

A bucket brigade is a copywriting technique that slowly drips the information to the reader to keep them interested and encourage them to scroll down and keep on reading. Bucket brigades use short and punchy one-liners that ask questions or make bold claims that capture the reader’s attention. 

It’s a great way to break up long blocks of text and segue into another talking point. 

Using bucket brigades is a sure-fire way to decrease bounce rates and increase dwell time on your pages. Using catchy one-liners makes it easier for people to digest the general ideas that the article is trying to convey. If they’re not particularly interested in a particular section, you can bring them back by calling their attention to the next sections. 

This is really effective in online copywriting since people expect instant gratification and just want to get to the meat of content without having to read through long introductions.

  • Don’t forget the mobile aspect

Mobile devices account for roughly half of the world’s website traffic. It would be foolish to ignore this huge population of users, so you have to make sure your website and its content looks great and is easy to read even on smaller screens. 

Structure your content so that it’s easy to scroll through, and don’t flood it with long paragraphs like you would in an academic or white paper. Readers should be able to judge whether your content is worth reading through just by looking at your intros and outros. You should also generously use visual aids like bullet points and infographics to make things easier to read and digest. 

  • Provide credible information

As a financial advisor, you want to project an image that you’re extremely reliable and trustworthy. It will be impossible to make a good first impression and build any kind of trust with your readers if your content is filled with misinformation and just generally poorly written. 

Whenever you link to another page to back up your claims, make sure it’s a respectable site with lots of authority on the subject. Otherwise, your site might be put in the same category as tabloids or fake news sites. 

  • Put more thought into titles, meta tags and descriptions

You should put just as much thought into your titles, meta tags and descriptions as you do with the main body of your content. These are the first things that people will see whenever your page shows up in search results, so it should reflect the quality of the article it’s associated with. Otherwise, people will just scroll past your link and move on to the next one in the list. 

Categories
Marketing Website Design

Secrets to Creating a Strong Visual Identity for Your Financial Brand

No matter how good of a financial advisor you are, you need to have a strong visual identity for your brand. It’s the first thing people will see even before stepping into your office, so it has to be unique, attractive, and thematically consistent. These visual elements make it easier for people to identify your brand, and continually attract new clients that will grow your business.

Brand Identity vs. Visual Identity

Brand identity and visual identity go hand in hand, but there are distinct differences between them. 

Brand identity is the overall representation of your company to the general public. This includes your visual identity, as well as non-visual elements such as your company name, mission statement, copywriting, messaging, and all other aspects of external communications.

Visual identity strictly deals with logos, colors, graphic design, photos, typography, and all other visual elements that can be seen on your website, social media profiles, business card, and marketing collateral whether it’s on physical or digital media. It’s basically everything that people can see. 

Start by Evaluating Your Brand

Before making any design decisions, you need to take a close look at who you are as a brand and who your target market is going to be. 

If you want to appeal to a specific demographic, you need to do things that will catch their attention. Flashy graphics and bold colors may work well for younger people, but more conservative individuals may be put off by it, so you’ll have to take a more traditional approach.

Does your current brand image need a complete overhaul, or do you just need to improve on a few things? Either way, your visual identity needs to reflect the brand identity that you want to project.

You also need to take a look at your competitors and figure out how their brand is addressing the market. Find out what they’re doing right if you want to emulate their success, but make sure you’re also making your brand stand out through its own visual identity. 

Colors Palettes and Themes

Colors are able to invoke certain moods and feelings in people, so it’s important to choose a palette that is aligned with the brand image you want to present. 

For example, red is often associated with strong emotions like love and passion while blue is perceived as cool and calm. 

In order to make your brand easily identifiable, you need to consistently use a primary color palette in most of your visual designs – so it needs to be chosen carefully. This primary color palette will be the first thing that people will notice and will be what most people will associate with your brand from here on out. 

Keep in mind, you can still use other colors in your designs, but the primary palette should always stand out. Logos, illustrations, photos, and symbols should also complement your primary color palette so your visual identity will have a unified look across all your marketing and promotional materials. 

Come up With a Style Guide

To ensure that your visual identity has a consistent look further down the road, you need to establish a style guide or a design language. This will make designing new pages and marketing collaterals in the future much easier since it narrows down the available options your designers can choose from. 

A style guide will specifically state what primary and secondary colors to use, the typography you prefer, and other visual elements like logo variations, website buttons, and page layouts. 

Brainstorm, Design, Tweak and Redesign

Before finalizing the most important aspects of your visual identity such as colors, logos and key images, make sure it addresses all your branding concerns and speaks to your target audience. Most importantly, it should all look good together since these will be the most used elements in your future designs.

Don’t be afraid to tweak or even completely redesign everything from scratch if anything looks out of place. It’s better to make mistakes now and create different iterations of your brand identity during the design phase than scrapping it all after only one or two years because you’re not happy with the results.

As a financial advisor, one of the most important things you want to project is an image of reliability and trustworthiness. If you’re always completely revamping your visual identity, you’re throwing away any brand equity and trust you’ve already built up previously. People want to see consistency and stability from their favorite brands, so make sure you do it right from the get-go.