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Marketing for Advisors

Connecting with prospects and nurturing clients is a skill that many advisors have to learn the hard way. With technology, compliance, and advisory landscapes changing all the time, it’s difficult for advisors to market themselves AND provide world-class service to their clients. We’re in awe of those that do!There’s an easy-to-follow marketing principle that we think can help known as The Four Rights:

The right message, to the right audience, at the right time, in the right medium.

Whether you’re trying to attract more prospects, or just deepening relationships, this strategy makes sure your communications aren’t missing the mark.

The Right Message… 

Communicating the right message means asking the right questions:

  • What am I trying to say? (ex. How would I explain this to someone I know well?)
  • What is the emotion I’m trying to convey? (ex. urgency, delight, worry, curiosity, anger)
  • What actions would I like the reader to take? (ex. download, go to website, call, sign up, share)

There are hundreds of thousands of financial advisors, stock experts, and apps out there trying to reach the same pool of potential investors. Asking the questions above can keep you from fading into the rest of the “noise.” Think about the articles, social media, and other content you’ve recently interacted with: why did you take action? What made the message relevant and personalized to you? When the message matters to us, we’re more likely to take action.

...To the Right Audience… 


If you’re looking to attract clients or just network with other advisors, these audiences have distinct needs that don’t often intersect. A helpful tool for identifying these audiences is to create “personas” with some criteria. Examples include:

  • A young technical professional in my area with 100k potential AUM
  • An ultra-high-net-worth executive looking to retire in less than ten years
  • A retiree who was an entrepreneur and passed down the family business
  • An advisor in my area looking to expand their practice

Creating a message with purpose is pointless if the intended audience never sees it, so it’s important to be specific. It’s easy to think, “Why not market to everybody?” But casting a wider net rarely results in a bigger catch. The key to reaching the desired audience is relevance: as the old saying goes, “riches are in the niches.” Don’t be afraid to specialize if you feel you are best suited to a certain profession, demographic, or age group. We encounter different types of investors every day, and everyone has different needs, fears, and priorities. Whether you choose to cater to retirees, divorcees, young professionals, lawyers, carpenters—being a specialist doesn’t limit opportunities, it only makes the potential clientele easier to find.

One of our company’s core values is Focus. We think in the long term and focus on doing a small number of things really well. We choose to make a deep impact rather than trying to boil the ocean. Consider if your approach might benefit from a little more focus, as well.

…At the Right Time…

Timing is a tricky concept in marketing because there is notoriously bad data everywhere you look. Some claim it’s the time of day; others say a general date is okay, while some say a “moment” is more important. How does this answer anything (it doesn’t) and how much of a surgeon do you have to be just to make sure your message gets an audience? It’s easier than you think.

Some “experts” say posting on Tuesday mornings is best, others say Monday afternoons have a better payoff, and we’re happy to tell you that, for the most part, none of that matters. The exact timing of a post only makes a difference in select industries, so there is no problem posting at 10 am EST rather than 3 pm EST. The best advice is to use old-fashioned common sense: a well-crafted message published at 2 am will not perform as well as a post at 2 pm, unless you’re marketing exclusively to night owls or vampires. In the realm of “right time” marketing, aim for relevance and you’ll be fine!

For even more examples: we’ve found that tax-related topics published in June won’t have urgency of action, and in-depth white papers won’t have a high response rate if they’re related to problems that are too far on the horizon. Take advantage of moments, events, and top-of-mind subjects. Ask yourself these questions when timing your message:

  • Is this relevant right now?
  • Will a good portion of my audience see it today?
  • Does this message align with things my clients are interested in this time of year?
  • Should I market to night owls and vampires?

It’s also helpful to think about your routine. Are you a morning person? Do you prefer to check emails in the afternoon, or does the timing not matter since you’re always on mobile? Insight into your own habits could be the data you need to time your messages right.

…In the Right Medium.

We created a Social Advisor Guide with stats on the most popular social media platforms and how advisors utilize them to increase AUM. Whether you’re trying to reach new prospects, or sending information to current clients, using the right medium for your message is essential. Research suggests that 26% of ultra-high-net-worth clients are regular LinkedIn users. If this is an audience you’re targeting heavily, your right message to the right audience at the right time will fall flat if you decide to use email or Facebook instead. The right medium is what binds your strategy together, and using a variety of mediums is the key to being effective across many audiences. This requires some trial and error but there are some free resources out there to make this process easier.

Hootsuite is a social media marketing and management dashboard that offers free and business plan options, depending on your needs. The metrics, functionality, and scheduling features make it a helpful tool for beginners and advanced advisors.

CRMs have also enabled helpful integrations for a variety of marketing tools, which can be a good option for those wanting to manage their prospects and outreach efforts seamlessly. Redtail, one of the most popular CRMs for financial advisors, supplies a list of recommended Marketing Tools with instructions for each. If you’re using a CRM, see if they may have a similar list.

Sometimes the answer is a little more analog—talking in person. As much as modern communication has gone digital, it’s important to accept that sometimes talking face-to-face is the best medium for what you’d like to say. Weigh your options and be open to being unconventional. Ask yourself these questions:

  • Is this the best format for my message?
  • Does this medium make sense for my audience?
  • Is this the best way or the easiest way?

Our risk questionnaire is a lead gen machine that advisors can utilize in a variety of mediums including on a website, social media, email, and more. Imagine being able to gather a Risk Number from anywhere!

To see how advisors are utilizing our risk questionnaire to attract prospects on their website, check out 15 Great Advisor Websites.

When advisors communicate the Right Message to the Right Audience at the Right Time and in the Right Medium, they revolutionize their business: they find more prospects, they build their network, and they improve their client relationships. If you’re a Nitrogen user, we provide a free Advisor Marketing Kit so that you can promote your business and the Risk Number easily, and across a variety of platforms.

Not a Nitrogen user yet? We’d love to give you a personal tour so you can see how 22,000+ advisors are empowering fearless investing for yourself.

The “Four Rights” was originally developed by Roger Flessing during his time as VP of Communications at World Vision.


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