Are You Making Knee-jerk Marketing Decisions?

By Joe Bayliss

June 16, 2016

It happens to the best of us.

You attend an industry function. An advisor speaks to his unprecedented growth and the marketing platform that’s driving an incredible number of leads. You get all revved up. This is the silver bullet you’ve been looking for. And by the time you get home you’ve turned your marketing platform upside down.

Or, a colleague, a sales rep, or someone else whispers in your ear about their marketing opinion. And that one conversation causes you to take your marketing in a totally different direction.

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Have you ever done this?

In my line of work, I see this happen every day. It’s disruptive. It wastes time. And it’s dangerous.

I believe industry functions can be great. I believe listening is a great habit (we have 2 ears and 1 mouth. Use them proportionately). But darting in different directions every other week will drive you (and your staff,) crazy. And it could derail any good things that are working right now.

Any changes to your marketing platform should be made slowly, and with a thoughtful strategy.

Here are 3 lessons from my experience …

1. ​Every market is different. What works in Phoenix could fall on its face in St Louis. Advisors have called me from industry functions to sign a well-known syndicated radio personality to do endorsements. We’ve seen this personality thrive in one market, yet we couldn’t get arrested in another market. There are no guarantees anything will work from one market to the next.

2. ​I’ve heard many advisors speak at industry functions. I’m sure they’re all well-intended. But it’s possible that on some rare occasions, there could be some exaggeration to the story. I’m just sayin’.

3. ​Everyone’s got a marketing opinion. But it’s important differentiate fact from opinion. That’s key. On what basis are you making this claim? More often than not, you’ll discover it’s an opinion. Just because someone has been peddling radio or TV spots for 25 years doesn’t mean they know a thing about generating leads. Be careful here.

Are you unhappy with your marketing efforts?

Do you want to generate more leads?

Then go back to the questions from Marketing 101 …

1. ​Who is your target demographic?

2. ​Where do they spend their time (radio, tv, online)?

3. ​What are some of the likely or viable mediums in your market to reach this target customer?

4. ​Ultimately, what do we want that potential customer to do? What action do we want them to take? (This will drive what your message will be).

5. ​What does the competitive landscape look like? Where are other advisors spending their money? What is their message/platform?

6. ​Are there any geographic challenges (example: suburb vs city)

7. ​What makes you unique? What gives you credibility?

8. ​What could be your platform to generate leads? (taxes; income; workshops; 401-K)?

9. ​What’s your Plan B, if Plan A doesn’t yield any results?

10. ​How do you define (marketing) success?

11. ​And how are you tracking your leads to know what is and isn’t working?

Answering these questions and forming a thoughtful strategy will help you navigate your marketing options with confidence. And it will prevent you from darting in different direction every other day.

In the end, this will save you time and money. And stop driving you and your staff crazy.

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