Volatile markets represent significant buying opportunities for disciplined investors. This is the ultimate opportunity for a buy low / sell high strategy. It takes discipline because the news that causes markets to go down can be downright scary (inflation, recession, war). The same is true for marketing financial advice to investors. Asset-based revenues are down in volatile markets so the emotional response is to reduce marketing until the markets recover. But that is like selling stocks in a down market when you should be buying when prices are lower. Volatile markets are best for acquiring new clients. That is because the number of investors replacing financial advisors triples.
Describing this discipline can be challenging. So, what follows are tips based on best practices for successfully selling your brand in a market with increased volatility.
What do you tell your prospects and clients?
The longer you work in the finance service industry, the more you see rising, falling, and recovering markets. At the end of a period of time, the markets are always higher than they were at a previous peak. The only questions are magnitude and time - how deep was the decline? How long was the recovery?
You tell your clients to be patient. Markets go up and down, but eventually they will recover. When they recover clients have to be invested to participate in the recovery. There is a high probability that those who went to cash during the decline will be late getting back in during the recovery. So they booked the loss in the down market and were late getting back in during the recovery.
Effective financial advisor digital marketing means consistent messaging to your CRM as well as compelling leads and prospects. When times are tough, delivering value means providing clients metrics-based reassurance. (First reference to digital marketing).
It can be a balancing act, but it doesn’t have to be exhausting. In fact, there is an encouraging point to share, internally and externally: When other investors panic and sell off, promising assets can be acquired at rare lows. (we are not telling advisors how to educate their clients to view down markets as buying opportunities. See what I wrote earlier and get into digital marketing a little quicker.)
Manage expectations as you would at any other time through meetings, emails, and other marketing tools. In other words, remind them not to go too far in the other direction and blow 100% of their cash. (Again, this is education advisors how to communicate with their clients. Our goal is to encourage them to increase their digital marketing during down markets).
Instead, suggest contributing regularly to diversified, low-cost, tax-advantaged funds. Compounding returns and dollar-cost averaging should reward measured, strategic investing. (This is close to being investment advice which we don’t do)
Shepherding nervous investors through volatility involves more than checking off the usual boxes. However, you also have to get proactive. (a lot of standalone sentences that are not on point).
The value-add within a special email or brief call from your team to explain what’s happening and provide guidance cannot be overestimated. (this is servicing, we are marketing)
Externally, your financial advisor website, email marketing efforts, and social media need to discuss the economic reality honestly. At the same time, all digital communication should engage worriers with analytics to ease their fears. (this is not bad, if it could be more specific - they should bump up their digital marketing to win more clients who are changing advisors. Their messaging should be adapted to market conditions. In some cases they will want to update their content, blogs, website, eBooks to support this.
How Can Financial Advisors Compel Leads While Ensuring Retention? Compel? A lead is marketing. Retention refers to clients.
Hopefully this is enough information. I would like you to rewrite the article and focus on digital marketing in down markets. You should limit how they service current clients during down markets. How good they are at this will impact how many clients they lose during the downturn. Our purpose is marketing - how they win new clients during the down market.
What changes do we recommend for their digital marketing?
The art of selling includes knowing how much to share without burying leads under too much data. Therefore, review your niche’s pain points before deciding what you will share.
Jon: The pain point in a down market is fear. How do they harness fear and use it in their marketing. This is about winning new clients during turbulent markets. We may end up wanting a lot of this content if the markets stay rocky.
Tailor communication for your target demographic as precisely as possible. Generic messaging can be easier, but it often adds less value to recipients. That’s a poor marketing strategy.
After getting proactive and keeping honest, remind clients, prospects, and leads that downturns are to be expected. This can also be a valuable window for emphasizing the reliability of your wealth management, if you are subtle.
Calmly explain that your team habitually manages assets from a long-term perspective. Position your practice as a trustworthy anchor to investors for all seasons.
On the other hand, consider doing so offhandedly: Sometimes real estate sells 50% because of what the realtor says and 50% because they gesture in passing to the view.
Even online, subtlety can be effective. Generally, you want to be upfront about how dependable you are. Regardless, make this obvious without always gesturing straight to it.
Instead, focus your messaging to provide clarity and factual reassurance. Leave just enough breadcrumbs for your audience to infer the rest.
Sincere reassurance, paired with humility makes far more compelling digital marketing. These also lower the likelihood of being misunderstood.
When mentioning the opportunities to buy up other investors’ panic-sold assets, you cannot afford to sound callous or gleeful. That would alienate some prospects while reinforcing negative stereotypes about the financial industry.
So, opt for straightforward, calming tones. When the subject of capitalizing on a market decline comes up, approach it from an angle of making the best of a bad economic situation. Pitch as a silver lining for retirement planning.
Converted prospects may celebrate that much louder when unexpected or forgotten dividends are realized—because you didn’t cheer-lead inappropriately now.
What Else Can You Do to Win Prospects in Tough Times?
There’s an art to financial advisor marketing during tough economic times. Another important aspect involves who you choose to message.
That is to say, widen your focus just a bit. If you have a podcast, don’t stop producing content. Never stop making your CRM feel appreciated, either. To rank higher with clients, you have to do more than search engine optimization.
So, remind investors that you always have time to help the people in their circles. Stress the fact that when family, coworkers, or friends seem anxious about the market, you want to help.
When you send out reassurance emails, include a call to action; a link for scheduling a brief asset review by phone. Add a line suggesting that they forward it to their loved ones, as well.
Consider a deal of some kind for family members and friends to sweeten the appeal. For example, offer a free second opinion with recommendations to minimize their losses.
Emphasize to clients and prospects that though the future is unpredictable, you plan sound financial strategies with them to weather even tough times. These kinds of digital marketing strategies put the odds in your favor.
As much as 78% of clients with a formalized financial plan in place have reported feeling positive about their assets over the year ahead. Only 44% of participants without a formalized plan felt as good. Small business owners, especially, can benefit.
These statistics assume a financial advisor is there, wisely providing value through numbers-based clarity. There’s no getting away from the human need for reassurance. We might even be hard-wired to panic.
In ancient times, stoicism could get you killed. People rarely if ever considered long-term planning because it was useless to them. In order to survive, we responded immediately to a threat.
For all our advances, we probably haven’t changed that much. External stimuli can only be ignored so much. If there’s a loud noise, we still look in the direction it came from.
It may be best to encourage clients to realize that anxiousness is a fact of life that everybody has to deal with. It usually passes, with time.
When the market drops precipitously, consider sharing the fact that almost everyone feels a pinch at some point from volatility. Be careful not to sound complacent about it, but make sure investors who take losses know they are not alone.
Next, emphasize your resolve to protect their assets—and all of your other clients’ portfolios—rain or shine. Keep building trust. Remind them that you and your team intend to stay with them, come what may.