9 Marketing Resolutions to Make for 2019 – Part Two
2018 has come and gone, and a new year is upon us! With January comes new goals, new commitments, and new opportunities. The same way you would resolve to eat healthier or travel more in the new year, you should be resolving to do better in your business – better conversions, more revenue, and more consistency. As you take note of how you want to incorporate some or all of these strategies into your 2019 plan, be sure to check with your compliance department to make sure that you’re not breaking any rules, and always work with them to maximize what you can, as much as you can.
Be sure to read tips one and two in last week’s post!
3) “In 2019, I will spend more time on professional development.”
Let me start by addressing the elephant in the room… “Kelly, what does this have to do with marketing?” A lot, actually! Marketing isn’t just about your business cards and social media. It’s about how you present yourself, the experience of working with you, and how referral-friendly you are. Spending time on professional development is a win nearly any way you look at it. For starters, you’re going to gain more knowledge on subjects that interest and impact you and your business. Additionally, you’re going to be able to make smart changes in your business – sometimes even ahead of the power curve. Finally, all of the things you’ll learn will provide valuable talking points and insights that you can share with your peers and clients. Win, win, win.
So what does “professional development” entail? Start with little things that you can incorporate into your everyday routine, and then look at something that you can incorporate annually. For example, how do you commute to work? If you have a long(ish) drive, or ride the bus or train, then use that time to listen to something – an audiobook, a podcast, or even a video! Look for topics that could improve and impact your business, or even things that just interest you. Maybe you’re listening to a marketing podcast that keeps you abreast of the latest trends and gives you tips on how to reach your target market. Perhaps someone in your study group suggested an awesome book from Darren Hardy on building your business. Or maybe you’re listening to a presentation that someone influential in your industry gave about their success. Whatever it is, commit to listening a little bit each day, and you’ll be amazed at the kind of knowledge you can intake during a normally mundane time. Personally, I listen to audiobooks whenever I can – traveling to and from work, while I’m cooking, as I get ready in the mornings, and even before bed.
On a bigger scale, look at what you could do annually that maybe you haven’t in the past, and plan for it ahead of time. Maybe your company offers a yearly conference designed to provide camaraderie and learning opportunities? Perhaps you haven’t attended in the past because it hasn’t been in the budget, or you didn’t think you would get a lot of out of it. This year, I challenge you to step a little outside of your comfort zone, and make plans to attend that conference, and then network and learn all that you can. The relationships built within just a couple of days can serve you greatly. If your company doesn’t offer something like this, look for other opportunities, other conferences, or even webinars, that could bring value to you and your business.
To learn more about some of the experts I believe all financial advisors should follow, read this blog.
4) “In 2019, I will have a social media strategy that can outlast the ever-changing algorithms and help inspire referrals.”
I hear you saying you “don’t do Facebook” or there are “so many rules for LinkedIn.” But I promise I will make this super easy! Only two steps: 1) maximize your profiles and 2) be a human!
Just like with everything else, compliance has a lot of rules. But more often than not, they have those rules written out for you, somewhere, and you may just need to ask for a copy. So do that, and then go through and fill in as much as you can on your Facebook business page and LinkedIn profile. (Of course, make sure you’re doing it the right way – if you have to use a compliance management system like Hearsay, then of course do that.) On LinkedIn, put your disclaimer as low on the page as you can get it. If possible, put it in the oldest “job experience” section.2
Once you have everything maxed out and compliance approved, now you just need to do basic maintenance. Keep your LinkedIn up to date with any new changes as they happen. You should post on your Facebook business page every few days with the 4:1 ratio (four lifestyle/helpful posts and one ‘salesy’ post) for vetting purposes, but where the “human” element comes in is on your personal Facebook newsfeed.
I always recommend to my clients to start and continually connect with as many of your clients and COIs as you can, and then to set a goal of commenting on five people’s posts every day. If they post a picture of their dinner, say something as simple as “Looks yummy!” Just be a normal person and interact on a personal level – not company to person… person to person. The power of doing this one little thing is incredible, almost as important as spending time with that person face-to-face. Another thing that is important to know is that “liking” or “reacting” to a post using the thumbs-up icon does nothing. If you like something, comment saying that you like it. Think of it this way… if you have 100 people like your post, how often are you looking to see who those people are? But if you have 10 people comment on your post – you’re reading every one of those comments, right? The next step, if you’re comfortable with it, is to let folks in a little on your life as well. Post a picture of your new grandbaby, or a vacation photo with your family, and interact with those who comment on your post. If you feel like that is too “off limits” for those folks to see, then post recipes, inspirational quotes, the latest book you read… things that are personal without getting too personal.
Doing this is going to keep you top-of-mind and show that you care. When someone needs an advisor or is asked for a referral, your name will be on the list because you’ve spent time making an impact in their lives through your interactions on their posts.
2You can learn more about improving your LinkedIn presence from part two of our four-part series on LinkedIn here.
5) “In 2019, I will make sure that people are finding me on search engines and that what they see is accurate.”
More often than not, offsite directories will try to be helpful and will auto-generate listings for you. But the problem is that these listings are oftentimes populated by user content, and therefore could be incorrect, out of date or negative toward you and your business. It’s important to do what you can to take control of these listings so that you know your business is being represented in the right way and that these listings can’t be maliciously manipulated.
At the very least, I recommend that you go through the process of claiming your Google listing. This entails having a Gmail account, but you can set one up for free. They will also have you verify your address and phone number, and you’ll have the opportunity to add pictures, list your hours, services and more. Having a maximized Google listing is incredibly important because it’s oftentimes one of the most trusted listings out there, and if it’s incorrect, it doesn’t look good on you. In addition, Google likes when you use their products, so if you have verified your listing, it’s going to help push you up the search engine results.
Another great reason for making sure that your directories are up to date and listed correctly is to ensure that you’re in alignment with compliance’s rules. As a business owner, I would recommend that you be the one to claim your listings, and not someone on your staff, so that if and when that someone leaves the company, you still have full control over your company’s digital presence. Some of the most powerful directories that you should look into claiming and optimizing include:
Be sure to check back next week for tips six and seven!