In a previous post, we provided some actionable tips around getting started with content marketing. However, with so many choices out there on how to deliver valuable content to prospective clients, taking that first step can be overwhelming.
With technology and the internet now-a-days, there are just so many options that we have at our disposal to provide great content. The long list includes blogs, podcasts, video content, social media, e-books, newspaper columns, journal features, newsletters, direct e-mail, physical mailers, etc. If you're just starting out, it would be unrealistic to expect that on day one, you would have every single content platform dialed in.
So the next logical question is to ask, "Which platform should I start with?
In this article, we'd like to provide a few tips on how best to answer that question for YOU and YOUR FIRM...within the context of blogs, podcasts, and video content.
Blogs: Highlights your writing skills
Writing is a great tool to help you put your own thoughts and opinions into written word. For most, this exercise actually helps the writer further understand a subject. By taking the time to write out your thoughts, you are forced to create arguments, tease out your beliefs, and share your voice.
If you enjoy writing, starting your own blog can be a great way to provide valuable content to your prospective and current clients. A blog is a great way to put yourself out there for readers to get to know the "real" you - your authentic self. Most likely it would be the case that your blog content would be related to financial planning topics that would be valuable information for prospects and clients to know. You'd get a chance to share your expertise in the subject, but also provide insight into your personality & own life experiences. Over time, the goal would be that your blog speaks to potential clients that would want to work with you and value your expertise (provided in the blog over time). To get some inspiration, here are Michael Kitces' Top 50 Financial Advisor Blogs & Bloggers List.
Podcasts: Highlights your verbal communication skills
If you like talking and have interesting things to say, starting a podcast may be a perfect fit for you.
The formats for podcasts vary, but the most successful ones in the advisory space tend to be in the "interview-style" format. There are a few out there that are more of an open monologue or dialogue on specific topics, but they do not always hit the mark episode to episode.
If you're thinking about starting a podcasts and you want to shoot for the "interview-style" format, take the time to think about what topic (or topics) you'd want to cover. Another thing we see is that of having a co-host. This is a great idea to provide another voice and perspective on whichever topic you choose.
Finally, if you are going to choose the "interview-style", brainstorm ideas on who you'd like to interview. Maybe you are an advisor that wants to niche in on personal injury attorneys. What better idea to reach out to that niche market, and interview them on such things as their career path, the current industry, and their pain points when it comes to their finances? Maybe you start out with your own clients that are within that niche, then branch out to prospects, referrals, or even cold leads. Most people would be flattered to be interviewed on your podcast if you come to them in a genuine manner. Before you know it, your podcast "listener-ship" consists of the exact niche you want to work with. Win-Win!
Video Content: Highlights your physical & verbal communication skills
If you are comfortable and confident in front of the camera (or stage), sharing video content may be the best option for you.
Video allows for you to let prospects get to know exactly who you are right away, before even meeting you in person. This can be a great tool to attract potential clients that you'd automatically gel with. If they are watching you share your expertise and personality on video, then odds are that they wouldn't mind being your client.
What's great about video is that it can be live or pre-recorded - depending if you put it out there via social media (YouTube, Instagram, FaceBook, Twitter, LinkedIn, etc.), direct e-mail, or right on your website.
One out-of-the-box way to use video content is to create a pre-recorded "welcome" video to prospective clients right before their first in-person meeting. Maybe your first introductory meeting is a 30-minute call to gauge if there is a fit. Next, they move on to an in-person meeting with you. What if, before that in-person meeting, you sent them a simple welcome e-mail with a video of you saying hello and letting them know what they can expect when you meet in person. What is cool about this, is that they prospect will almost feel as if they already had met you in person because of that video!
A last point to make on video content is that it can be relatively easy to produce a lot of content. If you have a newer smart phone, video quality is pretty amazing these days. Because of that, you do not need much to record yourself sharing your thoughts, expertise, and personality to prospects and clients. If you do not like writing and starting a podcast seems like a lot of work, video content could be the best out of the three for you.
Whether you start out writing your blog, getting your podcast going, or sharing creative video content - we have two MAJOR pieces of advice:
Just get started! Everyone has to start somewhere!
Choose something that you will enjoy doing so that you keep it up!
We understand that creating content on top of working with clients and running your advisory firm can be a daunting task. Nifty is always here to help!