What’s the Value of Niche Marketing?
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The following is excerpted from The Pocket Guide to Sales for Financial Advisors by Beverly D. Flaxington (ATA Press, 2014), which is available from Amazon via the link below.
What’s the value of niche marketing? Is it necessary? Will it limit your marketing options? In this week’s column, I offer some ideas on how to create a workable niche market for your advisory firm.
Learn more in my bestselling book on this topic.
Identifying your ideal client
Marketers often ask financial advisors to identify their ideal client. They want you to answer the question “Whom do you best serve?” Financial advisors can often point to the clients they enjoy the most, the ones that are most profitable or the clients they want to replicate. But when it comes to target marketing or new business development, they often don’t want to be boxed in by defining a specific type of client.
Not just a number
Many advisors will state their desired client as an asset number – “anyone over $500k in assets” or “we work with those investors who have $10 million or more in investable assets.” But few investors look at themselves as an asset number! Many people don’t even know exactly what they have amassed. And, from a marketing perspective, it’s quite difficult to create a campaign purely based on asset size.
So why not spend the time identifying, more specifically, the desired client your firm can best serve? It’s not about boxing your firm in or limiting your options; it’s about clarifying the people or organizations you understand well and can work with effectively, and it actually opens up your options in marketing.
Opening up marketing options
How can identifying your desired client open your options? When you can describe to a client, center of influence or prospect the types of people you work best with, the person listening gains an idea of who they might want to refer to you. It helps them to identify, as they go about their daily lives, those people who are potentially a good fit for you. It also allows you to create messaging and materials that speak directly to the types of people you want to attract.
Talk to ME!
We recognize messages that are tuned to our favorite radio station – WIIFM (what’s in it for me?) – and those messages that are saying something about who we are or what we care about will inevitably be heard more loudly than general information. Consider the difference: A financial advisor who says, “We provide holistic financial planning and have a depth of knowledge creating portfolios to meet long-term needs.” Or a financial advisor who says, “Self-employed individuals wondering whether they should sell their business in order to eventually retire comfortably often turn to us. Our specialty expertise is in working with the self-employed and examining options for their retirement.”
The first pitch could easily get lost amongst all of the other information coming at me in my business and my personal life. But if I am a self-employed person, I will immediately react to messaging that is designed to capture my attention. I will perk up and think about my own retirement planning and whether there are ways to enhance what I’ve done.