Whether you’re a well-established financial firm or an aspirational start-up, understanding how you’re going to generate new business is, perhaps obviously, quite important.
At Catalyst, we’ve worked with finance businesses of all shapes and sizes. One thing that many of our friends in finance struggle with is an overreliance on introducers.
Referrals are a fantastic source of new leads, having a 30% higher conversion rate than leads from any other channel.
What you don’t want, however, is to rely entirely on referrals for your lead generation – this is a recipe for disaster; having all of your eggs in one basket rarely works out.
So, how can you successfully build a marketing strategy for your finance business in 2022 and beyond? Our experts have sat down and put together everything you need to know to achieve marketing success; let’s get started!
Why bother with a marketing strategy if you’re getting lots of referrals?
While it’s true that your referral leads will likely be the best leads you generate, have you got a plan for what happens if they suddenly dry up?
The whole point of your marketing strategy is to bolster your existing efforts and grow your business in a more sustainable way. The only way to ensure sustainability is by creating a varied, multi-channel strategy that covers all bases, channels and techniques.
Not only this, but the more leads you generate, the more business you close, and the more customers you have who may refer you.
Your marketing strategy isn’t there to replace your referrals, it’s there to fuel them.
How to build a finance business marketing strategy
When preparing your marketing strategy as a finance business, it’s important to lay the groundwork before you get started.
Research, research, research
You wouldn’t grant a finance request without doing your due diligence. Your marketing strategy should be treated in exactly the same way.
Without proper research, your marketing strategy is built on chance. By taking the time to learn everything you need to know about your target market, competitors and more, you can ensure that every tactic you employ is based on data, not guesswork.
You’ll need to know:
- How you’re articulating your business’ offering
- What your target audience want/need
- The approach your competitors are taking
- How your website is performing
You need to demonstrate that you understand potential clients’ pain points and growth plans. Knowing all of the above helps to create a marketing strategy where everything and everyone is pulling in the same direction.
Without this research, you’ll see far worse results, so never skip this step!
Need help conducting thorough market research? Talk to our research specialists today for advice tailored to your finance business.
Branding & proposition
Your business proposition is a succinct summary of your business’ strengths that connects your product or service with your audience, and your branding is how your business presents itself (imagery, messaging, visual elements, social media presence, service, reputation, et cetera).
It’s important that you have all of this set and consistent over your lead generation campaigns – there’s nothing worse than a brand with no true voice or direction; it sends the wrong impression and often comes across as disorganised or non-committal (two qualities you really don’t want to associate with a finance business!).
Best lead generation strategies for finance businesses
Once you’ve got your branding and proposition sorted, it’s time to add some substance to your marketing strategy in the form of lead generation!
Sending a message directly to potential customers; doesn’t get much better than that!
Manually emailing thousands of people would be incredibly time consuming, though, which is where email automation comes into its own.
You create high-quality, fully optimised emails, set them up to go out on a predetermined schedule, press go and prepare to follow up. It’s one key piece of the puzzle, but can’t exist in isolation. Your emails need to be supported with fantastic collateral content.
Regular well written content is a superb way to nurture potential leads and position your business as an authority figure in the finance industry.
This is perhaps one of the most important lead generation tactics that you should employ as a finance business, as your content can help to demystify the highly complex issues that you solve.
By making things easier to understand for potential customers, you’re organically building a rapport that will likely pay dividends in the future when they’re looking to purchase.
Your content may take the form of:
- Networking events (presentations, displays, brochures)
Make sure that the content that you’re producing is relevant to your niche. Say, for example, that you offer asset finance for SMEs, you’ll want to produce good content that’s keyword optimised and easy to understand for your target audience.
Remember – many of the people you’re trying to communicate with won’t follow if you use too much jargon, so keep it simple & readable – you’ll thank us later!
SEO is important for any business, sure, but it’s especially important for finance businesses.
Our top tip is to find a gap in your local market and exploit it – you’re going to struggle to break into the big leagues unless your financial product is relatively niche.
This means targeting keywords such as ‘X support in Y’, where you can capture the interest of people local to you.
Account based marketing
Do you know exactly who you want to be working with? Reach out to them with a tailored, physical message.
Account based marketing (ABM) is where you choose a handful of ‘perfect’ accounts, and you send them something memorable that introduces your business and how you can meet their financial requirements.
Get it right, and you may be able to cut out the middleman and communicate directly with the decision makers.
Well optimised pay per click works wonders, especially if you’re looking to build some short-term momentum.
It’s a great way to beat search engine algorithms, however, your ads need to be properly optimised before they go live (this will save you a lot of money).
Finance businesses can get a bad rap, creating some positive PR around your brand can be a powerful driver of leads.
Whether you’ve done something charitable, you’re innovating in your sector, or you simply want to talk about what it’s like being a finance business, PR can be a great way to get people on your side and to remain front of mind at all times.