Where, Oh Where is my Calling List?
In my last article, Marketing Funnels for Financial Advisers, I gave an overview of marketing funnels and their important role in marketing for financial advisers. This article will cover the first step – lead generation – and why sales is no longer about the calling list.
What is a lead?
A lead is a person who has shown interest in your company in some way. It is a “potential sale.” They may come from website visitors, social media, or blogs. Based on their interaction with you (or your content) they are slightly interested in what you have to say.
But how do you know if someone is actually a lead or just a visitor? Let’s break it down. If 100 people visit your website in a week, and ten are really interested in your services, those would be your leads.
What is Lead Generation?
Great, you have ten leads! Or do you? The question is, how do you capture those ten people’s information so you can reach out and contact them? You have to have a process in place to do so – this process is what is called lead generation.
It’s the process of collecting the right information from the right people.
You have to have a process in place to identify and cultivate potential customers for your financial advisory firm. It is all about gathering the information from potential clients and individuals that have shown interest in your business, product, or service.
Lose the Calling List
Things have changed over the years. Twenty years ago someone would go to their local insurance agent or family banker and ask for a recommendation for a financial adviser, or financial advisers would pay for a list of potential clients that they could send out mass emails or make impersonal cold calls to all afternoon.
While both of these ways of connecting with new clients are still used today, they are no longer the only, or the best, options. As a person doing business you have to ask yourself – how are my potential clients looking for me – and meet them there.
In today’s world, a person is also no longer limited to only local options and they are no longer limited to the recommendations of only their friends. They can search the internet, find a list of hundreds of advisers, and research the company without leaving their own desk.
They are not interested in getting cold calls at dinner time or even a cookie-cutter email reaching out to them. They want to be in control of the interaction. They want to make the first move. They want to get to know you, build a relationship with you, and begin to trust you before committing to doing business with you. The best thing you can do is give them as many opportunities as possible to do so.
Leads Don’t Just Happen
Not everyone who sees your website, or other branded material, is a good fit to be a client. Not everyone that reads your latest blog or even follows you on social media is going to decide to have a relationship with you. You have to do the work to get the right ones to let you know they are interested.
You have to give them a way to let you know that they are interested, that they want more information, or they wouldn’t mind having you reach out. The second part is to convince them to take action. You have to convince them to fill out the form and click the “learn more” button. All you can do is give them the opportunity; they have to take the action.
What To Do Next?
You have to publicize yourself and your business and do everything you can to engage with the right people.
First, know exactly “who are the right people.” You need to define your audience and then target them. In the past this was done with a large net, hoping to catch a few, with cold calls and emails. Now you use your website and social media to interact with people. Potential clients will have a need, and at some point they realized that you could fill that need. Now you just need to figure out how to make that connection and get their information.
The number of people that visit your site, or see your information online, is unlimited. What is limited is the number of people that are actually interested in doing business with you. By having a well thought out process in place to capture leads you can increase your chances of making the right connections with the right people – potential clients.
In the next article in this series I will cover the details of How To Create a Successful Lead Generation Process.
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