Raise your hand if you as a financial marketer plan to create more thought-leadership and other content marketing in 2019 than you did in 2018.
I obviously can’t see you, but I’m willing to bet that most of you raised your hand. I don’t blame you.
As marketers in the asset management, investment banking, and other financial services industries, we’re always thinking about ways that we can do more next year than we did this year. And when it comes to creating content, our thinking is no different. We assume that to enhance our thought-leadership efforts, to engage our target audiences more deeply, and to improve on all our marketing key performance indicators, we need to do more.
Blog more. Film more videos. Create more infographics, white papers, social media posts, slide decks, and pitch books.
Now, humor me for a moment and think about your habits as a consumer of content in 2018, particularly when it comes to digital content.
How many of you hope to receive more emails, see more content in your Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn feeds, and have more content from vendors, businesses, publications, etc., next year? Again, I can’t see you, but I doubt many of you feel like “not enough marketing content” is a major problem in your life.
I can’t take credit for coming up with this anecdote that highlights the paradox of the world we live in—and often fall prey to—as financial marketers in 2018. It came from Tarah Speck, strategic manager, value consulting initiatives at marketing software firm Marketo. She presented at a recent conference put on by The Asset Management Marketing Association (PAICR) that was centered around marketing automation.
But I thought the point she made was so important that I had to share it with you—even if it may not be in my best interest as someone who works for a firm that ghostwrites thought-leadership and content marketing for asset managers, investment banks, and other financial services firms.
Why wouldn’t I want Wentworth Financial Communications’ clients to think they need to create more thought-leadership content in 2019? It would certainty help our business grow—at least in the short run.
But in the long run, as Speck pointed out, simply adding more volume wouldn’t help our clients improve on the metrics that matter the most, especially audience engagement. And we often tell clients that trying to produce content for the sake of getting more views, clicks, or likes isn’t a worthwhile endeavor.
As Speck said in her PAICR presentation, and as we tell our clients, more important is the quality and personalization of the content that you produce.
Here are three ways financial marketers can enhance the quality of their content in 2019.
Take a distinct point of view or angle that moves the conversation forward
Make sure that you’re producing content that’s truly distinct and advances the conversation, and not just piling on with more “noise” on a given topic. For example, if you’re an asset manager writing about cryptocurrencies, don’t just write your typical background primer on bitcoin, ripple, or other digital tokens; rather, as we at WFC have written about before, write about an underrepresented investment angle or opportunity related to cryptocurrencies.
Write about tangible examples
All too often, content marketers tend to write about things in broad generalities, instead of using real, tangible examples to help a concept really hit home with readers.
Just like a good feature film or book has more impact and power when the people and stories involved are real, the same can be said for financial content marketing and thought leadership. If, for instance, you’re writing about how the new tax law could influence estate planning strategies, try writing your piece in the form of a case study about how a family in a particular situation should think about year-end gifting in light of the new higher exemption amount and annual exclusion.
Try using new, complementary content mediums
Of course, at WFC, we will always advocate for the written word, but sometimes the best way to make your thought leadership stand out in a crowded media environment is to augment your written content with other, more interactive content mediums.
For instance, take the 3,000-word white paper you’ve written on how volatility and trade wars are affecting equity capital markets and create an infographic or talking-head video as a supplement to promote it. Particularly with social media, these new, alternative mediums are effective in driving more web traffic to longer, written thought leadership pieces.
So, remember these points as you head into the final quarter of 2018—a period that, for many financial marketers, typically means mapping out your thought-leadership and content marketing plans for the year to come.
More content doesn’t necessarily mean more engagement. Content is certainly one of the many aspects of life where quality trumps quantity.
For more insights on how financial services firms can create compelling thought-leadership content—whether on their own or by working with a ghostwriter or outsourced writing agency—subscribe to WFC’s YouTube channel.
About the Author
Frank Kalman is the chief operations officer at Wentworth Financial Communications. Frank and the team of writers and editors at WFC help professionals across the financial services industry build their brands by creating investment-grade white papers, bylined articles, newsletters, blogs, social media posts, and other forms of content marketing.