Lone Beacon works with elite financial advisors across the country, and our data allows us to recognize industry-wide trends. At the end of the year, we mine the data for each of our clients to assess performance of all media buys and marketing tools, and to create a strategy for the upcoming year. Here are some of our industry-wide observations from 2019:
Local vs. National
We looked at overall trends for local and national media, including trends for cable TV ratings. Prime time cable tv is a great value for most of our clients because we can micro-target geographic areas and dramatically cut costs by focusing on a tighter trading area. We think, in general, tv news ratings will be high in 2020 because it’s an election year.
As with cable TV, advisor’s radio shows should focus on reaching a local audience. In 2019 we saw more people pushing podcasts as a way to increase brand awareness, but we think it’s more impactful on a national level than a local level. That’s why we focus on pushing out our advisor’s shows or podcasts on a local level through radio and social media.
At the beginning of 2018, many people were moving their money in the down market as was the case during a volatile 2019. This has to do with the fact that people pay more attention to their money during a market downturn and may have a different opinion of their advisor if they’re affected.
Facebook was used aggressively this past year, often as a supplement to mailers for seminars. We ran this type of advertising, but also focused on using it as a traditional marketing tool. The 50+ audience on Facebook is huge, and the advertising potential goes way beyond filling extra seats at dinner seminars. We used it similarly to how we use broadcast to get a brand out and fill the top of the sales/prospect funnel. The net result of a dynamic Facebook campaign isn’t just the leads generated from the Facebook form-fill, but the quantum leaps in web traffic made via organic searches.
Since we are uniquely positioned to recognize long-term trends in each of our advisors’ practices and across the industry at large, we have insight into what media platforms and innovation will work well for each of our advisors. One of our observations of 2019 was the “omnichannel trap”: There are so many media platforms and marketing tools to choose from, that it can be easy to attempt to use all of them, only to use none of them effectively. Although all of our advisors are on multiple platforms, there is such a thing as too many, and focusing on quantity doesn’t always translate into quantity.
We’re excited to enter 2020 and see many opportunities for our advisors to grow their businesses. Specifically, we think video marketing and webinars, using Facebook advertising in a similar way to broadcast, and taking advantage of cable zones during an election year will bring success.