Financial advisors who work in rural areas often find themselves to be among a small group of advisors vying for a relatively small pool of clients. In the city, the market is much bigger and the competitive field is much more crowded.

The main challenge for urban advisors is to make sure their marketing efforts are focused on their target audience, says Richard Heft, executive director of Ext. Marketing Inc. in Toronto. To avoid getting lost amid a sea of advisors, you should strive to build the strongest brand possible.

Here are five tips for marketing in a competitive urban environment:

1. Create a value proposition
Keep your message laser-focused, so potential clients will know exactly what you stand for, Heft says. For example, if you want to expand your work with doctors, market yourself as “The Doctor’s Advisor.”

“As your business matures,” Heft says, “you want to focus on your areas of strength, but don’t close the door on other opportunities.”

For example, you may be particularly good at generating retirement income, but give yourself some leeway so you don’t limit your client base.

2. Utilize networking opportunities
Advisors in rural areas often emphasize their community involvement. The urban equivalent is having a presence at networking events. Luckily, there should be plenty to choose from.

Alternatively, you can host a presentation and call on your centres of influence for help, Heft says. That way, you can give your event more value by covering a couple of different topics and increase the number of attendees.

3. Tailor your communication method
Be flexible in the way you communicate with current and prospective clients. Many of your clients will have extremely busy work lives, so may wish to have most of their communication in digital form. For example, if your contacts spend most of their time online, Heft says, it makes more sense to send an e-blast newsletter than to mail out print copies.

4. Position yourself as an expert
While establishing a reputation as an expert takes time, you can positioning yourself as a subject-matter specialist in business media, says Andrew Broadhead, manager of communications at Ex. Marketing.

Once you’ve developed a particular expertise, you can build a media strategy for exposure that may involve writing articles and being vocal on social media.

5. Use online advertising
For a relatively low cost, you can experiment with advertising on LinkedIn, Broadhead says. Social-media advertising presents a growing opportunity for advisors, particularly because of the ability to target certain demographics.

“You can choose whose profile that ad is going to go in front of,” Broadhead says, “so it’s a way to stay focused on your goals.”

This is the second part in a two-part series on rural vs urban marketing.

Click here for part one.