As clients and prospects get bombarded by an ever-growing volume of information and communication, getting noticed in the digital world is getting harder.
With the right digital marketing approach, however, you can ensure that your brand doesn’t get overlooked by today’s tech-savvy, time-squeezed consumer, according to Debra Jasper, co-founder and CEO of Mindset Digital, a digital advertising training firm based in Columbus, Ohio.
“We are operating in a state of hyper-distraction,” Jasper said, speaking at the LIMRA and LOMA Canada Annual Conference in Toronto last week. “We have to dramatically — and, some folks would say, radically — change how we communicate if we want to continue to reach large audiences, or even small ones.”
While the number of channels for marketing your practice and communicating with clients and prospects continues to grow, Jasper said, the number of messages and marketing campaigns competing for their attention is also growing rapidly.
“It is so easy to get a message out,” she said. “What’s hard is: how do you get a message in? How do you get anyone to look up from their phone and tune in to what you have to say?”
Here are some tips for capturing the attention of clients and prospects in the digital realm:
> Use plain language
The financial services industry is notorious for its confusing terminology. In the digital world, Jasper said, that won’t impress clients.
“The rest of us don’t always follow,” she said. “Your clients don’t trust a lot of jargon.”
To capture the attention of clients and prospects on your website and social media, Jasper recommends taking an informal, conversational approach.
“I’m not advocating that we dumb it down, but I am advocating that we break it down,” she said. “Write like you talk.”
> Use visuals
Although you may have a lot to say, text is not necessarily the best method for getting a message through to your online audience. Pictures, charts, graphs and videos can provide far more engaging ways of telling stories, Jasper said.
“You really want to be visual to keep people tuned in,” she said.
Videos are the fastest growing type of online content, Jasper noted, and are poised to represent 80% of the world’s Internet traffic by 2019.
When you are using text on your website or as part of your digital marketing strategy, Jasper said, find ways of making it visually engaging.
“Text doesn’t have to be just text,” she said. “Text can be infographics.”
> Polish your LinkedIn profile
Don’t underestimate the importance of LinkedIn, Jasper said. Clients and prospects are undoubtedly searching for information about you online, and one of the first search results they’re likely to see is your LinkedIn profile.
“You have to meet clients where they are, and increasingly, they’re on LinkedIn,” Jasper said. “It’s not just a network. This is a website of you that is fully optimized by Google.”
To ensure your profile makes a positive impression on clients and prospects, include a photo that makes you look friendly and approachable. Avoid formal corporate headshots, Jasper said, as they can appear old-fashioned.
Describe yourself and your services on your profile in a way that conveys not only what you do, but what you love about what you do.
“This is a mini magazine bio of you,” Japser said. “You want it to be about what you’re passionate about, how you’re helping people.”
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