How to Blog and Vlog Your Way to More Referrals

Referrals have long been the heavy hitter for advisors seeking to grow their practice. After all, getting your existing clients to spread the word and bring strong leads to you is arguably one of the best ways to work smarter, not harder at increasing your AUM. No one is arguing the “why”, but the “how” can be where things get sticky. We’ve already taken a bird's-eye view of the power of marketing in your referral strategy, and we’ve talked about how to bolster referrals through email strategies, so it’s high time we look at two of the best ways for you to establish value with clients and prospects alike: blogs and videos.


Blogging and Vlogging Sound Like Too Much Work…


Before you hightail it outta here (because it’s hard to decide which you have less of, time to write a blog, or the confidence to record a video), hear us out: yes, blogs and videos both take time to create upfront, but the ROI is well worth it. They’re handy tools for providing free, educational resources to your clients, those on the fence, and people who have no idea who you are or really what financial planning is, but know how to conduct a Google search. And, unlike a promotional mailer or a cold call, they’re easily shared with multiple people at the click of a button. Make a video series on budgeting basics, and your clients can share it with their friends, kids, and grandkids at the click of a button. Get a big enough blog archive or playlist, and you can become the go-to for reliable financial information for a much broader audience than your existing clientele. And if that wasn’t enough incentive, depending on the subject matter, blogs and videos (especially videos) have a much longer shelf life in terms of generating leads than other types of referral strategies. Your emails probably haven’t been laminated, but static content– content that doesn’t interact with or change depending on the viewer– continues to generate leads and reinforce your status as a valuable source of information long after you hit “post.” As Troy Sharp notes on the Financial Advisor Success podcast, providing value is essential to advisor growth strategies. “If I provide enough value over a long enough period of time, I firmly believe that those people who I connect with– and they connect with me if they are in need of our service– that they will reach out…” 


Help Referrals Find You With Blogs


Are you a Google ads strategy specialist? No?? Good thing you don’t have to be to improve your search engine rankings. Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is a blanket term for different things you can do to help search engines like Google understand your content and get it in front of the right people. The more tools you incorporate (correctly), the higher up the results page your content will appear, and blogs happen to be one of the best vehicles for upping your SEO game, and by extension, generating organic referrals. 


One of the best ways to make a search engine your ultimate referral partner is by writing blogs focused on keywords (which can be short phrases that function as one keyword, not just individual words). Before you start tapping away at your keyboard or voice-dictating, think about what someone might type into a search bar when looking for the type of service or information you’re providing. Once you have a list of keywords that will attract the right readers to your blog, weave them into your content in a way that sounds natural (we’re looking at you, AI-generated blogs). Do use them in titles, subheaders, and the first paragraph of your content. Don’t jam in as many keywords as possible, since Google will flag your blog as spam and bump you down in search rankings.


Another great SEO tool for helping your blog generate referrals is the use of external links. You might think “Wait, why would I want to attract leads to my blog only to lead them away from my content through a link?” Great question. Linking to other reputable sites increases your credibility, which helps search algorithms value and rank your content higher. Writing about saving for retirement? Include a link to the IRS page for this year’s contribution limits. Just be sure your external links are compliance-approved, and set your links to “open in new window” so your audience can easily toggle back to your content.


Help Referrals Trust You With Videos 


Laura Garfield summed it up perfectly during our conversation about the value of video: “There is just something about video that is just much more personal than having a phone conversation… you can feel like you’re really with people.” But why is that, and how does it help financial advisors generate more referrals? 


The financial planning industry exists, grows, and thrives on trust. If you want clients to let you into the sacred space of managing finances and reaching dreams, you have to invest in a relationship built on trust. But it’s much harder to trust a name in your inbox or a voice on the other end of the phone than it is to trust a face you recognize. Enter video. As Nate Hoskin points out, “If you think about the people that you hug, or the people you sit across the table from, or something of that sort, they tend to be far more trusted than the people you keep at a distance. Well, video allows you to bypass that by being in the palm of their hand.” (catch our full interview with him here).


Short- and long-form videos enhance the trust you’ve already started to build with existing clients and get the ball rolling with members of your audience who haven’t committed yet. Through video, you can become a face that clients and prospects associate with trustworthy, reliable information on one of the scariest topics around: money. When you’re a familiar presence, even from a distance, you’re much more referable by clients AND more likely to gain organic referrals through video platforms.


Make Your Referral Strategy Go the Distance


Blogging and vlogging are exceptional ways to pump up your referral strategy and grow your firm. But if you’re going to take time out of your busy schedule to record a video series or write a blog, why not get the maximum impact for your hard work? Both are great starting points for short-form video content or social media posts, and they can boost your referral goals even more when they have a place to live on your website. Stay tuned for our upcoming blogs on increasing referrals with savvy social media content and a winning website. And if you want the best of both worlds but don’t have time to handle the details, check out how we can take care of blogs and videos for you!

Hook, Line, and Sinker

While jostling for space in an inbox can feel more daunting than figuring out where to stand at a mixer event, with the right email strategy, you’ll be pulling in referrals in no time. But what if you don’t have time to create weekly, monthly, or even quarterly emails, much less craft a drip campaign? Enter our new done-for-you email marketing service! Because if you can outsource your email marketing to someone who understands your voice, goals, and how to accelerate your referrals, why wouldn’t you? Check it out to learn how we can take email marketing off your plate. Maybe you can finally get some mileage out of that “gone fishing” sign after all.

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