It’s no surprise that most financial advisors struggle with marketing, since there’s nothing simple about asking people to entrust their life savings to you. With more people searching for advisors online now, it’s even harder to impress visitors. You’ve got to build credibility and trust, and at the same time, communicate specifically how you can help them, if you want to get on their radar.
Sadly, most financial advisor websites are not up to the task, so they don’t consistently produce leads.
That’s the bad news. Fortunately, there’s good news, too: there’s some simple and affordable steps you can take to get your website working for you. One step is to add Case Studies.
Show, Don’t Tell
A case study on your financial advisor website can simply be a client story generalized with all details changed for privacy. Its purpose is to walk a website visitor through a client’s experience. It’s best if you pick case studies that involve common challenges. For instance, a case study about a client recovering from an expensive divorce is going to be much more relatable than one about a big lottery winner.
In the case study, you’ll want to describe the challenge, the steps you took with the client over time to improve the situation, and then of course, the happy ending.
With case studies, you get a unique opportunity to show how your services benefit clients. You can talk about the client’s condition before you started working together (frequently stressed about money, feeling unsure about the future), and then at the end, talk about how they felt afterwards (peace of mind, and feeling optimistic about their future). This way, your website stays focused on the real benefits of your service, not just features.
Case studies work because storytelling is a powerful communication method. It’s particularly effective in financial services, since much of what you do is behind the scenes and not necessarily understood by the public. By turning what you do into a story, you give people a bird’s eye view on what it’s like to work with your firm and what they can expect from it.
Making the Abstract Real
Additionally, case studies help make the abstract real by explaining your services in terms of daily life challenges and solutions. Not only do they help communicate the benefits of your services, case studies also demystify the entire process of getting financial help. This is critical for newer investors who may be fearful of confessing all their financial oversights to a stranger, or concerned exactly how it all will work.
At the same time, you are able to illustrate how the different aspects of your service work together to produce a synergistic result. For example, you can show how your financial planning not only helped a client with investing and saving goals, but also enabled them to pay off their debt much faster than they thought possible.
And you can reinforce the real benefits of your service, such as:
- Going from stressed about money to having peace of mind
- Feeling organized and knowing priorities
- Having an objective and informed second opinion for big financial decisions
- Feeling secure about the future
Perfect for Niches
At the same time, case studies can help you target specific niches. For example, if you want to work with more university professors, you can use a case study that showcases your understanding of their challenges and opportunities. Or, if you specialize in divorce planning, you can include details about how you helped your client find their footing before, during, and after the divorce.
Similarly, let’s say you want to work with more young professionals who probably have more income than assets at this point. With significant student debt, some of these people may think that advisors won’t even want to work with them. If you include a case study of how you helped a young lawyer pay off their crushing student loan debt and get on track to asset accumulation, you’re making it comfortable for similar people to contact you.
As you can probably see, these client stories give your firm a powerful tool to connect with a website visitor. If I’m visiting your website and see how you’ve helped someone in the same predicament as me improve the quality of their life, that’s far more meaningful than providing a retirement calculator or details on asset allocation.
Of course, this is just one part of a good financial advisor website. But it’s a relatively simple addition to make, and not many advisors include this content on their site.
Now, back to reality: you may not be able to use the term “case study” for compliance reasons. In those cases, see if your compliance department will allow some general or theoretical “client stories” or descriptions of “typical clients”.
Of course, you want to avoid using actual client names. Since privacy is a concern, it’s best to just create an amalgamation of client stories so no one person could identify themselves in it. However, if you do want to use one story, you’ll need to clear it with the client and work with your compliance department to make sure no issues arise concerning privacy.
One Step Toward a Productive Website
Using case studies or client stories is just one strategy to making your website work for you. If you or your team members are comfortable writing copy, you can usually construct and edit a few case studies in a short amount of time. Or, working with a financial advisor copywriter service can be an affordable way to get it done right the first time.
Either way, don’t wait! Improving your website copy and content is one of the most affordable ways to get your website working for you.
Jeanne Klimowski is the founder of Wavelength Financial Content Inc. and a financial ghostwriter. Wavelength is a provider of content for financial advisors and financial wellness programs for employers and retirement plan advisors.