Recently I received a response to a prospecting email I sent that read, “I don’t need a web page for sales. I need a web page to show my clients that I’m real, so I’m not in need of your service.”
After politely responding with some very compelling statistics (stay tuned below for those numbers), I restated the importance of having a website that is built to educate your target audience about how you can potentially solve their problems—and not just show them you are real—and more importantly I demonstrated that a site that is built to allow your target audience to actually engage with you while they are browsing your site is critical. Without these components, your website is providing you very little value.
What Does It Mean to "Engage with You"?
To elaborate, let me explain what I mean by “engage with you” while they are on your website. If your website is designed properly—and I don’t mean it looks good—I mean if it is functionally well-designed, your website traffic can interact with you through forms, compelling downloadable content, event registration, or even by scheduling a meeting with you. If done correctly, you will not only build trust with your clients, but you will benefit from two important details.
- First, you will capture their pertinent information (name, email address, phone number, etc.) so that you know who "stopped by". Ninety-three percent of website visitors that come to your site for the first time will leave and never return. So while the first visit is to see if, in fact, you are real. They will also be forming an impression of you, your firm, and your brand—within the first two seconds of being there. If you are able to capture their information, there is a much better chance that you can continue to educate that person on how you could potentially solve their problems
- Secondly, you will have a better idea of what their needs are based upon the information they downloaded—or how they engaged with you. For example, in this particular case, the person downloaded a recent ebook I wrote regarding Raising Capital in the RIA Channel.
Based upon this information, I assumed that this person was interested in reaching Registered Investment Advisors. And furthermore, I was able to capture their email address, which allowed for a quick search of their website. By putting everything that I was able to learn together, I was now able to send a more personalized message that focused on perceived needs and solutions, giving me a higher probability that my message would resonate.
The fact that we were even having this exchange highlights the legitimacy to what I was saying. Prior to him coming to my site, I didn’t know him; but now here I was with a new lead and new information about his potential needs, which I would never have been able to get from my Google Analytics report that shows me I had 500 hits to my site and that my bounce rate was 65% in the past week.
You will not do business with everyone that downloads something from your website. However, if you are NOT thinking about how your website is your number one salesperson working 24 hours a day and 7 days a week, it won’t matter if 500 or 5,000 or even 50,000 visitors are coming to your site every month because you will never know who they are and worse yet, you won’t be able to do anything proactive with them.
Now, I wish I could tell you that I convinced this person with what I believed were some very compelling points, but instead I received this response, “You don’t know my business and I KNOW that my clients don’t buy my services from my web page.”
What Is the Reality of the Financial Services Industry?
Here is the reality—I hear it over and over again from people in our industry—financial services is a “relationship business” and my website has never helped me close business. I don’t disagree that we work in a relationship business— I built my career with the relationships that I have established—however, the biggest evolution of the relationship is where the relationship begins. It used to be that you would meet someone for the first time over lunch or dinner, on a golf course, or at a conference (remember when conferences were actually useful?!). In today’s digital age, the relationship usually begins on the other side of a Google search, website visit, or social media post. A search of you and your firm—and you need to optimize these engagements.
In fact, B2B buyers are typically 57% of the way to a buying decision before actively engaging with someone from your firm. This underscores the importance of utilizing your website to do a lot of the heavy lifting for you and your marketing, while paving every step on the journey for the consumer to learn about, and engage with, your brand.
Here are those statistics about B2B buying decisions I mentioned earlier:
- 90% influence rate 9 out of 10 B2B buyers say online content has a moderate to major effect on purchasing decisions. (CMO Council)
- 67% of the buyer’s journey is now done digitally. (Sirius Decisions)
- 84% of CEOs and VPs use social media to make purchasing decisions. (Source IDC)
- 80% of business decision-makers prefer to get company information from a series of articles versus an advertisement. (B2B PR Sense Blog)
- 63% of consumers need to hear company claims 3-5x before they actually believe it. (Edelman Trust Barometer)
- 55% of B2B buyers search for information on social media. (Biznology)
GK3 Capital—How I Got Here
I have been helping Asset Managers optimize their distribution efforts and accelerate their growth and profitability for over 17 years. For the last few years, traditional methods used by Asset Managers to raise capital have become less effective due to a shift in the way Advisors and Investors make decisions. With this realization, I began seeking assistance from digital marketing agencies. On the downside, I was disappointed (very disappointed) with their offerings—they do not understand our industry, and they definitely do not understand Financial Advisors or Investors.
Realizing I knew the ins-and-outs of Advisors’ and Investors’ decision-making processes, I seized the opportunity to fill the void I saw and founded GK3 Capital, distribution architects for the digital world.
At GK3 Capital we possess the unique knowledge and understand the complexities of working in the financial services industry. We know the demands that Advisors and Investors place on you every single day to perform.
WE UNDERSTAND YOU BECAUSE WE ARE YOU!