Your prospects search for services and products, including the advisory services you provide, on the Internet or using their mobile devices. Today, having a website isn’t enough to get your firm found locally or to stand out from a crowd of local competition.
Today’s telephone book is called “the local search engines”. If you want to be found by local clients, but aren’t ready to hire a Search Engine Marketer (SEM), this article will provide you with the “major” local engines that you want to be listed on. As usual, I’m providing you with Action Steps to turn this to-do… into a to-done.
How many of your clients find you locally? How many do you want to find you locally? Even with a virtual business, we humans need the connections that only come from face-to-face meetings and events. PLUS, some of the search engines, like Google, are taking into account where you live when providing search results.
There’s no doubt about it. Registering your firm is a tedious and time-consuming task. That’s why you don’t sign up for every site imaginable. Sign up for sites that your ideal clients visit.
I bet there is someone on your team or in your home who loves to spend time on the Internet. This person can do the research for you and register your firm for the appropriate sites. Or you can hire a Finance Advisors’ Virtual Assistant, at around $50 per hour, to do it for you. You’re bound to find one on LinkedIn®.
To list your firm, visit each site and then search for your firm’s name and maybe your name, too. If you’re listed, you’ll see a button or link to “own it”. If you can’t find your firm’s name or your name, create an account.
NOTE: Many of the websites listed below allow readers/users to comment on your business. If that’s not what you want, if that’s not what your Compliance Department allows, if that’s not what your ideal clients would do, then don’t join any local directory where people can comment. Not all types of marketing are for all types of financial advisory businesses. Spend your time on things that can attract your ideal clients to your blog, website, and firm.
Action Steps: Preparing To Get Listed
1) Before you add your firm, check with your compliance person to learn what you can and can’t do. If you’d like to print this article or put it in PDF format, go to my blog, where you’ll see the print and PDF buttons.
2) Create a new email address to post your listing. If you have your own domain name, that task will be easier. If you don’t have your own website, make sure you have approval to create an email address for this purpose. When using the web in this way, it’s good to use a separate email address just in case spammers somehow get your address.
3) Create a spreadsheet and on the first worksheet, list keywords. Consider the benefits and features of what you offer.
4) On the second worksheet, include the sites you’ll be visiting, along with your user ID and passwords. Add your firm’s contact information. Add more information to your worksheet as you learn what each site requires.
5) Get your picture and logo ready, as many of the sites ask for one or both graphics.
6) Find your firm’s history, your bio, and your firm’s bio. Chances are you’ll need all three.
7) Link to your website. If you don’t have one, use the link to your LinkedIn® profile.
In many cases, the local listings want to verify that you are… you. Some will ask for your phone number to text you, others will mail you verification, and still others will email you. Pay close attention to how they ask you to confirm.
Here’s A List of The Local Search Engines To Consider
Bing Places for Business
Google Places for Business
Ok now… Get going local! Get found locally!
Read More About SEC GUIDANCE ON THE TESTIMONIAL RULE AND SOCIAL MEDIA, March 2014
SEC Provides Guidance on Social Media and Testimonials, by FiPath4Adviosrs
Directories, Not Yelp, Better Equipped For Advisor Reviews, by Megan Leonhardt
Skip Navigation Links Understanding Proposed Legislation for Digital Assets by William Bissett, CFP®; and David Kauffman, J.D., CFP®
©2014 – Maria Marsala guides high-achieving independent financial advisors to reach their 5-year business and personal goals in 24 months. She is a financial advisors’ coach, speaker, and a former Wall Street Trader. Named one of the Top 30 International Coaching Gurus in 2011, Maria has been recognized as a thought leader whose ideas have been published in Financial Planning Magazine, RIA Biz, Advisor Max, Dow Jones, The Street, Entrepreneur Magazine, and numerous books, trade journals, and magazines. She has authored four business-building workbooks including, Attracting Clients You Love Working With: 6 Steps to a Profitable Client Base.
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