Traditionally, advisors have relied on client referrals and networking to attract potential clients, but with modern technology and an increase in publicity mediums available, advisors have many more options to build a brand to represent themselves. However, with more available methods to choose from, advisors are increasingly challenged to find the ones that are most effective. Choosing an effective public relations strategy can seem daunting and exhaustive to already busy advisors. Moreover, with so many metrics to consider, making sure there is a strong return on investment and leveraging any public relations efforts is even more difficult.
In our 85th episode of Kitces & Carl, Michael Kitces and client communication expert Carl Richards discuss how financial advisors can utilize public relations to better brand themselves, how to decide which medium will have the best return on investment, and how to leverage public relations to increase the number of connections with potential clients.
As a starting point, it’s important to identify the intention behind utilizing public relations and to determine the effort the advisor wants to commit to. Writing an article for a local paper or receiving a one-time mention in a periodical may be suitable for those who simply want to offer social proof of their expertise to current and potential clients. Whereas running a local radio show or becoming a go-to financial expert on a high-profile medium may be better suited for those who want an ongoing presence and have the capacity for a higher level of commitment.
Identifying a specific intention will help advisors to better track the right metrics to assess the ROI of their public relations strategy. If an advisor’s intention is to attract more clients, using social media might be a good way to connect with a larger audience (and gain popularity), but will not necessarily increase the number of potential clients who will possibly do business with the advisor. Which means that it is important to spend time determining the right metrics to track, as this will support the advisor in identifying the right strategy to realize their primary goal.
Furthermore, while some advisors may be uncomfortable sharing their media coverage (for fear of sounding too boastful), it is important to recognize that telling clients about their efforts is the only way clients (current or potential) will find out about their appearances. Providing printouts or links to publications to current and prospective clients can be an easy way for advisors to relay their work to clients, which can serve to build their credibility and grow their referrals.
Ultimately, the key point is that while public relations can be used by advisors to build their brand, having a clear intention will help advisors leverage their branding efforts to realize their goals. Understanding the different strategies available and how results can be measured for each will allow the advisor to spend more time on the right actions that will yield better results for them and help them reach their goals!