Rob Brown is onto something in his TheDigitalFA Thought Leader guest post. As many of you know I have presented to over 4,000 advisors on the power of Leveraging LinkedIn in the past eighteen months and Rob’s comments that originally appeared on his blog article are spot on.
If LinkedIn’s estimates of only 51% of their 259 million connections have a 100% completed profile think of what that means for websites, Twitter and Facebook accounts. My guess is only about 20% of advisors have a 100% complete LinkedIn Profile. Think of what that means for you from a competitive advantage standpoint. Stuck on where to start, Rob’s blog is a great place to start.
My mom never let me wear underpants with holes in them.
She wondered what the doctors and nurses would think if I was ever carted off to the emergency room.
Kind of silly, I know. But she wanted me to look my best at ALL times.
Even if the scenario was unlikely and certainly unwanted. Even if what COULD be seen was never supposed to be in plain sight.
After all, I rarely ran around with my pants down.
What does this have to do with advisor websites?
Too many advisors have websites and social media profiles that make them look like they’re running around with their drawers dropped to knee level. And their underwear is full of holes.
They’re pitiful. My mother would be horrified.
Whether you think your online presence matters or not…it DOES. Anyone can see it. And it’s one of the first places prospects and referrals go to check you out.
Your clients would like to hang out there too!
More than 80% of the advisor websites, LinkedIn profiles and Facebook pages I see are in need of serious help. Some could be fixed with a few tweaks. Many need major overhauls.
In all cases, it’s just a matter of making your web presence a priority. And it doesn’t require a huge amount of time or a major financial commitment.
Here’s a quick checklist to diagnose your web presence…
- Start with a professional photo. Kids, big fish, sports logos, and fancy cars are all great subject matter for your personal Facebook page, but they detract from professional image. Would you put a picture of the big tuna you caught last week on your business cards?
- Make sure your title or headline identifies what you do and who you do it for. Things like RIA, Financial Advisor and Vice President don’t cut it by themselves. The alphabet soup of designations is nice, but they oftentimes only mean something to industry types… not to your clients and future clients. Something like “Certified Financial Planner serving corporate executives in Cleveland” makes more sense than “Financial Advisor, SVP, CFP”.
- Don’t use “me too” language to describe your background and your business model. Tell your visitors how you do what you do. Display some of your personality. What’s your client service commitment? What’s your client management process? What can someone expect if they become a client of your practice?
- Capture the contact info of your visitors. Knowing people visited your site or your profile page is great. Getting them to tell you they were there and requesting more information from you is even better. You’re generating leads. Whitepapers, research reports, initial consultations and seminar signups are just a handful of ways to get this done.
- Schedule regular updates. Websites aren’t one and done projects. Keeping it fresh with things like blog posts, access to new research reports or news about what you’re doing in the community can keep it fresh. Making similar posts in your social media newsfeeds is also a great way to stay in front of your audience.
- Make it easy for your clients to access their portfolio and their financial plan. Your website can be a great way to communicate with your clients. When they can easily connect to their financial information they’ll be frequent visitors. You want them to have a pleasant visit… every time.
- Resist the temptation to blame the condition of your website and your social media presence on your compliance department. Sure, the rules are constantly changing. Some of them are downright idiotic. But when you take time to understand what you can do and combine it with a bit of creativity, you’ll have an online presence you can be proud of.