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Asset Managers

Your Marketing Strategy

According to a recent survey from LC Kirk & Company, twelve to eighteen months is the amount of time it takes an advisor to learn about your offering before they make an allocation to it. For some sponsors, especially new ones in the commercial real estate and alternative investment space, that can seem like a very long time.

How can we shorten that long sales cycle? The answer – sync up your sales and marketing.

Shortening the Cycle

A lot of times marketing operates in a vacuum, and they don’t understand what the sales team is seeing in the field, the objections they’re facing, and the questions they’re getting from advisors. So, it’s important to open the communication channels between marketing and sales to help shorten that sales cycle and bridge the gap between what sales actually needs and what marketing is delivering.

Brand Awareness

Next, you should focus on brand awareness. Make sure everything is synced up across the board from email, to what you’re doing at conferences and how you’re helping advisors understand what you’re doing. Some firms feel hesitant about emailing, but email is a great way to increase brand awareness about your firm and offering. Building a strong brand helps build trust and break down barriers for advisors in looking at and completing due diligence on your firm.

Boil Down Your Story

It also helps shorten the sales cycle when you communicate what you do and the details of your offering in a simple way. Get away from complicated jargon. Advisors are not going to dig into what you’re doing if they don’t understand it immediately. Make sure you’re boiling down your story into digestible chunks, so it’s easily understood. That could be anything from the demand drivers behind your commercial real estate assets or lifestyle trends that are driving demand, and what supply looks like.

If you need help syncing marketing and sales, raising brand awareness, and boiling your story down into something that’s easily understandable, contact us at Marketing Intent. We’d be happy to help you shorten your sales cycle.

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Asset Managers

Optimizing Your LinkedIn Profile

You may have noticed that we at Marketing Intent have been using LinkedIn a lot more to stay in front of our target audiences, as well as our clients. LinkedIn can be a really powerful connection tool.

How do you optimize your LinkedIn profile to connect with both your prospects and your clients?  

Use the Tagline

There’s an area underneath the name on your LinkedIn profile, and a lot of people use that for their job title, but we think there might be better ways to use that real estate.

One great thing you can use is a tagline. It can be a tagline on what your company does but stay away from any jargon or messaging that may be confusing. It should be quick and to the point. It’s a great way to advertise exactly who you are. And a tagline can allude to your title and what you do, so you don’t need to have a title featured.

There is another place, as well, that a lot of people don’t use and that’s the banner. You can do the same thing there and include your tagline or feature another point about what your firm does or what you focus on.

Include Your Target Audience

We suggest making sure you include your target audience in the two areas outlined above and highlight who they are. For example, “We help single women better prepare for retirement.” That way prospects clearly understand who you serve.

Something we want to point out is that it is okay to be repetitive, because we all know that everyone skims. The key is ensuring your target audience is highlighted – it will quickly grab their attention.

Building Trust

How can advisors help build trust with prospects and clients on their LinkedIn profile? Trust is huge, especially for advisors. There is so much going on these days and during rapidly changing market conditions, building trust is very valuable. We think it serves advisors further than most people realize.

One thing you can do to earn trust is to feature content you create. Don’t just repost other people’s content. Feature content you create. It shows your personality, how you communicate and who you are.

It also gives people a glimpse of what it’s like to work with you because they can see your perspective and what you’re trying to get across to your audience.

If you need help optimizing your LinkedIn profile and making sure that it speaks to your target audience, reach out to Marketing Intent, we’d be happy to help you.

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Asset Managers

The Importance of Communication

Everybody understands the importance of communication in projects, in your day-to-day, in work life and in everything that you do. But sometimes the effectiveness of our communication gets lost in the shuffle.

Let’s talk about how to emphasize open communication with clients.

Focusing on Communication

As a marketing firm with multiple clients, we have to focus on our communication. It has to be at the forefront of every morning, every evening and every week of what we do. Let’s go over some of the things that we do at Marketing Intent and review some options on how you can help improve your communication.

One of the first things that we do is hold weekly status updates. Every Monday we get together with our internal team and go over every single project, even if we’re not involved, that way we understand what’s going on. If one of us needs to be pulled in, or if we can offer some insight, we do.

Providing Weekly Email Updates

The other thing that we do is provide weekly email updates. If something’s changing throughout the week and we don’t have a meeting on the books, a quick way to update everybody is through an email. We really focus on making sure that we’re keeping everybody included and aware of what’s going on, even if it’s not time for a meeting.

The Best Way our Clients Receive Communication

When we bring on clients, we follow our onboard process and start off every client the same. Each client starts with a weekly project meeting and then we will also provide weekly status emails, but that doesn’t always work for everybody.

We tune into how clients best receive communication. We may have a client that likes to text, we may have a client that prefers phone calls, or we may have a client that loves emails. As we’re onboarding, we analyze the way that they are receiving our information and we adjust and tailor our communication specific to them. 

We are providing them with the most effective communication that is shareable with key stakeholders that is effective and easily digestible. This is a great way to help smooth out their process for projects and keep everybody in the know, so that there are no surprises that come up.

If you would like our communication experts to make sure your next project runs smoothly, please reach out to us at Marketing Intent.

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Asset Managers

Planning your 2023 Budget

Our team likes annual budget time – that special time! We know that’s not the case for everybody.

Taking time to create your budget for the next year helps you decide what you’re going to focus on and how to help your company reach its goals.

Let Us Help You Plan Your Budget

One of the most time-consuming parts of budgeting is figuring out how much these great ideas are going to cost. At Marketing Intent, whether you’re our client or you’re not our client yet, we are happy to help you plan for your budgeting for 2023.

Understanding our Packages

We have several programs that are off the shelf. If you are launching a fund, we can look at it and explain some of the small, medium, and large packages for how you want to market. You can then understand what those costs are, going into 2023.

How Long is This Going to Take to Execute?

If you have a new idea that you want to explore, like geotargeting, or even bringing direct mail back to your marketing plan, we can help with that.  We can give you a sense for how long it takes to plan and execute a program, and how much it might cost you.

Please reach out to us and we’d be happy to help you with your marketing plans and budgeting for 2023.

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Asset Managers

Serving Our Clients and Each Other

Does anyone remember the NBC public service announcements from the late eighties of “The More You Know?” This is the one with the shooting star and the rainbow across the screen. For some reason, that’s always stuck in my head. It reminds me of how much better we can serve our clients and each other, when we know more information.

A major tenet of how we operate with our clients is knowing about the background and backdrop of their projects and their company, so we can serve them well. Communication is the center point between how we work and collaborate well with each other.

Three Types of Information We Need from Our Clients

Let’s discuss the three areas we focus on as we work with our clients to make sure we are getting the information we need. With more information, we can do a better job. The backdrop, the key players, and the expectations.

Backdrop

The backdrop can be anything from a challenge the company has been facing, to a goal the company is trying to reach or even something a company has been trying to do and hasn’t been able to achieve – and initiatives the company has found challenging.

Sometimes there are different priorities within a firm, for different departments, and maybe things aren’t getting done. Progress may have stalled out because there haven’t been resources. It helps us to understand the backdrop, so we understand how much time to put into a project, and how to structure it to be completed in an appropriate time frame.

Key Players

The next key area for us to clearly understand is if there are key players involved in a project.  Is this something the CEO requested that we should put a high priority on? Or is it more of an operational piece that is important, but maybe not as high of a priority or a project that can be on a longer timeframe? When are people expecting this piece to be done or this marketing program to launch?

We need to understand how to prioritize it among our projects for a client, as well as how aggressively we should project manage it through to the end.

Expectations

The third area we need to understand is the expectations. Any good marketing project should have a concrete goal in mind. We like to know what that is, whether it’s brand awareness, or generating additional conversations with clients or investment advisors.

We don’t assume we know the goal of a project. Instead, we ask our clients exactly what they’re trying to get out of each marketing program. We can then deliver the correct project and program for them.

Communication is important. And the more we know, the further we can go with our clients. This includes knowing the backdrop, the key players involved in a project, as well as the expectations.

If you’d like more information about how Marketing Intent can help your firm with marketing, please reach out to us.

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Asset Managers

Marketing Intent and the Resources We Have Built

Let’s talk about how Marketing Intent is structured and the network of resources the firm has built.

Cherie Fournier, our CEO, has been in the financial services marketing arena for 25 plus years. After working in corporate environments for most of that time, she decided at the beginning of 2020 to start her own marketing firm.

Marketing Intent focuses efforts on helping asset managers and financial advisors better market to their target audiences. We also help streamline their marketing operations and develop plans and strategies.

The Thinking Behind Marketing Intent

The reason we started Marketing Intent in 2020 is because we wanted to tap into our financial industry experience to serve a wide range of companies and financial advisors. But we knew we weren’t experts in all facets of marketing. We’re not graphic designers or web developers, and we know our clients have a broad range of marketing needs. We felt it was an ideal time to tap into the gig economy, which has gotten even more attention after COVID. People started working from home and seeking better work life balance.

We found ourselves with a lot of great talent available to us to build out a network of professional marketers who could help our clients. For example, Cherie’s background is marketing management, strategy and copywriting, and Alise’s is marketing strategy and project management. Obviously, marketing goes far beyond that. Our professional marketing network helps us offer our clients a much greater bench depth of professionals to help with their projects and make them successful.

Our Network of Professionals

We structured Marketing Intent around these networks of professionals. Cherie and Alise are front and center with each of our clients. We look at our network and choose the right professionals for each project, and each client.

If we have somebody who’s looking at rebranding and doing a website, we may pick a design resource that might be different than a firm that is just redoing a brochure or wants to freshen up something that’s existing. We look at who is going to be the best match for each project and we deliberately select the best team.

How We Developed Our Network

Throughout Cherie’s career, she has had many relationships on the client side of working with different professionals. Marketing Intent has tapped into those cultivated relationships. Some are are decades long and other resources are newer.  We continually look at contacts and see who we can get connected with to grow our base of professional marketers. We are never static. We’re constantly growing and constantly looking for new people to add to our roster of contract resources.

The Ever-Changing Market

Sometimes we have a client that needs a resource that we don’t have. Marketing is ever changing as we know, and we don’t always know what is going to come our way or what type of requests are made. Often, if we have a request come up on something that we haven’t yet done, we tap into our current contacts to see if they have a trusted resource that we can use for a project. If not, we do research and vet different companies to see which ones are going to work well with us and who is going to serve our clients to our standards. We then bring that firm or individual on board as a contractor to help us with a certain project.

If you would like to learn more about how Marketing Intent can help your business grow by tapping into our network of professionals, please reach out to us.

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Asset Managers

Overcoming Obstacles When Managing Marketing and Delegating

You’re short staffed, buried in work and you know you should delegate to get out from underneath it and get caught up on your marketing tasks, but you’re not. Why aren’t you delegating? Even seasoned marketing managers fall victim to the “I can do everything myself” or “I can do it better myself” mentality.

Let’s discuss ways to overcome some of the obstacles we feel when managing marketing and delegating – as well as opportunities to potentially outsource delegation to an outside marketing firm.

Some managers fear delegation because it hasn’t worked out well for them in the past. In my 25+ years of managing marketing teams, I have found that it comes down to delegating to the right people.

There are four different personality traits that I found are critical when you’re choosing who you’re delegating to. 

Strong Sense of Responsibility

First is a strong sense of responsibility and a commitment to the company. You want somebody who is dedicated and interested in their career growth, as well as the mission of the company and feels excited about it. That energy then translates into wanting to accept the additional responsibility of delegation.

Intuitive Communication Skills

Next is intuitive communication skills. I always think of this as understanding the communication needs of the target audience, which in this case is myself, or you, if you’re the manager. You want to make sure that the person you’re delegating to understands what you need to know and when you need to know it. They need to give you updates that make you feel comfortable, without feeling like you have to pry for information, or that you aren’t getting what you need.

Strong Project Management Skills

The next is really strong project management skills. It’s important for whoever you’re delegating to, to understand the overall project and how to move it along. I like to know that the person understands “Plan A,” but that they also have a “Plan B” and even a “Plan C” at times, in their back pocket. They can then keep the project going and moving along if they encounter any obstacles.

Confident Individuals

Next are individuals who are confident in themselves. You want to make sure that you have a team or a person you’re delegating to that is solutions oriented. They need to be trying to solve a problem that comes up versus coming to you as a safety net when things get hard.  They figure out how to address red flags and put projects back on track. This is somebody who feels comfortable and confident in challenging situations, but also makes solutions a reality.

Self Reflection

Let’s move on to our next topic – which can be harder because it requires self-reflection. Oftentimes managers want to take credit for everything the team does, and they feel like in order to do that, they have to do all of the work. They take more of an “I” approach to managing marketing than a “WE” approach.

What I found in my career is that a “WE” approach is much more effective in motivating a team, as well as lightening your own workload, so you can dedicate your time to the tasks and projects that require your attention. If you think about how to motivate your team and elevate each member to work to their maximum potential, there’s much more that a marketing team can accomplish, than if everyone is working on their own.

Delegation to an Outside Firm

When it comes to delegation, marketing managers don’t often think about using an outside marketing resource. Consider projects you just aren’t getting to, or projects that you need help with to push them across the finish line. These are great areas where an outside marketing resource can help. 

An outside marketing firm can also help fill in areas that aren’t your strong suit.

If you’re not an organized person, try to find a marketing firm that is. If you’re looking for a little bit more creativity, then make it criteria to select a firm. Once you have that alignment, you can start out with a small project to make sure you’re developing trust, and then you can move on to delegating out bigger projects.

If you’re finding yourself underwater and need help managing your marketing load, we at Marketing Intent would be happy to explore delegation to us, with you.

Let’s have a conversation.

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Asset Managers

Your Success is Our Success

What does client success look like for us here at Marketing Intent?

Our philosophy is “Your Success Is Our Success.”

We start off by setting expectations and then delivering on those expectations, which in turn results in a meaningful experience for the client and building trust. We can then develop long-term relationships.

We Make Sure You Reach Your Goals

We make sure that our clients’ success is aligned with their goals, and we make sure they’re reaching those goals. A big part of that is communication and planning. While communication in or work lives is common, we have a keen focus on ensuring high-quality communication and strategy planning.

Communication = Success

We lay out when we are going to communicate, our plan for a client’s projects and the deliverables – and then we make sure we meet those deliverables. We also strive to go above and beyond those deliverables. If we can add value to a project or take it a step further to help clients reach their goals, we will.

But first and foremost, we make sure we provide the deliverables promised. We communicate and keep the client apprised of everything going on. There’s never a question in their mind of where their projects are.

What Can You Do?

Here are a few things that a client can do, either working with us or other marketing firms, to be successful on their end.

Don’t stop being curious. We’re in an ever-evolving industry and since the pandemic it’s even evolved quicker, so stay on top of what is going on and what is available out there. Doing research on how to solve some problems or get around roadblocks is going to help people advance and be leaders in the industry.

If you would like help with your marketing and you want us to help guide you along the way to reaching your goals, we’d be happy to help. Reach out to us today and let’s have a conversation.

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Asset Managers

Creating Content to Stay Ahead of the Curve

Are you overwhelmed with creating content for your firm? Does it seem like there’s never-ending demand for additional content from your marketing team?

In this article, we’ll discuss creating a content machine so you can stay ahead of the content curve.

Consider Your Target Audience

The number one rule for creating content is to consider your target audience. Make sure the content you’re developing is already in demand, even before you create it. The best way to do this is to think about what types of conversations you have with your clients. What questions do they ask?

If you are an asset manager, tap into your sales team to understand what objections they’re hearing and what types of information might be unclear to financial advisors and investors. Use those topics in your content.

Determine What Type of Content to Create

The format you choose for your content can be just as important as the content itself. If you have a complicated topic that’s just too hard to explain on paper, use video. If a topic is too long for a video, split it out into multiple flyers or even an email campaign. Regardless of the type of content you use, make sure it’s skimmable and that you’re supporting your topic with high-quality graphics.

The Machine Part of the Equation

Now comes the best part…the machine. When creating content, whether it’s a video, a report, or an email, always think about how you can parse that out into smaller pieces.

For example, a video can be split up into smaller videos to use on social media or within emails. You can take a flyer and divide it into social media graphics, or an email campaign.

Once you have that solid piece of content developed, consider ways to parse it out and use it more broadly so you get maximum mileage out of it.

We Help Clients with Content Daily

We’ve talked about creating a content machine based on:

  • Understanding what your target clients want to hear about
  • The formats they’re most receptive to
  • Parsing out your content to make it go further

At Marketing Intent, we help our clients with content daily.

If you need help, reach out to us, and we’d be happy to help you make you content go further.

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Asset Managers

Marketing Teams Aren’t Immune to Inflation

Inflation – it’s all across our economy and affecting almost every part of our lives, including our marketing teams. If you’ve been searching for marketing candidates, you’ve probably noticed a demand for increased salaries, but you may not be getting qualified candidates applying for your positions or the hiring process is draining your team resources.

Let’s talk about how an outside marketing firm can help take work off your shoulders by tackling shorter and longer-range marketing projects.

The Sprint Project

The “sprint” marketing project is a short project where you might already have content developed and you just need it developed into an email, flier or a social media campaign. That’s where an outside marketing firm can step in quickly, especially one who knows your industry. They will help you push the project to the finish line.

The Half Marathon Project

Next, let’s talk about the “half marathon.” This is a project you may already have started and know it’s going to take some time to complete. You may need help with strategy, planning, writing or designing some deliverables. Again, an outside marketing firm can step in, accelerate the project and see it through to completion.

The Marathon Project

Then there’s the “marathon.” These projects can last multiple months. We often see these projects as the ones that firms have started, but don’t have the time to dedicate to them. An outside marketing firm can help you with planning, making sure everything stays on track over the months, as well as creating the deliverables. Examples of marathon projects are fund launches, series of videos, and automating email marketing.

Reallocating FTE Dollars to Outside Resources

Regardless of how in-depth your marketing project is, from that short sprint to a long marathon, taking the dollars you have earmarked for full-time employees (FTE) when you just can’t fill those roles, and dedicating them to an outside marketing resource can go a long way in helping you reach your marketing goals.

Contact Us to Fill in the Gaps

If you need help, as you’re looking to fill marketing roles and just aren’t finding the right candidates, reach out to us and we’d be happy to fill the gaps.