TheMost CostlyMarketing Mistakes…& how to avoid themAn Exclusive PLUG‐N‐RUN® Report
The 10 Most Costly Marketing Mistakesand how to avoid themThe purpose of this whitepaper/article is t o help you identify 10 different, very specific,marketing mistakes that we here at see all too often. We want to helpyou avoid these mistakes and successfully navigate through them, so that you canachieve what you’re ultimately trying to a ccomplish... Effective Marketing! We wantprospects to flock to you, like kids flock to the ice cream truck. It can happen. And if youtake the necessary steps proactively to y our marketing, it will happen. The first step,however, is to correct some of the mistakes you may already be making!“It worked so good I quit.”We’ve all heard that phrase before. We find that advisors weren’tintentionally making problems for themselves; it’s just that theyhaven’t had the chance to step back and look at their marketingobjectively. Slipping back into bad habits is far too easy.Let’s face it…as an independent advisor, you are stuck wearing anumber of different hats. You have to be a financial planner, businessowner, accountant, salesperson, and marketer all at the same time.The, “It worked so good I quit” analogy is always fun to point out,because it is easy to develop what can be casually referred to as the,“shiny object syndrome.”DEFINITION: Shiny Object Syndrome – although not an officialsyndrome, it refers to the advisor who will go chasing after theshiniest object that floats by, discarding the previous course theywere on.Winston Churchill once said, “Those that fail to learn from history aredoomed to repeat it.” So in the efforts to try to help you avoid some ofthose costly mistakes or ‘get your nose bloodied’, and to help youaccomplish the things you are looking to achieve and be successful at,we have summarized 10 of the more common mistakes we see made.If you can avoid them or maybe help identify if you’re in the midst ofone, we might be able to help you see it and navigate through it, oravoid it altogether.
1. Lack of a Marketing PlanThis is honestly one of the most common, most significant, mostoften overlooked, and probably the simplest mistake that happens.You’ve probably heard the phrase, “plan y our w ork and w orkyour plan.” As advis ors get into t he business and get caught upin the day-to-day activi ties of the business , one of the biggesthurdles for many is simply estab lishing a robust marketing plan. Oftentimes,advisors may recognize that they would lik e to do a seminar, a newsletter, or would lik eto get referrals. Although thes e are good ma rketing ideas, they are not necessarilymarketing plans. So, take the time to develop a plan in w riting. This will help y ouwhether you have a staff, or are a one man shop. A plan gives you the ability todelegate, monitor, and track who’s doing what, how successful they are at doing thos ethings, and it gives you the opportunity to divvy up duties, roles, and responsibilities.“Those that fail to learn from history are doomed to repeat it.”If we look at a couple of the examples, it may help y ou to und erstand how much isinvolved in having a marketing plan. Let’s say that one of your ideas is to do a seminar.That’s a great idea, but there’ s a great deal involv ed in doing seminars, as many of youknow. You now have to decide:∙ Where you’re going to hold the seminar∙ When you’re going to hold the seminar∙ How often you’re going to do seminars∙ What size mailer∙ Who you are going to send mail to (list)∙ How big of an audience do you want to have∙ How are you going to do the mail (how far in advance, what style marketing piece)∙ Who’s going to do the mail∙ What kind of topics do you want to present∙ What mechanism you are going to use to present (handouts, power points, etc.)∙ How will you handle reservations“A good marketing plan will have 4-6 robust marketing activitiesand at least 2-3 ongoing automated campaigns.”There’s so much involved in d eveloping the plan , it may start as an idea, but youhave to take it much further and really consider all of the different decisions you’re goingto have to make. So, we encourage you to consider a variety of different marketingideas. Break each idea down into a strategy or a plan, with all of the steps listed. Thenchart them out in advance and coordinate all of y our different marketing ideasand plans. When we initially bring on a new advisor, we spend hours in developing thisplan. Having an accountability partner is a tremendous asset for your business. Beingindependent has its adv antages, but one of t he only real disadvantages is not alway shaving somebody to work with you in drivingyour business to the next leve l. That’swhere we come in.Accountability is tremendous for both you and your staff!
2. Need for a Marketing CalendarIf we were to ask y ou to show us your m arketing calendar,could you produce something? We hav e samples and atemplate that could help you get started. Anot her thing thatwe can do, during ph one calls or in consulting sess ions, ishelp you get organized by writ ing out a marketing plan andputting it on a marketing calendar. Feeling organized andactually being organized is vital to your success.“ ’s assistance in building myA-Z marketing calendar was amazing…I can nowfeel like I have a plan for my future.”- David G.NevadaThe actual coordination of t he plan is going to be y our biggest challenge. Sometimesadvisors will tackle one thing at a time, and as soon as that is finished, it’s almost lik ewiping the slate clean and starting all over with a new marketing idea or plan.That not onl y creates big gaps in y our marketing funnel, but y our appointmentson your calendar, as well.We encourage you to use some sort of mind mapping software (you can download afree version at freemi nd.com). Brainstorm all of the ideas you hav e for marketing, thenfrom each idea, figure out the necessary steps it will take to exec ute that idea. Fromthere, place it on the calend ar. Determine the frequency of t hat marketing effort, writedown y our goals and what you hope to accomp lish from that activity (be realistic).Execute the plan and TRACK YOUR RESULTS.It’s been joked in the past that the best invention was the deadline…Without it, no other inventions would have ever been created.By developing plans and strategies firs t, getting organized and putting them on thecalendar does a num ber of things. Initially, it helps y ou stay long-term focused ratherthan short-term focused. It helps from an accountability standpoint, not only for yourstaff, but i s also a good reminder for y ou to hold yourself accountable. We usecalendars and task reminders here internally to alert us when it’s ti me to send e-mailsand faxes, to do audios, conference calls or whatever it is that we’ve got on ourmarketing calendar. Accountability is tr emendous for both you and your st aff! Creatingself-imposed deadlines is easy…simply get it on the calendar!
3. Using Only One Lead SystemUnfortunately, this is a mistake that w e see far too often. We see a lot of peoplemake the mistake of using only one lead system to get themselves in front of prospects,particularly w hen working w ith seminars. People tend to rely on only a seminarsystem for leads.“Years ago all I relied on were seminars, until I metWealthnetic TM . Fortunately, they encourage and support other systemsand have the tools to develop a much more integrated marketingeffort.”- Kevin H.PennsylvaniaWhen sem inars are working and everything is going well, we have a tendency to getlazy. It’s easy to develop a “why bother doing anything else” mentality when everythingis working fine. Let’s face it, it’s easier to have just one mark eting system; it’s lesscomplex, less to monitor, less to worry about, less to track, it’s easier for you, and easierfor your staff…But we’ve also been taught not to put all of our eggs in one basket.On the other hand, we will see people develop 2 or 3 different lead systems orcampaigns, which is a good thing because they’re not relying on just one. But they caneasily get caught in another trap… which I’ll refer to as, “riding only the fast horse.” Thismistake happens when advisors track their re turn on investment for each marketingactivity, and then only focus on the one that produces the highest return, eliminating theothers.They’ll start out with right intentions, but when they have 7 to 1 ROI on a seminarand maybe 4 to 1 ROI on another lead sy stem or campaign, they’ll drop the 4 to 1with the mindset of, “Well, I get a bigge r bang for m y buck out of the 7 to 1 one.I’ll just sink more money into that and ride that horse ‘til it drops dead.”There’s the problem!When all is well and ev erything’s fine, that math works. Fartoo often people get tripped-up becaus e whatever systemthey had rolling… there can alwa ys be setbacks or glitches inthat system. So there goes your 7 to 1 ROI… now what areyou going to fall back on?So again, when you’r e looking at your firm’ s marketingin terms of how great and ho w easy it is t o have onesystem and one plan, keep in mind that it’s best to havea couple of backup or supplemental marketing plansgoing all the time.
4. Not Enough TouchesThis one we simply call, “Not Enough Touches.” When whatever you’re doing is workingwith existing clients or prospects, oftentimes we can be guilty of not communicating wit hthem enough. It’s ea sy to adopt the, “they seem t o be ha ppy w ith us and o urservices…” mentality. BUT YOU CAN’T RUN YO UR BUSINESS LIKE THIS. Don’t letyourself think, “Well, once we’ve got them, we’ve got t hem…I can move on to the nextperson.” It’s important that y ou perform proactive touches, not just reactivetouches…whether it’s sending them gifts, ma iling or emailin g communications, phonecalls, inviting them to events, etc.If your clients get the feeling that they are always the one contacting you ormaking the effort, overtime, they might get the feeling that you’re really notservicing their needs the way you should be.There are a lot of different reasons why you’re going to want to communicate or “touch”your clients and your prospects… You may be providing ongoing information, providingtimely and key updates on tax issues & new laws or informing them about new productsthat just became available. You might foll ow up on required distribution or, if you’rerunning our integrated income and growth pr ogram for clients (Asset Cycle PortfolioSystem ® ) you might want to follow up on the flow of the money and the income they’rereceiving. There’s a wide vari ety of reasons, but you need to make sure that they feellike they’re getting the touches and that you’re getting credit for them. So always keepin mind that it’s not just the quality of touches, but the quantity of touches is alsovery important.How do our advisors address this? It’s simple… working with our endorsed CRMand integrated web services, and setting up all of the touches needed , takes lessthan 6 hours a month…w ork that y ou can do y ourself or hand off to y ourassistant.5. Not Having a USPUSP stands for unique selling proposition. In other words, what makes you different?How are y ou differe ntiating y ourself, not only from local competition, but alsofrom the large institutional entities?ASK YOURSELF THIS QUESTION HONESTLY:What do you do that YOUR CLIENTS CAN EFFECTIVELYCOMMUNICATE TO OTHERS that is different from your competition?There are many different financial institut ions that encourage people to be, “do-ityourselfers”,but you may also have competiti on in the building next door. It’s importantthat you deliver a unique experi ence. What are you doing wit h your initial marketing,advertising, and high-level pers pective that would give people in your communitysomething special and a different experience, right from the get-go? You might have
specialized lic ensing, specializ ed educ ation, specialized tr aining, some of the core,significant well-known industry designations . Maybe you’re offering a “one-stop shop”,where you offer multiple s ervices in taxe s as well as financial planning and estateplanning.Anything you can do to be different.“The Chain of Secrets ® Mastermind Program that Wealthnetic TMputs on, was crucial to my practice management. I developed myUSP, mastered time management, and learned the core essentialsof how to run a financial services practice. I moved to acompletely new town, and inside of 18 months, have built asuccessful, identifiable business in my new hometown.”- Chris T.MichiganSometimes it’s different in terms of service, different in terms of the value that youprovide, or the products you may be working with, maybe even how you dev elop plans.How do you package your services and knowled ge, and present it so you don’t look lik eeverybody else? However it is that you’re presen ting yourself to the communit y,what are you doing to make yourself stand out?It’s important that you perform proactive touches, not just reactivetouches.6. Not Having a Call to Action Within Your Advertising PieceA call to action is something that compels the person who is reading, listening to, or seeingyour advertisement, to contact you.When a marketing piece is too vague and/or notinformational in nature, there is nothing that is going tomake people feel like they can’t live without whateverit is that you have to offer.Nothing can be more ineffective, costly, or deadly asdoing a piece of advertising without a call to action. Wesee this particularly when people are trying to do the“build your brand” form of marketing. If building yourbrand is all you’re trying to do, that is going to be an incredibly expensive and unfulfillingadventure… one that rarely works very well. It’s very frustrating and, if it works at all, ittakes forever before you see any tangible, measurable financial results.
“The simple fact that Wealthnetic TM has pre-created newspaperads, reports, audio CD’s, and radio ads for me to run, trulymakes them turnkey. My previous experiences with other marketingfirms couldn’t hold a candle to what they have created. And totop it all off… since they own and operate a broker dealer andtwo RIA’s, all the materials have been compliance reviewed…which makes my life much easier.”- Jeff B.PennsylvaniaIf you do call to action advertising, and you do it right and do it well,your brand will automatically build by default, along the way.7. Seminar ErrorsWe could do an entire piece on seminar errors alone, because there are quite a few ofthem to cover…∙ Spending Marketing Dollars –In the last two years, particularly with the financial crisis, advisors have reallystarted to be cautious with their marketing dollars… how they ’re spending themand where they’re sp ending them. For some advisors that have experience da drop in seminar attendees, they believe that by cutting out the meal, the ycould save some of those marketing dollars. Big mistake!∙ Poor Restaurant Choices –Another mistake adv isors make when planning seminars is making poorrestaurant choices – opting for mediocre restaurants or restaurants with low costfood. Even though you’re trying to be cost-conscious, it can reall y backfireif y ou pick the w rong location . If you want to le arn about where to holdseminars, contact us. Over the past dec ade, we’ve done t he A- Z execution onover 5,000 seminars across the country. Learn from our experiences.∙ Seminar Start Times –Picking start times for y our seminars can be a pro blem as w ell, particularlybecause of traffic issues - tr affic patterns, tra ffic times and the facility loc ation inrelation to rush hour traffic. Many times things like this get overlooked.∙ Age Demographics –Recently, we’ve seen advisors trying to reach down one less age bracket andstart dipping into more of the Baby Boom er market, which is great. But you alsoneed to be cognizant of the seminar time is sue… a lot of Bab y Boomers arestill working and w ouldn’t necessaril y be able to make it to a seminar at4:30 pm.∙ Zip Code and Territory Management –Zip code and territory management is a very dangerous one as well.Sometimes we’ll see people pick a locati on that doesn’t correlate w ell withthe zip codes because of drive time issues, not only to the facility, but from thefacility to y our office a s well. This is the reason why we’ve created a “Red-Zo ne
Territory Mapping” program for all of our affiliated advisors. Ifyou are not doing this, you are shooting yourself in the foot.∙ Content Creep –We’ve teased a few advis ors about hav ing ‘content creep’. Over the years,they’ve added and c ontinued to add things to their s eminar in t he hopes that itwill make results better. Although change can be good, y ou can only add somuch con tent before needing to dele te some. Otherw ise, your 75 minutepresentation quickly turns into 120 mi nutes. Remember the old saying …“The mind can absorb as much as the hind end can endure.”∙ Changing the Seminar –This is probabl y the biggest and most important issue concernin g allseminar presentation items a nd errors that are made. We see people gothrough painstaking lengths to change a number of differ ent things, which is sodangerous, because when you change m ore than one thing… y ou can’t tellwhat worked and what didn’t. If you are going to ch ange things about yourpresentation, limit how much change you make at one time. YOU NEED TOBE ABLE TO MON ITOR EFFECT IVELY HOW YOUR CHANGES AFF ECTYOUR RESULTS. You must be able to pinpoint what change worked.∙ Seminar Intro and Close –When advisors make changes to their semi nars, those chang es usually end uphurting them. They make changes, but neglect the most im portant part of theseminar… the intro and the close. Although we have a lo t of that scripted out,and have coached and consulted on that for years, at the end of the day, that first10 or 15 minutes and the last 5 or 10 minutes are the two most important parts ofeach and every seminar. Put more emphasis there, and you’ll find that yourseminar success w ill be a lot better. For specific coaching and consultingon this, simpl y engage our patent pending, “Fill-The-Room ®” semina rsystem for your next event.“Wealthnetic’s Fill-the-Room ® Seminar system is the best I’veseen. Not just from having customized invitations, but I get tocustomize my content to present what I want. Previousorganizations I’ve worked with gave me a “canned” presentation.I need to have flexibility in what I present. The fact thatWealthnetic TM stays on top of adding new ‘seminar modules,’ I alwaysfeel like I have access to the planning topics prospects areinterested in.”- John H.Michigan8. Referral Systems or Lack ThereofThis has been a problem in the industry for hundreds of years; and not just our industry,but the industry in general. The biggest hurdle in the referral system process is thediscomfort that exists betw een you and the client. Sometimes people ask, “Whatdo I have to do to make a client want to re fer me to hi s family and friends or even be
willing to refer them to me?” Th e answer is always, “They do wantto, and they are willin g.” Part of the problem is that a lot of advisors just don’t askbecause theyaren’t comfortable asking. It’s this awkwar dness that exists between two parties thatultimately prevents you from asking for t hose referrals. You need to be c onfident an dassertive, because when you’re comfortable, more than lik ely they’re comfortable, an dthat’s what’s important.You need to learn how to take the inherent discomfort that exists, and make it feelnatural. This is why we’ve work ed extens ively with focus groups, as well as, a “clientcentered” marketing approach. Y ou need to teach your clients how to refer. It’s reallyquite simple once you’ve dev eloped the plan. Spend an hour of cons ulting time with us,and you’ll be an expert in referrals. Your clients w ill be be gging to k now when thenext opportunity is f or them to intr oduce more of their friends to y ou. That’s theposition you want to be in.There are three important things to consider when it comes to referrals:1. What is it yo u are d oing that creates a unique experience for y our clients?Rest assured IT IS NOT THAT YOU ACHIEVED A __% RATE OF RETURN. Ifyou need s ome direction on this, try reading The Experience Economy, a bookwritten in 1999 by B. Jos eph Pine II and James H. Gilmor e. It’s very informativeand one we think you’ll find interesting. We will gladly give you plenty of ideason how to create unique experiences for your clients.2. Ask your clients. If you want to know what your clients are thinking, simply askthem. You can do this in larger focus groups (6-10) or one-on-one. Before youinstall a r eferral program or a mark eting program, ask the people who itaffects…YOUR TARGET MARKET!3. Create a client centered marketing appro ach. Referrals are aboutMOMENTUM. Creating momentum is as easy as centering your marketingefforts around your clients. If you are looking for direction on this, engage us for aone hour referral consult. Creating this system is SO EASY; your client s wil lliterally introduce their friends to you, rather than you needing to ask them.“If you build it, they will come.”9. Website Marketing ErrorsWebsite marketing errors have been a popular topi c for the last year or so, as it is arelatively new medium in terms of financia l advis ors use. What works? What should Iavoid?“If you build it, they will come.” Remember the old KevinCostner movie, Field of Dreams? If he didn’t build thatbaseball field, the White Sox from the 1919 World Seriescouldn’t come back to relive their childhood innocence.Much the same with a websit e… people can’t come to
your website if you don’t have on e, hence the most obvious error –Not Having a Website. Five years ago, this started to become an issue. Today, if youdon’thave a w ebsite, y ou’re in serious troubl e. Consumers expect it…They almo stdemand it.You cannot rely solely on building it. Remember, in Field of Dreams, he had to “go thedistance” as well. You need to have search engine optimization working for you. AtWealthnetic TM , we s pend the majority of our time actually de veloping the interactiv epart of our client websites and the call to action marketing that we mentioned earlier .Although Search Engine Optimiz ation can drive traffic to your site, there are a numberof other ways to drive traffic to your site as well. If you are interested in lear ning moreabout this, please contact us to request some of our e-marketing reports and webinars.Having part of your website interactive is very important - your existing customers andprospects will get in t he habit of visiting fr equently and regularly, if it’s done correctly. Inaddition to having a website, YOU MUST HAVE ANALYTICS ON YOUR SITE tomonitor your website traffic. We initiate this on behalf of all advisor sites. Andremember, if you don’t have c all a to ac tion or direct response marketing w ithinyour w ebsite, y ou’re doing yourself a great disser vice and spendin g mone ywithout getting good results.“Since using Wealthnetic’s web design, the traffic to mywebsite has quadrupled and I’m actually getting leads out of it.My previous organization offered websites. They looked nice, butgood graphics only get you so far. Their internal search engineoptimization expert has delivered so much google traffic! I’mextremely pleased.”-Jim H.Missouri10. Not Having a Turnkey Process or System for AppointmentsLast but certainly not least, one of the biggest problem areas for many advisors isnot having a turnkey process or a sy stem in place for office appointments .Fortunately, a lot of folks utilize the appointm ent process that we’ve presented at Chainof-Secrets® and Discovery Day events over the y ears. When conducting app ointments,it is important to be very well practiced and rehearsed, but not canned or scripted…There is a difference. There is a saying,“Be in charge, but not in control.”There are ways in whic h you can be in charge of a c onversation and an appointmentwithout the clients feel ing that way. An important thing to think about within theappointment process is going slow. When advisors go too fast, for whatever reason,clients and prospects tend to feel pressured, so you need to be careful. The
interesting thing about appointments is, similar to seminars, there’sa fine line between educating, entertaining, or interacting with c lients or prospects, andintimidating them.Every time you end a consultation or meeting, in addition to explaining what the nextsteps are, and managi ng the expectation, make sure there’s some kind of anenticing statement or hook at the end, so that w hen they walk out that door, A)they feel very good, and B) they feel exc ited about the next time they come to see you.So please get in the habit, whenever you c an, of trying to develop a good en dingstatement or phrase, even if it’s as simple as you walking them to the front of the offic eto book their next appointment. Your parti ng statement should be a strong and enticingstatement or comment like,“I’m really looking forward to our next visit because …”Put some kind of hook or bait on the end of those consultations. It helps keep the mcoming back, it keeps them excited, k eeps them feeling good and as a r esult, youexperience less falloffs and cancellations throughout your appointment process.If you are looking for a complete appointment and sales track system to run down, it isimperative that you join us at our Wealthnetic TM Discovery Day and Training session.SO YOU’RE PROBABLY WONDERING…EXACTLY HOW DO I GET STARTEDAND WHAT SHOULD I EXPECT?MAYBE YOU’RE ALREADY TRYING TO WEIGH OUT VALUE OF YOUR TIMEVERSUS THE VALUE OF WHAT YOU’LL RECEIVEBY SPENDING A DAY OR TWO WITH US???PLEASE CONSIDER THE FOLLOWING OFFER IN MAKING WHAT COULD BE ACAREER CHANGING EXPERIENCE….JOIN US FOR OUR DISCOVERY & TRAINING DAYS WHERE YOU WILL LEARN…“How You Could Super-ChargeYour Financial Planning Practice To Generate6-Digits Extra Income In 90-Days or Less!”Does your current organization offer ALL of the following UNDER ONE ROOF? A full-service FMO/IMO/BGA for annuiti es, life, a nd LTCi, and advancedplanning Our own full-service independent broker/dealer (we’re not simply an OSJ orbranch office or affiliated with some b/d…we’ve had our b/d for 10+ years!) RIA “WRAP” acco unt platforms w ithin the broker/dealer for thoseInvestment Advisors who like to “manage” client assets.
A separat e RIA offering Tur nkey FORMULAIC MARKE TTRENDING Asset Management for tho se Investment Advisors w ho prefer“collecting” assets but don’t want to manage it all themselves.An integrated marketing, advertising, PR, & coaching/consulting firmPLUS ALL OF THE TOOLS BELOW AT YOUR FINGERTIPS: The Home of the Financial Wellness Initiative ® whitepaper reports Online Seminar Modular Presentation Builder Turnkey Fill-the-Room ® Seminar System Consumer Audio Visitor ® Library (podcast & CDs) Audio Brochure Personal Interview (podcast & CD) Consumer Video Visitor ® (Videocast & DVDs) FWI pre-created newspaper ads, radio and TV commercials Fascinating Financial Facts ® Client Newsletter Asset-Cycle® Portfolio System Planning Software WEB Interactive Website Hosting & Development Search Engine Optimization (SEO) Online Positioning Chain-of-Secrets® Mastermind Coaching One-on-One Performance Consulting Practice Management Winner’s Secrets ® Audios Streamline Practice Management Technology Tools Business tracking Interactive Website DashboardWe know it’s a lot to absorb. It’s taken us over 20 years to put all of these piecestogether – we recognize y ou c an’t poss ibly wrap your mind ar ound it all, whe n it issimply bullet pointed out.I was always taught the best way to check some thing out is to go “kick-the-tires” andsee it for y ourself. We’ll put on a full “show & tell” event for you so you c an identify theareas where we can create the most value for you, which will help y ou make aneducated decision as to whether or not you wish to engage the services of our firms!We are confident enough in our adv isor services that we’ll brin gyou in for a visit on our nickel (includes airfare, hotel,transportation & food)!- PLUS –-We’re so confident that we’ve developed the most integrated andcomprehensive Plug-N-Run ® Financial Advisor Structure, We’lleven P ay You $500 if you visit and tr uly don’t believe we canoffer and deliver everything we just told you about.
No strings attached. No contracts to sign. Just a day of yo ur time and an openmind to see if you think we might be a good fit for your practice.Discover why other organizations continuously ask us …. “How did you do it? How didyou put all of the pieces together?”We referenced Kevin Costner’s Field of Dreams earlier. We did the same thing:We built it.We eased the advisors pain(Marketing, Compliance, Business Consulting…everything under one roof)We went the distance…Will You???If so, please contact Bruce Wisler, National Marketi ng Vice President,TODAY at 800-530-9872 ext. 419 to explore our ex citing Discovery D ayopportunity!If not, we hope you enjoyed the tips within this free marketing report and hope that you speak highly of Wealthnetic TMto your peers and friends in the business.