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Episode 2: 
Where To Start With Marketing
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Show Notes:
In this episode of The Ultimate Advisor Podcast we discuss a variety of ways that we think you can use marketing to differentiate yourself in a way that isn't overwhelming. We will discuss how you can create a clear and easy action plan to get started today. So push PLAY and let us walk you through where to start with marketing.

Read The Transcript Of The Episode:

Speaker 1: This is the Ultimate Advisor podcast. The podcast for financial advisors who want to create a thriving, successful and scalable practice. Each week, we'll uncover the ways that you can improve your referrals, your team, your marketing and your business operations. Helping you to level up your advising practice, bring in more access and create the advising practice that you've dreamed of. 
You'll be joined by your hosts Brian Sweet, who has more than half a billion dollars in assets under management. Britney Anderson, the driving force for advisors looking to hire, improve their operations and company culture and Draye Redfern, who can help you systematize and automate your practice's marketing to effortlessly attract new clients. So, what do you say? Let's jump in to another amazing episode of the Ultimate Advisor Podcast.

Draye Redfern: Hey everyone, Draye Redfern here and welcome back to the Ultimate Advisor Podcast where in this episode, we're going to be taking a little bit of a different direction and going down the marketing rabbit hole. The stuff that we want to share in this episode isn't the hyperbole stuff, it's not the stuff that's theory, it's the stuff that's actually working and we're going to answer some of the questions that we often hear from advisors across the US.
 Both Britney and I have spoken in multiple stages together and Brian in and himself, speaks often across different platforms of different events across the US. And so all of us, it's all of these sort of different facets and speaking opportunities, we often get asked a lot of questions around marketing.
 And so in this episode, we all want to kind of touch on a variety of ways that we think that you should use marketing, differentiate your marketing and really finding ways to implement your marketing in a way that is not overwhelming or stressful or causing a ton of frustration that really is a really clear and easy action plan for you to get started.
 So where do we start? I think that the first place to really begin here is that from the advisors that we've talked to and have surveyed over the last 18 months, 70% of advisors, their basically sole marketing purpose for generating leads is referrals. This is super, super scary because these are the individuals who already have a practice that's sustainable, that's already more or less growing, but just like you wouldn't advise your clients to put all of their investments or all of their retirement into one singular vehicle, whether that's a singular stock or mutual fund or whatever it maybe, that's essentially what you're doing with your business if you're only having referrals as your lead gen strategy.
 A really sort of interesting approach when it comes to this, we're going to go through some ways you can essentially change this and maybe sort of balance that out and put your eggs in more than just one the one basket. But I think it's also important to realize that of the advisors that we've talked with, 80% of them do not have a dedicated marketing person. And I'm sure that that's probably you, if you're listening to the podcast, there's a good chance you don't have a dedicated market person. And that is perfectly okay because none of the stuff we're going to go through in this episode is going to be overwhelming or is going to take someone having to constantly do the same action over and over and over again.
 Basically, we're only going to use strategies in this episode that where you can use or repurpose someone in your office for a few hours a week in order to help leverage their time and also to help you leverage the marketing. Where we're going to really begin with this is the differentiation. We talked about this in our first episode of the really sort of key difference between an enhancement differentiator and a never seen before differentiator. And this concept is so imperative that you have in your marketing.
 You really find a way to create something that's not seen before in the market, and don't just try to enhance what your competitors are doing. And so a perfect example that we've referenced before is that Sweet Financial has the dream architect process. You're not working with the financial advisor, you're working with a dream architect. Game change or good, and it really makes an incredible distinction that Sweet Financial has against the rest of the competition.
 Now, you can't knock that off, don't try it. We have bought some stuff set up to monitor this stuff and the whole thing is trademarked. But it gives you a really good idea that really how to create some of those differentiations in the market for you and your business.
 Once you have that, then we can go a few different ways. The next thing that I want to talk about is singular actions. I'm sure everyone knows what SEO is, it's search engine optimization and it's really, really important. But one of the only ways that you can continually rank higher in the SEO algorithm with Google and all these sort of things, is to continually keep putting out content.
 That means a new blog post or several new blog posts every single week without fail. And it sounds really good, and someone can commit to it, but from experience and literally having talked with dozens and dozens if not hundreds of advisors at this point in time who've all said, "I had a blog and then I just stopped writing." And it happens time and time again because everyone knows they need to have this blog, but they don't actually keep up with it.
 What I want to talk about with singular actions is doing something really well once that could then be reused, repurposed and leveraged in perpetuity. And so what would that be? That would be something more than just your monthly state of the market newsletter. Some sort of content or download that allows you to interact with your audience.
 And so a perfect example of this is like a checklist. It could be the second opinion checklist that Britney and I have used a lot over the last few years. It could be the 10 things that you want to make sure that you have in a good financial advisor. It could be all sorts of different things that would allow that individual to download some content in exchange for their name and email address and then you could basically, what we call drip content onto them, where it's basically they receive an email a week or maybe if it's a few emails a week for a set period of time.
 This is called and email autoresponder. And what this essentially allows you to do is to write all of this content once, set it and then forget it. A perfect example and an example that we referenced in the first episode is women in transition. If a woman has just has her husband pass away and she's obviously going through a whole variety of complex emotions and finances are absolutely going to be one of them.
 If you've seen the case of variety of time, you most likely know what this woman or this group of women will most likely experience next. Maybe at first it's disbelief. Then it's maybe overwhelm, because they don't know how to manage all of the finance. And then it's uncertainties. Whether or not they're certain enough that they can even take care of it. And then it could be complete overwhelm after that.
 If that's the client journey or the client path, you can walk them through this in an automated fashion using singular action. Maybe it's a download or that it's the 10 things that you need to consider after a spouse passes away. And then you can walk them through this process or this multi step emails afterwards where you're taking credible off time upfront to write it out. But then, you sell it and forget it.
 So that way if someone unfortunately has their husband pass away tomorrow or six months from now, or a year from now, that journey and that email sequence isn't going to change. It's going to be the same thing every step of the way that you can walk them through the process and then really help build that trust with you and that rapport with you eventually reducing the sense of reciprocity where they know you, they like you, they trust you and you're the only logical option that there is in order to manage their finances or help them along this tumultuous time.
 And that's a singular action. That's doing something once that can be leveraged ongoing. What I would challenge most people, most advisors listening to this would be, what are the singular actions that you can do in your business today? I'm sure there's a list of at least five. If you can't thing of five, then I would really maybe start this episode over from the beginning and go through some of the stuff again. Because I promise you there's at least five things you could probably do. Whether that's an email sequence, whether that's downloads, whether that's even just redoing your homepage so that it's not just a pretty business card. So that's sort of talked about ... We've talked about in the previous episode, that really puts that client centric approach first.
 All of these are things that you can do once and be highly, highly leveraged ongoing. And then, once you have a variety of these singular actions in place, whether that's email sequences or downloads, all these other facets, then you can automate. If you automate before this, you're not really going to get a whole bunch of benefit from it because what are you automating? You're not automating an email sequence, you're not automating a download or a delivery, there's really not a lot to automate.
 But, after you've done some of this work upfront, then you can automate a variety of things. So for example, when someone finishes maybe the women transition email sequence, they can be automatically moved over to a separate sequence that could take them to the next part of the journey. Automation sequence could be when someone visits your site for the first time, and they're a prospect or maybe they're a returning customer or a client, you can have a variety of buttons that allow them to follow through, to get them to the right spot on the website that most resembles the need that they experience.
 For example, someone may want to schedule their annual review with you. So you give them a couple of options on the site, you allow them to work to a calender page, it would be an hour long review, specifically with you and that whole process could be automated. They could book that spot on your calender, that's automated so you don't have a whole lot of back and forth, and their needs were met without anyone having to reach out or back and forth emails all of the stuff that may occur with your existing client base.
 When someone's a new prospect, and maybe they want to book an appointment with you, well, we're not necessarily proponents of spending an hour or an hour and a half with every potential prospect under the sun because they may not be a good fit, and you may not be a good fit for them. And so you can schedule 15 minute little exploratory calls that would allow you to see whether or not you're going to be a good fit. If you are, then you can move them down this next process.
 That whole thing, and all of these processes can be automated inside of your practice to where it doesn't take administrative time, it doesn't take your time as the advisor, it eliminates all of the back and forth, and then once something is booked, whether a calender appointment is booked, or whatever you maybe setting up, you have additional content and resources that you can provide to them through the singular actions that we basically talked about, to really help create that deeper relationship with more of that rapport and really strengthening the bond with your existing clients. Then really taking massive leaps and bounce with those prospects compared to your competition to really engage with them. Have that deep and sense of rapport and then bring them in with that heightened sense of trust to really start leveling up that whole relationship.
 I've been talking for a little while now and I know you guys have definitely got some things you want to add in here. But those are the three big things I would say when it comes to marketing, I highly recommend differentiation, singular actions and then automations.

Brittany A: Draye you said something earlier, it kind of sparked a thought for me. You were talking about how when you set this whole thing up, and you were talking about the singular actions, making sure you don't necessarily have to have at this point in time a dedicated marketing person, but you need somebody who can allocate a few hours a week to this.  
 Draye and I, for those that don't know but are listening, we work with financial advisors all across the United States on getting their teams engaged in all these marketing components in place. And there's only been one instance that I can think of where it just didn't seem to work and it was with an advisor that wanted to do it all himself.
 And what we've just talked about if you listen to our last episode, we talk about different Kolbe types. And we talk in previous episodes about the difference between the visionary or the primary in the company versus the person who is an implementer or is an integrator.
 The thing that I want to comment on is that you absolutely without exception have to identify somebody on your team that has the skillset to be an implementer or and integrator to take some of these things and actually bring them to life. And like Draye said, once you identify that person, this whole process, and I can speak from experience because we at Sweet Financial, Draye is our consultant in this. He is our marketing guy.
 He's able to tell us, "Hey, here's a few key things that you need to do to bring this to life," and then we take it and run, but it's because we have somebody designated on our team who's spearheading this. If I were to have Brian be the one that's like, "Hey Brian, I need you to actually implement some of these automations and integrations." That's not what he should be spending his time. He should be spending his time on the big revenue generation. On the things that he most enjoys and he's most passionate about. You need somebody else that can take this and bring it to life so that your automations are set up.
 I think Brian, I think you can comment to the importance of that and just making sure that you're surrounding yourself, I'll have you talk a little bit about maybe the who versus how mentality and just really embracing that and how that's impacted you and helped us implement some of the things that Draye has brought to the table.

Brian Sweet: Exactly Britney. First of all, it is going to take somebody and has Britney alluded to, it needs to be somebody other than the advisor to get these things set up. But literally, they don't take a lot of time but if you think about it this way, maybe it takes you an hour to set it up, but then it saves you and hour, a week, well, over a year, that's 52 hours that it saved you. Is it worth spending an hour today to save 52 hours later on? I would tell you, yes.
 The other things is a lot of these little introductory comments or things that you can do without a lot of work, Draye was kind enough to create a book and a lot of these concepts are in that, that we'll have available as a link after the show, so look out for that.
 And I think the ... Britney alluded to this who versus how concept. I think it's probably one of the amazing concepts I've gotten from Dan Sullivan of Strategic Coach. And I think one of the things that was always frustrating or things that held us back in the office over the years was, we would try to say, "Hey, that would be a really good idea to implement, how do we do that in the office?"
 And so then we would have somebody that would have never done it before but dig in and try to learn it. We were so wrong with that and Dan Sullivan came up with this concept of find the who that's out there that's the expert in what you're trying to do, hire them to be the how. And that's how we got Draye, because we didn't know how to do marketing other than get referrals.
 And so we went out and found the expert, Redfern Media to help us deliver all of our automated marketing. That really is applicable to virtually everything. Instead of doing it yourself and taking that curve. And there's an interesting comment I had from Don Conley, if anybody knows Don. You ask the question, "When was the last time that you did something for the first time and got it right?" And the answer is probably never.
 So why don't you go to somebody that's done it thousands of times and that's their expertise, plug into them, it shortens the time period of which you become an expert, might cost you a little money but once again, cost versus investment, I would tell you those are great investments and so I think just regardless of marketing, just use this who versus how thought process and a matter of fact, once again, if you wanted to go to Strategic Coach website, there's actually a book that you can download on that topic, that would be another good source for reading. I'll turn it back over to you Draye if you got any other thoughts or comments on those things that we've been chatting about.

Draye Redfern: No, I think it is a really good conversation to have. And I think that it's really important that it's almost unrealistic to expect that all of the brilliant marketing ideas and automations will come from within inside of your own practice. We haven't see it. Usually the stuff that's working really, really well was integrated on or improved on from an outside individual consultant. Outside build or outside marketing company, that has just been taken to the next level.
 And not that these things couldn't necessarily work, but I highly, highly recommend as Brian was saying, get some outside help or at least someone who could look at sort of these stuff to see what's maybe working for you, what's not, look at what you're offering and then really take it to the next level with something that's custom for you.
 That maybe you hiring somebody, but there's also plenty of mastermind groups that are out there that you could join, where you can see what's working in your particular niche or vertical really, really well that you can model. Not copy, model. So that really could really figure out what's more tailored for what you may need.
 Regardless, whatever where you sort of go with this, what we've talked about so far, [inaudible 00:18:51]. You've got to have that differentiation. After you have a differentiation, find those big, singular, things you could focus on to really make some giant leaps forward, not just a little, two steps forward, one step back. Then once you have some of the singular options in place, whether that's an email sequence, whether that's downloads, whether that's followup sequences, whether that's different segmentation stuff that you would use, it doesn't matter what it is because it's going to be different for everybody, then you could find more ways to automate that sort of stuff and really take it to the next level. Buy back more hours per week and that third component there with automation, that's where you can basically set it up to once your team has it in place, you no longer have to worry about them executing on it or doing it because it's done or it's automated.
 And that's where you see a really wonderful time ROI than you can get back. That maybe 50 hours a year, that maybe 200 hours a year you could buy back of your time and your team's time, when it comes to marketing these things and it makes it so, so much easier.

Brian Sweet: And that's how I actually can run my wealth management firm and four other companies and take time off, is I've gotten really good at finding the who's. And so I don't need to spend my time and my team can spend their time on specific things to get it done. To me, that's one of the secrets of how do you free yourself up to spend your time doing only those things that you truly enjoy or good at and that you get some passion from doing?

Brittany A: One component that neither Draye or Brian has touched on yet is that when you look back to episode number two, we talked about the importance when you're communicating with prospects of clients about how it's all about them versus you. I want to put a spin on this too because one of the efficiencies that we have found as Sweet Financial Services is that through some of these automations that Draye has helped us put in place.
 He referenced earlier about the efficiency being the scheduling component and how you can have a portal on your website or somewhere that they can schedule. The thing to think about with all of this is not only the efficiencies that it creates within your company, but also what it does for your clients and your prospects as well.
 So when you're looking at ... I'm just going to go on the example and piggy back off of what Draye talked about earlier with creating this opportunity for somebody to get direct access to your calender, there's ways that you completely, you block out what you don't want them to see, or you block out times your don't want them to sneak in on you on.
 But actually it's an efficiency from the client's perspective too because just like you get a ton of emails in a day, so do your clients. So do your prospects. So if you can save the hassle of going back and forth with them trying to coordinate a time, trying to coordinate their annual review or their semi annual review, whatever it is, and you can just give them direct access to your calender saying, "Hey, here's the next three weeks, four weeks, six weeks," however you work within your office and your practice, or you can actually give them direct access and let them [inaudible 00:22:06] rather than going back and forth 15 times, that's an efficiency for them too.
 That's the way we look at these things also, the different things that Draye brings to the table that he's going to talk about, not just today but in upcoming episodes, it applies to so many different aspects. It's efficiency for you. It's efficiency for your client and efficiency from a prospect perspective as well.

Draye Redfern: That's exactly it Britney, and I think that implementing these things into your advising practice really just goes a long way to just level up what you're doing compared to your competitors. Lead with value. Make it easy on the client to work with you, to schedule time with you. Make it easy for them to learn from you. So you share great and valuable insights and information and really just going that extra mile, that frankly I would say just having been through thousands and thousands of advisor websites at this point in time, that 95% of advisors are just doing awful at.
 You have an incredible opportunity. I wouldn't look at this as like an overwhelming thing, but I would look at this as, there's such an opportunity in this market. We call them red oceans and blue oceans. Where most of the advisor market is in this red ocean with all competing over enhancement differentiators, and it's just like there's blood in the water and it's awful.
 But if you compete in this blue ocean, it's completely different. And you have more streamline client communication, automation and value that you can share with them, it makes you so difficult to compare to other advisors out there because you're head and shoulders above the rest. You make it easy on the client, you share great value and from your standpoint, much of the process is automated and it goes a long, long way to making you stand out and among the crowd.

Brian Sweet: That's an interesting point Draye, I was just thinking, as you were speaking, how often do we run into competition or clients and things that were trying to capture for new business and I really can't hardly remember the last time we had to compete against ourselves but we didn't have to compete against anybody else.
 And I think it's because we've set the stage and have all that differentiation already there, and before the clients even contacts us, they know we're different. And so that's a very helpful point and I'm not only, really I'd only have to compete by impressing the potential client, and I don't have to overcome four or five other financial advisors to get the business.
 I just have to make sure I let my value proposition show and how I can solve their problems and assuming they agree that that's the case, it's pretty much done and they don't have to look any place else.

Brittany A: Brian, that's just an interesting point and I think it just ties back to what you were talking about prior also with the who versus the how mentality. And when we're looking at Brian, I think I just have to commend you, you've done such a great job within your wealth planning business within the Sweet Financial Services of instilling in your team that if there's nothing else, make it easy for the client.
 Make the experience easy, because finances in general can be overwhelming, right? To somebody who doesn't do it thousands of times a year and go through a million different portfolio reviews so from a client or prospect's perspective, whatever you can do to make their life easier, and that's some of the things that Draye was talking about, is taking these different concepts, and like I said, no only applying them within the business, but externally as well.
 That's a differentiator for you and that lets you stand out and as like Brian said, it really helps you to not have any direct competition in your marketplace. That's so important.

Draye Redfern: I think that we've covered a lot in this episode. I think it's a really good sort of initial starting point to start the marketing conversation as we go. We're going to dial a lot into all of these concepts over the coming episodes, but I think this is like a really good foundational way to really make sure that marketing is not overwhelming, you don't need to hire a whole new person in your office to get it going, and you can really do a lot to differentiate yourself from the competition relatively quickly and pretty painlessly in the grand scheme of things. Hope you got a lot of value out of this episode and we're really looking forward to seeing you in the next episode of the Ultimate Advisor Podcast.

 Hey there, Dray Redfern here and before you go, we just wanted to say, thank you for listening to this week's episode of the Ultimate Advisor Podcast. If you enjoy this episode, then please subscribe to the show on iTunes, Google play, Stitcher or Spotify and be sure to rate us five stars on iTunes, because when you do, you'll be entered into a monthly drawing for our Ultimate Advisor coaching program which is a 2000 dollar value.
 And if you would like to access more of the show notes, additional resources in our free, premium content, then please visit ultimateadvisorpodcast.com. We look forward to seeing you in the next episode of the Ultimate Advisor Podcast. We'll see you there.

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About The Ultimate Advisor Podcast:
The Ultimate Advisor podcast is a business podcast for financial advisors who are looking to grow their advising practices with greater ease and effectiveness. Ultimate Advisor was developed to help financial advisors master their marketing, sell their services with greater authority, generate repeat clients, and additional revenue in their business.
Each week, your hosts Draye Redfern, Bryan Sweet, and Brittany Anderson will share some of the closest guarded secrets from successful financial advising practices across the U.S.  

Draye Redfern

Draye is also the founder of UltimateAttorney.com which helps Attorneys go from “Surviving” to “Thriving” in their business.  In addition, Draye helps to provide insurance solutions to more than 8,600 law firms across the United States annually.

Bryan Sweet

Founder of Sweet Financial, CEO, Wealth Advisor, RJFS
Creator of The Dream Architect™
Co-founder of Dare to Dream Enterprises
Creator of Elite Wealth Advisor Symposium
Author of 3 books – Dare to Dream: Design the Retirement You Can’t Wait to Wake Up To, Imagine. Act. Inspire. A Daily Journal and Give & Grow: Proven Strategies for Starting an Running and Effective Study Group

Brittany Anderson

Director of Operations at Sweet Financial, Office Manager, RJFS
Co-founder of Dare to Dream Enterprises
Author of 2 books – Imagine. Act. Inspire. A Daily Journal & Dare to Dream: Design the Retirement You Can’t Wait to Wake Up To
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