How to save time and money with evergreen content
In an age of information overload, clients are relying on advisers for trustworthy information and education that will empower them to make the right decisions about their financial futures. The challenge for advisers is to support each client through the education process and to do it profitably.
One approach to this task is to develop educational materials that are valuable and relevant to clients, but not time-sensitive. Known as “evergreen content”, this type of marketing information can be used multiple times, in a range of different ways.
Evergreen content can help advisers cost-effectively serve existing clients, build loyalty and attract new prospects, says Certified Financial Planner Adele Martin, founder of The Savings Squad, My Money Buddy, and Firefly Wealth.
Martin uses evergreen content extensively in her businesses.
Firefly Wealth, the personal financial advice offering, has developed a library of videos for clients to watch in preparation for meetings with advisers. The videos explain concepts such as risk profiling and types of life insurance, and introduce the firm’s investment and insurance philosophy.
“It saves us having to repeat ourselves all the time in meetings. It saves money and it’s more efficient,” says Martin. “From a compliance point of view, it means the advice is getting delivered consistently, and also it means the client has something valuable and tangible.”
Sending clients educational material prior to a meeting can also help them to show up better prepared, better informed and more able to have a strategic discussion.
Martin actively promotes her businesses through media interviews and social media, with prospective clients initially directed to her Facebook group, The Savings Squad.
People who join the group receive an email linking them with a five-part video series of savings tips.
“That five-part series is evergreen content. It never changes. I record it once and I don’t have to reinvent the wheel,” Martin says.
The business sends group members a monthly email newsletter with links to a podcast, then three of four times a year Martin runs a Facebook Live discussion which aims to convert members into financial planning clients.
Think smart, save time
It sounds time consuming, but Martin says it isn’t.
“You can get smart with it if you take the one piece of content and use it in multiple ways,” she says.
A Facebook Live could be turned into four or five videos. The audio could become a podcast, while quotes lifted from the videos could be repurposed as memes for Instagram. Facebook and Instagram have comprehensive online training guides that outline how to use their tools for business.1
Adele Martin’s efforts have paid off. Many clients have been motivated to pay for personal financial advice from Firefly Wealth as a result of their experiences with The Savings Squad and My Money Buddy.
Educational content helps overcome barriers to obtaining financial advice
Cost and a lack of motivation are the two main barriers that prevent people seeking financial advice, according to the Australian Securities and Investments Commission’s report 627, Financial advice: What consumers really think, released in late August.
Other barriers the report identified include perceptions that advice is irrelevant, or too difficult, and fears that an adviser will push them into something they don’t want or understand. Many consumers feel vulnerable seeking advice and won’t share their full circumstances until they have developed sufficient trust, the report found.
Providing educational content over time to warm clients up and build familiarity can help to overcome these obstacles.
Evergreen content must be relevant. Budgeting and cash flow are popular themes with clients in their 30s and 40s, but may not interest retirees.
“Think about your audience and what’s going to resonate with them,” Martin advises.
She finds that clients themselves are the best source of topic ideas. Focus first on creating content that answers the most common questions clients have, and ask them what else they want to learn about.
Evergreen content needs to be general. It might introduce clients to standard industry terms - such as stepped versus level premiums - so they can confidently discuss their options with advisers. Or it might include a testimonial explaining how a client benefited from income protection insurance. It should avoid technical content that covers rules and thresholds that may become obsolete if those factors change.
Advisers should include a general advice warning up front.
Draw on experts and ready made content
Martin suggests advisers seek out experts to discuss their topic areas in videos or podcasts. Product providers and dealer groups may be able to assist with resources that advisers can share with clients.
For example, OnePath Life offers advisers OnePath Clarity, which provides evergreen white label educational content advisers can use as part of their lead generation, engagement and retention strategy.2
Office staff can help convert content into presentations, cut videos, prepare podcasts, and schedule and distribute content via social media and follow-up emails.
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