In their struggle for visibility and engagement, asset managers are beginning to realize there is very little to differentiate themselves, which is why an increasing number of firms are turning their focus to content marketing. According to a recent Kurtosys digital marketing survey, two-thirds of asset management firms plan on increasing their investment in content marketing, seeing it as the most important channel for generating more website traffic and leads.
However, creating and managing content, whether it’s pushed out through an email campaign or published on their blog, has been a significant challenge for most asset management firms. It’s time-consuming and most firms employ a manual process that diverts resources away from the things they do best. The larger problem is they have no way of knowing if or how their content gets used, or whether it’s having any impact. For firms operating on razor-thin margins, that’s no way to operate in the digital age.
On the other end, consumers are inundated with content. With more than 90 percent of B2B marketers pushing out new content every day, it’s a wonder that consumers have any more capacity to consume it. They probably don’t, which is why most content never reaches its intended audience, leaving marketers to wonder why they aren’t seeing better results.
Content for the Sake of Content is Not Content
The issue is not that there’s too much content. At any given moment there can be more than 3 billion people looking at their mobile devices or computers in search of content. The issue is that much it is just noise to consumers who have a limited amount of attention they can devote to consuming content. Therefore, content produced just for the sake of producing content creates no value for anyone. Just think about the limited amount of time and attention your prospects – fund gatekeepers and investment consultants – have to consume content.
Your challenge as an asset management firm is creating the kind of content that can cut through the noise and make an impression with their audience. The first step is to determine what kind of content can do that and, the second step is to figure out the best way to get that content to your audience.
To be meaningful and of value, your content has to be able to break through the noise as a differentiator in a sea of mundane content. In a digitally wired world, the only way to be visible and engage with a targeted audience is through content that has a unique voice, counters conventional wisdom and has something compelling to say – in other words, real thought leadership.
In an industry where mundane market recaps and outlooks dominate the information flow, thought leadership content has become highly coveted by advisors and investment consultants who crave new insights and a unique perspective.
Content Marketing – Going Beyond Traditional Marketing
The difference between traditional marketing and content marketing is who is in charge of the messaging. With traditional marketing, the marketers devise the message and push it out via media or blast emails in the hopes it hits its target. With content marketing, the intended target – your prospects and clients – shape the message and determine when and how they want to receive it.
The goal of content marketing is to build a reservoir of targeted prospects who opt into receiving your content because they find it to be of value. Once in the funnel, a content marketing system begins to track their activities – when they visit your website, what they do when they’re there, what emails they open and how they respond – and then adapts the content to their distinct needs, preferences, and behaviors. Rather than receiving one-size-fits-all content, your prospects and clients receive content seemingly intended for them.
While traditional marketing such as media, brochures, and other collateral is still essential for creating brand awareness, content marketing is becoming more essential for demonstrating value to your target market. They might recognize your firm’s name from a brochure or ad they saw but, if they receive meaningful content from you, they’ll become a subscriber, which is more meaningful for you.
Utilizing an array of methods to disseminate your content can ensure greater receptivity. It also enables you to repurpose your content so it can be consumed by a broader audience. For example, content delivered through targeted emails can also be posted to your blog and social media. It can also be converted to a podcast or webinar.
Effective content marketing can change the game for asset managers who have long relied on traditional marketing to get their message out. In a highly competitive industry, the game is now about differentiation and content marketing is the key to success.
Dan Sondhelm is CEO of Sondhelm Partners, a firm that helps asset managers, mutual funds, ETFs, wealth managers and fintech companies grow through marketing, public relations and sales programs. Click to read Dan’s latest Insight articles and to schedule a complimentary consultation.