Seminars

Online marketing and SEO seminars and webinars, especially for financial advisors and other financial professionals.

Social Security Income Planning and Website SEO: Financial Advisor Niche Marketing

Social Security Income Planning and Website SEO: Financial Advisor Niche Marketing

Website SEO is the key to marketing a Social Security income planning niche for financial advisors and other professionals

Bulls Eye - Financial Advisor Niche SEOA Social Security income planning is a great niche for advisors. Everyone nearing retirement age can benefit from it, the niche is often shunned by other advisors, and there is great opportunity for marketing this service on the Web, as demonstrated by the thousands of Internet search queries every month on social security income planning topics.

See our full webinar on Social Security Income Planning and Website SEO for Financial Advisors.

Download the Social Security Planning Webinar Slides

Why do financial advisors need a niche?

I believe wholeheartedly that all advisors should have a unique niche market. A niche helps you stand out among the competition and gives you unique selling points for gaining new clients. It’s always good marketing to stand out and be great at something. Rather than limiting your available client base as many niche-naysayer advisors would respond, it actually better qualifies you for your target clients, which can strengthen prospect close rates, open better marketing opportunities, increase client retention, improve client service, and make you a go-to resource for media interviews on your area of expertise.

Why is Social Security income planning a good niche for financial advisors and other financial professionals?

A good niche should be marketable. There should not only be a demand for your services, but you should be able to market yourself as an expert in your niche and prospects should be able to find you.

That’s what makes Social Security income planning such a good niche for advisors. Every month there are thousands of people searching for information on how they can maximize social security benefits. The public doesn’t understand Social Security spousal or survivor benefit rules. They want to minimize taxes on Social Security income. But most of the information provided on the Web is from journalists, not the expert advisors. In compiling a list of keywords on Social Security income planning, I quickly came up with over 150 high-traffic, low-competition keywords. Here are just a few Social Security income planning keywords with their total U.S. monthly searches, level of competition, and approximate cost per click if you were to pay for Website visitors via Google AdWords.

Social Security Income Planning SEO Keyword Terms

There tens of thousands of monthly Internet searches for Social Security income planning keyword terms.

 

Unlike other SEO keyword terms that advisors often use to market themselves, Social Security income planning keywords have low competition. That means it’s much easier to rank for a term like “social security advisor” than it is for a term like “financial advisor San Francisco” even though they have the same search volume. And if you’re still having trouble ranking in the first page of search results for your keywords after optimizing your website, you could always pay for each visitor to your Website via Google AdWords. Each visitor for the term “financial advisor San Francisco would cost you $12.52 on average, while the term “social security advisor” would only cost $7.44 per click.

If you instead pursued the niche of serving doctors, it would be much more competitive to rank organically, there are significantly less monthly Web searches, and paying for Web visitors would cost you $10.76 each.

 

Keyword

Competition

U.S. Monthly Searches

Approx. CPC

social security advisor

0.62

720

$7.44

social security advice

0.70

590

$4.04

maximize social security benefits

0.46

590

$0.94

financial advisor for doctors

0.95

170

$10.76

financial advisor san francisco

0.88

720

$12.52

cfp miami

0.85

91

$12.77

financial planning new york

0.79

1300

$10.29

 

To succeed in a niche market, you must first know your market. That means not only the practical side of how to advise clients on maximizing social security income benefits for example. But also how you plan on marketing yourself as an expert in your niche.

Social Security income planning as a service niche presents great opportunity for marketing yourself on the Web. I’ll show exactly how to do this in our free recorded webinar on Social Security Income Planning and Website SEO for Financial Advisors.

My co-presenter, Frank Horath of ClientFirst Financial, will demo some really neat planning software and show you how to become an expert in Social Security income planning. I’ll show you how to market that Social Security income planning expertise on the Web with search engine optimization.

Title: Social Security Income Planning and Website SEO for Financial Advisors
Download the Social Security Planning Webinar Slides

Local SEO For Financial Advisors And How Google+ Can Help

Local SEO For Financial Advisors And How Google+ Can Help

Search engine optimization (SEO) for financial advisors should at least include optimizing around local search terms. That’s because local keywords are the most targeted terms used by buy-ready prospects searching for an advisor in their local area.

Local SEO for financial advisors and how Google+ can help

See our Local SEO and Google+ Webinar for financial advisors.

Yes, it can get competitive to rank well in search engines for these golden search terms, but the key to gaining traffic for local seo terms is claiming and optimizing a Google local business profile, and still only 10-15% of local businesses have even claimed their Google business profiles! With a little bit of work, you may be able to get Google-assisted referrals for years. I show you how to do it at my Local SEO for Financial Advisors webinar.

In this webinar, I teach you to:

  • Determine the right local keywords to target on your website
  • Claim and optimize your Google Places business profile
  • Improve your profile’s ranking in search results
  • Identify the most important online business directories
  • Use Google+ to engage your audience and grow your business

Google+Local = Huge SEO Potential For Local Businesses

Google has been trying to find ways to make Google+ relevant despite its low adoption and engagement rates compared to Facebook, LinkedIn, and Twitter. Since Google is the king of search, its trump card is to integrate Google+ with search results. And that is what will differentiate Google+ from other social networks and drive new business to early adopters.

To illustrate the potential benefits to advisory firms, here’s an example. Say your firm is based in New York City and a client reviews your firm on your Google business page. If someone who is connected to your client on Google+ searches for “financial advisor in New York,” your firm has a greater likelihood of being at the top of the personalized results. It will also list your client, as having reviewed your firm. That’s huge as it’s essentially a Google-assisted referral to that new prospect. Even if the searcher has no connection to those who have reviewed your firm, profiles with many positive reviews usually rank better in search results.

Web Reviews Are The Modern-Day Referrals

Reviews have always been important to Google Places rankings, but Google+Local adds the social element to the mix and can lead to referrals without clients having to fork over the contact info of their friends and family.

I’ve always thought the referral-based system for new business that so many advisors and other financial professionals rely on to be far from ideal. Many clients may not feel comfortable putting their reputation on the line by directly referring people, and prospects who get an unsolicited call from an advisor will guardedly approach the first consultation, if you even get that far.

I know there are some firms that have a great system for getting referrals and often its because they’re able to re-frame the discussion around the advisor helping the referred rather than the happy client helping out the advisor. But for many new prospects being contacted by an advisor, even one referred by a friend, it feels too much like a sales pitch.

That’s because it’s still the advisor chasing after new prospects rather than enabling new prospects to search for and find them. It’s the same reason that traditional advertising has largely failed in recent years while Google AdWords has been eating up the majority of advertising dollars. Prospects don’t like to be sold to when they’re not in the buying frame of mind. Positive reviews, especially those from connections, integrated right into local search results can be much more effective.

What About Compliance Rules Against Testimonials?

I know, I know. You’re worried about about Rule 206(4)-1 of the Investment Advisers Act of 1940, which prohibits use of testimonials. While that rule may pertain to LinkedIn Recommendations, it shouldn’t pertain here.

That’s because LinkedIn gives you control over your recommendations; you could decide to show the favorable ones and hide the unfavorable ones. But Google doesn’t let you delete or edit any negative reviews, only address them in a comment. It’s a public site and what’s posted there is out of your control.

Financial advisor compliance consultant Chris Winn of AdvisorAssist agrees, but cautions against promoting your positive reviews or re-posting them on your own website. “Officially, it’s still a grey area for regulators (it’s under review with the SEC right now), but should be passable from a regulatory standpoint,” say Winn. “Ratings are similar to the Facebook ‘Like’ question: just because someone likes something doesn’t mean it’s a testimonial. However, if an advisor makes reference to a review in any way, it becomes a testimonial.”

Watch Out Facebook, Google+ Has The Long-Term Recipe For Success

Having a presence on Google+ doesn’t just help you get found for local search terms. If you’re writing blog posts and creating valuable content that is getting +1s and shares on Google+, you’ll get ranked better in personalized search results for people in your circles and extended circles (followers of your followers), but also for the general public.Google Plus Logo

Since Facebook is largely a closed network, Google can’t see the majority of all the “liked” content. So while Facebook “likes” give you exposure within Facebook, they don’t help your content get found in Google Web searches. But with Google +1 button, Google sees these endorsements and learns which content users like. They can then use that information to provide better search results, and personalize those search results to more prominently display content that your contacts like. They have the recipe for effectively mixing social into search. And with over 70% of all web searches, they’re the dominant restaurant in town.

Optimizing For Local SEO: Your Best Online Marketing Bet

Local SEO

Search engine optimization for local search terms is the most important online marketing task of any local business.

Like many advisors, maybe you’ve spent lots of money over the years to build a fancy website, expecting to gain new business from the Web, but seeing little to no results. That’s because SEO is much more than just building a website. It takes time and expertise to know what terms your prospects are searching for and arrange your site content around those terms.

But a Google business profile is like a free mini website in and of itself. By creating a Google+ business profile you can easily add photos, videos, and interact with clients and prospects. And how your profile page ranks in local searches is only partially determined by the authority of your website. Your Google+ business profile can still rank well, even if your website does not.

Procrastination quote: one of these days is none of these days

Google only launched Google+Local on May 30, so very few businesses have many reviews. Advisors and other professional firms may have reviews ported over to Google+Local from Google Places, but those don’t have any of the aforementioned Google+ social benefits. Now, to review a business, users must create a Google+ profile, and I believe that is one factor that will help expand the Google+ user base.

Procrastination quote: the way to get ahead is to start now | William Feather

It is minimal work to set up a Google+ profile, and Google is making it clear that it wants Google+ to stay and those businesses that use it will likely benefit.

So act now and don’t hesitate. Listen to my webinar below and learn how to optimize for local SEO. If you can bring in even one new client this year, it will be a good return on your time investment. But what if you can bring in 10, 15, 20, or 100 clients? This is so powerful that it can transform your business.

I believe that Google+Local will soon be the most important way for a local business to market itself on the Web. In the following video, I’ll teach how to do it right. 

Download the presentation slides

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Brien Shanahan is founder of SEO4Advisors, a boutique search engine optimization company dedicated to helping financial advisors and other professionals gain new business from the Web. He can be reached at bshanahan@seo4advisors.com or (516) 299-6063.

Common Financial Advisor SEO Mistakes

Common Financial Advisor SEO Mistakes

Avoid These Common Financial Advisor SEO Mistakes

Since I started working with financial advisors in 2007, I’ve seen a lot of advisor websites. And many of them suffer from the same basic search engine optimization (SEO) mistakes that prevent them from getting found on the Web by prospects. These mistakes include missing Meta data, repeated page titles, framed content that’s invisible to search engines, unproductive “splash” pages, dead links, and no keyword targeting strategy or analytics tracking.

See Our Recorded Financial Advisor SEO Mistakes Webinar And Start Gaining Prospects From The Web

In a webinar hosted by BrightTalk, “Most Common SEO Mistakes By Financial Advisors,” I simplified the SEO mystery for advisors and offered clear solutions to the most common financial financial advisor SEO mistakes. Check out the recording below to learn where your website is failing in SEO and to learn about free tools that can help you analyze your SEO and spy on your competition.

Financial Advisor SEO Mistakes Webinar

In this 45-minute webinar, you’ll learn:

  • What types of websites are nearly invisible to search engines
  • Are “splash” pages a good idea?
  • How to see if your site has page titles and meta descriptions
  • Why your competitors rank higher than you in Google
  • How to see what sites link to your competitors
  • What SEO tools can help you spy on competitors and optimize your site
  • The importance of keyword research and how to do it
  • The anatomy of a well-optimized web page
  • What to watch out for when outsourcing your SEO

Download the presentation slides.

You can watch the Financial Advisor SEO Mistakes Webinar right here or on Brighttalk’s website. And please be sure to rate it so we learn if you like it.

Brien Shanahan is founder of SEO4Advisors, a boutique search engine optimization company dedicated to helping financial advisors and other professionals gain new business from the Web. He can be reached at bshanahan@seo4advisors.com or +1 (516) 554-0126.