Many investment advisors use blogging as a powerful element in their registered investment advisor firm (RIA) digital marketing strategy, to increase brand recognition and reach a wide audience of prospective clients. Simply having a business website alone serves as an online marketing brochure, but it is the unique, valuable content in blog posts that will continuously attract new visitors and enhance credibility.
Have you or your RIA firm considered adding blogging to your marketing strategy? In this post, we'll highlight essential tips for launching and maintaining a successful and compliant blog as an investment advisor.
The benefits of business blogging are well-documented:
- 80% of internet users interact with blogs
- Business websites that blog regularly get 55% more visitors than sites that don’t
- Companies that blog get 67% more leads each month than those that don’t
However, as consultants and compliance partners to thousands of RIA firms, we see many common mistakes when an investment advisor adds blogging to their RIA marketing plan.
Here is a quick rundown of tips for blogging as an investment advisor:
- Create a content strategy
Cultivate a collection of evergreen content that your target audience will find educational and relevant regardless of timing (day, week, month, or year). Providing valuable content that remains relevant to your audience, no matter when they read will help your blog rank more favorably for keywords and build ranking power with search engines.
Research keywords to optimize your posts for better search engine optimization (SEO) value. Use a tool like Google’s Keyword Planner to do some basic research and find keywords that make sense to use in your blog posts.
- Use images to create more attractive posts
Not only do images make for a more attractive post, but they also help articles stand out when shared through social media channels. In addition, images provide another opportunity to optimize your posts for SEO by adding alt tags that include your target keyword.
- Don't just write to write
This will only create noise. Write content of value to your clients and targeted prospect niche.
For example, does your firm cater to a specific niche audience like physicians? Make sure your posts address specific topics relevant to that audience (e.g., how to optimize paying off medical student loans) and not too generic (e.g., how to save for retirement).
- Promote your blog everywhere you can
Increasing engagement on your blog can be a challenge, so you’ll want to leverage every marketing channel at your disposal. Don’t be afraid to share your content through social media platforms such as Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn, or FacebookConsider starting a monthly newsletter to help increase blog traffic by highlighting several of your recent and relevant blog posts. With Google on track to effectively kill third-party cookies in 2023, first-party connections like subscriber lists are becoming more important, so this is a worthy investment of your time.
- Link to other resources on your website
This may include prior blog posts, white papers, or external resources. If you only link to external resources, it's likely time to invest in the creation of additional relevant items a prospect could download from your website. Like many items on this list, internal links serve a second purpose of checking off another box on search algorithms, increasing the SEO impact of your content.
- Test your content (don't be afraid to make revisions if necessary)
Be sure to test your strategy often, especially early on. Find out what works and what doesn’t. It’s okay to alter your content strategy along the way.
Check metrics such as click rates, page views, and keywords to see what content is most engaging to your audience. If you haven’t set up Google Analytics, here is a simple guide for setting up the free tool on your RIA blog.
- Keep it compliant
As RIA compliance consultants, we want to remind you that any online content your firm publishes is considered advertising and therefore subject to traditional RIA advertising rules and regulations. You must establish the proper compliance policies and procedures before embarking on an online marketing strategy, as all online content will be examined in detail during a regulatory audit.
We highly recommend you and/or the Chief Compliance Officer (CCO) of your firm review the following blog posts for more compliance information related to digital marketing:
- Updates on the SEC Marketing Rule
- Social Media Archiving and Compliance
- Have Patience
A blog is a long-term investment. If you can exercise patience and stay the course, a blogging strategy can be a cost-effective way to grow your RIA firm.