Strengths: Being an author carries a weight of authority, even in today’s mostly digital culture. Books have become a business card for many experts who want to show their command of subject matter and place in the industry. Consider the comparison of advisors from a client’s perspective. Many advisors are similar, but if a client can work with an advisor who shows they have put enough thought into their field to publish a book on that subject, it will undoubtedly separate them from their competition.
Books can also point back to you as an advisor in very targeted ways. Imagine sending your book to a prospect with specific chapters marked that you know will help that lead. At the end of the chapter, they see your office’s phone number or your email address. That’s a great lead flow.
The gift of a book feels significant and yet the cost for each book can be small if considered in a cost per lead comparison. Books also travel well. An email, a conversation, a dinner, those things will fade away, but a book will still be there as a resource for a client or lead.
Books can also communicate your personality and expertise in a way that your website can’t. Lastly, books are transferable. Whether it’s you sending them to an individual or your COIs sending them to leads, a book travels well.
Challenges: It can take a lot of time and thought to create a book. You can expect to spend 12-18 months if you want to truly develop an idea into a printed book. If you write it yourself you can plan on spending 100+ hours on content. If you pay for a ghostwriter that could run 15-30k. The last obstacle is in the production of the book.
Many authors simply lack a plan for how they’re going to use the book or they expect the book to sell a lot of copies on Amazon and then customers will come running to them. There’s very, very little chance of that happening. Advisors need to have a plan for how they’re going to use the book as a marketing tool. Navigating the printing and publishing world can be difficult without a guide. Many authors end up with hundreds of copies of their books collecting dust because they don’t make a plan.
Strengths: Video can effectively communicate your professionalism and personality. If you find a great production company you can create several compelling videos in a matter of weeks. Views can be tracked easily so you can see how much interest your videos are getting. Video encourages visitors to your website to stay longer and they’re easy to share over social media. One video shoot can create multiple videos.
Challenges: If you’re not confident on camera you may need coaching. A good production company can help with the script, wardrobe, and where the video is shot. Driving traffic to your video will take a separate effort but again, you can measure how many people have viewed it or even where they stopped watching it.
Video can be quite expensive, but production companies will all have examples of their work for you to see and compare.
Strengths: Since it’s 2021 many more people are comfortable logging into a video meeting/webinar and experiencing online learning. Webinars can target specific groups effectively and include calls to action so you will know their effectiveness immediately. They can be highly interactive if you want them to be and are a very affordable outreach method.
You can give the same webinar several times or record a webinar and offer it as a replay in the future. There are no rules on how long a webinar has to be so you can make them as long as you want and give them from home or your office.
Challenges: Most advisors overcomplicate webinars. It’s important to make registration simple and to remind those who register to show up to the live teaching. Live audiences convert much, much better than those who watch a recording. Skimping on the design of your slides and other graphics is a big mistake. Find templates or simply hire out the design of what you share on your screen.
The last obstacles are not developing worthwhile content and not feeling confident delivering content. You will get better the more ties you give the teaching so run through it several times before inviting anyone to attend. Don’t be afraid to invite your team to help you develop the webinar.
Strengths: This is an online tool that helps a specific audience learn something new about their situation. It should show them their needs and direct them to you to help them fulfill those needs. It can be affordable and give you great data to help you assist your target audience.
Challenges: Developing your assessment will take thoughtful analysis. You have helped those to take the assessment to identify their needs and asking the right questions is vital. An assessment that can give scores in different categories will help the taker quickly identify where they need help. The greatest challenge with assessments is driving traffic to them and then having a thoughtful follow-up process for those who complete it.
Strengths: Being in person is powerful. When you can be face to face with someone you’ll have a much higher chance of converting them. If you’ve got a winsome personality and a great command of your material then an in-person seminar can be effective. The more you give the seminar the more you’ll improve at giving it and if crafted well it will help the audience see their need for your services.
Challenges: In person events can be hard to come by right now. Seminars sometimes don’t scale well so you need to be strategic about how to get in front of your ideal audience.
Strengths: These can be created quickly and at very little cost. Guides can help solve specific problems, which builds trust with your prospects. They’re also sharable and automated. You don’t have to print and mail them. They’ll be delivered via email or your website. Once you find someone to help you either develop content and/or format the guides, you can create many of them with minimal effort.
Challenges: You’ll need to know the challenges your audience faces and then craft guides to solve those issues. The more specific problems you solve, the better. You need to have a follow-up sequence via email or by phone to maximize the lead opportunity. Driving traffic to your guides is a challenge, but they’ll also be working for you while you sleep because they exist online, not just when your office is open.