Back in 2006, you probably had never heard of Sochi, Russia. It was one year before the announcement that the city would host the 2014 Winter Olympics.
$50 billion later, most people throughout the world have heard of Sochi.
The big question now is: will Sochi become a city for Russians to vacation in with upscale transportation, hotels, theme parks and a Grand Prix venue, as well as world-class skiing just 30 minutes away?
For this answer, we’ll have to check in a few years from now.
The $50 billion renovation of Sochi is, in some ways, similar to techniques carried out every day by many financial advisors. They have spent time and money building a grand website but find themselves discouraged when no one comes to visit.
As a coach and consultant to financial advisors, the best thing I get to do each day is talk about what advisors are doing (and not doing). I recently spoke with an advisor in Las Vegas who had completed an update to her website over six months ago. She was lamenting that despite the money she invested in her website update, she wasn’t seeing a spike in clients.
I asked her a couple of questions about her website, including: Was she tracking visitors? Did she know where people were coming from?
The answer to all of these questions was a firm “no.”
The problem is that there are a lot of people who can make a cool, beautiful looking site, but the key is to create CONTENT in order for people to want to come. Aside from the cosmetic appeal and intriguing content, you have to get the word out through social media sites, such as Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter.
For AUM in a Box, I spend four hours a week creating content and another four hours posting information. After that, Julie Grawe from WRITE on RED, LLC | Content Creation & Marketing Consulting, spends another several hours a week uploading content to the site and making it look grammatically and aesthetically appealing.
The point is that before you build a wonderful looking site, you first need to have a solid distribution strategy in place.
Our website has new content posted three days a week. We distribute on Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter and comment on other users’ activity throughout the week as well.
Maintaining a webpage that generates success can be a simple task if you prioritize the functions of your site correctly. Rather than spending the money to make the site look remarkable, spend the money on creating content instead and have someone distribute it out for you.
The advisor in Las Vegas did quite the opposite. She used a national template-based company to create her advising site. She also hired a content distribution company that provides cookie-cutter newsletters that cannot be differentiated from one advisor to the next. This advisor spent close to $20,000 on developing the materials, $59 a month for updated newsletter posts and an additional $220 for site updates.
Her error was not in choosing poor vendors. Both organizations she used produce fantastic looking material; however, the sites and content are not distinguishable and do not provide the distribution mechanisms needed to spread wide and far in order to capture clients.
For example, the content distribution company delivers the same content and layout that it does to every other advisor who uses their services. This provides no unique advantage for her specifically and won’t help her webpage gain attention from Google, which will make it more difficult to attract new viewers to her site. It’s important to have differentiated content so search engines are able to pick your site up and offer it to visitors.
Focus on a Content Distribution Strategy to Gain Webpage Viewership
In this advisor’s case, a lot of money went to developing a website, much like how the Russian Federation spent $50 billion to develop Sochi. However, putting in more money doesn’t always mean gaining more clients.
With the ever-expanding industry of website design and development, you can hire someone to create and maintain a fine site for a couple thousand dollars. My advice is to take the remaining $17,000 and use that to pay a professional to write original content for you.
Once you have created unique material, it’s time to send it out, just like people do with television and radio shows. Fortunately, you can do this much more inexpensively on the Internet.
Before you get to thinking, “I will build it and they will come,” be sure to create a content distribution strategy and think about how you can create unique content that potential clients in your specified niche would follow.