When making an initial approach to inbound marketing (an umbrella term I’ll employ to include digital marketing, email marketing, content marketing, & social media marketing) confronting the hyperbole (as in, 65 Strategies You NEED to Follow for EPIC Content Marketing Results), too-cutesy metaphors (Content isn’t the king – it’s the kingdom), and the buzzword salad of jargon whose purpose seems to be to make those late to the content marketing party feel inadequate is… well, let’s just say it is off-putting.
But in all fairness, if there’s an industry that can’t in good conscience get upset about overusing jargon, it’s investment management. And I can’t blame marketing bloggers and content creators for employing these tactics –in truth, words like “awesome,” “stunning,” “kick-ass,” “foolproof,” and my personal anti-favorite, “epic” (so overused…) have been tested and shown to increase click rates and drive traffic to their sites.
And that’s the whole point to this inbound marketing exercise – drive eyeballs to our websites, prove our value, develop relationships, and add to our client base.
Inbound marketing works. When undertaken with a dedicated, professional effort worthy of attention, inbound marketing for investment managers can unquestionably be effective.
The problem is that effective marketing requires persuasion, and when a marketing technique's use becomes hearlded as simply another part of the established conventional wisdom, people's antennae shoot up, and are no longer persuaded by the tactic. That's when it loses its effectiveness, jumps the shark, and ends up as the butt of a joke on a "Saturday Night Live" skit.
But that’s also where the opportunity lies.
It’s an opportunity because it allows for a high degree of thoughtful differentiation, so long as the investment management firm’s marketing department truly understands their ideal client’s buyer persona; in other words, in the morning, what motivates them to get out of bed… and what makes them want to stay there? And what can we do, in terms of our content, to make the decision to get out of bed easier? How can we help them to break through their roadblocks and do their jobs better/make their jobs easier?
That’s what inbound marketing is all about, and why it is growing in popularity.
The best description I’ve seen about how to avoid the “keeping up with the Joneses” trap was articulated thusly: Take what’s unique about you, and apply it to the existing platforms (Thank you, Rob Rose).
In other words, because other people have already done the heavy lifting, it means we don’t have to reinvent the marketing wheel. But we do need to be creative in how we leverage those tools to our advantage. And the root of our creativity has to come from an intimate understanding of the people with whom we most want to work, and how we can best serve them.
Interested in learning more?