We'll go out on a limb and say that when you were taking your MBA courses, you didn't think that five years later you'd be educating yourself on "Pinterest lead generation."
Inbound marketing, mobile marketing, social media — these things have turned traditional marketing on its head, particularly within the financial industry where things like competitive differentiation and customer service are particularly critical. As a result, many firms in the industry are outsourcing a portion of inbound-related marketing activities to a trusted financial inbound agency. Should you become one of them? Quite possibly, if any of these following signs hit especially close to home:
1. You need help creating buyer personas. The concept is old, but the way in which buyer personas influence your inbound marketing work is relatively new, particularly as social media becomes even more prevalent and customers become increasingly technologically sophisticated.
2. You're not sure how customers find you. In the old days, customers would walk into a branch or call after seeing an ad. Now, however, leads come from all different sources, and where they come from determines the nuts and bolts of your marketing plans.
3. You still don't really understand what "keywords" are. Your Web team does, but you don't, and that's unfortunate because mastering the art of keyword selection and placement has a direct impact on the success of your inbound marketing efforts, SEO, and blogging strategy. Which reminds us...
4. Your blog isn't so hot. Your branch has a blog, but it's infrequently updated. The content isn't linked to keywords nor is it targeted to buyer personas. And most of the posts are commercial in nature, which has the negative effect of actually turning off readers.
5. Your content strategy doesn't exist. Your ad hoc approach towards posting content seems to work just fine, but in reality, it could be much better. A content strategy that maps content to the financial lead or customer's position in the purchasing funnel will reach the right customer at the right time.
6. You and your team aren't writers. There's an unlimited amount of financial-related content to be leveraged for lead- or customer-facing deliverables. The problem? You just don't have the time or the in-house writing expertise to get this done.
7. Your lead nurturing process is antiquated. It's a one-size-fits-all approach that ignores things like buyer personas, content interests, and the customer's position in the sales funnel.
8. You've resisted video marketing. Most financial services firms, understandably, lack the in-house expertise to make an effective video. Inbound marketing agencies do.
9. You want to automate, but don't know how. It's common for client companies to keep some inbound-related tasks in-house. These tasks can be automated and an inbound agency can facilitate this process.
10. You lack in-house expertise around a host of other inbound-related tasks. These include pay-per-click marketing, social media marketing, search engine optimization, and Web analytics.
Has your firm outsourced some tasks to an inbound agency? What tasks do you keep in house? How do you measure the agency's effectiveness?