HALO for Lead Gen: Search Engine Optimization Basics
by Ashley Flitter | Nov 5, 2018
Financial advisors are facing an unprecedented number of challenges in their practices. Whether it’s managing a large amount of wealth transfer or competing with robo-advisors, there are many potential obstacles advisors need to overcome in order to maintain and build upon their success. This is especially true if you are an advisor who’s approaching retirement age and getting ready to sell your practice.
Online lead generation is fueled by having the right solutions for your potential clients as well as being able to market them effectively. If you have all the right solutions but no one is visiting your website, then your lead generation efforts will fall flat. To that end, search engine optimization (SEO) is a critical element of being able to compete in today’s crowded markets. But don’t let the concept overwhelm you – SEO is simply the ability to be found by those who are looking for you and ensuring that they are, in fact, the right people for your business.
Let’s break it down into a few basic elements.
Know Your Audience
Before you can optimize your website content, you have to pinpoint the exact type of person you want coming to your website. Ideally, any leads you drive to your site should be likely to convert into a client. Here are some questions you should ask yourself and your team before going any further.
- What types of clients are you looking for?
- What makes them an ideal client?
- How do they compare to your current client base?
- Are there any leads you absolutely don’t want?
- How long does it typically take a new client to onboard? How long is the sales cycle?
Once you have a solid picture of who your ideal audience is you can move into the keyword research phase.
Apply Keyword Research
Now that you know who your audience is, you can begin the discovery phase of figuring out how those people are looking for you online. Are they looking for advisors with a specific focus? Do they want to stay in a certain location? Use those types of cues to start your keyword research.
This does not have to be complicated. For example, if you are a financial advisor in Detroit Lakes, MN, who focuses on retirement planning for clients who have a high net worth, then you have your keywords ready-made. A list of potential keywords and phrases:
- Minnesota Financial Advisor(s)
- Financial Advisors in Minnesota
- High Net Worth Financial Advisors
- Detroit Lakes Financial Advisors
- Financial Advisors for High Net Worth Clients
You can also use keyword research tools to help you generate ideas. You should generate a list of 10-15 keywords you want to focus on and these are the words you will use to optimize your site content.
Create Quality Content
Using your new keyword list, it’s now time to create new content and improve existing content. The first step you should take is to make a list of your existing web pages and copy all of the existing content into an external document so you can review it easily altogether.
Next, edit and revise the current content so that each web page targets 1-2 specific keywords. Focus on adding them in naturally and not forcing them into the content. Even if they are only mentioned a couple of times throughout the page, it’s better to have fewer mentions and good flow than to force them in and make the content confusing or hard to read.
Lastly, if you do not have a blog page or an articles page then now is a good time to start one. This is not to say you should just start writing articles in order to use keywords – all articles or content on your site should provide value to your clients.
This is where a solution such as HALO can provide quality content for lead generation. You can create a web page where you embed HALO and then create quality content around it to provide context for the assessment. This type of high-quality content and interaction can fill your pipeline with qualified leads.
The final step to optimizing your website is to have a clear call-to-action on every page. What is it that you want potential clients to do when they visit your site? What is the optimal outcome? If your goal is to set up an initial meeting, then each part of your site should clearly lead potential clients to a place where they can set up a meeting, even if that’s just a clear message and a phone number.
An effective web page that brings in leads is of no use if you can’t convert those leads by having a clear action step for them to take before they leave your site. Having a solution such as HALO can also help with having a clear call-to-action because by them taking the assessment, their email address, name, and information and automatically emailed to you so you can follow up with qualified leads.
Lead generation is a culmination of many factors, but search engine optimization is a great place to start piecing the puzzle together and is something you can do relatively quickly and for a low cost.