Finance marketing: Start building your reputation June 1, 2020Every good finance marketing campaign starts with trust. When you help someone with their finances, they’re not just trusting you with the numbers. They’re trusting you with their livelihood. It doesn’t matter if you’re running a credit union or offering a new POS solution for small retail stores; you can have a profound impact. You can help them solve problems they’re facing every day to improve efficiencies and improve their bottom line. There are two key aspect of trust that you can develop with digital marketing services. The first is credibility, and the second is transparency. Clients want to get to know you a little bit, so they have an idea what kind of business they’ll be working with. That means communicating to them that you’re qualified to help, and an expert in your field, and that engaging your service will be the start of an open and honest relationship in which you have their best interests at heart. Ready to get started? Let’s dive in. If you’d prefer to skip straight to a conversation, schedule a free consultation. Trust starts with a website It may seem elementary, but the first and most important thing you can do to start building online is to have a good website. This isn’t something you can just set and forget. A good website is something that you’re constantly updating with fresh information, to ensure all the content is up-to-date and that it has a contemporary, professional and engaging look and feel. A website is essentially a digital storefront. Bear with us a moment and picture two offices side by side. One has gleaming windows, fresh paint and clear signage that indicates exactly what products and services are on offer. The other has cracked tiles and cobwebs under the eaves, with a sign that is now missing a few key letters. Which would you trust to help your business? A good website needs a few key elements: A well-organized structure. Keeping things clear and simple means clients, and prospective clients, can quickly find the information they need. This is the first impression you make, so if your website is helpful, they’ll assume you are too and be more likely to proceed. Concise, helpful information. Modern consumers favor straightforward text, broken up into bite-sized chunks that make each page easy to skim-read. That means using keywords, headings, bullet points and other formatting devices to convey information. An engaging “Home” page. Make the right impression with an attention-grabbing homepage that captures your company’s personality and expertise. A polished “About” page. This is where you demonstrate your qualifications, with brief bios of key team members, as well as any professional affiliations. A helpful “Services” page. Clearly set the services you provide, including a brief sentence or two explaining how you can help your clients. An active “Resources” page. Blogging is great way to capture people’s interest. Blogs are laden with keywords that perform well in search, and can be used to educate clients, answers FAQs, and position yourself as a thought leader. A simple “Contact” page. Don’t make clients play hide-and-go-seek to find your phone number. Ensure your contact details are intuitive and easy to find. Strong visuals. Imagery goes a long way toward creating a sense of transparency. Corporate photos are a powerful way to do this; corporate video will take it a step further. This allows people to see and hear you, so they get a sense of what it will be like to engage you. A clear call to action. What’s the next step you want new clients to take? Arrange a phone call? Schedule a free consultation? Sign-up for something? Make it clear on every page. Read more: 5 website trends you need to watch this year Google boosts credibility Secondary to a good website is a Google My Business profile. This is one of the most powerful ways you can use search engine traffic to generate new leads., because it makes you discoverable to anyone who searches terms like “best accountant in ___” or “best credit service in ___”, etc. Most importantly, it improves your SEO in your local area, and keeps clients informed about your details – for example, your opening hours, your phone number, and any updates such as holiday closures, expanded services, and so on. It also boosts consumer confidence because it creates a public forum for reviews (we’ll circle back to this a little later in this post) and you can add photos. Every business automatically has a Google My Business profile. All you have to do to get started is sign into www.google.com/business, fill in the details, and verify that you own it. Read more: 10 tips to improve your website’s ranking on Google Power of online reviews Word of mouth is the original and best form of marketing. Since the first business was invented, people have been talking to their friends, family and co-workers about what they did and how they helped. It’s the simplest and easiest way to generate leads, because if one client tells another person they had a good experience, they are more likely to trust you. Reviews are the digital equivalent. The internet is made up of a community of strangers, so trust is never assumed, but people will be much more likely to trust businesses if others have had good experiences. Google My Business provides an excellent platform to facilitate this. Once you set up your profile, ask your long-term clients if they’d mind leaving a review. Make it a standard business practice to ask clients to leave reviews when you finish up different contracts. Ask colleagues, business partners, and even employees to leave reviews. “That’s great,” we hear you thinking, “but what if I get a negative review?” Negative reviews are a scary prospect, but they don’t actually have to be a bad thing. For example, they can be a great way to identify opportunities to improve your services and business practices, improving customer experience and increasing efficiency and maybe even profitability. They’re also a powerful way to demonstrate the character of your company. You may need to take a deep breath and calm down for a second before you reply, but it’s important that you do respond to every single comment left on your platform. Your replies will also be public, so they allow other people to see that you are efficiently, polite and professional. Addressing grievances through reviews also shows your commitment to customer service. Who knows, if you’re able to solve a problem, you may even be able to turn the negative review into a positive! Read more: 6 must-read tips to rocking your online reviews Testimonials as proof Another really effective way to prove your trustworthiness is to incorporate testimonials on your website. All you really need is a positive comment attributed to a real person. For example, you could use an excerpt from an email one of your clients has sent with positive feedback on a project (with their permission of course). Testimonials can be as long or short as you’d like, as long as you can show prospective clients that they can from a real person at a real company. They are incredibly persuasive – since they’re placed on your website, customers will be perfectly poised to respond to the call to action. It could be the final gentle nudge they need. Have questions about implementing these strategies? Schedule a free consultation.