Event marketing is an essential piece of any financial advisor’s overall marketing strategy. Events help keep existing clients engaged, and it’s an effective method for advisors to grow their business, deepen their client relationships, and further cement their credibility in a competitive industry.
Best event formats for financial advisors
Whether your goal is to strengthen relationships with existing clients or get new prospects into the funnel, the most important hurdle is deciding what type of event to hold. What will the format and structure be? Will it be virtual or in-person? Who is the target audience? These are all important questions to ask as you begin planning an event.
Here are some event formats that financial advisors might consider:
- In-person seminars: Great for showcasing new products, services, or diving into a relevant topic area in which you hold expertise.
- Webinars/virtual events: Live-streamed presentations, hosted on a platform such as Zoom, mean far less overhead cost than an in-person event. The video can also be recorded and utilized for content on other digital platforms. For example, Altruists saves all previous webinars on its website.
- Networking events: Financial advisor networking events are ideal if you’re looking to establish a low-pressure environment that focuses on casual relationship building (as opposed to a hard sell).
- Educational workshops: A workshop format can create an interactive experience for your audience, addressing their pain points while showcasing the value you bring to the table.
- Client appreciation events: Want to show your clients some love? Host an event and invite them to come chat and catch up with you. You can even give them a nudge to bring a friend along, but the focus should be on maintaining your existing relationships.
If you’d like to learn more about planning and hosting a successful event, check out our Event Marketing Playbook: an 8-week roadmap that will walk you through every aspect of creating a killer event – and refining your strategy to convert new clients.
Five marketing event ideas for financial advisors
- The State of the Market
Host a lecture about the state of Wall Street, Washington, and anywhere in between. Share your insights and answer attendee questions.
- Retirement planning essentials
Offer a workshop on retirement planning topics like Social Security and tax-efficient withdrawal strategies.
- Financial literacy sessions
Conduct financial literacy workshops for your clients on topics like budgeting, debt management, or investment 101. Use this as an opportunity to think about your audience’s niche values and what topics they might want to know more about.
- Final days webinar
Bring in estate attorneys, long-term care specialists, and a mortuary spokesperson to discuss holistic end-of-life planning. After hearing from the specialists, use your expertise to discuss financial planning and preparing for the future.
- Bring in a guest speaker
Inviting guest speakers who have expertise on a particular subject important to your clients is another way to add value to an event. Plus, webinar technology means that guests don’t necessarily have to be local.
How event marketing led to AUM growth
Planning and executing an event requires investing a lot of upfront time and energy. The goal is to see a return on that investment. But how does that take shape? Let’s look at an example of successful event marketing in action.
On an episode of The Advisor Journey, Altruist CEO Jason Wenk and Head of Community Dasarte Yarnway spoke with Grape Wealth Management founder Alex Newman about his commitment to building a local community through events and event marketing.
While meeting with new clients in his hometown of Temecula, California, Newman noticed that every person mentioned the same pain points: they’d moved to this beautiful place, but they were having a hard time making friends and finding community.
Newman listened and took action by starting a group called Retire Temecula, which hosts events, mixers, and more for retirees. Far from sales-forward, Retire Temecula events are intended to be social, fun, and engaging. Best of all, they bring people together, and Newman is there to meet every single one.
In just 5 months, Newman grew his business to $17 million in AUM – and he credits his event marketing savvy as the reason for that impressive growth.
“It's just such a great time and it's so natural,” Newman explains.
“They’re calling me saying, ‘Hey Alex, oh my gosh, thank you so much, that was such a great time, I love that band that was playing, those tacos were amazing, oh, what was the name of that wine that you got me?’ And, ‘Oh, by the way, I need for you to look at my portfolio, I've been meaning to consolidate it since I moved here a year ago from San Diego.’”
The formula here is clear: Successful events lead to successful relationships, and successful relationships lead to a successful business.
“90% of this stuff is relationship management, and 10% is the work that you do, the financial planning, the technical stuff,” emphasizes Yarnway. “If advisors master relationship building, they can grow their business.”
Why audience is key to advisor event planning
To plan successful events as a financial advisor, it’s essential to identify your target audience. By identifying new-to-Temecula retirees as his core audience, Alex Newman was able to plan impactful events that led to serious business growth with his target demographic.
Before you start planning an event, think about your ideal client and write a client persona, says Yohance Harrison, CEO of Money Script Wealth Management.
Harrison will often write a full page describing this ideal client persona.
“Every year, I sit down and I rewrite this avatar of who my ideal client is. I write out who this person is, what type of work they do, what are their activities, everything, even down to how much money they have, how much they save, the type of accounts they want to open with me, etcetera,” he explained in a recent episode of The Advisor Journey.
From there, you can check your current client roster, identify who fits the persona best, and tailor your upcoming events to what you think would be valuable or engaging to that client.
By aligning your event with the values and interests of your target audience, you can demonstrate your expertise, showcase your services – and hopefully grow exactly the ideal client base you’re after.
Learn more about additional offline marketing channels to incorporate into your overall strategy.