At this time of the year, business owners are naturally reflecting on the successes, failures and lessons of 2016 and setting their strategy and goals for 2017.
An important lesson we learned in 2016 is that, invariably, the top volume-writing brokers in Australia attribute much of their success to strong relationships with referral partners. That is traditional lead generation through business development. It’s the tried, tested and proven method for bringing business in the door.
However brokers have a tendency to chase the elusive silver bullet – aided by industry buzz – placing a disproportionate amount of effort on the “sexy stuff”, like digital marketing, but neglecting the basics.
Now don’t get me wrong, I believe that digital marketing can pay huge dividends. One need only look at the gold standard – the Home Loan Experts – for proof of that concept.
In fact, last year Finance Ferret changed our entire approach to marketing, wholeheartedly adopting the Inbound Methodology. For those not familiar with the concept of inbound marketing, it is about attracting potential customers to your business, rather than fighting for their attention. Everything centres on creating and sharing quality content specifically designed to appeal to your business’ dream customers, and in doing so, attracting (and hopefully converting) qualified leads.
Done well, digital marketing can be the backbone of a lead generation machine which will continue to produce leads day-in and day-out for your business for many years to come. And should you ever wish to sell your business, a well-oiled digital marketing machine will certainly boost the multiple you can achieve. However building and refining that sort of content library, as well as earning a high domain and page authority, takes a lot of time and investment of capital.
And that’s where the issue lies. If you don’t keep everything in balance, you run the risk of not having sufficient resources to support your long-term content generation strategy, leaving you with a half-baked lead platform and neglected referrers who will look elsewhere.
This year, we’ve committed to viewing digital marketing and other such initiatives as what they are – exciting long-term ventures. But we will be keeping our eye on the ball, with a renewed focus on the basics – that is fostering relationships with existing referrers, as well as developing new ones.
And with the additional revenue we generate, we can build out quality content offers to ramp up our digital marketing campaigns.