[vc_row el_class="post-content"][vc_column][outlined-text outlined_text="It’s Time" outlined_text_color="white" outline_color="black" normal_text="to Get Ready" normal_text_color="black" heading_tag="h1" extra_class="post-heading"][vc_column_text el_class="post-subheading"]
For Your Annual Marketing Planning. First, Break Everything.[/vc_column_text][vc_column_text][get-user-data][/vc_column_text][vc_column_text el_class="post-body"]The year is almost over. That means it’s time to write your annual marketing plan. (You do have a plan, right? I hope you aren’t spending money without one!) The next few posts are going to show you how to create a plan that gets results—and have fun doing it. Let’s face it. Most of the time, an annual planning meeting is kind of a downer. It starts by looking backward. What did we achieve against our business plan? Where did we fail? What worked, what didn’t? Obviously, no firm reaches 100% of its goals, so there are bound to be some disappointments. That’s why this part of the process usually feels about as much fun as weighing yourself.
(Note: In this post, I’m speaking directly to all the marketing coordinators, marketing directors and marketing managers ensconced at their lonely posts inside advisor firms. This one’s for you—but it might do some good if your boss reads it, too.) "What have you done for me lately?" If you haven’t heard your boss say that yet, you probably will—and sooner than you think. You were hired with high expectations. You see, your boss thinks that, as soon as you arrived, all of your firm’s marketing challenges would be instantly solved. You’re supposed to be a one-person band, able to edit a podcast with Audacity while writing a prospecting letter with your other hand and laying out a brochure with InDesign while coding a website with your toes. This is how you’ll be able to triple revenue in six months, right? Right? Time for a reality check. Look, I love and respect financial advisors. I spent the first decade of my career on the inside working directly with advisory firm owners, and co-founded this company because of my genuine passion for the profession and the industry. But I have to be honest about my experience and what I've learned over the years. Most advisor's expectations of what a single marketing person can do are just not realistic. And there’s only one solution.
This is the second half of a two-part post. In the first, I gave you homework—a few questions to identify what you really need before you hire marketing staff. Now, I’m going to offer a few specific staffing suggestions.
That is the question. You may not need a marketing department at all if your business is cruising along at a good pace and you’re happy with your success. Even if you are trying to grow, you can still choose to outsource rather than hire. The question is, which direction is right for you?
I take a strong personal interest in the role of interns. That’s because my first job in business was a paid internship at a John Hancock Financial Network career agency. I’ve been a huge advocate ever since. That’s why it frustrates me when firms don’t always know how to use interns properly.