Investment PR and Content Marketing 101
Breaking down the process, placements and value
Public relations is a lot more than just sending out a press release and hoping clients flock to your doorstep. It’s about managing your reputation, ensuring brand quality, maintaining media relationships, and putting in the research to execute an efficient and highly-targeted outreach plan, all in the hopes of generating successful leads while supporting your marketing and branding initiatives.
THE Financial PR PROCESS
Times have changed, and the value of drafting a newsworthy press release and scheduling an automated, targeted send out to the wires has changed as well. It’s critical to take a proactive stance to grabbing media attention through email, social media and the personal touch of a follow up call. This rigorous approach to PR, especially necessary in the financial and investment industries, should be combined with thorough research to increase the probability of snagging small to large-scale opportunities, from straight-forward Q&A write-ups to podcast interviews and full-page features.
How the investment industry social media game works
Social media accounts such as LinkedIn, Twitter and Harvest are not only crucial in developing your public image, but also great resources to scope out journalists, engage with clients and monitor competitors’ activity. Firms need to be consistent with posting and brand tone when engaging with their audience on social channels.
Investment firms and asset managers can do this by using relevant hashtags, links and images, and tagging journalists they want to re-post topical news. By engaging on social as opposed to a wire platform, you’re offering your messages directly to end users. It’s a much quicker, more direct form of communication to a very targeted audience who have chosen to engage with your brand on social media in the first place.
You can actually become the direct source of news about your company or brand by writing a blog and posting articles or media releases on your website. This can help raise you and your firm’s profile and improve your credibility as an expert in your field. It can also boost your SEO efforts—even in the highly-regulated financial services industry.
WHERE TO GET PLACEMENTS
At the beginning of every PR campaign, you have to determine the most appropriate channels and publications to reach your target audience. Some are more influential than others, but you may choose a particular media outlet with the goal of improving SEO. According to a recent JOTW Communications Survey, measuring current trends among PR, public affairs, and communications professionals; storytelling, content marketing, and thought leadership topped the list in terms of importance for effective PR strategy.
Looking deeper into the results, the percentage of communications professionals that believe the trends or tactics will be either “more important” or “much more important” are:
- 79% of respondents said storytelling
- 71% said content marketing
- 67% said thought leadership
Matt Brunini, President and Founder MBC Strategic adds, “Thought leadership campaigns should be centered around your products, unique story and expertise. They should be built to support a strategic marketing and branding campaign leveraging that unique story. And, that message should be regularly published on multiple channels and platforms—especially in the crowded asset management and investment services marketing space as you really need to reach your market wherever they consume content.”
Here are a few best practices:
- Length of Articles –1,000 words is a good target. This word count will allow you more opportunity for SEO keywords, along with increasing “average time spent on site” which search engines will use to further boost your rankings. It will also set you apart from the majority of blogs, which are topical at best.
- Quality over Quantity – If someone goes to your website from a Google search and finds a useless article, you’ve just created a bad first impression. However, if their search brings them directly to an article you’ve published that answers their questions, then you’re off to a strong start, with your audience more likely to continue navigating through your content and website.
Whether you’re pitching print or digital platforms, or simply using your personal social media accounts to enhance your professional credibility, no link is too small and detracts from the value of your brand. It’s all about creating a consistent online presence and quality, with engaging-expert content.
IS IT WORTH IT?
Worthwhile marketing and PR metrics include website referrals, media mentions, influential content, and word of mouth. When executed properly, it is possible to measure the effects of public relations—even in the investment industry. With all the digital tools now available, you can get valuable insight into which strategies have the greatest impact for your firm. This can be measured by particular website and newsletter visits and clicks and any follow-up inquiries through any recent content published and is all attributed to the base of your benchmarking encompassing not only a proper PR campaign but a 360 approach for a fresh marketing strategy.
The goal of a public relations campaign is to steer brand influence of a brand by using key offerings, personality and thought leadership to elevate the brand into an influential and sought-after business. The entire public relations game should be reliant on the lasting relationships built between firms, PR agencies and the reporters deeply interested in the subject matter that they’re writing about and the most relevant readers in order to maintain and sustain respectful relationships within the industry and provide educational content to the masses while providing exposure to a firm’s services.
WHERE MBC STRATEGIC CAN HELP
Navigating the niche world of financial and investment PR and marketing, we seek ways for investment companies and investment managers to flesh out their stories and offerings in order to differentiate themselves from the sea of asset managers, private equity firms, alternative investment firms, service providers, financial advisors and everything in between. Investors—whether retail or institutional—deserve and need to be educated on the nuances of your investment strategy, as well as the plethora of educative financial topics. The firms that stand out are those that have a precise investment-related public relations plan in place.
To learn more about how MBC Strategic can improve your financial and investment marketing and branding solutions, please, give us a call and contact us today.
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