MEASURING MARKETING AUTOMATION ROI FOR FINANCIAL ADVISORS

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1 MEASURING MARKETING AUTOMATION ROI FOR FINANCIAL ADVISORS By D. Bruce Johnston, President and COO CaptureTrackConvert Marketing Automation Software Copyright CaptureTrackConvert, LLC. All Rights Reserved

2 Changing Marketplace Prospects & Clients are on the Internet Just as today s clients have become more demanding in their expectations of their financial advisors, advisors have begun to demand proof of the effectiveness of their marketing effort s effectiveness. At CaptureTrackConvert, we share that view with advisors, and have shown numerous advisors how our automated client qualifying process, CaptureTrackConvert, can: Changing customer buying behaviors require advisors to automate their client qualifying, acquisition and retention process. Provide accountability measurement in the form of Return on Investment (ROI) for a marketing program Move their marketing efforts from a cost center to a revenue generator Make those revenue advances more predictable and reliable by improving interactions with prospects from initial touch point to on-boarding as a client Quantify the overall improvement of a marketing program in terms of effectiveness and efficiency from campaign to campaign As highlighted in a recent United Capital whitepaper, and echoed in numerous other sources: The Consumer Revolution: Surviving and Thriving in a Time of Tectonic Shifts the new consumer shares some common expectations with their advisors. These new clients are making increasing demands on their advisors for: A unique, self designed experience. They are far more guarded and much more activist in their approach and expectations. They expect to take an active part in designing their financial lives. Value for every dollar they spend. Transparency is the new world order. Today the consumer knows more, expects more and plans to pay less. Judgment, simplicity and objectivity from their advisors. They want their financial advisor to guide and advise objectively and to be responsible for their recommendations. 1

3 A customized, original, scalable and networked client experience. Clients will look for firms that create a strong client community linked together by utilizing technology and customized client events. For advisors this means your prospects and clients are online, increasing the time they spend in researching your proposals. The Internet has become the go-to channel for prospects and clients to research and buy products and services. Dawn of social networking This past year has seen a rise in U.S. companies using social networks to win new business. According to a recent Regus survey, 43 percent of firms are successfully using social networking to win new customers, up 8 percentage points from last year s survey. The research also reveals more firms are using social media to engage with existing customers than a year ago, with the following highlights: 50 percent of businesses in the U.S. use Web sites like Twitter to engage, connect with, and inform existing customers. In the U.S., 55 percent of firms encourage their employees to join social networks like LinkedIn and Xing. 38 percent of U.S. companies dedicate up to 20 percent of their marketing budgets to business social networking activities. Globally, the survey reported a 7 percent increase in the proportion of businesses successfully recruiting new customers through social networks like Facebook. Social networking has fully evolved from a nice-to-have to a necessity as the majority of businesses in the U.S. (69 percent) agree that social media activity is playing a bigger role in their marketing strategy. In the U.S., 64% are also emphasizing the need for a balance of marketing media, confirming their belief that without a combination of traditional and digital techniques, marketing campaigns will not work. Even more specific to advisors, a MerchantCircle report states that more than 70 percent of small businesses in the US are promoting their business on Facebook. These changing prospect and client behaviors are forcing advisors to communicate with them in new ways. Prospects and customers are demanding content that is personalized to their needs and delivered to them the way in which they would like to receive that information versus the way their advisor would like to deliver it. Through client acquisition technology, savvy advisors are communicating with prospects and clients alike at every stage of their problem solving cycle, providing them information that is targeted to their needs, role, intent and interest level. Furthermore they are delineating where their prospects stand in the sales process, while are engaging them with thought leadership and relevant automated nurturing content designed to build trust and gain mind-share CaptureTrackConvert, LLC. All Rights Reserved

4 Does Marketing Automation Really Work? A recent report by Aberdeen Group, Marketing Automation: A Strategic Guide for Optimizing End-to-End Marketing Activities found that 67% of best in class companies report increases to annual revenues and 65% claim year-over-year increases to return on marketing investment. CSOInsights 2010 Lead Generation Optimization study found that only 37% of marketers using a client acquisition technology say their efforts need improvement. This is a marked difference when compared with 65% of marketers not using automation systems who said they needed improvement in this area. In a world driven by performance and performance measurement is it any wonder that advisors are adopting marketing automation? How long did it take from the time you purchased the system to realize a return on investment? 12% 32% 32% 24% 1 month 2-6 months 7-12 months 1+ Years Source: Focus Research Study: Marketing Automation A Survey of Marketing Automation Users - March 2011 Advisors that have adopted marketing automation have discovered the difference of using data to drive decisions that help them to realize higher returns on marketing investment as well as customer acquisition. While ROI measures will vary depending on the business goals and needs of your practice, according to industry research the most common benefits to client acquisition technology include: Improved sales opportunities. A DemandGen Report identified a 20% increase in sales opportunities generated from leads that were nurtured in comparison to leads that were not. Improved revenues and customer acquisition results. Aberdeen Group found that best in class companies saw double their bid-to-win ratios on nurtured leads, plus a 47% higher average order value. A more engaged sales force. A Forrester Research report found that salespeople follow up on more than 75% of the leads in 46% of firms where marketing has developed formal lead management processes. Additional paybacks from implementing a marketing automation strategy are: 2011 CaptureTrackConvert, LLC. All Rights Reserved 3

5 Possibility of a reduction in the resources required to create and facilitate marketing campaigns. Growth of the firm s marketing database in terms of contacts and leads Shorter sales cycles through nurturing programs Increased ability to react to industry opportunities and market demand shifts More efficient marketing spend based on improved campaign measurement Increased conversion of raw inquiries to qualified sales opportunities Lead management and marketing automation technologies enable advisors to integrate key prospect and customer information with marketing campaigns to create and prioritize the most qualified opportunities. In fact, CSOInsights study pointed out that top-performing organizations are three times more likely to leverage a lead management solution with automated lead scoring capabilities to prioritize sales-ready opportunities. In June and August of 2010, Aberdeen surveyed more than 453 executives regarding their 2011 Marketing Executive s Agenda. The results regarding their most significant challenges were compelling: 61 percent of all companies stated that the difficult economic environment was the top pressure facing their marketing programs. As a result, nearly half of the Best-in-Class companies have used technology to automate their campaigns and measure their results, while nearly 40 percent of all other Best-in-Class respondents are planning to deploy solutions within the next 12 months as a central, core component of a multi-channel, multi-touch marketing lead management strategy to directly impact financial results. Given the turbulent changes to the global economy over the past 36 months, companies are intensely focused on marketing programs and channels that effectively reach customers to speed the marketing to sales lead lifecycle and positively impact top-line revenue. Simultaneously, companies are tightly managing marketing costs that were previously viewed as discretionary spending while requiring marketing organizations to deliver greater tangible returns to the business. Aberdeen s July 2010 research, Accessing and Understanding Customer Experience Data Means Life or Death, showed that automating marketing programs and measuring their results, in combination with other strategic capabilities, is being used by 47 percent of Best-in-Class marketing organizations to deliver quantifiable results on key performance metrics (KPIs) such as annual company revenue, greater contribution to the sales team s forecasted pipeline, and improved lead conversion rates. This metric -- growth in company revenue -- gains further importance considering that 59 percent of Best-in-Class indicate that they are under pressure to operate with fewer dollars and headcount. The performance improvements achieved by Best-in-Class companies demonstrates, without exception, why Best-in-Class companies have automated marketing programs and the management of leads at a significantly greater rate and project substantive increases in their spending on these technologies in coming months CaptureTrackConvert, LLC. All Rights Reserved

6 Is there a formula for measuring marketing automation ROI for Financial Advisors? Much has been discussed recently on marketers ability or, more to the point, inability to extract ROI from their marketing automation solutions. In a 2011 Focus Research Study: Marketing Automation, Focus found that among those who had both purchased and implemented a marketing automation solution, the majority said that their solution had at least met ROI expectations: How long did it take from the time you purchased the system to realize a return on investment? 54 percent: ROI met expectations 15 percent: ROI exceeded expectations 6 percent: ROI failed to meet expectations 25 percent: Unsure How Businesses Are Using Marketing Automation Marketing automation is a powerful technology, providing unprecedented customer insight and facilitating diverse sales and marketing strategies. Historically, the marketing automation space has been associated with larger businesses; this survey supports marketing automation as a viable option for smaller businesses as well. When fully utilized, data suggests, businesses of all sizes are enjoying the broad functional applications of marketing automation. Which of the following functions or applications are you using your marketing automation system for today? Lead activity tracking Marketing campaign management Lead scoring and qualification Online Lead-gen ( ,website,social media) Website visitor tracking Drip marketing Automated lead nurturing (complex, behavior-based workflows) Life stage marketing Offline lead generation (trade shows, mail) Multi-channel tracking Never Sometimes Frequently N/A Source: Focus Research Study: Marketing Automation A Survey of Marketing Automation Users - March CaptureTrackConvert, LLC. All Rights Reserved 5

7 This survey supports the idea that ROI is attainable within a year for most businesses. Of those claiming a return, 80 percent reported ROI in less than one year, and 44 percent reported ROI in less than six months. Furthermore, data suggests smaller businesses may be quicker to achieve ROI than larger ones; 53 percent of small businesses report ROI within six months, compared with only 38 percent of large businesses. This disparity is likely due to the nature of smaller, more targeted implementations associated with smaller companies. For advisors to determine the true ROI automated client acquisition technology may have on their practices, we suggest that advisors should first analyze the total cost involved in installing and implementing a system. Additionally, advisors would be well served to analyze the business impact an marketing automation system may have of their business. The classic definition of Return on Investment (ROI) translates into the extra profits you make divided by your investment. So, if you spend $40,000 on an initiative, and the initiative generates $120,000 in additional revenue, the following formula gives the ROI: ($120k $40k) / $40k x 100% = 200%) Conclusion The features and benefits of an marketing automation technology sound fantastic but you re likely thinking only the big guys can afford such tools. After all, many marketing automation companies charge expensive set-up fees in addition to very steep monthly premiums. CTC believes companies of all sizes can truly benefit from an marketing automation technology tool and has developed a platform that is... Straightforward In order for a tool to work, it must be easy to you to use on a daily basis. Account set-up is quick (think hours) and the introduction demo is equally streamlined. Once you begin using the platform, you ll find that the tabs are clearly marked and the functionality makes sense. CTC still believes in good old-fashioned customer service and the account managers really understand your account. Full-Featured You may be thinking that a client acquisition platform that is so easy to use might be a stripped- down tool or nothing more than a glorified ESP. Not so with CTC. From lead scoring and visitor alerts to conditional statements and multi-level nurturing campaigns, CTC strives to provide all of the features and functionality you need in an automated client acquisition tool CaptureTrackConvert, LLC. All Rights Reserved

8 About The Author D. Bruce Johnston was named Fund Marketer of the Year by Institutional Investor for his outstanding work in building value-added programs for advisors. Now this visionary, high-energy and results-driven senior sales executive has turned his attention to the free bandwidth advisors have at their disposal through digital, automated marketing programs. Attuned to both short- and long-term opportunities in wealth management, Bruce is expert at recognizing, analyzing and applying current trends to successful Internet-driven distribution strategies. Engaging By using CTC, you can shift your paradigm from a batch-nblast communications model to one that considers each of your prospects at an individual level, rather than a nameless, faceless group. The more you customize and personalize communication, the better the prospect s engagement and the results. Affordable As an emerging technology, marketing automation tools have been priced at a premium and reserved for those with money in the budget. CTC is determined to bring the benefits of an marketing automation platform to companies of all sizes and budgets with a pricing model based on platform usage and site traffic. CTC does not believe that one-size-fits-all, and therefore does not price according to that notion. Moreover, CTC does not hold clients to long-term contracts or charge exorbitant set-up fees. When your current marketing efforts are not enough, add CTC. With CTC, your website immediately begins to capture the visitors who are coming to your site. Whether you know their identities or not, you start to know their interests. Each of your web pages becomes a client qualifying device, continuously providing you with details about a visitor s preferences. As you capture their interests, you continuously encourage them to provide you with their identities by offering them a closer look at your subject matter expertise. By offering them a free white paper, for example, many interested visitors will fill out a CTC built form to gain greater access to your thinking. More Information? Please contact us at or us at Once they download your white paper, you have captured their identity. With CTC s lead scoring capability you can qualify your prospects by level of interest to generate a clear prospect profile, so you can focus your attention on best prospects. Instant alerts are sent to you as prospect open and read your s. Additionally, embedded links continue to drive them to your web site for additional content and touches. What Are You Doing To Build Your Client Base Now?

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