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Turn up the Heat on Your Content

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Today is January 25th and this week has been uncharacteristically cold all over the nation. Unfortunately, I can’t do much to help you with your climate situation (unless you’d like to come visit me in South Florida), but I can help you turn the heat up on your content.

So if you feel like the only thing your content marketing efforts are getting you is the cold shoulder, consider implementing the following principles to elicit a warmer response from your audience.

STOP Comparing Yourself to Other Advisors

Stop comparing yourself to what other advisors are saying and focus on what you have to say. Your firm is unique, and highlighting your individuality is what will make you memorable. Without your story, you’re just another advisor.

You’ve got to embrace what makes your firm distinct and share it with the world. No, not just your prospects or the people on your email lists—the world! Whatever it is that makes your firm unique, you should feel so good about it, so passionate about it, that you want to shout it from the rooftops for all the land to hear!

But, make sure that the story you’re telling is your own. Don’t try to tell the other guy’s story. Because guess what? You won’t be as good at it. Why? Because people sense insincerity a million miles away. You know what I’m talking about. Used car salesman and personal injury attorneys are infamous for it. We detest their commercials because they reek of artificiality.

In her book, The Art of Memoir, Mary Karr warns aspiring memoirists of the danger in publishing disingenuous writing:

“If the reader intuits some deception or kink in the writer’s psyche that he can’t admit to, it erodes the scribbler’s authority. This drives the reader from the page, putting the writer in competition with Chubby Hubby ice cream and the TV remote—tough contests to win.”

If you aren’t sincere, you run the risk of being another advertising nuisance clogging up the inbox. You run the risk of being flat out ignored.

Now, of course you aren’t going to land the big fish with every piece you publish, but your probability increases when what your saying is your truth.

Honesty, sincerity, truth—these qualities make us real. They make us human. To someone we’ve never met, these things make us trustworthy. And if you’re a prospect thinking about placing the well being of your entire net worth in someone else’s hands, don’t you want those to be in the hands of someone you trust?

Here’s the real kicker. 

If you tell your own story and tell it with integrity, you’ll never have to compete with anyone because you’ll have moved into a league of your own. Ironic isn’t it? When you stop comparing yourself to your competition, you eliminate it altogether. How incredibly liberating!

START Comparing Yourself to Other Advisors

What?!? Hold the phone, Olivia. You just spent 400+ words explaining why NOT to compare myself to other advisors.

Yes, that is correct. And I meant that. But this is also correct. And I mean this, too: you don’t have to reinvent the wheel.

If we all lived in individual bubbles and weren’t ever exposed to our competitors, one of two things would happen: (a) we would never improve or (b) our rate of improvement would significantly decelerate.

But we don’t live in bubbles. Thanks to social media we are exposed to our competition everyday. And that’s great! Because we, as humans, are pretty incredible and capable of awesome, creative things. It’s ok to be inspired by what other people are doing well and to mimic those strategies to enhance our own content marketing approach.

I’ll be the first one to say that I am inspired on a daily basis by other marketers, writers, and even financial advisors who are doing exciting things. Reading another writer’s rockstar article motivates me to knock my next one out of the park. If I see that inserting a personal anecdote really took an article to another level, I’ll make a mental note to see if my work could benefit from the same. Encountering savvy media created by another advisor stirs me to create fresh media for my own advisor clients. We can enrich our own approach by learning from our peers.

Warning: Someone else’s approach might not always work for you, so don’t force it. If it doesn’t feel natural, your reader will sense it, as I mentioned above. For example, if it doesn’t make sense to include a list in your article, don’t try and include one just because you heard it was an effective blogging strategy. Or if your article sounds too cheesy with a personal anecdote in it, take it out. What works for someone else might not necessarily work for you. And that’s great news. At the very least, it keeps things interesting.

At the end of the day, there is absolutely nothing wrong with mimicking strategies that you find appealing as long as the story you are telling is uniquely yours. 

Full disclaimer: I am certainly not suggesting you start blogging about your personal life or writing excessively about yourself. “Telling your story” means letting your firm’s personality and values shine through your information, whether that be on your website, in your blog posts, in your newsletters, or throughout your email campaigns. Nobody likes a braggart.

Your story should be purposely and seamlessly woven between the lines to such an extent that the reader is unaware they are even reading it.

My name is Olivia Luper and I am the founder of Lexicon Content Development. I understand just how important it is to tell your firm’s unique story with the content you publish. It is for this reason that all of our content creations are completely original and written with your firm’s goals in mind.

If you’d like to learn more about our content writing or content marketing services, please feel free to get in touch. I’d love discuss how I can help you leverage content to reach your business goals.

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