There's an old African proverb:
"If you think you are too small to make a difference, try sleeping in a closed room with a mosquito."
There's a message here for financial planners who want to get free publicity exposure, and use it as a smart marketing tool to grow their practice. Actually, two messages:
--You don't need to be a big name to get big-time, business-building publicity.
--Publicity is a powerful and well-suited way tool for financial planners to get their story out.
In fact publicity, being essentially free, often packs far more punch dollar for dollar than advertising or direct mail for smaller businesses. It raises visibility, enhances credibility, and provides the best shot, for the buck, at lifting a business to the next level of growth.
In the competitive marketplace, publicity is the great equalizer. You win ? and beat out bigger rivals for free media space ? by being smarter, not by spending more. Smaller companies outscore giants in free media coverage every day -- simply by being more resourceful, effective, and proactive in publicity. With advertising or direct mail, the only way to get more exposure is to spend more.
There's another crucial advantage to publicity. Those advertising dollars ? and it's great if you have them ? buy you visibility. But publicity earns you credibility? ? if professional journalists have selected your story to present to their audience, most people believe, your product or service must be good.
Smart businesspeople use that publicity to gain more recognition, credibility, and market share. It opens doors to new business, new financing, new markets ? to any audience that responds favorably, as most people and institutions do, to favorable media coverage.
How do publicity-successful financial planners do it? They just learn how to give media people what they need to create great stories. In publicity the coin of the realm ? the ticket to success -- is good ideas and creativity, not dollars. Any company, regardless of size, can get significant media attention.
Financial planners are full of information that clients need and pay for: How to negotiate taxes and handle finances. How to protect assets. How to start and run a business. The media never stop running stories on these topics ? and all those articles quote experts like you! Look closely at the pages of the major business and personal finance press: sprinkled heavily in there, along with representatives of the industry giants, are scads of quotes from solo and small firm financial planners. Why not you?
Cumulatively, this publicity is a powerful business-building tool. And it's there for the getting. It just takes a little work in mastering the knack of how to press the right buttons that get the media paying attention. Fortunately, media savvy is like any other resource. It can be bought or rented (by hiring a staffer or retaining an agency); it can be taught, learned, and developed internally. Any of these routes is far cheaper than advertising.
For the financial planner, publicity is a lot like that stone David slapped into his slingshot when he took on Goliath. Affordable. Accessible. And, when aimed properly, way more effective than more expensive tools.
Ned Steele works with people in professional services who want to build their practice and accelerate their growth. The president of Ned Steele's MediaImpact, he is the author of 102 Publicity Tips To Grow a Business or Practice. To learn more visit http://www.MediaImpact.biz or call 212-243-8383.