Few things make people more anxious than anything money-related, especially money management, investments, and loans. On top of that, if they are bombarded with misleading marketing and financial jargon, it can result in an even more stressful experience. This is why effective financial advertising is more important than ever. It can be the difference between a person making a smart money decision and a poor one.
However, financial advertising isn’t exactly a piece of cake since you have to consider regulations and audience responses, especially when marketing to retail investors. Additionally, you need to ensure you present your product and service in a way that’s compliant with a marketing platform’s requirements.
This guide covers different aspects of financial marketing and explains how you can market your financial service skillfully.
Essential Marketing Practices for Financial Advertising
Financial services marketing differs immensely from other product categories. In general, people are much more reluctant to purchase financial services than any other type of product or service. This is likely because financial products and services are often associated with a certain level of risk. For example, when you take out a loan, there’s always the chance that you won’t be able to repay it. This means that you have to exercise caution when marketing financial services.
You need to make sure that your target audience understands what they’re getting into and are comfortable with the risks involved. Here are some essential marketing practices for financial advertising.
Research Financial Advertising Regulation
The finance industry is heavily regulated, and rightfully so. Therefore, before you start creating any marketing materials, you need to be familiar with the relevant regulations. Otherwise, you could break the law and face some pretty severe consequences. The last thing you want is to get fined or even banned from marketing your financial services.
To avoid this, take the time to research financial marketing regulations. Here are some things to consider:
Investor Protection Regulation
Investment advisers and broker-dealers are subject to investor protection regulations. This includes the need to disclose certain information to potential investors, such as the risks involved in investing.
Financial advertisers must also ensure that their ads don’t contain any false or misleading information. For instance, you can’t promise potential investors that they will make a certain amount of money if they invest in your product.
There are also rules about how you can distribute your ads such as not sending unsolicited emails or texts to people who haven’t expressed an interest in your product.
Platform-Specific Advertising Guidelines
All platforms have advertising guidelines that you need to follow. For one, Facebook has a set of advertising policies that you need to adhere to if you want to run ads. The platform clearly indicates that ads promoting income opportunities for the audience must fully describe the business model or associated product. Plus, Facebook does not allow you to promote business models that offer quick get-rich schemes with little investments.
Likewise, Facebook prohibits advertising financial products or services associated with deceptive promotional practices and misleading claims. Therefore, you have to be very careful about the information you put out.
When it comes to financial advertising, you need to make additional disclosures, like sharing the terms and conditions of the product or service you’re promoting. This includes interest rates, fees, and other important information. You also need to clearly state how the product works and the potential risks. You should remind the audience that past results do not guarantee future performance.
For instance, Google requires financial advertisements to fully disclose the business’s physical location and contact information. Plus, you must disclose associated fees. Financial advertisers cannot add disclosures in another tab or link.
The audience should be able to see the fees immediately and clearly in the ad without clicking any link. Likewise, disclosing third-party endorsements and accreditation is also mandatory.
Suppose you want to promote an ad about personal loans. You must disclose the following:
Minimum and maximum repayment periods
Maximum annual percentage rate
Total loan cost, including fees
Be Clear About Your Financial Products to Avoid FINRA Fines
FINRA (Financial Industry Regulatory Authority) is a regulatory body that oversees financial firms and brokers. One of their main focuses is to protect investors from being taken advantage of by these firms.
FINRA has imposed some pretty hefty fines on financial companies for misleadingly advertising their products. In 2021, FINRA fined Robinhood a whopping $70 million for misleading and false information.
Therefore, you must clearly state your financial product and what it does. If you want to promote a credit card, you need to be clear about the terms and conditions, fees, and interest rates.
Moreover, you have to make sure that your ad copy is not misleading. You can’t make false claims or promises to lure the audience into buying your product or service.
Carefully Target Your Investment Products and Financial Services Advertisements
One of the best ways to avoid fines and maximize your return on investment is to target your ads carefully. First, you need to make sure that you target the right audience with your ad campaign. For instance, if you’re selling a financial product only available to accredited investors, you can’t target your ads to people who don’t fall into that category.
You also have to ensure that your ad copy and call to action align with the target audience. Otherwise, you might waste a lot of money on your ad campaign.
Research the Average Investor’s Financial Decisions
First and foremost, you have to understand the average investor’s mindset. What are they looking for in an investment? What kind of risk are they willing to take?
You can use this information to create ad copy that resonates with your target audience. If you know their pain points, you can address them directly in your ads. If you’re targeting risk-averse investors, you might want to focus on the safety and security of your investment product.
On the other hand, if you’re targeting investors looking for high returns, you might want to focus on the potential profits they could make by investing with you. Once you know what your target audience is looking for, you can craft your ad campaign around that.
Let’s say you’re advertising for insurance products. Your target audience will make decisions based on the following factors:
Coverage options: What does the policy cover?
Cost: How much does the policy cost?
Deductibles: How much will they have to pay out of pocket if they need to use the insurance?
These are just a few things that your target audience will be thinking about when they make a decision. Let’s suppose you want to target the segment that mainly focuses on coverage options. You can write ad copy that focuses on the different coverage options available and how your product can meet their needs. Moreover, you can offer them coverage plans that include different options, such as health care and auto insurance, in a single plan.
On the other hand, if you want to target the segment mainly focused on cost, create marketing material that shows how your product is more affordable than other options on the market. But, again, the key is to market to align with your audience’s mindset and decision-making approach.
Craft Marketing Material to Appeal to Retail Investors
Your marketing material forms the backbone of your ad campaign. Your target audience will see this, so it’s essential to make sure that it’s well crafted and compelling.
One of the biggest mistakes you can make is to focus on your product features instead of the benefits. Your target audience doesn’t care about the features of your product, they only care about how those features will benefit them.
If you’re selling credit cards, don’t focus on the credit card’s features. Instead, focus on how those features will benefit the customer. Suppose you want to highlight that your credit card has no foreign transaction fees. Then, market it to frequent travelers or students on study abroad programs to show how they can save money by using your card.
Since retail investors are nonprofessionals, you need to ensure that your marketing material is easy to understand. Use layman’s terms and avoid using jargon. The last thing you want is for your target audience to feel like they’re being talked down to or that they can’t understand what you’re trying to say.
Also, make sure your call to action is clear and concise. Tell your target audience exactly what you want them to do, whether to call a certain number, visit your website, or come into your physical location.
More importantly, you can’t just rely on one type of content. You need to mix things up and use various content types to reach your target audience. Some types of content you can use include:
Each type of content has its advantages. Blog posts are great for search engine optimization purposes, but they might not be as engaging as videos. Meanwhile, webinars are great for providing in-depth information, but they require more effort to create.
It’s important to experiment with different types of content and see what works best for your target audience. You must find a balance between what you’re able to produce and what gets the most engagement from your target audience.
Go Where Your Ideal Investors Already Are
The location of your ideal investors will depend on the kind of financial service you’re selling. Suppose you’re creating a financial service marketing strategy for funds and investments. You’ll find that many of your ideal investors are already on investment-related websites, such as The Motley Fool or Morningstar. You can reach them by placing ads on these websites or creating sponsored content relevant to your target audience.
Maybe you want to market a new retirement plan to small business owners. In this case, you’ll find your target audience on business-related websites, such as Inc. or Forbes. You can also reach them through business-related social media channels, such as LinkedIn.
Meanwhile, if you’re advertising a debit card or selling payday loans, you can find your target audience on personal finance websites or social media channels, such as Facebook and Twitter.
The key in finance marketing is to go where your target audience is and meet them where they’re at. In this way, you can get their attention easily. Regardless of the platform, make sure you follow the advertising rules to the T. If you don’t fulfill the advertising requirements, you may be banned from the platform, which will limit your ability to reach your target audience.
Build a Financial Marketing Strategy That Enables Informed Decisions
When you’re creating a marketing strategy to advertise and market financial products, your primary focus should be to create marketing material and present it in such a way that allows your audience to make informed decisions. It’s important to remember that people are inundated with marketing messages daily, so it’s critical that your strategy cuts through the clutter and delivers your message clearly and concisely.
When selling credit cards, tell the audience about the annual percentage rate, time period for repayment, and additional fees. Likewise, investment advisers should provide their potential clients with enough information to make an informed decision about whether or not to invest.
Today’s customers do not get their information from a single channel. Instead, their journey is a winding one that might include online research, conversations with friends, and visits to physical locations. Thus, your marketing strategy must be comprehensive and provide touchpoints at every stage of the customer journey.
Marketers must recognize the scope of omnichannel marketing for financial services and products. At AUDIENCEX, we provide seamless omnichannel access via our unified, holistic omnichannel marketing platform.We provide integrated access to programmatic, social and search platforms, alongside an array of futureproof targeting, identity, and attribution solutions, enabling you to reach your customers across devices, channels, and formats to engage them where they are. By creating a financial marketing strategy that enables informed decisions and leveraging it across the full digital landscape, you’re not only helping your customers find the information they need, but you’re also setting yourself up for long-term success. Get in touch today to learn how AUDIENCEX can help your business in financial services marketing.