Recently, in a discussion with a financial consulting firm, the issue of using digital marketing came up. It particularly concerned the improvement of the sales strategy of the different services.
Indeed, the observation is simple. When we came out of the confinement, the digital presence in our lives has grown considerably. It has even allowed the survival of a whole part of the world economy. Thus to do without the various digital tools for a consulting firm would be a brake.
However, it is necessary to know what we are going to talk about here when conducting our reflection. Having a clear vision of communication and digital marketing is essential. Indeed, these two approaches are different, although they can be similar on the different processes, each one has a substantive marrow allowing to differentiate them. Given that the processes can be similar, it is necessary to go into a causal approach to differentiate their original substrate. The first of these approaches is thus underpinned by the fact of carrying, transmitting information, whereas the essence of the second is a transformation of the target into a client.
The goals for each of these two approaches are now clear. It is possible to carry out different actions depending on the different targets identified (using tools such as personas). The goal will be informative but also and above all with the aim of transforming prospects into customers. This is the architecture we will apply here, with the implementation of digital communication for a financial consulting firm and digital marketing for SMEs and mid-cap companies.
Digital communication for a financial consulting firm
Opposed frontally, physical communication and digital communication are gradually losing their meaning. Indeed, communication must be not only harmonious but also harmonized. Moreover, the boundaries between the two are becoming increasingly blurred. For example, it is possible to make flyers using augmented reality.
Thus, digital communication must engage a real strategic approach encompassing all forms of communication of the firm. Indeed, the construction of a strong image allows to underpin and homogenize its expression. This homogenization is obviously essential in order to gain the trust of the target audience. The confidence can only be gained by hammering the same message on all media and by providing proof of concrete and coherent results.
This trust must be the burning and vibrant heart of any communication strategy, both digital and physical, of a financial consultancy because its reputation or e-reputation is essential to its survival. Thus, it is necessary to reinforce this reputation. To do this, it is necessary to create qualitative content to reinforce and increase the image of expertise that a firm must send out.
Creating content is an excellent idea. Nevertheless, it is necessary to make them known. This will naturally reinforce the image of the firm whose reputation we want to develop. It is at this precise moment that digital communication takes its real consistency. It allows us to dispense with the rules of the physical world to spread information to all interested parties and to generate the sharing of information. This is how the image of the consulting firm will be strengthened by providing constant proof of its expertise.
By reinforcing its perception and consequently, its notoriety, the firm will then develop more and more prospects. But conversion is not the intrinsic goal of communication, but an effect outside it, difficult to identify and quantify. Indeed, digital communication talks about the company, its expertise, its image. Digital marketing, on the other hand, talks about the customer and his needs. It is in this perspective that digital marketing takes all its power.
Digital marketing for small and medium-sized businesses
The objective of marketing is to transform the prospect into a customer. But it is thanks to the digitalization of the world around us that this objective is greatly facilitated. In this perspective, data has a fundamental role and in particular, the good use of KPIs allows to escape from uncertainty.
By constantly monitoring the right KPIs, it is possible to develop a real acquisition strategy. This way, the journey will be optimized to convert business owners in an optimal way. Moreover, the use and development of key indicators are able to enable this conversion process. These KPIs also allow us to anticipate the evolution and to adapt the different processes to the new way of information consumption.
We must not forget the other data that can be collected. Indeed, with the multiplication of data and collection sources, it becomes easier and easier to refine the personas to anticipate the needs of potential customers. These different data collections can thus feed the implementation of predictive marketing strategies. This predictive marketing can be efficiently integrated into different channels (email, social networks,…) to deploy strategic messages at an optimal pace.
More and more, predictive modeling is becoming an essential part of marketing automation. Algorithms can be adjusted in real-time. This then provides up-to-date insights for marketing campaigns already underway. Specifically, predictive models can help improve lead generation as well as sales, through more consistent personalization of the various messages issued by the firm. These messages than reach their targets more easily. In addition, these predictive tools will help determine which targets need special content for successful conversion.
Once the data is known, it is then easy to send a clear message to the decision-makers of SMEs and mid-cap companies. Not only is it possible to use archaic solutions such as cold emailing or more insidiously, programmatic or geolocated advertising. An example of the latter, it is totally possible to target an entrepreneurial congress for a tiny budget.
Digital reduces costs and allows to obtain information in an easier way (in the respect of the GDPR). Thus, it becomes possible to transform more quickly the decision-makers into customers of the consulting firm.
Communication and digital marketing can perfectly go together. The two have a similar logic, but should not be confused. However, the boundaries between the physical and digital world are becoming increasingly blurred. It is becoming more and more necessary to think of these approaches in a more global way in order to generate a true structural and systemic vision. The latter will then have to develop the acquisition of prospects, their conversions, but also their retention, and even obtain recommendations from them to generate revenue. Thus, by mixing these different approaches, we obtain a framework quite close to AARRR and growth hacking…
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