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How FAs Are Reaching New Clients in the Current Economic Climate

Sales & Marketing

To better understand industry trends in financial advisor marketing given the current economic climate, SmartAsset surveyed roughly 270 advisors on its platform, asking about how they are currently marketing to clients and their expectations for 2023.

According to the findings, nearly 6 in 10 advisors (59%) report that they have been pushed to do more client outreach, with some citing the current economic climate as an opportunity for bringing on new clients. Roughly 33% of advisors say they have not changed their outreach strategy and another 6% say that the main change has been reaching out to current and prospective clients more frequently.

And like most client-facing businesses, financial advisory firms tend to have a strong focus on marketing. Almost 68% of advisors say that marketing is “very important” for their firm and growing their client base, while another 23% say that it is “fairly important.”

Looking Forward to 2023

Next year, many advisors expect lead generation platforms and social media outreach to see the largest increases in importance across all marketing strategies.

Nearly 4 in 10 (39%) advisors say that lead generation platforms will be the most important marketing strategy in 2023 compared to less than 32% of advisors reporting that for 2022. Still, more than 63% of advisors report that they are using lead generation platforms more this year when compared with previous years.

Social Media Strategies

Advisors also anticipate looking toward increasing social media outreach in 2023. Following lead generation platforms, social media outreach is the marketing strategy with the second-highest expected increase in importance in 2023, according to the findings.  

Though only about 12% of advisors say that social media outreach is their firm’s primary marketing strategy in 2022, close to 19% of advisors think it will be the most important in 2023, the firm notes.

Of the various social media outlets, the most used platforms, not surprisingly, are LinkedIn and Facebook. Almost 46% of advisors report that they use LinkedIn either “often” or “extremely often” as a marketing tactic. For Facebook, that figure stands at about 37%.

And while Instagram and TikTok are growing in usage among younger generations, they are the least used social media platforms among advisors. SmartAsset found that about 82% and 97% of financial advisors say that they never use Instagram and TikTok, respectively.

Similarly, YouTube and Twitter follow closely behind. More than 7 in 10 financial advisors say that they never use these platforms. That said, social media usage rates vary widely across advisors. Some advisors are leaning much more into social media video formats, with weekly videos that discuss hot topics being sent to clients and posted on social media and websites, the firm notes.

In-Person Events

Some advisors also cite putting increased importance on in-person events. Here, the findings show that roughly 16% of advisors report that in-person events are where they currently focus, but nearly 22% say that will be the most important strategy for 2023, second only to lead generation platforms.

Many advisors (30%) also referenced other marketing strategies. Several advisors point toward referrals as a popular way to engage new clients, with referrals coming from both clients and centers of influence.

Falling Out of Favor

Meanwhile, some advisors saw a shift in their marketing practices in 2022. While advisors increasingly lean on lead generation platforms and social media outreach, cold-calling and traditional advertisements are becoming much less popular, according to the findings.

More than 52% of advisors say they are cold-calling less in 2022 relative to previous years and about 37% of advisors report they are promoting fewer traditional advertisements.

Survey data was collected by SmartAsset between Oct. 1–17, 2022, among 272 financial advisors.