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Some financial advisors rake it in with email marketing. Every day, they open their calendar to see new appointments with interested prospects. 

But many advisors send email after email and only get unsubscribes. That’s because they’re making crucial mistakes that alienate prospects. 

In this episode, you’ll discover what these mistakes are and how to fix them so that your email marketing magnetizes new clients. 

Want to supercharge your email marketing? Listen now!

Show highlights include: 

  • How to build a client attraction machine by only writing 5 emails. (3:02)
  • The 80/20 of email marketing that gets you results without writing every day (5:25)
  • The stupid easy way to get appointments with email marketing (6:08)
  • Why getting compliments from readers is a death sentence for your conversions. (9:25)
  • How telling people not to subscribe gets you more appointments and clients (10:42)
  • Why a terrible landing page makes all your email marketing useless (14:10)

If you’re looking for a way to set more appointments with qualified prospects, sign up for James’ brand new webinar about how financial advisors can get more clients with email marketing. 

Go to https://TheAdvisorCoach.com/webinar to register today. 

Go to https://TheAdvisorCoach.com/Coaching and pick up your free 90 minute download called “5 Keys to Success for Financial Advisors” when you join The James Pollard Inner Circle.

Discover how to get even better at marketing yourself with these resources:




Read Full Transcript

You're listening to Financial Advisor Marketing, the best show on the planet for financial advisers who want to get more clients without all the stress. You're about to get the real scoop on everything from lead generation to closing the deal. James is the founder of TheAdvisorCoach.com, where you can find an entire suite of products designed to help financial advisers grow their businesses more rapidly than ever before. Now, here is your host, James Pollard. [00:31.7]

James: Welcome to another episode of the Financial Advisor Marketing Podcast, as always, I am your host, James, stay in your lane, play no games, make it rain Pollard. And I am going to talk to you about five email marketing mistakes that can wreck your conversions. And this is a topic that is near and dear to my heart because I love email marketing. I have been doing email marketing for years. I've been helping financial advisors with email marketing for years. So, this is going to be awesome, tt's going to be a fun podcast episode. I want to make sure that it's good and I give you some information that you can actually use. I have been running myself ragged lately. I've have so many people who were trying to reach out to me for different things, so many different messages. At this point, like I've just stopped responding to all social media messages cause I cannot get caught up and I don't want to pass it on to a team member because I like to be the one to reach out to these people. So, it was just like people were just reaching out and reaching out, reaching out. And I appreciate you. I love you. I really want you to continue doing that, but give me some time to get caught up. [01:29.8]

I have been not that busy in 2021 compared to what I was doing in 2020, I was just going hard and pushing and pushing and pushing. And then I took some time not off, but instead of working six hours a day, I would work four hours a day. I would take it a little easier on Thursdays, that would be like my traditional “day off” or easy day. And things have been pretty nice in 2021 and like this past month is just been off the hook. Like, I don't know what happened, but I'm getting so many people and so many messages that just, I'm not going to ramble on about that, but it is just like, it's a lot. So, bear with me here. Let's get into the podcast and to be clear, I want to tell you that email is designed to get appointments. I never get tired of talking about it because it is such a powerful appointment setting strategy. I have an email marketing system called Appointments on auto-pilot. It is not clicks on autopilot. It is not opens on autopilot. It is appointments, because that's what you want. Email is the thing that gets people to set appointments. And I don't want to waste any more time today. So, let's begin with these five email marketing mistakes. [02:43.6]

Email marketing mistakes number one is not emailing frequently enough. I recommend sending an email every day. When financial advisors first hear about this, they get nervous. They think that they need to write a new email every day, that is not true. When I help advisors with email marketing here's what it looks like. My goal is to get them to create a sequence of 5 to 12 emails. It could be more, I don't want it to be fewer than 5 because you kind, you need 5. Okay, just take my word for it. It could be more, but I'm just saying 5 to 12, it's completely arbitrary, but you can take it for what it's worth. Put that into an email autoresponder sequence that follows up with prospective clients on a predetermined basis. It does not mean you write a new email every single day. You need to write 5 to 12, put them in a sequence. And that sequence is what emails every day. When someone joins your email list two weeks from now, they get the same emails as someone who is joining a month from now, or someone who joined a month ago. That is the idea. [03:44.8]

Your question might be well. What happens once the sequence is over? What happens when people go through all of the emails in the series, that's up to you. If you want to continue sending emails, more power to you, but in my world, the bulk of your appointments are going to be set in the first emails because they do the heavy lifting for you. They explain who you are, your process, your background, and more. If people aren't interested or hooked in the first few emails, the chances of them being hooked later are very low. Does it happen? Absolutely. I email every day, that is what I do. Because as my specialty, I enjoy email marketing. I want to stay cutting edge. I want to stay on top of things. I do it every day because you only get better by practicing. And I am just doing that. I get financial advisors doing business with me after years of reading my emails, not days, not weeks, not months, years. There could be somebody who has joined my email list and they don't get deleted. Typically, I delete people if they don't engage and they don't open the emails, but there have been financial advisers who open, open, open, open click, click, click, and they don't get deleted because they have that activity, but they haven't done business with me. They haven't subscribed to the inner circle newsletter. They haven't bought anything. They haven't reached out for further help. And that is very interesting because part of that, you know, I take full responsibility for them like, Hey, why aren't you doing that? But sometimes people just aren't ready. Sometimes people don't want to improve themselves. I don't understand it. I personally can't relate, but it is what it is. [05:15.5]

That's not optimal, if you're running a business where your income is directly related to your time, you have to be efficient. And I'm always talking about the 80-20 rule and it applies here. If 80% of your appointments will come from these initial emails, do you really want to put equal effort or in many cases, far more effort to get that last 20%. That's up to you. It's dependent on what else you can do with your time and the options you have available for you. But if the 5 to 12 emails can get 80% of the results and that's the 20% that is getting it, you probably don't want to have emails 13 to 25. Pick up that last 20% unless you do, unless that's something, unless you have absolutely nothing else to do. You have everything maxed out and your systems are super-efficient, but most of the time you can be doing something else after setting up that initial sequence. Let's move on to mistake number two. [06:10.2]

Mistake number two is not asking for a response or engagement. And this includes asking for an appointment. Think of this. I've heard from financial advisors who have told me that they've tried email marketing and they want to write it off because it hasn't set any appointments for them. So, I do a little digging. I opt into their email list to do some research and I begin getting their emails and I see they aren't even asking for an appointment. I wish I was making this up, but I'm dead serious. Financial advisors weren't setting any appointments because they weren't asking people to set appointments. It's kind of like running a marathon and getting within a few feet of the finish line and then stopping. It's like just crossed the darn line. You are so close. You're running ads. You're talking to people on social media. You're engaging on LinkedIn. You have your website set up correctly. You've got an opt-in form. You maybe you're split testing the opt-in form. Your emails are awesome. You have a series that is designed to get appointments for you on autopilot, but you are not asking for the appointment. You've done so much work, but you can't get the appointments because you aren't asking. [07:15.5]

Sometimes people will say that they don't do that because they don't want to be pushy. But what they don't understand is that prospective clients there, when this happens, let's just imagine that it's you. Prospective clients are on your email list. You aren't on their list. They're in your territory, not the other way around. Do as you please. If they don't like it, they can always unsubscribe. I've said this many times before, and I'll say it again. Prospecting is about filtering. If you aren't getting any unsubscribes, then you aren't pushing hard enough. I get unsubscribers with every email I send. If I didn't get any unsubscribes or any unsubscribers, I would be worried. I would think I did something wrong. That's the mindset shift you need to have. Unsubscribes are not a bad thing. They're a signal that you are prospecting. You're asking people if they're interested. People unsubscribed, that is basically them saying, they're not interested, but guess what? It didn't take any of your time. It didn't take any additional effort. It takes the same amount of energy to write an email and hit send, or to set an email autoresponder up or to write a series, to send to 5,000 people as it does to send to 50 people. So, you might as well get as much leverage as you possibly can. If someone isn't interested, they unsubscribe. [08:32.7]

It takes nothing from you for this to happen. You're saying, Hey, do you want this? Do you want this? Are you interested? Do you want to set an appointment? And if the answer is no, they leave. That is awesome. It is an incredible tool. And on a side note, in my experience, I've had many emails, far more than I care to admit where people real, they will respond to me and they'll say something like great email, or I love the content, or you're such a good writer. And I appreciate that, I really do. I, I love that and I love hearing from people and I am so glad that they're enjoying my content. But sometimes these come from people who are the same people who have never done any business with me, who don't do anything with The Adviser Coach, their, their businesses are stagnant. Now, granted, there are people who are killing it, who are inner circle members and these are awesome people. I am very grateful for them. but I would say that, I mean, I haven't looked at the actual numbers, but I would say 90% of the people who write stuff like great email. I love this content. This is awesome. Keep it up. Like thumbs up. They don't do anything. [09:35.5]

So, in my case, those are not effective emails because they do not accomplish the mission. And likewise, you could have a high open rate, a high click-through rate and a high engagement rate. But if you aren't setting any appointments, do those things really matter? No, there are a lot of people who are quick to flaunt, their open rate. I understand, like open rate is nice. You have to have people viewing your emails. I get it. But once they view your emails, what do they do? If they don't send an appointment, are you accomplishing the mission? The answer is no. [10:04.1]

Hey, financial advisors – if you’d like even more help building your business, I invite you to subscribe to James’ monthly paper-and-ink newsletter, The James Pollard Inner Circle.
When you join today, you’ll get more than one thousand dollars’ worth of bonuses, including exclusive interviews that aren’t available anywhere else.

Head on over to TheAdvisorCoach.com/coaching to learn more. [10:26.8]

Mistake number three is having content in your emails that is different from what is promised. Let me read you the text that is on my homepage, describing my email list. This is directly from TheAdvisorCoach.com. And here we go..Ahem… I will email you with something new every day, if you can't handle daily emails, do not subscribe. And I have that in all capital letters DO NOT SUBSCRIBE. Sometimes the emails are amazing. Other times they're just my incoherent ramblings. Either way, I must be doing something right, because financial advisors seem to love them. And when you subscribe, I'll give you a PDF called 57 Marketing Tips for Financial Advisors for free. I'm very clear about what you'll get with this is, or you can go through the text as I just read that to you, you understand you're going to get daily emails. You know what the content is going to be incoherent ramblings sometimes are amazing. And you know, the signup bonus. So, I suggest you do the same and follow roughly the same format. Obviously don't copy and paste because you don't want to be a low-class jerk who just copies and paste like a lot of these people do. [11:38.4]

But I want you to be clear about your frequency. How often are you emailing? Your content, what are you going to talk about in the emails and any sign-up bonuses or things you offer to get people to sign up to your email list. This is also about filtering. One of the reasons my marketing works so much better than other people's is because I'm ruthlessly focused on filtering. I don't think people truly understand how much I do not want people to subscribe. This leads to far more qualified subscribers when people finally do subscribe. It is not like I am trying to get email subscribers. Like, yes, I have it. It's hard to explain. I am not pushing and pushing and pushing and pushing and trying to get people to join my email list. I am presenting them with an opportunity to join and there's a big sign up there basically saying, do not join, unless. That is the cue, that is what I'm putting out there. [12:30.8]

And it's one of the reasons I tell financial advisors that the size of their email list doesn't matter. I have one of the biggest financial advisor email list in the entire world now, but it wasn't always that way. Back when I only had a few thousand people on my email list, my metrics still smoked everyone else's because my subscribers were engaged. They did what I wanted them to do. If I sent a podcast episode out, they listened to it. If I sent a video out, they watched it. That's how email is supposed to be. They're supposed to have a qualified less. You're not supposed to just go out and get as many people as you possibly can who don't engage, who don't do what you want, who are just sitting on your email list doing absolutely nothing. The big takeaway here is that you want to be clear about what people should expect, even if it costs you subscribers. Even if you only get five a day instead of 10 a day. Yeah, sure, you could. You could get 10 a day by being very open and saying yes, sign up. It's super amazing. Like it's for everybody. No, no, don't do that. Do not do that. Because if they get something different from what they expect, they probably aren't going to set an appointment with you anyway. And remember, that is the mission. That is the goal. You want to set an appointment with these people, so you have the opportunity to convert them into clients. I would rather have an email list that is lean and mean that consistently sets appointments than a fat email list that doesn't. This is what you need to think about. [13:55.3]

Mistake number four is linking to a poor quality appointment page. Let's assume that your emails are awesome. You're doing an incredible job. Getting subscribers. You're filtering people. You're telling them what to expect. And you're sending emails. That's all well and good, but everything will fall apart if you send them to a terrible landing page. What happens when someone clicks your email or the link in there, and they get excited about sending an appointment with you because they really want to do it. They're clicking on that link; they go to the page and it takes forever to load. Your whole process stops at that point. So let me just stop and say, please make sure your appointment page loads fast. Make sure it looks good on desktop and mobile. Fill it out yourself, go through it. See what happens. Get a few friends and family members to set an appointment, to see if they have any stumbling blocks. You would be amazed at what a fresh pair of eyes can do for you. [14:49.4]

And back when I did website for financial advisors, I would say to them, I would say, me having the mind of a prospective client as I go through your website is one of the most valuable things, I can offer you because I wouldn't even look at a website until I started recording. Which means that my recorded reaction was my real reaction to seeing the websites for the first time. In these videos, when I send them to financial advisors, they could see what caught my eye, where I went, why I went there. What my real genuine first reaction was, because if your website is any good, people are going to have that the reaction all the time, because you're going to get in front of new people, more new people and more new people. And the same concept applies to getting your friends and family members to set appointments with you. You're getting a fresh pair of eyes on your process to see if they have any stumbling blocks. If you have two people who stop and struggle at the same point, that is what marketers call a clue that you can use to improve your business. [15:47.6]

Also, this is this, an absolute gold that if you get nothing else from this, I, this is going to be the thing that can put money in your pocket. I am almost hesitant to give it away for free here on this show, but here we go. I'm going to swallow my pride and I'm going to try to give it away. Here we go. Don't be afraid, this has multiple calendars. Ooh. I just gave it away for free. I can't believe it. Examine your metrics. See how many page views you've received compared to how many appointments were set. Now, of course you want to be statistically significant and that's a topic for another show. I've talked about that in other places, but listen to my example here, just to get the idea. Let's say you have 400 page views over four months and you've set 20 appointments. That's a 5% conversion rate. Now let's say you try a new calendar service and you get a 10% conversion rate. Do you think that's worth your time? Absolutely, it better be. And I'm hesitant to give a recommendation because different calendars look differently on different websites. I personally like Acuity, but sometimes Acuity looks horrible with certain website themes, but you might test acuity against Calendly and find the Calendly, I may to say it correctly this time gives you a better conversion rate. And if that's the case, keep using it. This is very simple stuff, but most people don't do it. They just get on acuity and say, wow, acuity is awesome. And they never test their calendar. They never do it. And they just, they never know. They, they don't know what could have been. If you do nothing else from this episode, this one thing can easily easily pay for your inner circle newsletter subscription in perpetuity. So, make sure you come back and give me a big thank you because you are welcome. [17:25.7]

Okay. The last mistake, mistake number five is not leveraging the features offered by your email automation software. I don't want to get too deep into any one provider because financial advisors use Constant Contact, MailChimp convert kit, and more. They all have similar features and they also have different features, that I talked a lot about the various features in the ‘Is email marketing, dead?’ podcast episodes. So go back and listen to that. But I'm talking about things like this. The ability to split test subject lines and even split test entire campaigns integrating your calendar or appointment, setting software directly with your email automation software. You can also integrate your CRM, which is really cool. And it handles a lot of the data input and you can go back and see who has been contacted 12 times and hasn't responded. Maybe you can integrate multiple marketing strategies. You can see exactly which emails people clicked, which ones they open, things like that and pay attention. Use these features, get to know your software, take a day and just go through their YouTube channel if they have one. Talk to their live chat, ask, what are some of the most overlooked features of this service or this software that you, you wish more people knew about? What are some things that you wish people did? [18:39.9]

These customer service people, they interact with their customers all day long. They know who is killing it, who is not. They have access to the data. They can see the backend stuff. They obviously they're not going to share proprietary data with you or anything like that, but they can give you, hence they can put you in the right direction. You don't think if I've been a customer of Drip’s for years and spent tens of thousands of dollars with them that if I ask them, Hey, can you please just take a look at my email automation software or my service and my series of emails and just tell me like, is there anything obvious that I'm missing or any new features that you've added in the past couple months that could really help me increase revenue? You don't think that they're going to try to help me to keep me as a customer. You're fooling yourself, if you think that they don't do that. So those are the five mistakes I want to wrap up this show by leaving you with something serious. [19:26.9]

If you have the ability to leverage email marketing right now, and you're not doing it, you are missing the opportunity of a lifetime, especially in financial services, because there are so many financial advisors out there that while they can use email marketing, they can't use email automation. So, here's the analogy I like to use. Imagine Coca-Cola and Pepsi in the Cola wars, Coke is allowed to advertise everywhere, in this hypothetical example, the Coke can advertise on radio TV, social media websites, and more. They can advertise anywhere and everywhere they want, but Pepsi can only use billboards. That is what's happening right now in the financial advice industry. If you're a financial advisor with the ability to use a marketing strategy as ridiculously awesome as email marketing and you are not using it, shame on you. Because that's like having an incredible talent and letting it go to the grave with you. You're missing out on something incredible. [20:30.9]

So that's all for this week. If you want to learn more about email marketing register for the webinar, three counterintuitive ways financial advisors can get more clients with email marketing. It's at TheAdvisorCoach.com/webinar. One more time. TheAdvisorCoach.com/webinar, and I will be back in your earbuds next week. [20:49.8]

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