Susan Weiner, CFA, helps financial professionals with their writing skills so they can attract clients to their firms. Susan has a popular blog, Investment Writing, where she provides tips on how to be a better writer.
I have known Susan for quite some time through social media. In fact, Susan and I almost met face to face in Boston when I was there for a speaking engagement but alas we weren’t able to connect. I hope to one day meet Susan in person.
I am a big fan of using writing to grow any type of business, particularly a financial services firm. There are so many wonderful topics advisory firms can write about that would benefit the general public. Blogging has become a great way to demonstrate expertise, deepen client relationships, and attract new clients.
Here’s my interview with Susan on her new book, Financial Blogging: How to Write Powerful Posts That Attract Clients.
[SUZANNE] Tell us about the motivation behind writing your book.
[SUSAN] Poorly written blogs lose readers, but it doesn’t have to be that way. I’ve drawn on my experience as a reporter, investment communications professional, and reader of financial blogs to develop a system that helps advisors overcome their weaknesses. As you know, I’ve taught a blogging class for advisors since 2010, so my methods have been proven with real-life advisors. Blogs can help advisors attract new clients and deepen their relationships with existing clients. My book helps advisors achieve this.
[SUZANNE] Tell us the details about your book. How long is it? Is it available in a digital format or print format? What’s covered in the book?
[SUSAN] My book gives advisors detailed, step-by-step instructions for writing compelling blogs, starting with brainstorming ideas and organizing your thoughts before writing. It also demystifies challenges such as marketing, time management, blog post promotion, and compliance. The book is 107 pages long, with 11 chapters. It’s available as a paperback or as a PDF file for use on computers or e-readers, and can be purchased from the book page on my website.
[SUZANNE] What is the biggest mistake financial advisors make when they first start blogging?
[SUSAN] Some advisors start without a plan for what they’ll write and how they’ll promote it. As a result, their blogs lack focus and quickly run out of steam. Advisors can use my techniques to plan a targeted series of blog posts that they’ll promote through multiple channels. They’ll position themselves for success.
[SUZANNE] Can you give us a few tips on how can advisory firms attract clients from blogging?
[SUSAN] First, advisors should identify their target market, so they can write posts tailored to their audience. The more specific, the better. This increases the odds that desirable prospects will find the advisor through online searches. Also, targeted blog posts will help readers develop comfort with the advisor before they communicate directly. Readers will say, “Yes, this advisor understands me and my needs.”
[SUZANNE] What advice do you have for advisory firms who want to use blogging to attract the media?
[SUSAN] First, if your blog posts break new ground or express controversial opinions, they may spark news coverage. This happens most often with prominent bloggers, such as Michael Kitces of Nerd’s Eye View. Reporters are hungry for story ideas and need new slants on old topics.
Second, if you blog about topics that are in the news or relevant to the reporter’s area of specialization, you make it easier for reporters to think of you as a source. This is particularly true if your blog features catchy quotes or in-depth content explained in a way that speaks to the publication’s readers.
Finally, reporters are just as anxious as advisors to be found and discussed on social media. Referring to a great article in one of your posts will please them.
[SUZANNE] Where can advisors purchase your book?
Advisors can buy my book through links on my website’s book page (investmentwriting.com/book). The PDF and the paperback are sold through different sources, so it is important to click on the correct link from my book page. I hope advisors will take advantage of the discount code that is available until midnight on August 14. They’ll save $14 off the full price.