Responsive Advertising Blog

Campaigning in a crowded market? Stand out with direct response

4 minute read

Working in a disruptive industry? This blog post series can help you thrive in a time of change.

When it comes to investment advice, one best practice holds true across life stages and wealth tiers: never put all your assets in one basket.

 In other words, diversify your investments.

The same is true for financial services marketers—especially in the current environment. With nimble new entrants and more tech-savvy consumers upending traditional business practices, it’s critical to target your outreach with laser precision. In a fast-paced and crowded market, brokerage and financial planning brands can’t afford to miss the mark.

Yes, a completely digital marketing strategy will yield results. But a smarter approach diversifies your campaigns by integrating direct response advertising. By adding television and radio, you’ll reach more consumers, have more options to personalize your interactions and stretch your marketing budget (and all with completely measurable results).

Four ways that direct response advertising can boost your brand: 

1. Be heard above the noise.

In a crowded, disruptive market space, consumers receive a barrage of messages. In an online environment, it can be difficult (and costly) for your brand to stand out. Television and radio campaigns give you a whole new arena to share your story.

It starts with a programmatic approach to media buying. Instead of focusing on only traditional television networks and cable outlets, programmatic buying analyzes more than 5,000 stations across 110,000 dayparts to go beyond obvious targets. Radio buying takes a similar track and looks across satellite, digital, streaming and podcasts as well as more mainstream choices. This makes broadcast advertising efficient and cost-effective for brands of all shapes and sizes.

You’ll be able to expand your universe of potential buyers exponentially—while still connecting with exactly the right individuals. With this strategy, every dollar spent reaches 3.5 times more consumers than the average.

2. Increase your engagement.
Adding a direct response component to your broadcast ads gives you even more of an edge. Campaigns with offers can outperform traditional, image-driven brand ads by a factor of 10 to one. That’s because direct response campaigns go beyond simply telling your brand story. They focus on behavior and motivation, using sophisticated offers to move your audience beyond “watching” to actively engaging with you.

When you have just seconds to make an impact, the right call to action focuses every aspect of your creative toward your marketing goals.

3. Test and evolve your story.
With new competitors and financial planning innovations appearing almost daily, financial services marketers have no time to waste. Gone is the luxury of a six-, 12- or 18-month cycle to plan and perfect your brand message before launching your first campaign.

 Using direct response dramatically accelerates your timing, helping you launch in weeks rather than months. With this Agile method, you test several creative options simultaneously, and continuously fine-tune your message, so you’re always in-synch with the latest consumer demand or market shift. Market research is embedded in the creative process, and every decision is based on actual audience responses and quantitative data (rather than big agency egos).

4. Protect your prospects from poachers.
The biggest flaw in many campaigns? Relying on consumers to find you on the web. Unless your target audience enters your URL directly into their browser, you have no control over your consumer’s online journey. Even a Google search on your exact brand name will reveal paid ads for your competition. Web searches on terms related to your offering, such as “financial advisor” or “retirement plan,” can yield literally thousands of choices. Why risk your hard-won leads and marketing budget?

Instead, opt for channels that you can control, such as calls to action with text message short codes. This mobile-friendly approach is fast and easy for consumers to use and keeps you in the driver’s seat. You can customize engagement journeys based on individual responses; serve up links to websites, videos or special offers; and measure all aspects of the interaction. Automated chatbot technology enables you to handle even significant volumes.

Can you afford to wait?

With more than three-quarters of investors under age 40 reporting they would be “comfortable” working with a virtual advisor, and $30 trillion in assets set to change hands in the coming years from baby boomers to younger generations, the financial planning market is truly up for grabs.1,2

As with any financial plan, the longer you wait to start investing, the harder it becomes to reach your goals. Now is the time for marketers to make sure your brand connects at every level with the audiences who matter most.

Set up your financial brand for success with an integrated broadcast advertising campaign.  Contact us to discuss your marketing goals.


Up next in our series:  3 Must-Haves to Convert your Financial Services Leads



1  Investopedia, “How Fintech Is Disrupting Wealth Management,” published April 27, 2017

2, “Robo Advisors And The Great Money Movement,” published September 12, 2017

Katie Scheetz

By Katie Scheetz

Chief Business Development Officer

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