Stuck on what to write? These Topics Will Turn Advisors into a Content Writing Pro

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Why Your Website MUST have an SSL Certificate (and What It Is)

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Google has made an update that may affect the way people view websites and ultimately advisor websites when viewed on a Google Chrome browser. In July of 2018, with the release of Chrome 68, Google will begin displaying “not secure” warnings on any page that is from HTTP and contains any form submission options that allows for the transfer of potentially sensitive information such as first name, last name, email, phone number, login info, etc.

Example of a secure site within Google Chrome:

 

 

Example of an insecure site within Google Chrome:

 

 

This warning is based the fact that data on these types of pages can be sending information through an unencrypted connection.

To avoid this warning and serve up an encrypted page requires the data to be exchanged on HTTPS, the secure version of HTTP.  It offers additional protection in blocking someone from trying to view that traffic and is commonly referred to as a “Person in the Middle attack”.

Without this protection, a hacker could ultimately see what’s on an advisor’s screen, which in many cases could be sensitive or confidential information.

What is an SSL Certificate?

SSL (Secure Sockets Layer) certificates have been available for over twenty years. Having an SSL certificate ensures that sensitive data of your website’s visitors will be transferred over a secure network.

Despite the importance of having an SSL certificate, many organizations or business owners have delayed the adoption due to the price of the certificates and the complexity of implementation. Now, with this new update on Google Chrome, website owners simply can’t afford to not have an SSL Certificate.

Why Your Website MUST have an SSL Certificate

Increasing site security

SSL certificates will protect the sensitive data transmitted from and to your website. This will encrypt the connection and help protect your visitors when they visit your website.

 

 

 

 

Credibility and Trust for Your Customers

A significant benefit of SSL certificates is the fact that they can help you gain trust with your visitors. How many times have you clicked on a website but got a warning and still proceeded to the website? You probably closed the website, just to be on the safe side. Alternatively, you proceeded with caution and would never fill out any form or take any action. You wouldn’t want your visitors to be rethinking if your website is safe. With an SSL certificate, your website will be displayed with a security padlock in the address bar of the browser. If your website doesn’t have a certificate, some browsers may label it as “unsafe.”

SEO Advantages

Another benefit of having an SSL certificate in place is improvement in SEO rankings your website will get. Google gives websites with encrypted connections a slight boost in ranking. That boost isn’t substantial but would definitely give an advantage over competitors who don’t have certificates.

So now what? How do you go about obtaining an SSL certificate?

The most common way to get an SSL certificate is to check if your current hosting provider offers SSL certificates. We are committed to updating you on important information related to your website performance. Contact our service team to get your SSL certificate in place for your website.

5 Reasons Why Your Enterprise Needs an Archiving Tool

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As a business grows it will create more data – data that needs to be meticulously managed and monitored in order for it be utilized properly. Keeping tabs on this data can prove problematic for businesses that never put an archiving system in place. Effective record management becomes a vital process to ensure the protection of the organization and the advisors. Archiving is the process by which inactive information, in any format, is securely stored for long periods of time.

In addition to archiving traditional documents, it is important to archive all content, this includes website pages, blog posts, email newsletters. While you can attempt to archive data manually, this would take up a lot of resources opens up to a risk of error, cannot accurately track changes, and will create confusion in the case of a change in staff.

Here are 5 reasons why your financial enterprise needs an automated archiving tool:

1.Prevent Data Loss

Information that hasn’t been archived in a central and secure location could be lost forever. There is a chance that an employee accidentally deletes or misplaces a file. While in some cases data recovery experts might be able to retrieve this information, this takes time, cost a lot and is rarely 100% accurate. Using an archiving tool allows employees to retrieve the backed-up information independently without having to rely on third parties.

2. Legal Requirements

Archiving is important for legal reasons too. Many enterprises accidentally delete data that they legally should be keeping. An effective archiving system will ensure company- and industry-specific retention schedules are adhered to, regardless of each employee’s knowledge of the retention schedules. Data protection authorities enforce more severe penalties on businesses so employees should be made aware that ignoring these policies could lead to hefty fines or even prison sentences in some cases.

3. Increase Security

In a time when archiving cyber-attacks and data breaches are becoming more frequent, archiving is important for security reasons. By securely archiving documents, businesses can keep track of information and increase protection from unauthorized third parties. Even the most cautious of businesses are now targeted by very adept hackers. Paper records in open circulation can easily be taken from crowded offices or stolen by bitter employees. A reliable offsite archiving system will reduce this risk.

4. Reduce Risks of Errors

Conducting an audit requires a thorough examination of the inner workings and fine details of your business. With the right archiving tool, you can improve the accessibility of data and mitigate the risk of human error.

5. Saves Time

Traditional auditing is very time-consuming, requiring greater resources from larger organizations. With the right archiving tool, the auditor can access the historical content more effectively. The right tool will also include features like the visual editor and powerful filters to allow auditors to work much faster.

Archiving is vital for business continuity and ensuring the highest level of performance in a competitive marketplace, attempting to establish a manual audit process would be too resource intensive and risks exposure. In the instance of financial advisor marketing, this would be impossible to archive the content of every page, of every advisor. Digital Agent offers an archiving tool, Digital Archiving, that allows the enterprise to automatically archive advisors website content. There are a host of features such as high-powered search, visual website review, and external content archiving that increase audit efficiency. Digital Archiving gives enterprises greater peace of mind by auditing your advisors’ online presence.

 

What Happens in the Field, Stays in the Field: Why head office marketing campaigns have limits

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Enterprises are spending large budgets in attempts to build trust with consumers, but consumers interact with the field agents in which they have not built a relationship with. This model of trust building is wasted effort as customers care more about trusting the advisors with whom they interact with.  There are many benefits for financial enterprise marketers to include field teams in their marketing distribution.

  • Messaging amplification
  • Additional content creators
  • Increased advisor visibility

The one key benefit of advisor marketing programs is the unique positive impact on customer relationships. Just as we all do not answer phone calls from unknown callers, customers do not respond to brands outside of their trusted networks. Companies outside of that trust network, have to work much harder to gain the attention of the customer. If you can tap into the trust network of your customers using your employees as conduits, you are going to build stronger long-term connections.

As an enterprise marketer, you oversee a department and have a budget that is dedicated to programs to create customer engagement – how can you make valuable connections? The traditional approach would be to deliver messaging at the brand level; this method, however, creates a disconnect. All engagement will happen between you the brand and the customer, but the revenue comes from the field level, not the brand level. So only focusing on the brand-customer relationship will mean the customer may trust the brand but does not have a relationship with the field agent with whom they are supposed to trust their money with.

To build this trust, customers look for the personal connections and credibility in their advisor. As they are publishing their own connect, there is a stronger chance of customers connecting with the content because it will be written by a person that a customer can speak with in person. Also,  the advisor will write about subjects that are relevant to their client base. They will have a better understanding of their micro-segment and what financial information will be beneficial to them. Another benefit to advisors producing their own content is to build credibility. Credibility is no longer measured simply by just education and title. Credibility is built when the advisor clearly understands the needs of the client, the difficulties they may face, and having a plan to meet client objectives.

The final element to establish credibility is a proven track record. This will validate expertise and the plan set forth by the advisor. Several elements that establish credibility can be done through marketing content. If website, email, or blog content, speaks to the needs and problems of the potential client, they will self-identify and begin to trust the expertise of the advisor. Additionally, if the marketing content provides a few actionable tips for free, this helps to build trust as it is not hidden behind a wall.

While a head office marketing department may have the resources to create engagement with the customers, it has its limitations. The programs would not be able to provide the same level of personalization for customers. Tailoring messaging that mean the needs of specific micro-segments. Furthermore, enterprise marketers need to leave room to allow for the field teams to engage with the customers and build relationships at that level. In this way, the engagement and relationships build between customer and enterprise will result in the customer being loyal to the brand. And the engagement and relationships built at the same time between the customer and advisor will establish trust and confidence in the management of the customer’s finances.

Four Advisor Personas Enterprise Marketers Need to Be Aware Of

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As an enterprise, when you think about all the advisors that have an online presence and using Digital Agent, their online efforts probably vary drastically.  Some sign in multiple times a week and some probably sign in a few times a year. Ultimately, enterprise teams want to see 100% of advisors leveraging Digital Agent and the marketing tools they provide to its full capabilities. In order to educate and truly understand the habits and characteristics of advisors, we wanted to define the four advisor personas. These personas take advisors through a process of full adoption starting with frequent users to fully active users. Let’s take a look at each of the personas:

1.Online Business Card Website (rarely make updates, no blog)

These advisors have a website but it is a fairly basic website.  These websites have only a few pages that outline the basics such as About, Contact, Product, Services, etc.

Habits and characteristics of an online business card website advisor:

  • Takes a long time to make changes. Wants everything to be perfect before it goes live
  • Does not make updates very often, a few times a year
  • Does not have a blog
  • When they do want to make a change or an update, they will often leverage the Digital Agent service team to help them
  • Does not take time to learn digital marketing or how to leverage Digital Agent better

2. Website Only (make updates but does not blog)

This group of advisors have a website and make frequent updates to it but do not have a blog. They like to update their website but feel they don’t have the time for maintaining and creating content for a blog.    

Habits and characteristics of a website only advisor:

  • Makes updates to their website
  • Leverages the service team to learn about digital marketing and Digital Agent
  • Does not see the value in having a blog
  • Curious about the basics of digital marketing and how they can get more traffic to their website

3.Passive advisor

A passive advisor is defined as an advisor who has a website that they update frequently and they also have a blog that they update 1-2 times a month. While they understand the value of having a blog, they have a hard time making it a priority in their day to day activities.

Habits and characteristics of a passive advisor:

  • Regularly makes updates to their websites
  • Adds content to their blog at least once a month
  • New blog content could be either original content written by the advisor or content created by the enterprise
  • Interested in learning digital marketing strategies and how they can apply to their website
  • Leverages the Digital Agent service team to learn and improve their website and blog

4.Active Advisor

Have 100% of advisors who are actively using Digital Agent is every enterprise’s goal. By leveraging the full capabilities of Digital Agent advisors will see results from their efforts. So what defines an active advisor? An active Digital Agent advisor is someone who regularly updates their websites and has a blog that new articles are posted to at least 5 times a month.

Habits and characteristics of an active advisor:

  • Regularly signs in makes updates and adds new blog content
  • Leverages the resources provided to them to increase their digital marketing knowledge and knowledge of Digital Agent
  • Treats their website as an important part of their overall personal branding and marketing strategy
  • Sets aside time on a consistent basis to improve and create content

By understanding these four personas and knowing which advisors fall into which categories, financial marketers can be better equipped to educate and train on the value of digital marketing and Digital Agent. When they have a better understanding of advisors can start to move towards the next personal level with more activity.