Getting in front of new accredited investors is a huge challenge for companies looking to raise capital. From regulatory challenges to the simple fact that there’s a finite number of prospects, landing on a productive strategy seems impossible. A question we get all the time is whether or not online marketing strategies work. The short answer is yes, but it’s tough and what’s thought of as “traditional content marketing” is not the answer.
Instead, a more proactive, direct strategy is needed. One such strategy is paid LinkedIn marketing. Over the years, LinkedIn has emerged as a powerful tool to connect with highly targeted audiences, which can make it a good fit for “getting your word out” to high net worth investors and potential capital partners.
Here we take a look at a recent LinkedIn client campaign –– and six big lessons that can help set your Accredited Investor marketing efforts up for success.
LinkedIn Marketing Case Study – Filling “Digital Seats”
A real estate asset management company needed help driving registration to the live stream component of their annual investor event. Centered around commercial RE investing, the two-day conference was designed to educate and inform with multiple segments providing a deep dive into a variety of relevant topics. By live-streaming the event, the client hoped to leverage their hard work and planning to reach a new audience. Our goal was to fill “digital seats” by marketing the event to High Net Worth / Accredited Investors. To help meet this objective, we crafted and implemented the following paid campaign components:
- LinkedIn content campaigns
- LinkedIn InMail campaigns
- Google Ad campaigns
Given the difficulty of targeting elusive HNW/accredited investors, the campaign exceeded its goal of bringing in new prospects, doubling the internal target. It also helped shed light on tactics and approaches, which can be used to set the stage for future campaigns.
We’ll talk about Google Ads targeting HNW/Accredited Investors in a future post. For now, let’s take a look at the lessons learned from LinkedIn advertising.
Plan Ahead… But Not Too Far Ahead
People are busy and, yes, their calendars fill up fast. But it’s also hard to commit to something a month or more in advance, especially in business. This played out in real-time on LinkedIn –– the closer the event date, the more registrations received. The lesson learned? Create a sense of urgency while driving excitement. Plan to kick off your paid, event-specific campaigns no more than two weeks prior to the event date with multi-message A/B testing conducted that first week. Adjust quickly to focus budget on top performers. Organic posts teasing the upcoming event to your existing community can begin about six weeks beforehand.
Budget Dollars Wisely with a Specific Goal in Mind
According to LinkedIn, the average click-through rate is 0.025 percent. The average conversion rate for content ads is 2.74 percent. In our client’s case, we came in right at 2.75 percent. You can use these percentages to back into your budget: If you are aiming for 30 new prospects, you need to aim for 1,100 clicks, which means you need to aim for just over 4 million impressions. With this click target in mind, carefully monitor your click-through rates, upping budget as needed for more impressions, which ups your chance of hitting your numbers.
InMail was Cheap & Surprisingly Effective…To a Point
Sponsored InMail delivers personalized, private messages right to a target’s LinkedIn inboxes. Using LinkedIn’s audience-building tools, we micro-targeted high net worth investor groups. All told, the campaign spent under $500 on Sponsored InMail, which is a steal just on the brand-building/awareness-building front. That budget delivered:
- 1,609 impressions
- A whopping 50.78% click-through rate (CTR)
We attribute the CTR to highly targeted content to an audience hungry for information plus a strong call-to-action. Unfortunately, the campaign fell woefully short on conversions –– ONLY TWO?!?!?!? –– which leads us to the next lesson learned…
Landing Page Quality is Key
The most critical component of a landing page is making sign-up as easy as possible. Unfortunately, due to the client’s legacy website issues, we were unable to optimize the campaign’s registration process. Instead of being able to sign up directly on the landing page, the prospect had to click yet another “SIGN UP” link to even begin the registration process –– a big ask in any circumstance.
If You Offer Something of Value, People Will Sign Up to Get It
This isn’t really a lesson learned as it’s a cornerstone piece of online lead generation, but it bears repeating. If you offer quality content targeted to people who will benefit from knowing that content, those people will trade their contact information to get it. It certainly doesn’t have to be as complex or expensive as a Live Streamed event. Simple lead generators like How-to Guides or Checklists or “Listen in” Webinar Recordings are highly effective. Lead generators are campaign components that we absolutely love creating because they can impact our clients’ business-building efforts… big time.
Have a Follow Up Nurture Campaign in Place
The last “lesson,” again, isn’t a lesson –– it’s a necessity for effective sales. Studies show that companies with smart content marketing strategies enjoy 6x higher conversion rates than competitors who don’t. And email campaigns certainly count as content. According to marketing automation provider Marketo, 96% of visitors who come to your website aren’t ready to buy. This fact stresses the importance of 1) having a lead generator and 2) having a nurture campaign readily in place that can move your prospect along your sales funnel at the “speed of relationship.” Relationship-building is especially important for big-ticket asks –– like asking someone to entrust you with their investment dollars. But even if you’re selling $10 widgets, people tend to buy from companies they know and trust.
For our clients, we typically start with a 5-piece automated nurture campaign that includes a sales letter that, as its name suggests, ASKS for the sale. Then, we add new pieces as time and budgets allow to keep messages as fresh and timely as possible.
When it comes to Accredited Investors, the hard reality is they make up a tiny percentage of the population. The fact that very few of them “Google” for investment opportunities means you need a more proactive, direct approach for reaching, connecting, and building a relationship with them. As our recent experience shows, LinkedIn Marketing can work and we believe it’s something worth exploring to help expand your capital channel.