How Brokers Can Succeed in 2019 – Guest Post

Maria Nikolova

Charlotte Day takes a closer look at the challenges brokers in the financial services sector are expected to face in the coming year.

The following is a guest article by Charlotte Day, Contentworks.

As we prepare to bid adieu to 2018, we must first take lessons from the year’s economic upheavals, so that in 2019, we are equipped to tackle challenges. Brokers in the financial services sector are expected to face several challenges in the coming year. In addition to the usual change in laws and regulations, they must now look at various marketing challenges.

Challenges for Financial Brokerages in 2019

For starters, 2018 brought new regulatory frameworks. The MiFID II directive and GDPR guidelines have placed special emphasis on transparent and consistent content marketing, for the benefit of the common investor. These European legislative reforms have had global ramifications.

Next, the increasing possibility of a “no-deal” Brexit looms large. On March 29, 2019, as the UK leaves the single-trade zone of the EU, laws will change and so too will the ease of doing business. Brokerages in both the EU27 and the UK will have to re-shape their communication strategies, in order to survive and stay relevant to their existing client base. Overall, these are the prominent challenges that financial companies will face in 2019. Let’s look at the impact.

  • The Cost of Compliance

With increases in regulations, the cost of compliance and complexities of financial reporting will increase. This will be a challenge for multi-jurisdictional brokerage firms. It will also place a heavier emphasis on streamlined content and social media that requires minimal intervention.

  • Getting Ready for ICAAP/ILAAP

The ECB’s internal capital adequacy assessment process (ICAAP) and internal liquidity adequacy assessment process (ILAAP) will begin in 2019. Manual and time-intensive processes will make this an error-prone activity.

  • Tackling SFTR Regulations

The Securities Financing Transaction Regulation (SFTR) by the EU will be enforced from Q2 2019. It will be necessary for brokerages to understand the implications of these laws, to avoid reporting errors.

  • Post-Brexit Effect

Uncertainty looms large as Brexit draws ever closer. Global financial brands with headquarters in the UK, may relocate to the EU27, resulting in resetting of the entire framework. Physical infrastructure, human resources and moving operations will pose serious challenges. Based on these challenges, brokers need a strategy to facilitate smooth marketing activities. They also need to be talking about Brexit on their social channels as this will impact their customers.

2019 Marketing Tips

  • Re-Assess Objectives and Goals

Brokers need to reassess their KPIs and USPs, before drafting a marketing strategy. It’s necessary to highlight what makes your business stand apart from the crowd, whether it is strong customer services, unique products or new technologies. Based on that, a strategy document must be created, so that distractions throughout the year don’t divert from your company’s goals and vision.

This also includes identification of your target group. Which demographic are you providing your financial services to? Check out the demographics and stats of this sector, and then craft your campaigns accordingly.

  • Marketing Budget and Channels

Identify your current marketing channels and evaluate the ROI generated by them. For example, are your social media posts garnering enough engagement? Are your Medium blog articles driving traffic to your site? Which channel brings the largest number of clients to your website? Have you invested enough in content marketing for SEO? Keyword research is a critical part of SEO. Check which keywords are trending for your domain. Are online activities, rather than conferences and summits where your core business lies? So many questions but essential ones.

Based on analytic reports on various marketing channels, the budget for 2019 must be decided. Many companies make the mistake of thinking that re-doubling efforts on poorly-performing marketing channels could lead to positive results in the future. Remember, based on your findings, the budget will vary. For example, Google Ad spending is costlier than many other forms of digital marketing. There are also ad restrictions across the main digital channels for FX and crypto products. These will need to be factored into your strategy.

  • Evaluation of Your Current Marketing Team

Who’s in your team, do you need additional resources and are your team members in the right roles? A marketing team in the finance sector requires all cogs to be turning smoothly and effectively. 2019 is going to require top notch content marketing and in the finance sector this means campaigns, eBooks, whitepapers, analysis and blogging. This is not one person. Consider outsourcing your content marketing activities. This will help save time and budget plus hit all the content marketing needs your brand has.

  • Keep Tabs on Changing Rules and Regulations

The latest ESMA regulations provide licensing guidelines; from upping the capital requirements of forex brokerage firms to decreasing the leverage that can be offered to clients. Make sure that your content marketing team is aware of all the rules, so that they can efficiently communicate with customers. The MiFID II guidelines have now made it mandatory for every EU-licensed firm to include risk disclosures on their websites. Content on any channel must be transparent, not to mention honest and realistic. Focus on investor education, eBooks, podcasts, webinars and blogging.

Speak to the Contentworks team now to kick start your 2019 marketing plans.

Disclaimer: The content of this article does not necessarily reflect the views of the FinanceFeeds’ team. FinanceFeeds does not provide investment advice.

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