Money worries are universal. Internet users search for how to make more money, how to spend less money, and how to save for things they want. With so much interest, it makes sense that personal finance companies want to answer those search queries.
Content marketing is a powerful tool in the fight for online visibility. Successful content can:
- Educate the reader
- Build trust and authority
- Reach new audiences
On the other hand, unsuccessful content can, at minimum, be a waste of marketing dollars. At worst, it can land your company in legal and regulatory trouble.
Learn more about why content marketing for personal finance works and what mistakes you need to avoid.
The basics: Content marketing for personal finance
The primary goal of content marketing is to build brand awareness, establish credibility, and foster customer trust. Personal finance companies do this by freely distributing valuable, relevant, and informative content such as:
One aspect that separates personal finance content marketing from other financial markets is the reliance on free access. Personal finance is, well, personal. An average person at home will search for help with their budgets, and successful personal finance brands are answering those questions.
Mistakes to avoid in content marketing for personal finance
While every marketing program is unique, there are some common pitfalls personal finance companies should avoid.
Mistake 1: Not understanding your audience
Understanding your audience is crucial for all content marketing programs. But failing to do so when talking about finance can be a huge mistake.
Without a clear understanding of your audience, you won’t be able to address specific pain points and market appropriately. While, yes, almost everyone has or wants money, not everyone is a good fit for your product.
Example: Acorns writes content about long-term investments. They have opportunities to write about broader finance topics. The micro-investment company understands that its user base cares about investing and saving for retirement. Writing about debt payoff or credit scores does not speak to their core audience.
How to avoid it
The best way to avoid this mistake is to do your research. Common ways to build an audience profile include:
- Look at current audience demographics
- Survey current users
- Check website analytics
- Listen on social media
- Look at competitors
- Analyze your user base
Mistake 2: Neglecting personalization
A personalization strategy typically involves capturing and collecting data related to prospects and customers. Then, create an experience that builds connections with those customers using content.
Many companies think personalization means adding a name to an email, but personalization goes much deeper. Personal finance brands should consider browsing history, purchases, and other information. To create a customized journey for each customer.
How to avoid it
- Divide your audience into segments and create content tailored to these groups.
- Customize emails with user behavior.
- Set up triggers that deliver specific content based on user actions.
- Create interactive content like quizzes or assessments that provide personalized results.
- Target content based on the user’s geographical location.
Mistake 3: Ignoring SEO
Content marketing is a huge tactic for personal finance because people are searching for it. Search engine optimization (SEO) gets eyes on your website. Essential SEO strategies include keyword research, content creation and optimization, and link building.
Google also has more stringent requirements for content related to personal finance. In 2018, Google introduced the Medic update. Medic emphasized and focused on a website’s expertise, authority, and trustworthiness (E-A-T).
This update, sometimes called “Your Money, Your Life” or YMYL, impacted pages related to user well-being and happiness like:
How to avoid it
- Be transparent and show your sources.
- Spend time writing author bios for your blogs. Prove that you know your stuff.
- Write for the user, not the algorithm. E-A-T is a factor considered by real testers, not the Google bot. Google works with 16,000 Search Quality Raters who assess content.
- Always anchor content to keywords.
Mistake 4: Non-compliance with financial regulations
Personal finance is no joke. Companies that handle money or offer financial advice must adhere to strict regulatory standards. Writing personal finance content requires knowledge of compliance and regulations. Failing to adhere to regulations can lead to fines or worse.
Some of the key regulations that affect personal finance content marketing include:
Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB)
Enforces rules and regulations related to:
- Fair lending
- Truth in advertising
- Fair debt collection practices.
Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC)
Regulates the securities industry, including investment advisers and broker-dealers. To best avoid the issue, watch out for:
- Fraudulent claims
Federal Trade Commission (FTC)
Monitors advertising and marketing practices to ensure truthfulness and prevent deceptive claims.
Truth in Lending Act (TILA)
Requires lenders to disclose the terms and costs of credit in a clear and understandable manner.
How to avoid it
- Use professional writers with a knowledge of the finance industry and regulations.
- Be open and transparent in your communications.
- Consult compliance officers.
Mistake 5: Lack of continuous learning and optimization
Personal finance isn’t static. The economy, interest rates, and behavior all changes over time. That means your content shouldn’t remain static either.
If you’re busy creating new content, it may not seem worth your time to go back and update old posts. But there are many reasons updating blog posts is worth the effort. When you update blog posts, you ensure both Google and readers will continue to find your content relevant.
The personal finance industry is constantly changing. New products, services, regulations, and market trends emerge regularly. Continuous learning allows content marketers to stay updated with the latest developments. Doing so helps keep content relevant and accurate.
How to avoid it
- Stay on top of industry trends.
- Build content refreshes into your content calendar.
- Regularly audit content to remove outdated or inaccurate content.
Create successful personal finance content
Content marketing is a smart strategy for personal finance brands. A successful content strategy can drive website traffic, build brand authority and nurture user relationships. To set yourself up for success, be sure to:
- Keep SEO in mind
- Tailor content to your audience
- Follow regulatory guidelines
- Stay on top of trends and changes