December 16, 2021

How A Wealth Management Company Embraced Full Funnel Marketing To Drive $5 Billion in New Revenue: Five Keys to Success

By Brock Pernice
Co-Founder and Managing Partner
TrueVoice Growth Marketing™
LinkedIn Profile

Like many companies in highly regulated industries, financial services firms are embracing digital transformation and understand the imperative to implement full funnel growth marketing as a key driver for revenue growth, but many are still grappling with how to identify their best customers and synchronize the people, processes, and technologies necessary to convert them.  Utkarsh Patel, a 20-year industry veteran, experienced this challenge firsthand as Chief Digital and Marketing Officer at Wealth Enhancement Group (WEG), when he needed to drive $4 billion in organic growth in 2020.  He realized that by viewing digital transformation at WEG as a time of opportunity, not a time of fear, he could set up WEG for success in both the short and long term.

With that in mind, Utkarsh engaged TrueVoice Growth Marketing™ to unleash the full power of a highly efficient full funnel growth marketing process that is impactful, measurable, and profitable — leveraging every part of the journey, at every stage of the funnel, in real time – to build and optimize demand; increase and convert more qualified leads; and better retain and grow clients.

The ability to focus and drive success with full funnel growth marketing around five key areas transformed marketing into a revenue driver at WEG, resulting in $5 billion in new revenue -- $1 billion above target. In a recent TrueVoice webinar, Utkarsh discussed how TrueVoice’s revolutionary ACCESS – which is currently tracking more than 11 million high-net-worth individuals -- powered the five keys to success in full funnel growth marketing with Brock Pernice, Co-Founder and Managing Partner, and Mushter Moin, Director of the Growth Marketing Practice, at TrueVoice Growth Marketing™

The five keys to success are:

  1. Know your audience
  2. Analyze and align your operating model
  3. Measure across the funnel
  4. Test and learn
  5. Manage change

1. Know Your Audience

For any marketing effort to be successful, you need to understand your audience. And specifically, in a cookie-less world, a first-party data strategy becomes imperative.  But how do you define the audience?  How do you know where they are and what they want to consume?

Utkarsh: “With TrueVoice, we were able to tap into skill sets that we didn’t have in-house to better define our audience.  One thing we did not do successfully in the past was to have clearly defined personas.  We had these general personas that we would use for marketing, but it was really like throwing darts at a dartboard.  There was nothing precise about it.

“The work that TrueVoice did around personas was truly spectacular because we came out of the process with six distinct personas.  TrueVoice’s ACCESS gave us that understanding, immediately giving us a pool of 11.5 million qualified high-net worth investors, with investable assets of $500,000 or more.  This pool was not only within our geographies and fit within our demographics, but were hot leads that were consuming information about financial advisors, or retirement planning, or deferred compensation.

“We also gained the ability to understand exactly where they were looking for that information, what they were consuming, and this has allowed us to be specific in our targeted marketing.  Now, for the first time, we really knew our audience.”

2. Analyze and Align Your Operating Model

The funnel touches not only one organizational team, but multiple teams within an organization.  So how do you modify your operating model?  How do you align the people, processes, and technologies that need to be integrated to fully extract the value of a full funnel growth marketing approach?

Utkarsh: “To really be successful in full funnel growth marketing, you need to assess what needs to happen and then make the changes necessary from your operating model perspective.  We needed to align the organization and break down the silos between sales and marketing as well as the silos between the different pools of data.

“We were very siloed when it came to data. There was a data set within the IT organization, a data set within our CFO organization, and a data set within marketing.  So, if you needed to pull information, you basically had three sources of truth.  If someone wanted to spin what we were doing, they very well could because you could use data from the IT organization, or the former CFO, or from marketing.  And they certainly told a different story. 

“The idea was how do we get to a one single source of truth?  And then from an operational perspective, who owns the data?  I said if we are transforming the company from a digital perspective, then digital analytics needs to sit in my marketing organization so that we could be successful.”

3. Measure Across the Funnel

Once data has been consolidated in one place so everyone can see it, it then becomes necessary to create the appropriate dashboards and the appropriate communication channels.  What are you seeing?  What impact does it have on the business?  What recommendations can we make and what will they change?

Utkarsh: “All of the knowledge that TrueVoice brought to the table gave us the ability to leverage insight into activation. That has helped accelerate our capabilities into the measurement space and into the decision-making space a lot quicker than if we had to do it on our own. It's helped us optimize our campaign spend and our conversion rates. And as I pointed out, we've exceeded our goal by $1 billion dollars all because our marketing engine was working.

“As we got better at precisely targeting prospective prospects, we became more relevant to a larger, better defined, and higher quality pool of people.  What that really meant was that we were creating very specific personalized content for those groups.  We had the ability to understand their behavioral and psychographic information and their need state, which enabled us to create specific content that was the right message at the right time in the right place.”

4. Test and Learn

The adoption of a testing methodology brings a new-found level of agility to your marketing plan.  It sets the stage for real-time analysis of marketing and starts to build the muscle memory that leads to consistent success.

Utkarsh: “Measurement just fed into the whole test and learn methodology, giving us ability to go after these segments.  It gave us the ability to understand their behavioral and psychographic information and their need state.  The wrapper around this for success was TrueVoice’s test and learn methodology. It's something that we did not have in the past. 

“One of the things that the TrueVoice team brought to us was that success really must be built on a framework around test and learn.  If you're not measuring it correctly, and if you're not learning from it correctly, and if you're not making real-time decisions, and not making proactive decisions, it’s not going to work.  In the past, we were always reactive, we were always behind the eight ball, looking at month-over-month data or year-over-year data and then making reactive decisions.  Now, the team can do learnings in real-time and make decisions in real-time.  What it really did was it help us refine the channels that we needed to be in, it refined our media mix, and it helped us spend money in the right way in the right markets.”

5. Manage Change

Every learning comes with a certain understanding of the organizational changes that are needed to synchronize people, process, and technology and what role change management must play in applying a full funnel growth marketing approach.

Utkarsh: “To be successful in full funnel growth marketing, you need to see what needs to happen and what changes need to be made. So we aligned the organization, and we've made changes from an operating model perspective, we've broken down silos, we've moved teams into the marketing organization, and now we have a single source of truth when it comes to viewing data.

“Change is never easy, but it was something that needed to happen for us to be successful and to reach our revenue goal.  It also enabled me to report to the C suite precisely how we are performing as a company.”