9 Ways M&A Advisors Can Increase Dealflow

So few companies, too many advisors! M&A is becoming increasingly competitive: brutal pitches, painfully long deal cycles and LPs who only get paid when the deal has been done.

Within this article, I’ll discuss how M&A advisors can:

Unless you’ve got an incredible team of superhero closers that hit targets quarter after quarter; succeeding in the M&A market is incredibly difficult.

Top-tier advisories take up a lot of the marketing noise, with big budgets, fancy videos, slick online and offline events and impressive PR. If you’re in the M&A sector, you know who they are. But what can your company do to improve competitiveness, increase deal flow and build your brand as a small-mid-sized M&A advisor?

Before I get into what you can do to increase M&A deal flow. Having delivered strategic marketing and delivery for a top European M&A advisory delivering a 300% increase in lead generation, increasing deal flow and bringing in key marketing techniques which I will share with you now.

Let’s Start With SEO

Marketers talk a lot about SEO, because it does work, Every employee name, successful tombstone and partner has a ‘digital cache’ within search engines. More pages that link to different topics within the M&A niche you specialise in give you a competitive edge. You should own page one of Google and other search engines for your specific area of focus.

Team Pages — With Book Meeting Embeds

If you have a wide number of expert partners within your organisation covering a range of industries like Semiconductors, Autotech, Medtech or Biotech, then create individual pages that relate back to why they’re unique and how they deliver for the client.

These team pages should include specific deals they’ve worked on, education, personal interests, social links and a 500-word synopsis of why they should choose them over the competition.

Everyone on your team, including the analysts, should get a page. Those in dealmaking roles should have meeting embeds.

Build M&A Market Report Landing Pages

For many M&A advisories, sector reports are essential to success. They showcase sector expertise, build trust among analysts, senior executives and founders and are essential for your top-of-funnel lead generation.

Hundreds of hours are spent researching, analysing and writing M&A reports. Once published, they sit gathering dust on your website or hidden away on a blog post, with one or two social media posts that you’ve released.

Creating targeted, highly shareable, SEO-able landing pages helps increase your market reports' awareness and reach and ROI per report.

Tombstone Success Pages

How proud were you when you got your first deal? Popping open the champagne when you successfully get a tombstone in the M&A industry is incredibly rewarding, even after your tenth. You know the deal happened, the team knows the deal happened, but apart from that one press release that went out about two years ago… no one knows!

Think about all the time that went into it, the endless due diligence and legal to-ing and fro-ing. Create a page that celebrates how you helped the customer, why they chose you as the partner and what impact it has had on their business.

Use all this knowledge, learning and experience as clout when a lead is on your website.

Guest Posting + PR

Getting to know journalists and editors is an important part of running an M&A business. Getting into The Wall Street Journal, The Financial Times, or Business Insider can dramatically boost your profile within your sector. Avoid being dull and have a solid hook to bring them to the table.

If you do nothing, nothing will happen!

Conversational Marketing

Pushing your prospective leads through carefully crafted chat flows can speed up your sales cycles by up to 50% allowing your team to deliver better initial consultations through higher quality lead qualification.

Pushing a visitor from a cold-lead to a warm-lead within a couple of minutes using some marketing automation and internal lead vetting methodologies, all with the aim of getting meetings booked with the sector principle that they need to talk to without the need to talk to the lead themselves.

Write Long-Form Article Content

Everyone on your team is an expert. They all know their individual sectors, they’re also likely to be multi-lingual from some of the finest universities in the world, so why not harness their expertise?

Investing in your content will increase your visibility on social media platforms, build your presence on search engines, create an engaged audience and drive sector-specific traffic to your website.

Regular Email Updates & Segmentation

Providing your newsletter is inbox-worthy is essential when it comes to email. Creating a narrative and sharing the successes will turn the tide when pitching for business.

Monthly / Quarterly Updates

Take stock of everything that is going on at the firm, such as deals, appointments, webinars, and reports. People want to see progress; they want to know who you’re doing business with, where you’re getting PR and how you are making your mark on the industry,

Segmentation for Key Sectors

Whether your focus is semiconductors, AI or Martech, segmentation brings highly targeted content to the specific niche that you focus on. Build credibility of your given sectors and put a human element with the sector expert framing the content.

Successful segmentation can deliver accelerated growth and make your business a market leader in your core sectors. Focus on one or two industries that will provide ROI as this can be a time-intensive exercise.

Planned Drip Campaigns

Drip campaigns are pre-planned emails that help to guide users through a journey. Within M&A they can help move a lead across the funnel. Share how the M&A process works, successful M&A transactions, team information, and anything else you think might add value to convince them that you’re the partner for them.

Advertising

When starting out, think about where your customers are. Within M&A, this is usually; LinkedIn and Google Search. These are channels where you have to be present on, whether you’re targeting keywords on Google or are running retargeting campaigns on LinkedIn.

These tools can scale your business, but it is essential to build the basics before paying for ads to improve conversion rates and ensure KPIs are being met.

How Long Before You See Results?

If you’re reading this, you know that M&A is an excruciating mix of due diligence, planning, negotiation and legal (a lot of legal).

Building the solid foundations of a marketing-sales revenue framework takes time. Realising ROI within M&A takes around two-six months to see significant pipeline improvements.

When starting marketing implementations within M&A it is essential to measure the following core KPIs:

We’d Love To Help YOU

If you’re an ambitious M&A advisory firm with the drive and ambition to close more deals. 

About The Author — Alex Lawford

I unlock the potential of your SME, startup or scale-up; building and scaling brands. I work directly with founders, CEOs and senior leadership teams to craft strategies, implement marketing and unlock opportunities utilising technology.

Alex Lawford

A strategy and marketing expert with proven experience delivering a complete marketing strategy from scratch. Over the past 5 years Alex has helped 3 business go from sub-£500k to £5m. Leading projects that drive lead generations, improve processes and generate sales.

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