Getting to Gamma in Your Business Blog

Although retired from my 27-year long career as financial planner, I continue to attend meetings of the Financial Planning Association.  I’m devoting this week’s Say It For You blog posts to concepts discussed at the most recent FPA meeting that I think are worth the attention of us Indianapolis blog writers.

Gamma is the third letter of the Greek alphabet, but, when it comes to investing, the term “gamma” has a very special meaning. “When it comes to generating retirement income,“
say Paul Kaplan and David Blanchett of Morningstar Investment Management, investors spend the most time and effort on: 

  • Alpha – selecting the money manager or mutual fund
  • Beta – choosing an asset allocation (how much to allocate to stocks, how much to bonds, etc.)

However, the Morningstar authors point out, gamma can be far more important when it comes to retirement income.  Gamma, they say, “presents a way to quantify the additional value that can be achieved by an individual investor from making more intelligent financial planning decisions.”

“It is every marketer’s goal to get inside the head of a consumer,” says Alek Flekel of business2Community, because, of course, you want to figure out how to get consumers to purchase your product or service.

In the online reader’s buying decision, the “alpha” stage consists of the consumer having a need or want and searching for a way to satisfy it. In a way, readers who arrive at your business blog have already “drunk the the Kool-Aid”. They already have an interest in your topic and are ready to receive the information, the services, and the products you have to offer.

The beta “stage” consists of the reader investigating what you have to offer in the category in which they’re already interested. Do you, in fact, offer the type of product or service for which they were searching?  Is the price range within their reach and in accordance with their expectations? Do they get the impression that you have experience helping consumers just like them solve problems and satisfy needs?

Gamma goes well beyond alpha and beta. Since the goal for every marketer, as Flekel reminds us, is not to sell to many one-time customer but to build a community of repeating, lifetime customers, it’s crucial that readers get a sense of your “gamma” through your business blog.

Write from your passion! The big advantage of blogs is that they’re personal. The business owners’  or practitioner’s personality and character need to be revealed.  A blog must unmistakably demonstrate to online readers that, in this business or practice, they’ve found the “real deal” Gamma factor!

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