By Jason Mendelson, Managing Director of IntaCapital Swiss UK
With thousands of unregulated commercial brokers in the UK alone, how do investors find a good broker in today’s market? Jason Mendelson, Managing Director of IntaCapital Swiss plc, a UK regulated funded solutions provider tells us what he thinks investors should look for when choosing a finance broker.
Looking for a broker can be hard especially in a market where many of the lending activities fall outside of regulation and therefore there is no requirement for a regulated broker. However, at IntaCapital Swiss working with the National Association of Commercial Finance Brokers (NACFB) we are beginning to formulate some guidance for those looking to engage a broker.
There will always be a demand, but there is currently little consistent supply
There will always be a need for finance, a need to build a strong economy regardless of the political or economic market. There may be a hiatus at times with Brexit fears but whatever happens, businesses will still need cash and funding.
Although we believe that there will always be a demand for finance, we want to ensure there is a credible, and consistent, supply of brokers and providers. To build a strong economy we need a credible pathway for those looking to invest, of companies who can give them options for the best financial solutions for their investment and those who can provide robust investment opportunities.
Always choose a broker or introducer that is regulated, or registered with a regulated body
Joining an association or body is a clear message that you adhere to certain standards and codes of practice. This is one reason why at IntaCapital Swiss we have welcomed this move towards regulation and have taken the steps to register ourselves with the National Association of Commercial Financial Brokers in the UK. At the NACFB each member, regardless of their regulated status is measured against the NACFB’s minimum standards. This has led to a dramatic increase in FCA regulated brokers in the commercial space, highlighting the fact that brokers are aiming to meet standards, to do the right thing, maintain a robust compliance framework alongside demonstrable ethics and cultures.
However, it is not as clear-cut as some might think and it is important to understand that there are brokers who only deal with clients who are currently unregulated. A good example is where the borrower is a limited company. If the broker only works in this space, there is evidence to suggest that even if the broker applies for FCA permissions they will not be granted because they are not required.
It is therefore not as simple as saying deal only with a regulated broker for the best and safest service. Let us also appreciate that the client is unlikely to know the subtleties of FCA permissions. They just want some help sourcing commercial finance from a knowledgeable and trusted person. However, it is worth noting that if your broker is regulated they will need to clearly define their strategies and continue with their obligation to be regulated.
Being regulated not only helps protect the investor but also offers a level of comfort to the broker.
All regulated brokers go through a rigorous induction process that helps them understand their commitments and standards of practice. It is also likely that joining an association such as the NACFB they will hold a data protection licence and public liability insurance, which will protect not only their clients, but their own company too.
It also means that if your broker is regulated or registered with an association they will have a network of other professionals beside them to collaborate and collectively understand the nuances and complexities of the market they are working within, even though they might be working alone.
Regulated brokers tend to be the chosen partners for other financial institutions
Regulated brokers will also be more likely to be part of a network of bankers, lenders and other financial institutions as a general rule of thumb, only regulated brokers offer whole market advice and therefore tend to be the chosen partners for others in the financial sector.
Over recent years as the mortgage arena started to become regulated, the commercial sector has changed dramatically with various high street bankers having to restructure and the typical bank manager disappearing. The usual high street brand you would expect to see RBS, Natwest, Barclays, HSBC and Lloyds are now keen to collaborate with authorised brokers and work collaboratively.
Again the broker will have to go through a vetting process by each bank to be approved to be on the banks panel. The broker will also be remunerated by the banker, which will have a knock on benefit for the borrower as this can be offset against the broker’s charges that the client would normally pay.
Less inherent risks
As a result there are likely to be more inherent risks for customers who deal with non-regulated brokers who are not authorised and therefore not bound by quality control standards laid down by the regulator. For those whose scope of work are not covered by regulated bodies, look at examples from the NACFB’s Unregulated Business Members Practice Policy that brings a level of reassurance that the company is looking to adhere to good practice.
Look at the broker’s reputation and history
You have every right to ask about your broker’s history and reputation before you entrust them to work on your behalf. Check how long they have been established, how long they have been members of a regulated body or registered with industry associations. Ask what other clients they have and in what sectors and industries. Although they shouldn’t be able to give you details and information about specific deals they have undertaken on behalf of other clients, they should be able to advise on certain sectors and be able to prove that they understand the market you operate in.
Ask for transparency, especially when it comes to charges
Making sure you get the best charges is always going to be key to working with any broker. However, like in any industry, the cheapest doesn’t always equate with the best deal. Ensuring that you get the best outcome for you or your business means looking at the right charge and exploring exactly what you get for that charge. Ask for the details and only use brokers that will give you transparency about their charges. At IntaCapital Swiss we always provide our clients and customers with full advance terms and conditions to ensure that all charges and fees are agreed upfront. It is also worth noting that if you opt to use an unregulated broker, you have no recourse if you are badly advised or charged extortionate fees.
The key for the investor is to find a broker who has their best interests at heart and who is trusted to act in a way that delivers the best outcomes for them.
The internet has set up brands at every corner of the street and getting people to visit yours is a mix of skill and art. The attempts to layout customer roadmaps to your brand which aren’t abandoned are not new and the struggles are the same as before. In fact, the struggle to have your brand heard has piled up as competition keeps emerging and viewer attention span keeps getting fragmented. This has led to a surge in brands using conventional advertisements to highly compress their message to the audience.
This is not the best gameplan to bet on. Ads are perceived by many as intrusive, insincere and housing an ulterior motive. The audience is bombarded with ads from every angle and making it shorter does not really help. Most people don’t react the same way to guest posting.
A guest post is a piece of brand journalism which lives on a publisher’s website. Sponsored posts are an advertorial piece of long-form writing that is created to be highly engaging. They avoid the intrusive and abrupt conventional-approach of ads and indulge in a more respectful and subtle modern-approach for recommending your services or products.
Choosing the right platforms to publish your guest post is crucial as the platform is seen as your partner and representative. Your chosen platform must balance between writing a blog post and a traditional advertisement, stray away from being intrusive and stick with being subtle and respectful. At Global Banking and Finance (GBAF), we offer the opportunity to bank on our decade-long experience and expertise in writing balanced content like this.
How Can Guest Posts on GBAF Help You?
Constantly investing time and effort into writing and publishing on your blog is great for fostering and strengthening your already existing audience relationship but this doesn’t help you reach a new audience.
Guest posting opportunities on our platform gives you access to an untapped audience base. This is a significant advantage in two ways:
- Familiarity: We have built our audience through our authentic, thought-provoking and storytelling writing nature. Our audience is familiar and receptive to this writing style. When we adapt your content in the same format, it allows your content to have better reception compared to traditional ads. Also, your content will adapt to the environment of content which makes it feel natural and less abrupt or intrusive.
- Trust: When a consumer learns about your brand through someone they trust (someone like a renowned brand, friend, some industry authority, etc), they are more likely to trust you, too. Our audience’s trust means a chance for your brand’s voice to be heard. It also means having customers who have completed their journey of brand choice. When they choose you, it will be an additional choice of transition from our platform rather than a new choice of approaching you. They only have to go half-way.
With amplified brand reach and redefined trust, your brand visibility and credibility will be boosted. We also help you boost visibility by leveraging our social media channels which currently have 135k followers and keep growing every day.
Another major area of impact when doing guest posts with GBAF is the focus, delivery and expertise of writing. The audience members will engage with your content much more than they do with your traditional ads. This will increase the chances of convincing the customers who doubt, skepticize and speculate becoming customers of your brand from afar. Writing to deliver your promotion with value-driven content also allows you to plug in a recommendation at a crucial point of the problem with your brand as the solution.
Lastly, value-driven content avoids the intrusive BUY THIS! style of writing. Here, the focus is on communicating your knowledge and therefore allows you to establish yourself as a thought-leader in your niche.
All of these combined benefits act as a catalyst to boost your brand reach, funnel attention to your brand, gain a competitive advantage and knock down all other challenges presented in separating yourself from your competition.
Brand adoption is slow. Abandoning an old familiar brand route for a new one is difficult. People rarely reach out to brands and they sprint the other way if they see brands reach out to them through conventional and dull ads. In such a deadlock scenario guest posts can provide the perfect strategy to bet on.
Why Guest Posting is Your Best Bet
In a scenario where new businesses are popping up everyday, one of the major challenges brands face is that of devising an organic and effective way to get the attention of their target audience. And one of the first solutions that comes to mind is the internet and consecutively, digital marketing. Even though its all-pervasive nature has made it both super-easy to reach people across the globe, the internet also comes with its own set of challenges. In this article, we will discuss the tough-to-crack parts of digital marketing, things that almost every brand representative or marketing executive has to face in the present date.
The oversimplification of digital communication has deceived many brands into believing that it’s the only way to reach their audience. However, the reality is hardly so. Today, there are more platforms and media formats than there have ever been before and newer ones keep emerging everyday. As a result, the netizens have developed a rapidly decreasing attention span. As a result, brands are wrestling to fit their message into as tiny a space as possible in what can only be called conventional methods of advertising.
For many brands, digital marketing proves to be an ordeal that takes years to crack, all the while draining the brand’s potential for more business and/or larger reach. It is worth noting that one of the major challenges that most businesses face is that of people avoiding ads altogether; no matter how good your ad is, chances are that people don’t want to see it, resulting in zero engagement. The second and bigger challenge is that short messages don’t convert those who are unaware of your brand, to brand loyalists. Instead, these ads are likely to affect only those who are already considering buying into what your brand is offering, which might be a small share.
This is where Global Banking & Finance Review (GBAF) comes in. We offer you the opportunity to overcome both the challenges (and more) in one go through our guest post services.
Guest Posts Have An Edge Over Normative Advertisements
Guest posts are advertorial pieces of long-form writing, created with an aim to engage the audience by taking away the impression of normative ads. How? Sponsored posting articles are so designed that they address the audience’s demands or queries, and also offer your brand as a solution instead of point-blank marketing. Consequently, this makes the audience spend a longer time engaging with your brand than they would do with, say, a pop-up ad. Through a guest blog post, your brand has the space to engage in a fair exchange because the article delivers value to your audience rather than being a conventional sales-driven advertisement.
To sum it up, sponsored posts fall right on the sweet spot between a blog post and a traditional advertisement on the spectrum of advertising.
Here’s Why You Should Run Guest Posts on GBAF
At GBAF, our team understands the importance of the environment in which your brand is introduced to an audience, something that leaves a lasting impact on their minds. It goes without saying that this very impression will influence and drive their future decisions on whether they want to engage with your brand and buy what you’re selling. Hence, it is our staff that is usually responsible for writing the posts that go up for your brand on our website. This allows for the sponsored post to merge in seamlessly with the existing content in our website instead of sticking out like a sore thumb. The aim in doing so is to create these posts in a way that does not distract or seem abrupt as guest posts are meant to be adaptive to an existing environment. So, even though it is essentially promoting your brand, a sponsored post is more of a brand journalism piece than an ad.
On our platform, we understand the importance readers attach to authenticity and value. This also allows GBAF to have a firm grip on introducing your brand effectively while simultaneously catering to the audience’s needs. Our team works around the clock to gain our audience’s trust by continually delivering authentic and value-driven content to our readers for more than a decade. When you partner with us, that resource pool is easy to tp into. When a consumer learns about your brand through a reliable source (for instance, someone like a renowned brand, friend, some industry authority, etc), they are more likely to trust you, too.
Why You Need to Take Guest Posting Seriously
When customers are largely in control of marketing conversations, traditional advertisement has lost its touch. How you educate your prospects and out-educate your competitors now win the battle and generate leads.
If you’re the spokesperson of a brand or if it is your job to tell a story that your customers care about, you know how important it is to be generous, to share your ideas on a platform that promotes storytelling, and to position your brand as the most trusted partner for your customers.
The challenge with quick, easy micro-copy is that it fails to make an impact. It’s like a quick-fix that we try to use in everything we do. However, quick-fixes don’t heal a burning pain-point. A thoughtful, easy-to-read, user-friendly guide does.
At Global Banking & Finance Review (GBAF), we help you help your customers. Here’s how.
Guest Posting: How it Works
Guest posting is the art of telling your story to your audience without shoving it down their throats. It’s not an advertisement, but a thought-leadership content piece that educates & promotes your brand to your target audience without interrupting them.
- Our editorial team works your content piece to present your brand on our website
- The sponsored articles adhere to the context, the tone, the voice of your brand and represent it in the way you’d like to portray to your audience
- The content piece is lucidly written and only does one job, i.e. educating your audience
- The piece is long-form of content that allows your target audience to engage with your brand longer (much more than an advertisement)
- It doesn’t distract, interrupt, or intrude the audience
- Sponsored posts are designed and articulated to solve the audience’s pain-point and showcase your brand as a solution-provider
Why Should You Run Guest Posts on GBAF?
GBAF is a platform that garners a community of over 135,000. Here are four reasons for which you should run guest posts on GBAF:
- We help you increase the engagement with your audience: We don’t depend on surveys to understand what your target audience wants. For the last ten years, we have been serving various kinds of readers. And we know them personally. Thus, we know how to place your content to increase engagement.
- We put your audience ahead of the marketing funnel: When you run an ad, you start from scratch. And as a result, the first step is always to start with the beginning of the marketing funnel. When you publish a guest post on our platform, your target audience already begins to trust you since we’ve put years of work in building the community.
- We help you generate leads: An ad is interruptive. When you submit a guest post on GBAF, it teaches instead. And directs the audience to take action. As a result, you generate more leads. In this era of marketing, the brand that educates better, profits more.
- We offer you cost-effective solutions: When you run sponsored articles on GBAF, you’re in charge of your budget. You decide how much you’d like to spend per month. And we support you with cost-effective solutions backed up with the results so that you can calculate your ROI upfront.
How to Submit a Guest Post on GBAF
- Check categories:
- B2B: CSR, Green Tech, AI & Big Data, Ongoing Training for Employees, Manufacturing
- B2C: Travel Destinations, Trends on Buying a Home, Working Remotely, Electronics
- Follow guidelines:
- Format: Word format
- Send at: [email protected] (or use this page to submit a guest post)
- Length: 750 – 1000 words
- Image: We need an image of the author (specifications: width – 800 px. & heigh – 600 px.) with original credits
- Additional requirements:
- Author Bio: Provide an author bio (name, title, affiliation, bio, and contact). You can add a link
- Profile: Give a brief overview of the company, key information about the company, major projects, certifications, and company logo. Please submit the profile in word format
We review your submission and if it adheres to our submission guidelines and quality standards, we will connect with you before publishing the article.
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