Let’s assume you are RDR ready. That you are running a good business with the clients you have chosen. All you need now is a slow, steady trickle of the right kind of new clients.
Time to reflect
Get yourself in a winning mindset. Start by looking at your business through a potential client’s eyes.
Transport yourself out of your office and then walk back in looking at everything as if you were a very wealthy potential new client.
Create your own ‘good enough’/ ‘great’/ ‘wow, love it!’ index and see how you score.
- Start with your name on the door
- Your logo
- The quality of your offices and ‘wash rooms’
- Your meeting facilities
- Use of technology
- Your stationery, how does your business card feel as you touch it again for the first time?
- The tools you use in your first meeting
- Work your way through the whole client engagement process
- And then, review all the client touch points you have through out the year.
Is it wow! or is it just mediocre?
Plan what needs to change and how you are going to change it.
Now, look at your website
But, before you do, surf a little. Look at some other sites first. Imagine where your wealthiest client will be looking. Timberland. Goldman Sachs. Waitrose. Apple. BBC.
How do you match up?
Is your call to action clear?
Next step. Ask your clients what they think about you
Not just from a ‘treating your clients fairly’ point of view but from a business development, forward thinking point of view.
Set up meetings with your top 10
The spoken purpose of the meeting is to ask for help in evolving your business.Your client is a paid up member and their opinions count.
Your inner purpose is to
- Gain a deeper insight about how your key clients feel about what they are getting
- Understand how much they value your service and, how they may describe it
- Learn how you may be able to expand and evolve your service to meet their changing needs in the next 2 – 3 years
- Explore how they think you should be marketing or engaging with people just like them
- Strengthen your relationship. Make it peer to peer rather than adviser to client
- Really understand what you do well, what you do not do so well.
Such a conversation can lead to unexpected rewards.
There is a lovely example of such rewards cited by Steve Moeller in his book ‘Effort-less Marketing for Financial Advisors’
… Adviser Jim was interviewing a client he had worked with for eight years. He had gone to college with the client’s son and was almost part of the family. He had asked for referrals, but the client had always been reluctant.
During the business development client interview, Adviser Jim asked the client about his motivations, challenges and concerns, and any areas in which he thought an adviser could help.
In time, Jim felt able to ask a killer question:
“Knowing what you know, if you were me, how would you market to people like you?”
Much to Adviser Jim’s surprise, his client said:
“I would ask your best clients for referrals”
So Adviser Jim did, to which the further response came:
“I belong to one of the finest country clubs in this city. I know many members personally. What if I went through the list and told you who could benefit most from your service?”
Three months later, Adviser Jim had the best month of his life, Adviser Jim made $100,000 from the referrals of a single interview.
So why did Adviser Jim’s old family friend client suddenly decide to open his address book to Jim?
The interview process changed his client’s perception of him. The client now saw Jim as a competent, compassionate advisor who understood his clients and had empathy for their problems. Jim proved himself to be client-centred by listening to and involving the client in what he was trying to do, the client responded by helping Jim to build his business.
It really does start with your clients.