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Marketing White Paper

Marketing Principes to to Grow your Practice

Professional advisors who focus on building supportive relationships with prospective clients will be able to prosper, even during challenging economic times. Investors will choose to work
with advisors they trust, regardless of market conditions.

On the other hand, professional advisors who concentrate primarily on getting quick sales and growing their own businesses will suffer.

Times have changed, and firms that close their minds to these new realities risk closing their doors.

Marketing Principles for Building Your Business

Listen more; talk less.
Before you begin pitching your firm and its services, ask prospective clients about their needs, concerns, and goals. Seek to understand before you seek to persuade. By so doing, you will be
better able to serve them, and you will establish a level of trust that will inspire them to do business with you.

Below are a few questions you might want to ask at the start of your first face-to-face meeting:
• What are the top three areas of importance to you in an advisory relationship?
• What are your concerns about starting a relationship with someone new?
• What are your biggest short-term and long-term fears about the service?
• How have these fears changed in the past year or so?
• Why are you asking for help now?
• What worked with your past situation? What didn’t work?

Ask probing questions. Demonstrate to prospects from the beginning that you’re focused on their needs, not yours. Understand their concerns and goals so you can more
effectively address them.

Be willing to invest time in building relationships.
In today’s tumultuous economic climate, a one-hour meeting with a potential client is not sufficient to build the level of trust required to foster a mutually beneficial, long-term relationships. The expectations of clients have changed, and the expectations of advisors must change accordingly.

To consistently win new business, advisors need to treat all client interactions as opportunities to foster trust, rather than merely as steps to rush through on the way to closing sales. They must
focus on building relationships first, and on building their own businesses second.

The care and patience you exhibit during the sales process will determine how quickly trust is established. Professional advisors who seek to understand the needs of prospects and deliver custom
solutions that meet those needs will succeed. Those who use the sales process primarily to promote their firm and its services will not.

When the key value proposition is low fees, the pricing structure of the advisor generated leads, but it do not permit to invest the necessary time with prospects to build trust and convince them that the adviser can address the client´s goals.

I is better to clearly and succinctly explain the business approach, and having meetings with a two-way dialogue in which the client is encouraged to ask as many questions as possible. With patient, thorough responses to the client´s questions during multiple meetings. So, don’t rush through the sales process. It’s a critical period in which you must invest time to win the confidence of investors.

Principle # 3: Clearly communicate your business approach.
Transparency builds trust. While there’s a limit to the amount of detail a prospect can absorb, you do need to communicate at least the following:
• Your overall service philosophy
• Your process for serving the client.

Clients do not like surprises. Following through on your promises builds trust. Information promotes understanding, which in turn promotes trust. Prospects who understand and feel
comfortable with your approach will be more inclined to work with you.

Explain the most important elements of your service model.
Many professional advisors fail to adequately describe one of the most important elements of their service model: communication.
Take the time to explain how your firm communicates with clients, so your prospects will know what to expect. Then deliver communications as promised, so your clients learn that they can rely on you.

Tell prospects about the important aspects of your communication service, such as the following:
• Frequency and purpose of face-to-face meetings and phone calls
• How your firm stays on top of client needs and concerns
• How you utilize the particular backgrounds and expertise of your team members to support the client experience
• How you provide timely reports and analyses of performance
• How you provide information

Service is more broadly defined today than in the past. It’s all about communication, which has a tremendous impact on the overall client experience you deliver.

Use a multiple-step proposal-review process to close the deal.
To ensure that your sales process builds momentum and concludes positively, schedule the following contacts with your prospect:
• Prior to sending the proposal, call to tell your prospect that the proposal is on its way.
Briefly explain its key elements so the prospect will know how to review it intelligently.
Schedule an initial review meeting or phone call when you will discuss the proposal in detail. Encourage the prospect to develop a set of questions for that scheduled call or meeting.
• During the initial proposal-review call or meeting, encourage the prospect to ask all questions and offer all comments that come to mind. This information will allow you to refine your plan and tailor it to fit the prospect’s needs. Schedule a follow-up call or meeting with ample time to review your modified proposal in detail.
• During the follow-up proposal-review meeting, present a modified plan that demonstrates that you have listened and responded to your prospect’s needs. Address all questions and concerns and close the sale.

Recognize that process is important from the opening act all the way through to the final standing ovation. Use a multiple-step review process to build sales momentum and gather the information you need to deliver a custom solution that will convince the prospect to do business with you.

If you’re accustomed to sprinting through the sales process, these principals may seem more like a marathon. To implement them effectively, you will need to slow down and concentrate more on serving than selling.