6 Steps to Help Create Urgency with Prospects
Creating urgency with prospects is a crucial yet often overwhelming obstacle for many advisors. The problem is how to get prospects to act, rather than deliberate and how to react when a prospect says ‘I’ll get back to you’ or ‘I need to think about it’.
It’s essential to have a strategy in place for getting prospects off the fence – otherwise your business will go nowhere.
Here are some practical ways you can help initiate this process.
#1. Ask both open-ended and closed-ended questions
The first step when it comes to creating urgency with prospects is to get them to acknowledge that they have a need or reason to seek financial advice. You need to get them to see the big picture by asking open-ended questions to help them identify their objectives – and how you can help achieve them.
Some questions to ask could include: What are your goals? When you look into the future what do you envision? Do you see yourself enjoying a restful retirement where you don’t have to worry about money? Do you see your children going through college? How important is it that this happens? When is this likely to happen? And crucially – how are you going to fund this? What are the likely consequences if you don’t have a plan to fund these life events?
Once prospects have recognized a need for financial planning they will start to feel they should be doing something about it, which will increase the chances of them acting sooner rather than later.
#2. Build rapport and trust
Prospects are going to make an investment decision based on whether they like you, trust you and believe you can help them achieve their goals. They are not buying into products but into you as a person. So your primary focus is to build a good rapport with prospects by revealing your personality, your motivations and your true commitment to helping them.
The very worst thing you can do is come across as unauthentic. If you do, people will not feel inclined to buy your financial advice. Remember that prospects won’t respond to logic when making a decision to do business with you or not. They won’t evaluate the rational features of your financial advice and they won’t be overly interested in any factual details and statistics.
They won’t be asking to see your qualifications. They’re more likely to be observing your body language, your tone and your demeanor. Prospects will use their intuition before they give a verdict – which has nothing to do with logic.
As Steve Jobs said “people don’t buy what you do, they buy why you do it”.
#3. Listen to your prospects’ concerns
The less you talk the more you’ll command your prospects’ attention. The key to good conversation is to listen and make the conversation about your prospects as opposed to what you are selling. Keep prospects engaged and allow them to come to their own conclusions. Once you’ve uncovered your clients’ worries you can understand where you fit in in terms of solving their problems.
#4. Explain how you can solve prospects’ problem
This is your chance to articulate how you can help solve prospects’ particular pain points e.g. lack of funding for college fees or retirement. Make sure prospects can take away the fact that you can add value to their lives.
#5. Use metaphors and stories to connect with prospects
Use metaphors – like Warren Buffet – who was once asked about investing in a Bull market. He replied “A rising tide lifts all boats. It’s not until the tide goes out that you realize who’s swimming naked.“ Use stories, people love stories especially when they’re told well. This connects with the right, emotional part of the brain.
#6. Overcome objections
If you’ve attempted all the previous steps and still find prospects responding with “I don’t have the money right now” or “I’ll think it over and get back to you” then you can either take their objections at face value or dig deeper to find out what’s really bothering them. Fear may be preventing them from acting so deal with this directly by instilling into clients that it’s the right thing to do. Another thing to keep in mind is that people don’t buy what they don’t understand. If this is the case, repeat and clarify your message.
Turn their objections into questions that you can answer. Objections are definitive sentences that aren’t up for debate – you can’t respond to them directly – but you can answer questions.
“Do you trust me and like me and think what I’m saying makes sense to you? If the answer’s ‘yes’ then there’s every chance you’ve turned things around and created urgency.
By approaching prospects in the right way and practicing your soft skills you will be well placed to making sure clients see your financial advice as not just a ‘nice to have’ but a ‘need to have’.