In this category you will find blog posts about clients relationship management – including but not limited to establishing trust, building a relationship, ending an advisor-client relationship, and more.

For Clients Expecting 5-Star Service, Exceptional Communications Is Not Enough—Proactive Communication Is the New Standard

For Clients Expecting 5-Star Service, Proactive Communication Is the New Standard

Top financial advisors understand that superior client communications are paramount to building a successful practice. That is supported by a widely published survey by Financial Advisor Magazine, revealing that 72% of clients cite poor client communications as the number one reason they leave their financial advisor.

If 72% of clients expect exceptional client communications as a condition for staying with an advisor, it’s no longer a differentiator—it’s merely table stakes for advisors who hope to compete for their business. So how can financial advisors who do focus on elevating the client communications game stand out to clients with higher expectations of what five-star service should look like?

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Prospect Engagement Strategy for Creating Reasons to Call

I often hear from financial advisors who, for various reasons, are reluctant to contact prospects who remain in their pipeline. Many are hesitant to pick up the phone because they don’t feel they have anything new to offer, which, in their minds, would amount to an untimely interruption or even an annoyance. Best to avoid calling them, right?

That’s a quandary because if you want to increase prospect engagement with the hopes of moving them out of the pipeline, you actually have to engage them. It is also problematic because, as successful advisors know, prospects’ needs change over time, and the only way to win their business is to be in the right place at the right time, with the right message. That can’t happen if you avoid the calls.

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5 Things Prospects Need to Know About You from the First Meeting

5 Things Prospects Need to Know About You from the First Meeting

Every initial meeting with a prospect is crucial. It took a lot to get them to finally agree to meet with you, and, in most cases, you only have one shot at making the right impression. If a prospect leaves the meeting still wanting critical information, you will not likely see them again. So, you carefully craft your initial meeting to ensure you check all the boxes, including:

– Your background and experience
– Understand your prospect’s needs and concerns
– Your process
– Your firm’s strengths and why you’re different
– Customer service expectations
– How you get paid
– Next Steps

As far as key information your prospect needs, that covers all the bases. It should also give you plenty of opportunities to demonstrate your competence and capacity to address your prospect’s needs and concerns.

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What Advisors Need to Do to Help Set Client Goals

What Advisors Need to Do to Help Set Client Goals

According to a Morningstar study, what clients want most from their financial advisors is to help them reach their financial goals. That should be good news for financial advisors because, generally, people with clearly defined goals and ambitions for the future have the conviction to adhere to a long-term plan to achieve them.

However, it could also spell disaster for advisors who fall short in helping their clients articulate their most important goals and fail to gain their commitment to achieving them. To inspire action, client goals must be well-defined and quantifiable with genuine intrinsic value. Anything less is a hopeful aspiration, and hope is not a strategy.

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How to Provide the Level of Service Clients Will Talk About

How to Provide the Level of Service Your Clients Will Talk About

By now, financial advisors with any ambition of success know that the only way to stand out in a vast sea of sameness is by providing an extraordinary customer experience—one that can turn your clients into stark raving fans. To do anything less relegates you to the ranks of every other advisor who prides themselves on providing “excellent service” to their clients. “Excellence” is now a minimum expectation of clients who have been raising the bar for advisors for the last decade.

So, what is an extraordinary client experience, and how can advisors consistently deliver it? The challenge for advisors is there is no standardization for delivering superior client service. One client is different from the next in how they view the level of service provided. The level of communication and engagement that suits one type of client may fall short for another type.

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The Fee Discussion: It’s Not the Fees That Bother Clients. It’s the Mystery Surrounding Them

The Fee Discussion: It’s Not the Fees That Bother Clients. It’s the Mystery Surrounding Them

For many advisors, discussing fees with their clients is about as comfortable as going to the dentist. They know they have to do it, but they’d much rather be doing something else. Why is that? Is it because they don’t feel their fees are justified? Are they afraid the client will balk at them? Are they concerned they will ruin the rapport they built up to that point?

It may come as a surprise to advisors, but clients expect to talk about fees. In fact, for most clients, it’s not the fees that bother them; it’s the mystery surrounding them when they don’t get the whole story. Some clients have a hard time understanding how fees work, which makes them feel uncomfortable. But they feel worse and may presume the worst when they don’t feel they’ve received all the information.

The fee discussion is a pivotal moment in the process and can set the tone for the relationship going forward. It’s also an opportunity to differentiate yourself if you do it right. That’s why it’s essential that advisors be well-prepared with a practiced presentation and the confidence to deliver it with the highest degree of transparency and professionalism.

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How to Build Immediate Personal Connections Naturally

How to Build Immediate Personal Connections Naturally

Gaining the trust of a prospective client is an absolute must if the relationship is to amount to anything. Plain and simple, people don’t do business with financial advisors if they don’t trust them. Building that kind of trust can take time, but successful advisors know how to accelerate the process—by first establishing a connection, which can be done when first meeting with a prospect.

If you think back on all your relationships—personal and professional—you’re likely to find that your best and closest relationships started with an instant personal connection. Something just clicked between the two of you that allowed you to lower your guard and open up to one another.

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Nail the First Meeting with a Prospective Client: Address What Your Prospects Want to Know

Nail the First Meeting with a Prospective Client - Address What Your Prospects Want to Know

It takes a lot of time, patience, and effort to move a prospect through the funnel to the point when they finally agree to meet with you. For every prospect that makes it that far probably six to nine fall by the wayside. That makes that first meeting ever so crucial. There’s a lot that must be accomplished. It has to go perfectly. There’s a minimal margin for error.

Every advisor has their own formula for constructing a perfect prospect meeting. It invariably includes a polished presentation and ample opportunities to present oneself as a likable, competent professional.

However, ensuring that first meeting is a success comes down to how you structure it to address all the prospect’s questions and concerns. They’re meeting with you to find out who you are and why they should work with you. They need the answers to very specific questions on their mind even though they may not ask them. So, why not structure the meeting around what your prospects really want to know?

Here are a few such questions they are asking themselves.

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The Importance of a Post-meeting Checklist

The Importance of a Post-meeting Checklist

Nailing that initial prospect meeting is crucial if you are to have any chance at starting a relationship. If you follow your first meeting preparation checklist to a T, you’ve established good rapport, shown your authentic self, listened more than talked, and pinpointed the person’s pain points. You mapped out the initial steps to address their biggest concerns and got agreement to forge ahead. What comes next?

In many respects, your follow-up to that first meeting is just as crucial as it will either reinforce your prospect’s positive feelings about you and the experience, or it could raise red flags triggering remorse. The initial meeting follow-up is your opportunity to showcase your commitment to excellent client service and set the tone for the new relationship.

Too often, advisors allow critical things to fall through the cracks, creating a perception of incompetence or not caring. That’s why a post-meeting checklist is just as essential as a meeting prep checklist culminating with a well-crafted follow-up email or letter setting the stage for the next step. It doesn’t have to be a lengthy checklist but completing the items on a timely basis is critical.

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Keys to Building Life-Long Loyalty with Clients

Keys to Building Life-Long Loyalty with Clients

Successful financial advisors know that client retention is vital for sustaining and growing their business. Replacing a client who leaves with a new client is expensive and hard work, costing five to 25 times more than retaining an existing one. Success at retaining clients enables advisors to focus on delivering value to them instead of having to pursue new clients.

However, advisors who shoot for a high client retention rate, as crucial as that may be, might be falling short of the mark. Building client loyalty is much more critical. Is that a difference without a distinction? What does it mean when you have a client’s loyalty?

Many clients stick around for various reasons:

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