Success is subjective for many. As a financial advisor, however, your success is directly tied to the financial success of your clients. While hard work and strategically helping them invest their money certainly play a part, there’s more to building a reputation—and a life—than merely putting in the hours and recommending the “right” portfolios.
Consider these three elements that may help you achieve new heights of success and, in turn, help your clients do the same.
1. Build Trust
Trust is possibly the most important factor when seeking financial advice. The typical investor may not have the knowledge or financial literacy to confidently evaluate the many offerings the market has to offer. Many voices are vying for their attention—and their money—and it’s difficult to know which financial advice to trust.
Many investors choose a financial advisor based on reputation, so staying connected in your community, and with other clients, can eventually result in new referrals. Prospective clients are almost certainly looking at online reviews and social profiles, so maintaining a strong, professional and positive social media presence is more important than ever.
Once a person walks through your door, however, you’ll still need to build a relationship and earn his or her trust. Ask questions and seek to understand each client’s needs, wants, fears, and hopes for the future. Taking a holistic approach to both their wealth and wellness, and getting to know your clients beyond their investible assets, shows you truly care.
2. Stay Informed
Have you been so busy working in the business that you haven’t taken time to work on your business? When’s the last time you attended a conference or trade show? When you received that email about a new product, did you instinctively hit the delete button?
It’s easy to become reliant on tactics that have served you well in the past and grow complacent with your go-to products. However, expanding your knowledge on new products and staying informed about emerging trends, regulations and tax implications in financial planning are vitally important for maintaining and growing your book of business.
Event networking can provide you with knowledge not available from articles or seminars, and the relationships formed can answer future questions you may have. When your clients hear you talking about the latest insights or the newest products that offer benefits beyond traditional portfolios, they may be more likely to recommend your services within their personal networks.
3. Be the Expert
Elite advisors often have two things in common: they know their products in and out, and they’ve taken the time to study, learn and understand the market and how it’s most likely to perform. They also know their clients, what problems they face and how to develop appropriate strategies. Successful advisors also have a keen understanding of how and when to show empathy, ask more questions or simplify financial jargon in ways a client can comprehend.
Building rapport is important, yet credentials can put an investor’s mind at ease. Clients will likely have a better perception of someone who’s achieved a Masters degree in finance or earned their Certified Financial Planner (CFP®) title. When investors see that you strive for personal achievements and success, they may trust that you’ll have the same attitude toward their success as well.
Every person measures success differently. Do you love what you do for a living? Then, by many standards, you’ve achieved success. Perhaps no greater measure of success is the level of enjoyment and satisfaction you receive from helping clients reach their goals. First, however, those clients need to get off the sidelines and overcome any fears they may have about investing.
To help you reach potential investors, we’ve developed The Value of Risk Control Accounts in Retirement Planning white paper. Click the link below for your copy.