Where do a financial advisor’s best leads and clients come from? It’s no secret. It’s likely every financial advisor will agree that the answer is undoubtedly… referrals. Referrals are potential clients that have been introduced to you by advocates—or fans!
What’s great about referrals is that they tend to move through the sales process much faster than non-referral leads. That’s because the sales process has been initiated by someone the lead already trusts. That trust is imbued upon you by the referrer, so the lead comes to you already predisposed to do business with you.
So how do we get more referrals (aside from asking, of course)? By creating more and more raving fans to bring business to your door.
More Referrals for Your Advisory Firm?
From the first messaging your audience encounters on the internet, through the onboarding process, and throughout the client relationship, your goal is to create a connection with your audience—one that your audience can’t stop talking about.
Marketing is the act of creating a compelling message for an offering that clients will buy and then won’t be able to stop talking about.
Capturing the Emotional Connection and Loyalty of a Fan.
In sports, there is often an emotional connection between the team and its fans. Sometimes this connection has been built over generations. As the Green Bay Packers state in their NFL Films introduction to the team, there is an “unbreakable bond between football generations”. I certainly am a case study of this football loyalty, having learned the game of football and what it means to be a fan from my football-loving grandmother. We cheered for our team when they were terrible and basked in the glow of their wins when they were better. But we never considered moving to another team because together this team was ours. Fan loyalty is an emotional connection and often stronger than any other loyalty, oftentimes because of these generational connections.
In a way, then, I’d like you to think about your advisory firm like a sports team. Your goal is to tap into the emotions of your clients and prospects in order to build this type of loyalty. But, getting clients to, literally, ‘go wild’ about you and what you do is elusive for most. I researched this concept deeply for my book, And The Clients Went Wild!
Here’s how to start building a client base of raving fans who will continuously usher in those invaluable referrals:
First, there must be some attributes worth going wild about.
What is it about your service offering that makes your client experience “fan-worthy?” This may be the toughest step in the process but will be critical in fostering the emotional bond you’re looking for. You may need to start by revisiting your value proposition and identifying that which makes your firm referrable.
In the book, The Connectors, I wrote about the critical importance of connecting with others in the business to fulfill your potential, create enormous opportunities, and gain the personal success you desire.
I urge you to take this one step further here and define the specifics that will turn connections into sales, and buyers into fans. The connection you make with others is what creates the possibility. When we truly tap into the emotional connection, it is only then that people will truly “love us” and go wild about what we do.
Then, work to energize your audience through the passionate delivery of information.
When people are truly passionate about something—a sports team, an accomplishment, a referable financial advisor—others tend to take notice. It’s hard not to. Energy and passion demand attention and act as conduits of energy to those listening.
As you craft your marketing materials—whether they be in the video, audio, or written form—don’t be afraid to let your passion about who you are and what you do shine through. While it may feel “over the top” or “loud” at first, you’ll soon see that the temporary discomfort is worth the reward. Advisors tend to gain confidence pretty quickly as they see how their energy passes on to their audience!
Finally, continue tweaking your messaging and client experience to give the fans what they want.
What do elite financial advisory firms have in common? Those who have positive exposure beyond their wildest dreams? They have worked to give the people exactly what they want and it has been loudly proclaimed by those that know them best – their clients, fans, and constituents.
Whether you’re monitoring the engagement on your social media posts or asking for client feedback on your annual review meeting, you need to continuously gauge the success of your efforts. Of course, seeing an influx of referrals is the ultimate goal, but there are checkpoints along the way you can monitor to determine your potential success rate.
And take a gut check! Does it seem to you as if your passion is being felt by your audience? Are you garnering more attention than you were previously? How can you tell? Sometimes you don’t need the fancy numbers or calculations to give you the answers. Sometimes it’s just a matter of performing a good old-fashioned “gut check.” What kind of person-to-person feedback are you receiving?
Never Underestimate the Power of Emotion in Creating a Raving Fan.
In business today, it is more critical than ever that we create a strong emotional connection between our business and our client. Without it, our product or service is lost in a sea of noise and similar offerings.
It’s time to break out your advisor megaphone and get the crowd going!