Want to know how to get referrals in times of great uncertainty?
An advisor told me yesterday that he is getting results with this question he asks clients as he talks with them during market volatility: “Do you know people that are already retired and are nervous about the volatility in the market? Perhaps they may be interested in getting a second opinion.” Pretty simple approach and he says it is having results. I think it takes confidence to ask a question like that in turbulent times. But if you know what you are doing is helping clients – why wouldn’t you ask?
On the other hand, for those that really don’t like to directly ask, here are 3 different strategies producing referrals that don’t require you to ask:
1. When a client asks, “How’s business?” instead of giving a stock answer you could answer by sharing that… “Our business is strong right now even though the market is volatile thanks to many of our clients who have been so kindly spreading the word about our firm to others that truly need our expertise. It is easy to be a good financial advisor in perfect conditions but it is the more uncertain times where we seem to get new introductions from clients. To us this is a powerful indication that we are doing things right for our clients. I am grateful. Thank you for asking.”
2. Answer the silent question, “Who Cares?” when you are describing your firm. Instead of giving the features of what you do make sure you are talking in benefits. Benefits affect people. Your proposed and perceived benefits will be what is remembered and passed along to others. What are the biggest benefits you deliver in difficult times?
3. At the end of a meeting with a client – make a bold and confident statement…. “We know that the kind of work we do at XYZ Firm is unique. We communicate and serve our clients deeply in good times and volatile times. This is actually different than what many in this industry do. We know that there are many other people that NEED our services that we can and should be helping right now while the stock market is so volatile. Our challenge is reaching them. What do you think we can do to continue get the word circulating so it reaches the people in need of a better financial advisor? “
The key is focus. Try focusing on referrals even in this time of uncertainty. Anything you focus on actively in your business will certainly have more results than if you didn’t.