David Byrne from Talking Heads once sang, “Say something once, why say it again?” I will tell you why: because people forget. They are bombarded constantly with emails, advertisements, videos, social media stories, ALL vying for their time and attention.
So how can you make sure your communications don’t get lost in the noise and provide real value to clients?
You want to remind them of all you can do to help. You want to educate them. And you want them to know that they are in your thoughts—all without inundating their inboxes or mailboxes with tons of messages. Though too little communication can also be a big problem. Many of the reasons clients leave an Advisor revolve around infrequent or poor communications.
Being strategic and a bit creative is critical as well as adding value with every message. If you’re sending out educational links, newsletters (such as Symmetry’s On Balance for clients), or other communications once a month or a few times a year, great! You are on the right track, but there is more that you can do to create a better client experience through your communications and make sure clients think of you first when financial questions or issues arise.
One way to start is to get to know your clients on a more personal level. I’m not talking about liking all their posts on social media or letting them know you noticed them in the supermarket buying twenty-four rolls of toilet paper. You get the idea. There’s a difference between learning more about someone and being horribly intrusive. In most cases, it’s not too difficult to do a little online sleuthing to find out what interests your clients have (or simply ask). Look at their Facebook and LinkedIn pages—maybe even Instagram. Note their hobbies, interests, affiliations, pets, anniversaries and other important dates, charities—anything that will help you provide more custom communications.
Once you have put this information into your CRM system, it’s time to take the next step with this new-found knowledge.
Perhaps you now know ten of your clients love dogs. You’ve discovered twelve clients enjoy hiking and are nature lovers. Five are Korean Rom-Com afficionados. Two have collections of antique teacups. And one celebrates National Puzzle Day (It’s January 29, in case you were curious). Take those kernels of knowledge and incorporate them into the ways you reach out to your clients.
“I was just thinking of you and…” is one of the most powerful communications you can have with someone. And if what comes after the “and” is personal and personalized, your communication will be even more powerful
The timing and types of your communications is also important to help you stand out. Everyone sends cards on major holidays. Many send birthday cards. But getting a card on National Ice Cream Day for a client with a sweet tooth (and maybe a gift certificate to a local ice cream shop)? That’s not likely to get lost in a sea of other greetings.
And, yes, you can buy those cards online (greetingcarduniverse.com). And it’s the third Sunday in July. You still have time to order in case you want to send to anyone who enjoys ice cream (including this blogger).
Your communications don’t all need to be cutesy greeting cards. Getting creative can be a challenge with all the daily tasks on your plate, but it can (and should) be fun. It will also let your own style and personality shine through. Let’s take those dog lover clients: if they are geographically close, why not get a dog grooming van to come to your office or somewhere easy to travel to? Hold a “Get Your Pet Set” event! It’s a very casual opportunity for folks to socialize (though still socially distanced for now), to talk about shared interests, and to reinforce the fact YOU brought them together. Your clients aren’t yet comfortable meeting in person? Try hosting an online video chat. Talk about Korean Rom-Coms with those five clients. Maybe send a list of your own recommendations. And get similar lists from the others. Better yet, let THEM “talk amongst themselves.”
There are many possibilities for reaching out to your clients, and they don’t need to be complicated. A simple email now and again with a note such as, “Hey, I saw this story about new hiking trails opening in your area. Here’s a link!” could suffice.
The point is to let clients know you are there and to remind them not only that you care about them as a person but also that you have skills, advice, and expertise to guide them through their financial ups and downs. Building trust with clients is important, and the more comfortable they are with you, the more likely they may be to refer you without ever feeling “put on the spot.”
One resource Symmetry offers that can help you put all the pieces together is our Earning Impactful Referrals guide. So do a little homework, take a little time to understand your clients, and someday they may be sending you “Happy World Financial Planning Day” cards. It’s October 7, in case you were curious.
Symmetry Partners, LLC, provides this communication on this site as a matter of general information. Information contained herein, including data or statistics quoted, are from sources believed to be reliable but cannot be guaranteed or warranted. Nothing on this site represents a recommendation of any particular security, strategy, or investment product. The opinions of the author are subject to change without notice. Due to various factors, including changing market conditions and/or applicable laws, the content may not be reflective of current opinions or positions. All content on this site is for educational purposes and should not be considered investment advice or an offer of any security for sale. Please be advised that Symmetry Partners does not provide tax or legal advice and nothing either stated or implied here on this site should be inferred as providing such advice. Symmetry Partners does not approve or endorse any third party communications on this site and will not be liable for any such posts.
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