Earn up to 68% more by communicating more

How often do your ideal clients want to hear from you and how do you build a process to do so . Earn more by communicating more
The advisors that communicate more often to their ideal clients earn up to 68% more than advisors who do less communication (Source Business Health Pty Ltd. 2013 US Advisors Key Value Drivers USA* The Value of Practice Management. The research reveals that in the United States, only 38% of advisors communicate more than 10 times per year to their ideal clients. A majority of advisors ( 50%) communicate 5-10 times per year to their ideal clients.
Communication has changed, has your communication process changed?
In speaking to groups of advisors, I always do my own informal polls. I ask the question “ how many of your ideal clients text you? “ Currently about 50% of the hands in the room go up. Now if I was to ask that question a few years ago, not many hands would go up including mine because I did not text. You communication process may be outdated and need to update. The same question in a room full of younger advisors ( 35 years old and younger) every hand goes up. They communicate differently and will certainly redefine the rules in the industry. At this same meeting with younger advisors, I was shocked that they rarely did evening appointments. When I started in 1989, that is one way I was taught to build my business. The younger generation can write this chapter on communication. I challenge you to redefine how you communicate and challenge your communication processes.
I have no time
I had an interesting call from an advisor complaining that he has no time to communicate more than 5 times per year for his ideal clients. I asked him “ do you have an agenda for these top clients” yes he said, “ does it have on the agenda the word communication on it? No he said why , so how often do your clients want to hear from you ? I am not sure, then why don’t you ask them how often they would like progress update meetings and other communication from us? Find out how often they would like to hear from you and what they would like to hear and see is part of your client experience process.
What we did next made this process extremely valuable. I asked” if you contact a client for a progress update three times per year and two phone calls, you are spending at least 10-12 hours for each ideal client and you have 100 clients is 1200 hours. Ask your clients this question. What if we did two progress update meeting per year and in between we will call each quarter and send you a progress update. That way you hear from us more often and we can make our progress meetings more efficient. About three quarters of his clients agreed and actually preferred this process of communication to keep them on track. This process takes about 8-10 hours per year per client. I said to him on 100 clients we are finding 100-200 hours per year and the clients get more communication and like the process better. It is a win- win communication plan. Those 100 hours at $300 per hour mean about $30,000 to his practice and better ideal client communication.
Don’t ask me how often you should communicate, ask your clients. The research says 10 times per year, from a personal point of view, not an automated e newsletter. Calculate the number of times, such as progress meetings, personal calls, special events or personalized communications such as one to one emails. Then do the math . How often do your ideal clients want to see you and hear from you personally in a year? __________________________
How often do you communicate personally now ______________________________________
Difference _____________________________________________
The spin dial rule
A top advisor I know calls his top clients while he is driving home from his office. He lives in a city and has a long commute, so instead of listening to music he spins the call dial ( hands free Bluetooth of course for road safety) and where it lands, he calls those clients just to keep top of mind. He has said that he often would be sitting in his driveway for a half hour because the conversation just kept on going. ( I fist thought , maybe he should buy a house further from the office, jokingly) His communication and relationships go deep and he never has to ask for referrals because it becomes automatic since they know he has 100% of their trust and continues to care about them and their family. He does one thing that most advisors do not do!


The key to communication
What he does that most advisors do not do is make the phone calls and does not talk about financial issues at all unless his clients mentions it first or wants to talk about it. He is talking as if he was part of the family. His phone calls are different than calling because you want to do a transaction for a client. Are your ideal clients getting transaction communication or lifestyle communication? The first time you do this it can be awkward. You call your client and say” what are your plans for the summer? “ If response is“ not much, how is my account doing? Then it tells you that they are used to only transaction calls and discussions with you. You may want to work on this. They were used to only hearing from you because of a financial issue. The conversation should allow for the client to ask you first, is there anything I should be worried about or need to do for my finances? The answer would sound like” no, I did a progress update before I called, everything looks fine until our next progress update meeting in a few months. Now think about this for a second. Every time your clients hear from you they feel better. You give them the comfort with their finances as their advisor. If they hear from you more often, how will they feel about you? On top of that you take it to the next level from a relationship and focus on their life and family and have time to. Remember you have all of their trust and all of their money, insurance and financial roadmap for life.
10 ideal calls to make this month
Try this idea. Choose 10 ideal clients and pick up the phone and ask them and open ended question such as “what are your plans for the summer, holidays etc. ?“ . The first time you do it will be awkward, trust me I have been there. Once you get into a conversation you will find it awkward to end because you both realize how strong the relationship is. The key process here is to develop a process on a regular basis for calls. The other advantage is that your progress update meetings will be more efficient, since you will spend less time on updating the relationship and get down to business quicker. It is a better use of your time, strengthens the relationship, builds referrals and give your clients the confidence in you. It is a win-win all around. Once you start this process for 10 clients, you will be hocked. These are the most enjoyable calls you will make in your practice and you and your clients will enjoy them. You probably want to spend more time communicating with your top or ideal clients, now you don’t have any other excuses. Put down reading this on your phone now and make some calls!