“Plan your execution. Execute your plan.” Anonymous
Business Development entails both marketing AND sales.
Marketing is about getting a potential client to know who you are, in part by building a brand. A potential client may get to “know” you through email content marketing, social media, advertising, writing, or public educational events. The intent of marketing is to begin to get people to know, like, and trust you.
At some point you have hopefully “earned the right” to move towards a business relationship and seek an initial business meeting. A “suspect” is a potentially qualified client based on buying authority, financial capacity, and willingness to buy. If that “suspect” is willing to meet with you, or has met with you, and is qualified, you now have what we define as a “prospect” and you can move to the sales process.
The sales process begins with establishing a rapport to develop your relationship and moves into a “discovery” meeting.
There are at least 20 business development approaches that can be used by financial advisors to acquire new clients and their assets. However, there are only a few key approaches that experience, and data show need to be part of your client acquisition strategy.
Introduction to Business Development
The objective for business development is not growing the number of clients but growing your number of profitable clients. You need to balance the cost of the services to be delivered in support of client retention and loyalty with the value of the client to the business.
How do financial advisors acquire those profitable clients?
Most advisors see this as one of their top challenges. Every advisor seems to have said, “If I can get them into my office, I can close them.” Business Development is about how you can get potential clients into your office.
Start by segmenting your clients with your 80/20 analysis, then ask, “How do you create another 10 of the top ~20% of your clients that provide ~80% of your revenue and profitability?” Look at replicating your top tier clients.
As you acquire more “top” clients, eventually growth will hit a critical mass and then start building on itself. Malcolm Gladwell refers to this as a “tipping point” - which is like a snowball rolling downhill to build momentum. A solid client base and “top client” growth can eventually hit a “tipping point,” so it’s important that the growth momentum has you focus on that top part of your book; the clients you want to replicate.
In part, you are creating your “ideal client” profile. What can you do to acquire a new number-one client every year? Also ask:
Grow your business by starting with your top tier - the clients who highly value you and your services and fully accept your business model (including your fee structure!).
David I. Leo, Business Development Overview Snippet 14
David Leo is Founder of Street Smart Research Group LLC. He is an author, speaker, coach, consultant, and trainer to financial professionals. David is an experienced business manager who works solely with Financial Advisors, Planners and firms who want to organize, structure & grow their businesses by attracting, servicing, and retaining affluent clients.
If you have questions or would like assistance in personalizing and implementing approaches from The Financial Advisor’s Success Manual, schedule a free 45 Minute Strategy Session at https://calendly.com/davidileo or contact me at David@CoachDavidLeo.com or visit my website at www.CoachDavidLeo.com
My book is available at Amazon at https://www.amazon.com/Financial-Advisors-Success-Manual-Structure/dp/0814439136.