“The more you talk about them, the more important they will feel. The more you listen to them, the more important you will make them feel.” ― Roy T. Bennet
Grow your business by marketing around key people and organizations who can boost your market access and credibility through referrals, testimonials, and word-of-mouth.
COIs are people who work with people who are like your ideal clients. Consider: what services do many of your best clients often need? As a financial advisor, the answer certainly includes CPAs, attorneys, mortgage professionals, and trust underwriters as well as trades people, family law attorneys, some auto dealers, bookkeepers, travel companies, and others.
Expand your network to tap into the network of other professionals.
A clean, fair, intriguing approach is to educate 100 other professionals on exactly what you do and ask them to educate you on exactly what they do. Why? Because professionals know and come in contact with lots of other people, some of whom are perfect to be your clients. Vet these professionals to ensure the quality of your network. You don’t want a plumber who always causes a backup or an electrician who causes fires. I would limit your COIs to the 10 to 15 of the most important skills your clients may need. If you have a large enough team, you can expand the list.
Many advisors find it challenging to develop relationships particularly with CPAs and attorneys. These professionals don’t want to risk you negatively impacting their relationships. Know, Like, and Trust are still the key drivers along with the high-value and quality expertise they provide. Social relationships are also important.
Limit the number of “strategic relationships” you have with the CPAs and attorneys you work with to a total of only 4 or 5. You cannot likely effectively support more. Nevertheless, you should know of most of your clients CPAs and attorneys and they should know of you.
A “strategic relationship” is one with a professional that:
The right COIs provide testimonials (at least for your brag book), information (to increase your knowledge), contacts, introductions, presentation support, themselves as clients, promotion, resources, skills, and clients.
Here are 6 steps to develop strategic relationships that can grow your business:
1. Identify potential COI partners
2. Vet potential COIs with your clients
3. Make an initial call to COI and ask two key questions to continue:
o Are you taking on new clients?
o Do you already have a trusted financial advisor to whom you refer your clients?
4. Have an initial meeting with the COI
5. Have the COI visit your office to meet your people, discuss your processes and see your technology and facilities
6. Plan the next steps with the COI
Final points of advice:
David I. Leo, Your Center of Influence Marketing Strategy Snippet 17
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.