Tuesday 05 2010

Here’s an achievable New Year’s resolution for advisors who want to build an affluent practice: revamp your marketing. Even as advisors worry about falling profits, client retention, and attracting new business, with the right marketing plan it’s possible—and more critical than ever—to improve your performance with both wealthy and affluent investors.

The first step is to become a student of the affluent and their expectations, and re-examine your approach to marketing to reflect this knowledge. Old techniques such as public seminars, mass mailings, and cold calling no longer yield strong results. Nor do presentations that focus primarily on product offerings. This means your focus should be on people, not simply selling your services as products. In other words, building long-term, mutually profitable relationships with the affluent and wealthy requires a full understanding of how they define value and make purchasing decisions, as well as the psychological needs that drive and influence them.

Step two is to make a conscious decision to expand your practice. Think about how you can grow your investment offering or client base to capitalize on opportunities as the financial markets and economy rebound. Focus on specific groups and become the go-to financial resource for them. It’s not enough to target business owners or doctors or money-in-motion in 2010. This year and in the years ahead, to be successful requires you to narrowcast.

Think about today’s major broadcast TV networks, which are losing money and audience to cable networks that know and deliver to their market base and are thus growing at substantial rates. The same goes for advisors. Instead of believing you will target business owners, identify specific groups within that market: tool-and-die shops, auto repair, fast food restaurant owners, and so forth. If you wish to target doctors, narrowcast by focusing on cardiologists, radiologists, or pediatricians.

Part II coming next week!

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