For many financial advisors, the goal is to find clients with assets of between $1 million and $5 million, which is somewhat of a sweet spot. But many older, high-net-worth individuals are already set in their ways; they live by the motto “If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it”—even if it’s broken.
Younger investors, those between the ages of 21 and 45, are going to offer more liquidity because they will likely experience life-changing events that require planning.
This age demographic is also going to be more open to new ideas. The negative is that they tend to have less money than older clients.
Having a target demographic is a good idea, but you don’t want to close any doors. The number one goal should always be to act in your client’s best interest. This alone will lead to the most long-term business. So how do you get the ball rolling?
1. Attain Referrals From Existing Clients
Word of mouth is self-explanatory. It’s still one of the most effective ways to get new clients. (Just be wary of overdoing it.)
2. Establish a Referral Network
Get to know professionals—including doctors, lawyers, real estate agents, and CPAs—in your neighborhood, around your workplace, etc. Sending business to each other via referrals is simple and effective. The best deals are those where both parties win.
3. Use Social Networking
Using Facebook, LinkedIn, and Twitter to market yourself as an expert and find potential clients isn’t as effective as often advertised, but any financial advisor not using these tools will appear archaic or not up to date with today’s technology. That’s a turn-off for young investors, especially.
4. Start a Blog
Although blogging about financial suggestions and/or your thoughts on current market developments may appear time-consuming, consistency is the key to success (and brevity). Your search engine rankings will improve if you update your blog on a regular basis—at least twice a week.
This will start slowly, but if you stay with it, the upward momentum will pick up. Instead of you needing to go out and find clients, they will come to you.
5. Write an E-Book
You should strongly consider publishing an e-book if you want to be a respected authority in your profession. The most straightforward way to do so is thru Amazon.com Inc.’s (AMZN) Kindle Direct Publishing (KDP) program.
It is free, and you may be able to earn royalties in addition to finding clients. 1 Leave your contact information at the front and back of the book to discover clients.
Because readers who use KDP can examine the first 10% of a book for free using the “Look Inside” function, which helps catch browsers, targeting the front of the book is vital. Publish 4-5 books, but not too rapidly, to build your brand and enhance sales.
Once you have a few books centered around a certain niche, Amazon will see that you’re serious about writing and your search rankings will improve. If you’re seeking high-end clients, write books on topics that interest them.
6. Become a Local Politician
If you want access to wealthy and powerful people, become a local politician. This will add a lot of after-hours work to your schedule, but having access to these folks during networking events, meetings, and fundraisers has the potential to be incredibly beneficial to growing your business.
Sure, there are statewide and city offices, but don’t forget about the smaller-scale community or zoning boards, as well as condo or co-op boards.
7. Throw Birthday Parties
Throwing a birthday party for a client may seem out of the left-field, but it can be highly effective. Not only will the client be impressed (and surprised!), but he’ll likely invite friends and family and will want to introduce you to most of them. This is an excellent opportunity to make new connections— lots of them in just a few short hours.
8. Buy Season Tickets to Something
Take a page from corporate marketing departments and buy season tickets for a professional sports team, the opera, the ballet, etc. It might be expensive, but it should be well worth the investment. You can take clients to games or shows, which will help retain them.
And the more tickets, the better: a client is likely to invite a close family member or friend, which then allows you to form new relationships and land new prospects.
9. Talk at Local Schools
Contact wealthy high schools and inform the administration that you would like to speak with the students about financial planning. Many schools will jump at the chance because the information is so useful.
You may not be able to distribute business cards or pamphlets, but you may encourage your audience to ask their parents questions about money, college savings, retirement, and other topics. Teachers and administrators will be paying attention as well.
10. Play Sports
We all know that golf is a great game for networking, but it’s a sport usually reserved for a foursome. If you want to increase your exposure, consider joining a tennis academy, softball league, or local fitness center.
You might not find as many qualified leads as you would have via golf, but you will find lots of opportunities.
The Bottom Line
Many methods for landing new clients are tried and true—networking, golfing, etc. But thinking creatively and going the extra mile (or spending the extra dollar) to find leads in unusual circumstances may be worth it in the end.