I coach financial advisors on how to develop a CLIENT DRIVEN PRACTICETM – how to put your best clients in charge of the development of your business. As I contemplated the use of checklists in a client driven practice, the thought occurred to me – would your client choose you if they had their own checklist?
This is not an idle question. The answer goes directly at the issues of retention, client engagement, and referrals.
Does your practice offer all the services your clients want most? Have you asked? Studies show the more services provided to clients, the better your client retention. And, obviously, revenue per client increases as well. Which of your services do your clients value the most? Have you discussed with your clients whether there are services they would value that you don’t currently offer
Considering what might be on a clients checklist can help your referability. If you find that your best clients have four or five needs they would like you to fulfill, that represents four or five opportunities to bring you up in conversation with friends mentioned those needs themselves. If you only satisfy two or three of those needs right now, whether it is because you don’t offer the other services or because you haven’t adequately communicated your service offerings, the client will only think to mention you when those two or three needs come up in those conversations.
More dramatic is the opportunity this presents to you in attracting new clients. If you devote attention to what the clients would have on their checklist for evaluating financial advisors, and then concentrate on featuring those services in your marketing materials, you would far more easily attract other, similar clients.
I recently conducted a program on how to differentiate your practice from other financial advisors, which I will post on this site sometime soon. It preparing for it, I reviewed hundreds of websites of financial advisors. Almost all of them say essentially the same thing. If a prospective client found your website in their search for a financial advisor, and ran down their checklist of the most important services and characteristics, would they choose you? Would they even be able to tell you apart from other advisory practices?
Engaging clients to determine what would be on their checklist of the ideal financial advisor, and learning how to communicate it, will help make you the ideal financial advisor for that kind of client.