Your female clients are poised and ready to help you become more effective at engaging the female client; all you have to do is ask. You can reach out one by one or create a group setting which can be even more effective at gleaning valuable information and potentially new leads. In a group setting by simply asking the right open ended questions the women will immediately begin sharing their thoughts and ideas with you as well as each other eventually driving the whole conversation.
You will leave this meeting with a plethora of new and valuable information as well as the potential for new leads and referrals. It’s really that simple. The key is remembering this isn’t about you, it’s about them. Your job is to ask important questions, encourage participation and you will build a team of allies. These women will leave determined to help you succeed in your mission to connect and engage more women with their financial lives.
Below is my “10 Step Guide to a Successful Focus Group” that will help you put just such a meeting together. Follow the items listed then email me and tell me your results. I think you will be surprised how easy it is to obtain the Keys to the Ladies Room.
10 Step Guide to a Successful Focus Group
1. Book a table at a really nice restaurant, make sure you have a table either in the corner or preferably in a private room so there are minimal interruptions.
2. Make a list of 2-3 female clients that you enjoy. Add to that list 5+ women in your community that you would like to become your client or are a center of influence either as a professional or in the social circles.
3. Personally call each woman and ask her if she would be willing to participate in an important focus group. Explain why you selected her (You respect her thoughts and value her opinion). Share the purpose of the focus group; for you to learn how you can better address the needs of women. Be sure to call to confirm they will be able to attend and express your enthusiasm for this opportunity to learn from women
4. Place a token gift at each place before the women arrive. A small chocolate, a bud vase with flower or something that reflects a woman’s touch and shows your appreciation for their participation.
5. As the women arrive be sure to introduce them to each other, this is IMPORTANT. I highly recommend name tags as this facilitates more interaction between participants.
6. If you assign seats (which can be helpful by positioning one of your best female clients next to a big potential prospect) be sure and put table tents or small name cards, this also makes it easier for women to talk with each other.
7. Thank them all for coming and then reiterate the purpose of the presentation.
8. Have each woman introduce herself and choose an open ended question that might add to the relationship building process. IE: Where you work, Where you live: even Your favorite hobby can create commonalities.
9. Once introductions are made and the women are warming up begin asking your questions, some typical questions might be:
What has been your experience working with a financial advisor?
- Who has worked with a financial advisor?
- What did you like about your advisor?
- What did you NOT like about your advisor?
- Who has had a similar experience?
What prevents women from becoming more engaged with their financial affairs?
- What would encourage women to become more involved?
- How can an advisor make the process more appealing to women?
What are the 3 biggest financial concerns you have right now? (Make sure they don’t over think this question.)
- How are those issues being addressed right now? (Be sure and write these down, they are important)
If you had all the money in the world and could only spend it in 3 ways what would you spend it on?
- This is what is considered their “Purpose” for their money not necessarily a “Goal”
When working with a financial advisor what is the most important factor and WHY?
- The relationship you have with him (comfort and trust)
- The performance of the investments
- The fees
- Be sure and challenge them on this, asking others who would agree or disagree.
If I hosted a series of events for women what are some topics you would find of interest? (You may need to provide some suggestions to help them along.)
- The importance of wills and trusts?
- How to get organized?
- How to put your financial plan to work?
- What is a mutual fund and why should I care?
What kind of environment would be ideal for these events?
- Conference room
- 25-50 women
- Like today
- At the golf course?
If you could suggest just one thing that I should do to create a more female friendly environment what would you suggest?
- Office space
If you have another women’s event scheduled ask “How many of you know other women that you feel would like to receive and invitation to my next event?”
- Example response: “I will call you tomorrow to learn more about your friend and what would be the most comfortable way to include them on my invitation list.”
10. Send each participant a hand written thank you note thanking her for her valuable input and valuable participation.