Five Ways to Make the Most of Partnerships with Your Centers of Influence

My five-year old frequently asks if she can have my phone to call her grandparents. It’s not that she just wants to chat with her grandfather. Whenever she calls, she has a clear goal in mind – she wants to plan a sleepover.

Before she asks to FaceTime, she’ll pack up some clothes and put on her backpack. Then, when she calls, she can demonstrate how ready she is for the upcoming event. Persuasive and adorable, her requests are almost always met with eager acceptance.

Planning is the name of the game for most advisors. It’s what you’re doing day in and day out. You think about the future all the time and implement plans to keep your clients’ plans working for them.

Likewise, once you’ve vetted COIs for your strategic alliances, having a clear plan in place for how you are going to work together will help you make the most of your partnership. This could come in many forms, but here are a few ideas:

  • Cosponsor webinars on topics that are insightful for both sets of clients. For instance, you may partner with a local estate planning attorney and put on a joint webinar where you help people consider how to leave a financial legacy they can be proud of. Set up the webinar and then email your segmented lists who will care about the topic, making sure the attorney does the same. Agree on a follow-up approach you will take for anyone who signs up from the other person’s list.
  • Share the stage as you cosponsor live events around your community.
  • Sign up to speak on a panel with your best COIs. Before you go this route, make sure you’re all on the same page about strategies and tactics to get the most out of it.
  • Guest post on each other’s blogs – nothing pitchy, just helpful insights that their clients will value. When COIs post to your blog, make sure you write a nice introduction explaining why you think their insights will be valuable for readers, and ask your COIs to do the same for you when you post to their blog.
  • Invite them to any social events you hold for your clients and introduce them to the group.
  • The frequency of these events is up to you and your strategic partners. It can be hard to coordinate your schedule and that of your COIs, so when you find a time that works for everyone, put it in writing and make it extremely clear to everyone involved so there’s no confusion.

    What kinds of activities are you doing with your strategic partners?