One of the biggest practice management mistakes I see with financial advisors is when it comes to segmenting their clients. They segment their clients into three or four different groups different groups they create service levels for ABC and D clients. This is a make-work project and only leads to frustration.
How should you segment your clients?
There are only two types of clients. Ideal and everyone else. We know that 75% of financial advisors don't have a definition of an ideal client so that is where segmentation fails. Start by having a crystal clear definition of who your ideal client is. The top 25% of financial advisors have an ideal client profile.
Do you want to continue to service all your non-ideal clients for the next 10 years? It's like running a marathon only to realize halfway you're going in the wrong direction. What is the right direction? Acquiring more ideal clients is easier than getting rid of non-ideal clients. So what do you do to simplify your practice and your lifestyle?
Some financial firms I work with have a built-in segmentation program. I truly believe that everyone deserves planning and advice but there are only 168 hours in a week and they're not changing it ( I have asked several times LOL) The structure is in place for these financial firms and the process is quite simple.
- Find an advisor to transfer to
- Find out your firm's options for transferring clients such as setting up a joint code
- Set up an ongoing agreement
- Start meetings with non-ideal clients and the new advisor and you
Build your own segmentation program
Let's imagine this year you brought on 10 new ideal clients. You have done some fantastic planning and advice work because this is what you signed up for to be a financial advisor. Doing your most challenging work motivates you and your team. Servicing clients that don't care about planning and advice takes time and energy out of your practice. You are thinking, maybe someday there is an opportunity with this non-ideal client so I will keep them. It is a waste of your valuable time with ideal clients. It is usually around one in 200 non-ideal clients turn into ideal clients. When I heard that as a financial advisor, it changed my focus and my practice. I held onto these clients as a security blanket. Which one out of the 200 should you spend time with? Where should you go and meet with potential ideal clients and spend your time?
Imagine you had a program where you brought on 10 new ideal clients and transfer 20 non-ideal clients to another financial advisor. A financial advisor that has the time that these clients deserve. It is a win-win-win all around. The client wins, the new advisor wins and you win. Build and implement your segmentation program this year if you are past capacity. Feel free to reach out to me if you would like a segmentation guide or a segmentation conversation at firstname.lastname@example.org
Meeting process and keys
When you and the other financial advisor meet with the client whether it's virtually or in person, build out a process and script. Below is an example of the process.
The transition process for financial advisors selling or transferring clients to another financial advisor
Keys to success
- Keep it the existing financial advisors “ WAY “ and adapt to their way with existing clients. Clients hate change
- Communications need to ALWAYS improve so client's confidence increases. Clients love communication
- Transfer relationship capital by recording it for each client – use phone and record and name recordings Clients enjoy relationships
- ALWAYS give the client an option to see the new person or come back to the existing advisor and then make a change if they are not happy. Given the choice, 99% go with the new advisor. Clients like options
Build a script – practice and master the process before meeting with clients
Understand the WAY how meetings are done, deliverables, process, and value – on paper and recorded by both financial advisors
Meeting process created and expectations for clients, old and new advisor mapped out
Email follow-up and deliverables process must be mapped out
Increase the Communications and have the new advisor have a communication plan
What is an ideal client for you?
My goal is to help you spend more time with ideal clients and ideal prospects and deliver an ideal world-class experience. If we can help your non-ideal clients and deliver more value to them, then isn't it time to build your segmentation process?
Related: Marketing Strategies Working for Financial Advisors Right Now