Nine Places to Look for Business After Labor Day

As an advisor, I often felt the world rolled up its sleeves and said: “We’ve got to get some business done” the day following Labor Day. Summer’s over. The kids are back in school. Your manager realized everyone’s got numbers to hit. What can you do?

Nine Opportunities

Some of these are “ring the cash register immediately” ideas. Others are planting seeds and getting on the radar with folks who might need to do something before year end. 1. Setup quarterly portfolio reviews.Its possible clients having been paying close attention to their investments while the kids have been out of school. How many client relationships do you have? 100? 200? How many are close, making face to face reviews practical? How many should be done over the phone? Is your firm OK with Skype? This would likely be early October at the start of the fourth quarter. Have a new idea. Hopefully they like it a lot. You like everything they own. This will need fresh money. Stop talking. Timeline: Shroter term. Results should be immediate, but you start in October. 2. School – The Parent Teacher Association.There’s lots of reasons for parents to be present at school during the start of the new term. You will see faces you’ve never seen before or people who only show up once. Do they know who you are and what you do? It’s wearing the ball cap or logoed windbreaker, not both. It’s mingling. Timeline: This is longer term. You’re getting on the radar. 3. The fall social season.Nonprofits hold galas, BBQs and wine tastings while the weather is still good. This gets you into the same room with heavy hitters. You’ve likely met them before. Remind them when your paths first crossed. Make conversation about their interests. Maybe you become an event sponsor. People see your name and firm in the program. Timeline: Longer term. You are getting on their radar and building name recognition. 4. School sports.Your children are likely involved. One of my gym buddies remarked: “If you are a sideline parent, every semester your friends are chosen for you.” Since you are attending in all weather, “logo up” and tactfully deploy the umbrella, hat or golf jacket. Don’t push business, but try to meet most of the other parents. Timeline: Longer term. You are working on visibility, but if you meet enough people, the numbers should work in your favor. 5. Portfolio Review +1:A month after you conducted those portfolio reviews, circle back to each client. Review what you did and how it worked out or try to get an answer if they were thinking about it. Ask who they know that hasn’t had a quarterly review from their advisor? Who isn’t getting this kind of attention? Timeline: Shorter term. If you contact clients after their reviews, some should come up with a name. 6. Tax loss selling.Ideally clients want to balance realized profits with losses if they have any. Addressing this early should avoid the 30 day wash sale rule if they buy back in at year’s end when other people (who waited until the last minute) are selling. Timeline: Shorter term. They would be taking action now. 7. Sector rotation.Some investors judge their success by how well the broad market averages are doing. You know theS&P 500is made of sectors. Some lead, others lag. Leadership changes. Is your client paying attention? Timeline: Short term. You make the case why they should be taking action. 8. What’s their favorite stock?When everyone seems to be using managed money or thinking about robo advisors, we forget individual stocks are what many investors think the stock market is about. Ask “What’s the best stock you ever owned?” Draw them out. “Why?” “Where is it now?” They may talk themselves into buying more. You need to avoid the risk of concentrated positions. Timeline: Immediate. If they like it a lot, they may be ready to take action. 9. Asset allocation.Since the market moves all the time, their allocation changes constantly. You aren’t going to micromanage, but where are they relative to the recommended model appropriate for their risk tolerance. If there’s been significant drift, should you recommend they get back into line with the model? Timeline: Immediate. They can see they are out of balance.Yes, you should be prospecting. You should also be giving attention to your current clients, especially if they have returned from summer vacation thinking: “I should be paying more attention.”Related: 10 Ways to Restart Your (Stalled) Prospecting Efforts