Drive referrals and build stronger relationships with these time-saving tips
As a financial adviser, you’ve worked hard to hone the technical skills that allow you to deliver high-quality outcomes for your clients. But what about the so-called “soft skills” of client engagement?
Remember, the clients you already have can be your most valuable source of business, both through the referrals they generate and the ongoing value they create. So building strong client relationships is one of the most powerful business development strategies you can use.
While we all know client engagement is important, finding time to do it well can be a challenge. Here are seven practical ways you can keep your clients engaged, without neglecting the day to day.
1. Make the most of CRM tools
Most practices already have customer relationship management (CRM) tools on hand, built into popular planning platforms like XPLAN, COIN and Midwinter. And if they don’t give you what you’re looking for, you can also choose from purpose-built CRM packages like adviser intelligence and PractiFi, the latter based on the market-leading Salesforce software.
All boast powerful features to help you analyse your client base, schedule and track touchpoints, and analyse the return on your investment in client engagement. But how many practices take full advantage of them?
By using your CRM tools well, you can ensure you don’t let high-value clients slip through your fingers, simply because you’ve been neglecting them. The key is to focus on creating a consistent client experience, without overcomplicating things. For example, you can use your CRM system to:
- record every client contact and schedule the next contact for each client
- generate reports to make sure that each client is being contacted regularly
- build in additional touchpoints for significant milestones, like birthdays and anniversaries
- create checklists for repeated processes like onboarding new clients, running meetings and sending educational content.
2. Know your client
With your CRM system up and running, you’re ready to create accurate, secure and current records for every client. Seek to capture not only financial information, but the little personal details that help you create truly meaningful interactions — from birthdays and anniversaries, to children’s names, hobbies and interests, even their favourite coffee (so you can have it waiting when they visit). Make sure you review your personal fact file before each meeting or phone call.
3. Prioritise, contact, repeat
Naturally, all of your clients are important — but some are more valuable to your business than others. Divide your clients into three tranches with different contact cycles — monthly, quarterly and bi-annually. Then use your CRM software to schedule regular contacts and track your performance.