The ClientWise Blog

Financial Advisor Tools for Successful Client Acquisition

Posted by Chris Holman on Jan 24, 2012 4:14:00 PM


Today’s financial advisors understand that they must continue to acquire new client relationships as well as maintain existing relationships in order to survive and thrive in today’s competitive landscape.  In fact, when we partner with top advisors to establish critical coaching objectives, top of the list is the need to focus on “client acquisition.”  However, there are a number of disconnects we observe on a regular basis.  Most significantly however, is the disconnect between the attitude and desire to want to grow (which is always very high) and the actions and commitments that actually make it happen (this…not so much). 

 Here’s what I’m talking about.

Our firm recently surveyed 1000 highly-successful financial advisors and uncovered the following surprising statistics:

  • 62 percent do not track their client acquisition efforts and results.
  • 70 percent do not have a clearly-defined “ideal client” profile.
  • 72 percent do not have a well-defined value proposition.
  • 76 percent do not have client acquisition goals for the coming 12 months.
  • 86 percent of financial advisors do not have a distinct and consistent client acquisition strategy.

So…even though most financial advisors know that client acquisition is “Job #1”, the vast majority isn’t doing much about it in an organized, consistent manner.

How can this be? (Actually, this is not that surprising when one considers how difficult it can be to change problematic and corrosive habits.)

Not so long ago, a medical study revealed the stubborn nature of change…even under the most pressing and dire circumstances. In this study, cardiologists informed their seriously at-risk heart patients that they would likely die if they did not make changes to their personal lives, such as stopping smoking, getting more exercise, eating a healthier diet, etc. Notwithstanding this dire sense of urgency, only one in seven of these patients were able to actually make these changes in their personal behavior.

By our observation, financial advisors who wish to dial up their client acquisition efforts should focus on two areas for improvement:

  1. Closing the gap between desire and commitment, and,
  2. Building a Client Acquisition Process using proven financial advisor tools.

“Closing the gap” is where coaching can come into play. Financial advisors who are consistently blocked from following through on their commitments should definitely check with their coach Or if they don’t have a coach, they should consider hiring one.

Building a client acquisition process involves paying attention to the three important components: strategy, tactics, and execution…and using the necessary financial advisor tools that address the important aspects of this process, e.g. clearly defining client acquisition goals, identifying ideal client types, lead generation, pipeline management, etc. (Of course, coaching can help financial advisors to build a process and plan too.)

The good news is that financial advisors who close the gap between desire and commitment, and create their own unique client acquisition process using effective financial advisor tool create sustainable financial advisory practices that serve their clients for many, many years.

Try these strategies from ClientWise:

The 6 Step Client Acquisition Process

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ClientWise is the premier financial advisor coach focused on business development and management best practices for financial advisors.

Topics: Coaching, Client Acquisition, Business Development