Effective communication with your clients and team requires more than staff meetings and educational seminars. In a survey conducted by the Spectrem Group*, the #1 reason clients left their existing advisor was due to lack of trust. Building trust requires that you develop a relationship with your clients and prospects. By communicating and demonstrating trust you will-
- Build Relationships
- Acquire Clients
- Strengthen Your Team
- Achieve Firm Success
In our blog, Knowledge is Power, https://aeschlapia.wordpress.com/2012/04/27/knowledge-is-power/, we reviewed how effective communication contributes to the success in your firm and how to build an internal communication strategy. Knowing that external communication is just as important to the success of your firm as internal communication, build your practice by applying these communication skills to instill trust with your clients and prospects-
Develop a relationship: Get to know your client or prospect. Learn as much as you can about them. Are they working or retired? If retired, where did they work? What are their hobbies? Ask about their family and community organizations they may belong to. Show a genuine interest in knowing who they are.
Practice listening: Listen, listen and listen. Listening is a vital component to establishing trust and an effective communication dialogue. By staying focused on what is being communicated, you show that you are engaged in assisting your clients and prospects. Don’t start developing opinions and compiling your answer before your client or prospect is finished speaking; rather, focus on everything being said. By applying this tactic, you will comprehend and retain 75% more of the information you hear.
Express empathy: Tell your client or prospect that you understand their concerns. Let them know their success is the #1 most important factor in your relationship.
Use Proper Timing: Don’t rush to sell your products and services before you have earned trust. Trust forms the foundation for effective communication. Once you have earned trust, you are then in a position to discuss solutions to meet your clients and prospects needs.
By becoming a trusted advisor, you are now in a position to engage in open, honest and detailed communication. Communicate details of your firm’s vision, mission and investment process.
- Be clear and concise
- Explain how your firm differs from your competitors
- Review with your clients and prospects exactly what they can expect from your firm
- Develop a process to ensure omissions are avoided
- Be pro-active by asking and encouraging questions
Remember, any areas of communication that are not understood can present serious challenges to the level of trust that you have worked to build. Last, but not least, frequent communication with clients is essential to retain a solid trusting relationship.
To be a successful advisor and grow your firm, don’t sell your products until you have sold your trust.
“Effective communication is 20% what you know and 80% how you feel about what you know.”
We are curious!! Do you practice communication techniques at your firm? Let us know!
Follow us as we explore each of Ironstone’s Fundamental 4™!
- Strategic Planning
- Business Development
- Operational Effectiveness
- The Human Element
Coming up next, learn about Strategic Planning and Succession Planning
*The Spectrem Group is a consulting firm specializing in the affluent and retirement markets.
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