“Nothing is working for me,” Brandon, a financial advisor in Arizona told me last year.
Over the twelve years Brandon had been in business he had developed a database of 300 households and grown his gross income to about $300,000. A third of that came from management fees from $40 million in assets under management. A third came from mutual fund and other sales and a third came from commissions on life insurance products.
But for the past 3 years, Brandon was struggling to increase business. He had a dream goal of $450K in gross sales, which didn’t appear to be much of a stretch, but each of the last 3 years found him in more or less the same place.
“Why do you think that is?” I asked him and he mentioned COVID, Zoom meetings and people being more difficult to reach.
“I tried buying leads,” he told me, “But they sucked.” “I had 13 clients show up to a webinar, and they seemed to like it, but they were already clients, and it didn’t get me any new business,” he continued. “I get referrals,” he added, “But just not enough and not to the right people.”
“Who are the right people?” I asked him.
“Well, people with money, to begin with…,” was the response.
“But aside from that,” I pressed, “Who would be an ideal client for you?”
Brandon was stuck. He had no idea how to identify an ideal client for his business—what marketing experts call an “avatar”. And ‘people with money’ is not an avatar.
So, I asked him to write the names of his 20 best clients and tell me about them. It turns out that they were all from different walks of life, but they had certain things in common. Most were professionals. Most owned a home and had children. And all of them came to Brandon because his approach was different than other advisors they had spoken with. He was the only one, they told him, who wasn’t telling them to sacrifice today so that they would be able to retire comfortably.
I showed Brandon that his problem wasn’t that nothing was working—he was simply trying to find anyone with money, rather than a crystal clear and specific type of person. So, the time, energy, and money he had been investing in prospecting was ineffective. It was like shooting at a field of targets over and over again with a shotgun, hoping that a pellet or two would hit any one of the targets, compared to taking a high-powered rifle, and aiming it at the target you want to hit.
Then I showed him that he already had clients and connections he could leverage to focus on those professionals he wanted, and we developed a plan to make his marketing much easier.
The plan included the following:
- Narrowing his marketing to aim at one target client with one service that client needed. This saved him hours and thousands of dollars.
- Improving his relationships with existing connections, which resulted in almost immediate additional business with them, both directly and through introductions happily given.
- Improvement of his online presence to focus it on his target client and market, which gave him his first online inquiry about his service and resulted in two new cases.
- Developing a service plan that kept all of this growing.
In the first three months, Brandon added $5 million in AUM and increased his insurance commissions by more than $50,000. And by the end of the year, he was on track to reach his goal.
If you’ve been in business more than five years and are grossing more than $100,000, and you want to accelerate your growth, you don’t need a whole new system to do it, you just need to narrow your focus and plan your prospecting around a single perfect client.
Get in touch about my Practice Marketing Tune-up coaching program, which is based on my unique Leveraged Relationship Model. We’ll have a brief conversation to see if this program is a fit for you.
And always keep REACHING…
Let’s talk about tuning up your marketing!