Sunday, March 6, 2011

One "Secret" to Closing More Business and Getting More Referrals

Is this really a "secret" or just an under-utilized strategy? You decide for yourself.
When someone decides to become your client, there is a huge emotional component to that decision. As they make their decision they are thinking (and feeling) "I think I can trust her" or "I feel I can trust him." A "buying decision" is always emotional at its core. Therefore, in your efforts to convert a prospect into a client, you have to address the emotional aspects of the decision process.
I believe the same is true for getting referrals. When someone, a client or Center of Influence decides to give you referrals, it's just like a "buying decision." There is a huge emotional component.
Therefore, it is important that you employ a strategy to make sure you trigger this emotional component in a very positive way.
"Why Do You Do What You Do?"
In past newsletters, I've mentioned the work of my colleague Leo Pusateri. Leo is the master at helping financial professionals identify and articulate their value proposition.
One thing I learned from Leo is the power of the "why" you do what you do. This simple conversation will activate the positive emotional reaction necessary for someone to decide to work with you or give you referrals.
Therefore, it is imperative that you bring this topic up early in your conversations with your prospects and Centers of Influence. Since most people will not ask you why you do what you do, I suggest you insert it into your conversations. For instance, you could be describing your process or client service promise to a new prospect or COI and then say, "Let me take a minute to tell you a little bit about whyI'm in this business."
And, of course, if someone does ask you this question, I suggest you have an immediate, confident, and succinct answer. With any hesitation on your part, credibility could be lost.

Sample Script
As promised, here are two sample scripts as to how you might describe "the why." There are as many variations to this answer as there are financial advisors. Use these to stimulate your thinking.
Sample Script 1
"George, that's a little bit about what I do and how I do it. I'd like to tell you why I'm in this business. I've found that - for most people - there is a gap between where they are and where they'd like to be in terms of their confidence toward their financial future. I enjoy helping my clients close that gap in their confidence, so that they feel more organized and in control of their financial lives."
Sample Script 2
"Sue, allow me to tell you why I love my work. When I first got into this business, I did it because I enjoyed working with finances - investments, insurance, and such. I also knew I could have a little more control over my time - so I could go to my kids' activities. But it didn't take me very long before I realized how much I truly helped my clients. I saw so many people getting bad advice or no advice at all. You see, money intersects all aspects of our lives. Because of this, I've found that the work I do has a positive impact on all aspects of my clients' lives. This is a very rewarding profession."
Do I expect you to use all or some of this wording? Of course not! Use what you like, if anything and discard the rest. Better yet, write your statement from scratch and from your heart.
Please don't finish reading this issue and say, "That's a good idea, I should do this at some point." Rather, block some time on your schedule - right now - to get this done. Try it a few times and feel the energy in the room change. You'll be sold on this strategy - as I have.






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