Instead of focusing on all the new shiny stuff and actually not getting anywhere – focus on what works – time after time.
At a recent conference, I was approached by a financial adviser who had a specific question for me, “I have decided on a niche market, but I have little experience working with this niche. How can I position myself as knowledgeable without coming across unconfident?” I like this niche and want to develop my expertise so that I can work with them more.”
Because it’s a question I know other financial advisers have, I thought I’d write a quick post about the guaranteed way in which you can position yourself within a new niche.
Firstly, allow me to address the 2 BIGGEST MISTAKES most financial advisers make when positioning their value.
1. Talking themselves up – too much confidence. I don’t meet a lot, but I have met some financial advisers who do this and people just don’t feel comfortable with them; don’t trust them. Gives the industry a bad reputation!
2. Talking themselves down – too little confidence. Clients want to know that you back yourself; that what you say you believe in because you know it works. Meek and mild aren’t attractive.
HERE’S THE PROBLEM WITH BOTH OF THOSE MISTAKES…
In both cases, you’re talking about yourself – not your ideal client.
We all hate to listen to someone boast about themselves, so please don’t do it!
Talk about the common problems faced by people in your niche. Talk about what you believe is causing the problems, and what the long-term effective could be if no action was taken.
Wyatt Woodsmall once said, “When you can articulate a person’s problem better than they can, they unconsciously & automatically give you credit for knowing the solution.”
That is the key to positioning you as the expert in any niche market.
How do you know the top problems in your niche? You ask, you research, and you read up! Focus your research on understanding what keeps them awake at night, metaphorically speaking! What is their number one financial concern? Focus on them and their problems not how you solve them YET. You can’t develop the solutions if you don’t know what their problems are!
There’s always a place to share your experience & social proof. It’s AFTER you’ve earned the right to talk at all. Shine the spotlight of your attention on your ideal client, not yourself or your financial advice yet…
If you need any help in developing your niche marketing, please feel free to contact me directly, and we can have a chat about it.
As Financial Advice businesses struggle to think about stories to share with clients and ways they can differentiate themselves, some are finding that the solution has been sitting right in front of them for years – their heritage; simply put the number of years they have been in business. I’ve often said that just saying you have been in business for 25 years isn’t enough and it’s not UNLESS you approach it the right way. It’s not about patting yourself on the back but rather talking about the great benefits you have been able to bring to clients, employees and business partners. How many people have to help transition into retirement? How many people have you helped pay off their debt? How many people have you helped grow their wealth? How many people have you employed over the years?
People respect a company that has a heritage, which can prove they have helped people over the years solve their problems. If that’s you, you have earnt the right to promote it.
Promote it as a competitive advantage by creating meaningful connections with potential clients, existing clients, and business partners. Ways in which you can achieve that are through visual content – images of when the business first started, perhaps what the building looked like, pictures of the staff and long lasting clients.
Consider a video of the founding member talking about why the business started and how things have changed over time regarding investment trends and business practices. People enjoy watching ‘down memory lane’ videos.
You can talk about how the business remains relevant and up to date – this will demonstrate that your company invests in its people, processes, and systems – clients like a heritage business that has evolved over the years because it proves that you can survive the good times and the bad!
One of the golden ways to promote your heritage is through others; your clients and business partners. Ask them to talk about how many years they have been in business with you, why they remain a client and what your advice has done for them.
In a world, that shows no signs of slowing down, how you remained relevant, current and engaged with your clients will ultimately lead to your success.
If you found this article interesting, please feel free to share it with others who may also benefit from reading it, thank you.
In my last blog, I shared how you can create your avatar and attract more of the ideal client. In this blog, I’d like to explain how important it can be to create a character, especially when you are marketing and communicating online, as a great deal of you now are.
Once you know your avatar backward, forwards and all the in between, you need to become the character that is most appealing to this avatar. Your goal and I know for many, your desire, is to become the expert leader; a trusted adviser for great information, advice, and solutions.
The reality is, your ideal client is going to follow someone. Might as well be you, right?
The great Dan Kennedy said, “People are walking around with their umbilical cords hanging out, looking for a place to plug them into.” In today’s digital world that is very true and they can very easily find a ‘place’ to plug into!
People will pay attention to you not just because you can give great advice but because you are interesting, engaging and exactly who they were looking for.
People can relate even more to you if your character has an interesting story to tell.
Think about your favorite TV show, movie or book. Can you remember some of the characters? Chances are you can. We remember characters and relate to them.
How memorable are you?
Your mission? Create and use a character that will instill a sense of relationship and engagement with your avatar. You want them to feel like they know you already as if you are already their trusted adviser.
A great character has magical powers. You have magical powers! I don’t mean superhero powers but if you think about what you do; create wealth, rid of debt and so forth – it can sound pretty magical to some people not in the industry!
Think about your brand, think about your client value proposition, think about your avatar and create a character to enable you to stand out from all the other financial advisers in your area.
What is an avatar? Your avatar is your ideal client, the average person that you offer advice to, who is happy to take your advice, pay for your advice, introduce others to receive your advice – they see you as the perfect person to solve their problem.
They will remain a client, see you as their trusted adviser and happy to spend more money with you over time.
This avatar is the person you should always do business with. However, before you rush into developing marketing collateral and so forth you need to create a story, become a character, deliver relevant up to date information [content] and become their trusted adviser.
To do this, you have to know them.
Who is your ideal client? Grab a pen now and write down a real description about them. Pretend they are sitting across from you now. What do they like? What is their income? How do they make decisions? Who do they trust and why? What job do they have? Where do they take holidays? Kids or no kids?
What is causing them pain? What is their biggest problem?
What do you have that will solve their problem? Is it a system they can follow? Is it a comprehensive plan to take them from A to B?
What are their fears? What frustrates them? How do they perceive financial advice?
Tip – the biggest thing people usually want comes in the form of emotions and experiences – the more you can focus on this, the better your marketing communications will be.
For example, what would happen to them/how would they feel, if they got their deepest desire?
Try filling out the blanks below to see how well you know your ideal client – a great exercise to complete as a business.
Hi, [their name], I know it’s not easy being a [their age] year old [gender] and [their identifying trait] who is trying to [their desired outcome] especially when you’re busy working as a [job]. When you think about [their problem], it can seem overwhelming and out of reach. I would like to take a minute to let you know that your biggest desire can be achieved. Achieving [their greatest desire] isn’t easy for many, but we’ve been able to help people just like you by [state how you solve their problem].
Once you know your avatar, you can start to create relevant information that will matter to them rather than shooting from the hip and hoping your marketing sticks!
If you are looking for help in attracting more of your ideal client, feel free to contact me and learn how I can help you.
You love referrals from clients don’t you? You probably would love more too I bet. There is nothing wrong with that, what is wrong is giving your client a gift every time, it starts to get a little awkward!
Having spoken to literally hundreds of clients of Financial Advisers I know all they expect in return is a thank you. You’d be surprised how many Advisers don’t say thank you!
So what should you do, I hear you ask?
Firstly, never ask for an introduction in the first meeting – unless they are raving about you, swinging off the chandeliers and bursting with praise for your one hour of work. Introducing someone they know to your business is a real privilege because you don’t work with everyone – you work with ideal clients.
It’s not your clients job to do your marketing, it’s yours.
When a client does introduce someone to your business a simple ‘thank you’ is all that is needed. You can call them, email them, create a short personal video to say thank you – all effective ways.
I was speaking at a PD day in Brisbane once and we were discussing this concept of just saying thank you and it really resonated with the Advisers but there was one Adviser that said, “I have one client that refers work to us all of the time and every time he does I give him a bottle of wine, I can’t stop that!” And he can’t! If you already have a client that introduces clients to you on a regular basis and they ‘expect’ that gift you can’t take it away however, if you don’t give a gift then my suggestion and recommendation is that you don’t but you DO acknowledge them and say thank you.
There are other ways you can say thank you too – in your monthly newsletter, your FB page, your blog post – these are all great because it openly acknowledges but also lets others know that you appreciate introductions (another way of asking for them!).
In one of the Advice businesses I work with, they have a list of clients that have introduced people to their business and it gets added to all the time – they have it on a wall in their reception area – has a massive impact!
Myself – I love introducing people to others for the purpose of helping them, do I expect a gift? No! that would be awkward!
No gifts but please remember to say “Thank you” so many others forget.