What does relevance mean? According to the dictionary – the degree to which something is related or useful to what is happening or being talked about. In the context of financial advice then it would be how relevant both the business model is and the advice being offered is to the client.
Relevance has been uncovered as one of the critical drivers of success for the future of financial advice. Relevance coupled with trust will be the two pillars that will attract the ideal client and keep your ideal client. By ignoring your relevance puts you in a position of danger.
So how do you remain relevant and how do you communicate your relevance?
In this short article, I’ll address some fundamentals that you can use in your business right now.
The first thing to consider is creating a framework to work within.
Demonstrate + Involve = Empowerment
Three keywords which will help you deliver the right message. Whenever you can demonstrate things like your capability, expertise, ongoing education, investment philosophy, innovative investment options; the things that are important to clients.
Then involve people in a discussion about the things you have demonstrated through existing clients supporting what you claim, through business partners supporting you, through discussion groups and open communication channels.
Because if you can demonstrate what the client is looking for and involve others, even them, you’ll empower clients to make the right decision to partner with you.
It’s a shift in paradigm for some; rather than relying on others to position your business you start to, and you take control of communicating your relevance to your existing clients and potential clients – even COI’s.
Due to the Royal Commission, questions are being asked; we all know that. Those businesses that think their clients aren’t a little bit concerned and thinking about their adviser, unfortunately, are not living in the real world – sorry to have to say that but I know through the research that I do. So let’s be proactive and start talking about and promoting things like your investment philosophy. You already have one [it might need a refresh] but start bringing it to the forefront and be proud to share it and demonstrate your relevance [plus a few other things!].
You’ve heard us all talk about the importance of content marketing and in the context of relevance I have to bring it up again because what content marketing does is help people answer their burning questions and demonstrates your relevance. If you don’t have things like a blog or white papers or articles where are you demonstrating your relevance regarding solutions for clients?
The other really simple thing you can do to demonstrate your relevance is to share information every time you attend a PD day, course or anything of that nature. Your clients wouldn’t have a clue about the amount of professional development you have to complete each year so tell them! A quick summary of the key points that you learnt from the course shared through your communication channels again demonstrates your relevance.
Relevance is also demonstrated through your financial solutions; the investment options you have available. The new breed of adviser, for example, Fox and Hare Wealth are doing some great things in delivering relevant financial packages to their target market.
As a marketing professional, I talk about all things marketing. But to end this article, I’d like to introduce the notion of organisation change because this is one of the most significant paradigm shifts you can take today as a financial advice business to drive home your client-centric culture. Across the globe, we are seeing a transformation away from functional specialisation to more cross-functional teams that focus on a specific client group. If you have a business that delivers financial planning, accounting and broking, for example, start having a conversation now about how your structure could be changed to match your client demographics rather than sticking with the same old structure.
Relevance isn’t just a word it’s an important pillar that will help your business stay alive now and into the future.