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Improving financial planning at your practice (part 1)

13 March 2019 Myra Knoesen

Designed with a financial adviser in mind, here are ideas Patrick Hannon, Enterprise account executive at Advicent, shares to improve the financial planning side of your practice.

It starts with a CRM

You should have a Client Relationship Management tool (CRM) that is more than just email. Keeping your clients’ information and your interactions with them organised in a central hub is critical for compliance and continuity in your business. Look for CRMs that will serve your financial service needs.

A firm with an organised CRM is worth more than one with archived emails, paper copies, and a large physical book of contacts.

Understand your book

Leverage your existing clients. They trust you for a reason. Use a CRM and look at each the following:

Clients by life stage (use age as a default)

  • College and early career (usually under 30)
  • Established professional (usually married with kids)
  • Building for retirement (usually age 46 to retirement)
  • Retired (looking to spend down safely) 

You should be communicating to these clients differently; each group wants financial planning but has different needs specific to their life stage. For example, if you want to court Millennials as clients, consider hiring one. Your Millennial adviser will already communicate and empathize with your desired clients.

Clients by size of 401k and age relative to 59½

This group should allow you to see what assets could be managed in a given time frame. Clients that are approaching 59½ will have questions and concerns about what that age means to them. Be ready to provide answers and value before they turn 59.

Clients by job type

Some firms work only with doctors; others have chosen to focus exclusively on lawyers. Segmenting by profession can often help you identify what concerns are keeping individuals up at night. Grouping those clients (and concerns) can help you deliver value to all of your clients. For example, you could serve clients with small businesses by building a marketing/engagement campaign that includes information on securing credit for their business.

Look for DINKWADs and HENRYs

Just because your clients do not have assets now, it does not mean that they will not later. Provide value now to young, high-income, high-debt couples. These are typically young, successful DINKWADs or HENRYs (Double-Income-No-Kids-With-A-Dog or High-Earners-Not-Rich-Yet). Help DINKWADs now through basic planning like setting up an account or obtaining life insurance before having children, and they will immediately look to you for investment advice. They desperately want financial advice but typically do not trust large institutions. While not exclusively Millennials, these clients are underserved but become fiercely loyal when engaged.

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