Get talked about and attract unsolicited referrals

Most financial advisors occasionally receive an unsolicited referral from a client or another professional. Any advisor would want to make that happen more often, yet it appears random. You didn’t seem to do anything special to make it happen. What if, however, there was something special you could do that would drive many more referrals to you?

In a 2022 survey supervised by Julie Littlechild, of Absolute Engagement, her team determined that 98% of engaged clients had referred at least one new prospect to their advisor during the previous year. To get results like this from your clients, you need to understand how to turn up the engagement level.

Engaged clients are happy clients

Whether or not a client is engaged depends on how happy they are with your service but, more importantly, how they feel about their experience as a client. That experience is the one factor that moves them from being merely satisfied to being raving fans.

There are several factors that go into that experience, which starts with hearing about you and learning about you online. It continues through onboarding and all their interactions with you over a span of years. It includes

  • How you communicate with them
  • How they’re treated
  • How accessible you and your team are
  • How they are treated by your team
  • Whether or not they’re being wowed
  • Whether you have a great story to share with them
  • Whether they have great stories to share with others about you
  • What’s special about your service

Imagine this:

Your clients come to your office for an appointment and there’s a “Welcome” sign at the desk with their name on it. Your assistant greets them by name and tells them that you’re expecting them and will be with them in a few minutes. She asks if they’d like some coffee and brings them the coffee on a silver tray with china cups. You then come out, greet them warmly and walk them into the conference room. Your assistant carries the tray to the conference table and asks them if they need anything else. 

How does that compare to the experience you offer to your best clients?

Or this:

You talk with one of your top clients, the Smiths, enough to know that next Tuesday evening they’ll be celebrating their anniversary at their favorite Italian restaurant on Main Street. They have 8 p.m. reservations. You call the restaurant and order a bottle of Prosecco for them, which will be delivered when they’ve been seated. While they’re perusing the menu, the waiter brings over an ice bucket and starts to open the bottle. Mr. Smith protests, “We didn’t order that.” And the waiter explains that it’s an anniversary gift from their advisor — you.

When the Smiths go home, friends and relatives are likely to ask how their anniversary celebration went. They’ll then tell everyone about the magical appearance of that bottle of Prosecco from their advisor.

A common response might be, “Your advisor did that? Mine takes three days to return my phone calls. Tell me more about yours.”

We can wait a very long time until someone our clients know asks them about getting help with their retirement finances or for someone who can help them get more insurance. But if their client experience has them talking about you, unsolicited referrals are just around the corner.

Create an experience that your clients want to talk about.

Sandy Schussel is a performance acceleration coach who has been working with financial advisors for more than 20 years, helping them break through to higher production levels. Contact him to learn how he can help you make selling the least of your concerns.

For more referral-generating ideas:

  • Praful Karia says:

    It’s a great idea you suggested but in India picture is different few client give reference but caution not tell their name

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