Health is Wealth for Financial Advisors

What if you could choose between unlimited wealth or perfect health? Which one would you pick? I asked my connections on LinkedIn the same question recently, and here’s what they said:

Health VS Wealth

Over 75% of respondents chose perfect health. Are you surprised? I’m not. 

What does make me scratch my head is that the majority of my LinkedIn connections are financial advisors. These are the people who’ve dedicated their lives to helping others accumulate and manage their wealth. 

What’s even more intriguing is that these are the very people whose careers take a toll on their own personal health. I’ve been an exercise physiologist for a long time, and one thing I’m sure of is that the combination of a sedentary job with high stress mixed in is a toxic cocktail for your wellbeing. It’s tough to preserve your health when you’re in the financial services industry. 

One advisor put it this way. “My bank account has grown fat, but so has my body. I feel like I’ve traded my health for my wealth.

Advisors are great at planning for retirement from a monetary perspective, but at what cost? I doubt that anyone really wants to accumulate money for the sake of having money. It’s important to remember that money buys a lifestyle. So, what good is that money if the health needed to live that lifestyle is bankrupt?

What if we ask retirees themselves? These are the people who’ve traded in their suit and tie for a golf club. If they played their cards right, they should have plenty of money to live life on their terms. However, a recent study found that money is not the most important thing in retirement. According to 81% of retirees, the most important ingredient to a happy retirement is good HEALTH. It sounds like they agree with the poll I mentioned earlier. 

Health AND Wealth

So, here’s the conundrum. Financial advisors spend the majority of their time helping people secure financial stability but rarely factor their health into the equation, even though like retirees they see health as a vital part of retirement. It seems to me that health is a form of wealth and should absolutely be part of financial planning conversations.   

BOTH health and wealth are important for retirement planning. One without the other will leave advisors and clients stranded on the side of the road. I wrote about this in a recent article. The road to retirement requires plenty of gas (wealth) to power you forward AND a well-maintained car (health) as a vehicle to get you there.

Health IS Wealth

So, what does this all mean for your practice? I talk to financial advisors every day who are looking for ways to build a better business in a stressful industry full of competition. They’re always surprised when I bring up health as part of the solution.

Puzzled, they wonder what the connection is between their own health and the health of their business. Let me explain.

In the current climate of the industry, many advisors are upping their virtual game. This has provided some positive things like more time from not having to commute to an office. But, it’s also created a feeling of disconnection from their clients. 

Imagine what it would be like to use the extra time to get your health back on track. This would not only improve your personal future, but it would give you the authority and authenticity to talk to your clients about their health. 

Why? Opening the conversation about health with your clients will give them a new insight they won’t receive from other advisors. Asking them what they want for their future and how they see themselves spending their time is a pathway for finding out if they have the right financial portfolio to match their needs and expectations. 

I’m talking about going beyond lifespan stats. Have you ever had a conversation with your clients about “healthspan?” If you don’t know what it is, it’s a game-changer. It will open the door to helping clients feel heard and cared for. Here’s the article I wrote on the topic. You’ll likely find gaps in their portfolio that you can assist them with and the result is better client relationships, more sales, and more referrals.  

To help you with this, I created a Health & Wealth Conversation Guide for Financial Advisors. You can swipe it and use it with your clients. It has 4 tools and a couple of resources that will shine a light on an area of life that sometimes gets overlooked when it comes to financial planning – health. You can request your free pdf copy HERE

(Thumbnails of the Health & Wealth Conversation Guide for Financial Advisors)

About the author

Stevyn Guinnip, MS, CWC is the wellness coach for financial folks. She’s a financial advisor’s daughter with 20 years as an exercise physiologist. Stevyn is the CEO & Wellth Advisor at Grow Wellthy™ and the creator of a proprietary 12-week wellness coaching program called the Wellth Academy™. You can reach Stevyn to apply to the academy, podcast interviews, or speaking inquiries at stevyn@growwellthy.com. Other ways to engage with Stevyn are through LinkedIn or her free Facebook group called The Wellth Planners.

Social Media Best Practices For Financial Advisors

social media best practices for financial advisors

By now, we all know the power of social media. Its influence is significant enough to sway elections, change buying behaviors, and alter public opinion on almost anything! It’s too big to ignore, so rather than fight it, you should embrace the capabilities of social channels to help connect you with your potential customers.

By being on social media, you let your customers know that you exist, you’re open for business, and you’re ready to listen. It’s a tool you need to leverage as a part of your marketing strategy to remain relevant and competitive.  

Digital marketing for financial advisors can help increase your brand visibility and boost sales in a fast and cost-effective manner. Social media platforms act as mystical portals through which to channel your enchanting story. Cast your spell and put yourself in front of your ideal clients today.   It may sound funky, but the reality is that it works, but only if you actually do it.

 

When Should You Post On Social Media?

A frequency asked question is, when is the ideal time for financial advisors to be posting social media content? Although there is no universal handbook for posting times, and the algorithms of big platforms continue to change regularly, I still have some advice on how to go about your content scheduling. Here are some general rules of thumb:

  • The best time for click-throughs is around 1 to 4 p.m.
  • Wednesday is proven to be the best day to post.
  • The worst time for click-throughs are weekends between 8 p.m. and 8 a.m.

Take these times with a grain of salt. I’m not saying that you should only post to social media during these times, but as a virtual financial advisor who has been doing this since before mass adoption, these are the best averages to go on. 

Your posting schedule will be dependent on your target audience. Say, for instance, you’re a financial advisor who specializes in working with educators. You probably wouldn’t want to follow this advice because your audience will be in school teaching during the “prime times”. So, tailor your approach to your market to maximize exposure and reach. A/B testing is a great way to gauge response rates at different times and on different days. It’s how you find your sweet spot.  

Social Media Best Practices For Financial Advisors

Keeping It Real

Originality is everything when it comes to content and should be your main priority. Your content is an extension of yourself and your story. Please don’t be sending out canned spam into the ether, and by canned spam, I mean cold, generic, lazy and impersonal content.  You know exactly what I am talking about! The kind of content that makes a terrible first impression and probably does more harm than good to you and your practice.

Keep it real – when it comes to social media marketing, content drives engagement. When content is unique and original, it encourages clients to engage with you. Make it personal by writing for your audience. Ask them questions to grab their attention and make them feel as though you are having a conversation with them in an authentic way.

Originality is a brand builder. Posting original content will help search engines drive traffic to your website and boost your reputation in terms of creativity and trustworthiness. This approach can have potential clients feeling as if they know you before even using your service, which is a fantastic foot in the door on the way to building a lasting relationship. 

So, what should you post on Social Media?  A variety of original content.  Plain copy posts.  Pictures.  Short videos (try to keep them under 2 minutes).  Articles.  Audio clips of podcasts you are on or are producing.  The list goes on.  

All of it should be driven by WHO your ideal client is.  And stay out of the weeds, people don’t care so much about complex financial products, strategies, etc.  They want to know who you are.  They want to know how you can help them.  They want to know why you instead of the next advisor.  They want to know the benefits of working with you.  They want to know your why.

social media best practices for financial advisors

The Fundamentals For Social Success

Integrate social media into your overall marketing strategy – Think of social media as an element of, not a replacement for, your other marketing efforts. Start slow. You don’t need to break the internet overnight and trust me, and you won’t. Trying to do too much too fast can be overwhelming. Rome wasn’t built in a day. 

Your efforts will be most effective if you take your time, observing and learning along the way. This will allow you to grow in confidence before tackling a new platform. I recommend starting with LinkedIn, where networking is the game, then move on to Facebook to build some relationships.  A caveat here is that if you know your ideal client is on Facebook, Twitter, etc. more than any other platform then go to that platform and crush it.  You can always add another platform later once you are rocking it on one.

Engagement is key. Don’t post your content and then disappear.  If people are commenting on your content, then engage with them, thank them, ask them additional questions.  Make it a conversation.

Never stop learning from others. What effective financial advisor marketing strategies have you seen lately? What was interesting about their website? What type of updates generated the most interest and engagement? These are the questions you need to be asking yourself to find the most effective solution for yourself.

Set goals for your social efforts – lay out a plan for achieving them and track your progress. Set up automated reminders on your calendar to stay on track with your social ambitions. Be consistent in your messaging and what you post. Once you have set up a pattern for posting you are happy with, stick to it. This forms part of your social identity.  

Lead generation for financial advisors is all about driving traffic into your marketing funnel.  For example, you post on LinkedIn, you build an audience that gets to know you, you post about an eBook they can have for free on your website, you send them there. Measure your efforts by using Google Analytics to track referrals from social media to your site. When you find out what’s driving traffic to your site, do a heck of a lot more of it!

Social media for financial advisors is an art & science.  It is not something that magically starts driving in clients overnight, forget that myth.  If you build a robust digital footprint, which includes social media, and are actively engaged with amazing organic content good things will start to happen.  When you start to see what works then, and only then, should you venture into the world of paid advertising (boosting posts, etc.) to throw gas on a fire you have already started.

What is your favorite social media platform and why?

 

Thanks for taking some time to read this, I really appreciate it!

Best Regards,

Derek Notman

Going Virtual – The Value Of Being A Location Independent Financial Advisor

Helping clients with their financial planning from a sandy beach in South Africa may sound too good to be true, but it’s not, and I’ve done it. The anywhere advisor concept was almost unfathomable a decade ago, but with the rapid adoption of technology in a Covid-accelerated digital wilderness, it’s now the most practical solution.      

Financial advisors traditionally had to sit down with their clients, face-to-face, and walk them through solutions to their financial planning challenges with paper presentations. How to get clients as a financial advisor was about cold calling, door knocking, seminar selling, and so on to drive more in-person meetings. However, times have changed, and virtual advisors are on the rise. Let’s analyze some of the benefits of practicing as a location independent financial advisor.  

Leverage Technology 

Videoconferencing helped me improve my life-work balance by reducing the need for business travel. It also allowed me to take on ideal clients who weren’t initially in my geographic scope, essentially without limit. It’s certainly the most effective way of delivering personalized advice in the digital age and having more time for your social life and family is one heck of an incentive, all while making more money and drastically reducing your overhead in the process.

Technology systems and web-based tools are virtually everywhere, which is a double-edge sword for advisors since so many solutions exist yet we don’t know how to put them all together to get the most out of them.  This is one of the reasons I created Conneqtor, to give advisors the master blueprint they need to help serve clients regardless of where you or your client happens to be

The anywhere advisor can serve different types of clientele, thanks to the cost savings and efficiency of using technology as opposed to a traditional office. Location independence presents the potential to craft an especially focused business serving niche clients that becomes feasible in the world of content and inbound marketing.

Freedom And Well-Being

Imagine never having to delay your life plans, while you wait for the ‘right moment’? Break free from the shackles of a physical location occupation. Stop being bound when you were made to explore. As a virtual financial advisor, you have the opportunity not only to create a life around the business of financial advice but to create an advisory business around living your life to the fullest.  

The ability to balance work and life has become the key to feeling happier and being more productive within your work. Saving time that would otherwise be spent on a long commute allows for better work-life balance and adds hours back into your days. Working remotely can improve your health and wellness by reducing stress.

What about financial freedom? The benefit of operating virtually and having a robust digital presence is that it’s possible to launch a new advisory firm at a fraction of the cost. A brick & mortar location is a massive expense, and with that eliminated, you can focus on building a fierce virtual practice and target your ideal clients. This newly found freedom also makes it more feasible to serve clients with different business models.

How you choose to spend your time saved as a virtual advisor are entirely up to you. Make sure to get that father of the year mug in 2021, go on that trip you’ve always dreamt of, or put the extra hours into other projects or passions. Either way, ka-ching! It all holds value. 

Replace Prospecting With Marketing 

Cold calling now seems like something from a prehistoric nightmare, but it was once a cornerstone of our profession. The world has since gone digital with everyone now online. This is where you must exist to stay relevant. 

Digital marketing is the most powerful asset at the disposal of a virtual financial advisor. Tech platforms offer many new opportunities to improve your overall marketing strategy, such as the ability to reach new audiences, generate leads, and close sales. Digital marketing is no overnight phenomena and can take months to start bearing the fruits of your efforts, but once you have an engaged audience, the value add is quickly evident. 

Connect through content – start focusing on creating content rather than AUM. Assets under management have almost zero value to a potential client. It’s an ego stroke that in a service-based business like ours should be left at the door. Clients are searching for how you can help them, and with 3.5 billion Google searches made every day, you need to be featured among them! 

Embrace technology, grow your digital presence, tap into new markets and become a specialist advisor who operates from anywhere. Write your own story – set your own hours – choose your own destiny. Become the anywhere advisor to acquire more clients, reduce your expenses, and have an amazing life-work balance.  How can anyone argue with this?

 

Best Regards,

Derek Notman

Lead Generation For Financial Advisors Isn’t Everything- Why We Need to Change Our Focus

lead generation for financial advisors

Lead generation for financial advisors, ugh, where do I begin? As advisors, we need to get the nagging voice out of our heads telling us, “you need more leads”. For decades, advisors have been taught to focus on obtaining leads to grow their business. This is all wrong. We don’t want leads, but rather ideal clients.

Think about it, would you like to be referred to as a lead? It’s such an impersonal, inhuman word, solely focused on one thing, selling something. Client, on the other hand, is a far more human word — one that is relatable and will lead to more significant sales.

We need to shift our focus to stay competitive in a rapidly changing world. Prioritize the client, not the business. Treat clients like the unique entities that they are. Worry more about niche satisfaction and the quality of your client acquisition than sheer numbers. Use a personable approach to liaising with clients, made up of empathy and support, to make you the clear choice in a financial advisor. Let’s dive a little deeper, shall we?

 

There Are Better Ways of Doing Things

To truly excel as an advisor, you need to understand you are not merely a salesman. There is so much more to being a great advisor than just selling a product.

Advisors who buy cold leads are essentially slapping people in the face (pitch slapping ring a bell?) as they ask them for money. It demonstrates that someone holds no value to you other than as a pay-check. This is not the kind of experience people are lining up to get more of, and they are rightfully looking elsewhere.

Prospecting is, for all intents and purposes, dead. Yes, it may yield some return — but at what cost? It’s a soul-crushing process that is certainly not scalable. As a virtual financial advisor, myself, I know there are far better ways to tell your story and propel new client acquisition in the digital world we live in today.

financial advisors

The Art of Financial Advice 

Financial advisors who focus on selling a product are subjecting themselves to massive competition – an endless rat race of misguided purpose and ambition. At the end of the day, we can all pretty much sell the same products and services. They are a commodity. But brilliant financial advice? That is an art form. An art form through which you can differentiate yourself and thrive.

Art requires skill – Michelangelo didn’t paint the Sistine Chapel by accident. You will need technical know-how and formidable storytelling abilities. Experience, credentials, and expertise create the basis for great relationships and client trust. Expressing your ideals and breathing life into your brand’s story can be the perfect lure to get well-suited clients.

With the possession of both skills, you can be sure the right clients will be placing their financial wellbeing in your hands. Advisors who focus on the art of financial advice have all the opportunity in the world with virtually no competition.

 

Clients Are Everything

Advisors who focus on client acquisition are the most likely to find long-term success. Remember, people don’t care how much you know until they know how much you care. You need to show them you care by marketing strong commonalities, deepening the human connection.

An ever-present human element forms part of any effective financial advisor marketing plan. This warm Conneqtor strategy bridges the gap between the service provider and the client. Once the client knows how much you care, they will be chomping at the bit to work with you.

As financial advisors, we need to facilitate meaningful, trust-building conversations. Before assisting with financial decisions, we can help clients clarify priorities and values. In this respect, a better client experience involves having financial knowledge and a fair deal of emotional intelligence.

Financial Advisor helping clients

Client participation

Client participation is equally important. Clients want to feel understood, informed, in control and secure within their service. For us, that means we need to deliver a hyper-personalized experience through smart consistency.

Smart consistency requires understanding where it’s critical to deliver a consistent experience and delivering on that. This means leveraging an established process to create tailored strategies based on what is most important to your clients. Advisors should put their clients’ interests before their own, using their goals and unique perspectives in their tailored strategies. A custom experience – that’s what clients want!

They like knowing what’s happening behind the scenes and feeling they have the best support in their corner. The client relationship should be aligned to achieve common goals of awesome advisory service and financial prosperity.

Time to change your focus, my advisor friends!

I hope you gained some valuable insight from reading this article! Remember, you can always reach out to me for more guidance and advice.

 

Best Regards,

Derek Notman