Relationship Marketing

Relationship Marketing
The only proven strategy to generate a steady flow of new clients.
By Peter Montoya

Marketing techniques for Financial Services practices have changed dramatically in the last 25 years. But some of the most significant changes have come about in just the past 3 years. Most of the marketing strategies you previously used to grow your business are now either illegal or just plain ineffective.

When you first started your career you probably used some of the following marketing strategies;

 Cold Calling. Purchase a lead list or directly call from the phone book.
 Forced Networking. Write a list of everyone you know. Good. Now schedule an appointment to sell something … and make them give you a list of their friends too.
 Direct Mail for Lead Generation (different than Direct Mail for Client Maintenance). Purchase a lead list, create a letter with a compelling offer and mail it.
 Yellow Page Advertising. May have worked at one time, but now mainly generates prospects looking for debt relief or stock transactions.
 Public Seminars. Mail out 5,000 invitations to your favorite steak house, attract approximately 30 prospects, present your wares and hopefully generate 6 meetings and 5 new clients.

If these marketing strategies are working for you, please continue them. If they are not working for you, you have my permission to stop wasting your money and give them up forever. If you are desperate for new clients, please DO NOT WASTE YOUR TIME ON THE MARKETING STRATEGIES ABOVE.

The following up-to-date marketing strategies are proven to work for a majority of Financial Advisors. If these strategies don’t work for you, it is because of some peculiarities of your area or your execution:

1. Client Referrals. Generated because of a perceived expertise or specialization, solid relationship and superior service. If you aren’t receiving client referrals, frankly, your service stinks.
2. Professional Referrals (CPAs, Estate Planners, Attorneys, Human Resource Managers). You can cold call to build these relationships, you can deliver CE credits, but the most effective way to build relationships is to meet them via a client or by networking in the community.
3. Client Communication. Probably the easiest and most effective marketing strategy to maintain and improve client relationships. Consider using Direct Mail and Direct Email to “touch” clients 12, 24 or over 60 times per year. The most successful advisors with the most affluent clients strive for 60+ “touches” each year … some even hit 100.
4. Client Events. Social or Educational events with clients and friends of clients. You should be doing at least 4 of these per year. 12 is better, and many of my most successful advisors go beyond 20 per year.
5. Web Site. Don’t expect any leads. Don’t expect to generate inquiries from wealthy prospects because your name popped up in a search for “Financial Planning” or “Retirement Planning”. Rather, your Web Site builds credibility between the time that someone hears about you and the time that you call. If you don’t have a high-quality web site, you’ll lose potential referrals. Period.
6. Networking. You should belong to at least 4 or more “groups”. A group can be a religious, social, political, non-profit or educational. You should attend meetings regularly, participate and be very, very passionate about the cause. It is quite simple: your clients are a direct reflection of your networks. If your clients have no friends and no money – you’d better change networks.

Here is where I’d normally insert a couple case studies of successful advisors who are using these channels, but for this article I don’t have to. Look no farther than the top advisors in your area or the top advisors in your Broker/Dealer. I’m willing to bet that they do all or most of the six Relationship Marketing strategies listed above.

If you want or need help implementing these strategies, we’ve developed an online marketing tool called…


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