There is very little in financial services which is quick and easy for consumers really…every decision, every solution, every recommendation seems to be a major journey for them.
At least that is what consumers think and say. Those inside the industry think otherwise. But of course we would.
The advisers who will be most successful in acquiring new clients in the next few years will be those who understand the potential clients buying journey best.
Understanding the multiple distractions and choices which every consumer has, and the sources of information and competing forces that are thrust upon them, is essential to helping guide them to good decisions.
They are influenced in so many ways and from so many directions today that their buying journey looks like a maze.
There are initial searches for educational or informative content…discussions with their peers and friends….further research which begins to look for detailed solutions or options…consumers interviewing potential advisers (instead of the other way around as it used to be)…comparisons of recommendations with workplace or group scheme options….and on it goes.
Decisions are often not quick or easy things for our future clients.
It is also not a quick or easy thing for an advisory practice to build the contact points and deliver the content and reference material that today’s consumers expect. Having a strong and systematic engagement process which supports the prospective clients decision-making path requires commitment, time and money.
But it is worth it.
Research has shown that those advisory firms who do so experience lower future customer service costs, better reputation and positive mentions, have better conversion rates and get a better return on their marketing dollars.
Oh…and they make a lot more money as a business too.
One might even go so far as to say it is the difference between being an advisory practice and a sales organisation. The one that is in tune with how potential clients wish to to choose to engage and ultimately make their decisions, and who deliver accordingly, are showcasing their advice focus from the start aren’t they?
It seems that it might be very worthwhile to build an engagement process which takes the prospect on the journey they were embarking upon anyway…
Tony Vidler is a business adviser who helps business professionals build more profitable advice businesses. He is also a conference speaker, personal business mentor and sales coach. Find out more at http://tonyvidler.com/financial-adviser-coach-blog/