$100,000. This could be the amount you leave on the table from people who have an interest in your service, but are not yet ready to engage. You see, when people seeking financial planning assistance come to your website, and you do not offer a way for them to get to know you such as an ebook, a video training series, a free report or even just a newsletter sign-up—they can only fall into one of two buckets:
1. I’m ready. These visitors have come with a purpose. They have a clear need for an adviser, have arrived through a search, a recommendation from a friend, or from viewing an article or marketing piece from you, and they are ready to take the next step. They will call you, email you, or submit a “request a consult” web form. We love these people; they are extremely valuable, and they are few in number.
2. I’m just browsing. These folks stumbled upon your site, took a temporary interest in looking for an adviser, clicked through a link without much consideration, and are probably on their lunch break or listening to a boring conference call while they surfed around your site. Perhaps they think, “Oh, I should get my financial act together” or “I really need to call one of these planners some day,” and the task moves to the bottom of their mental to-do list. The impetus to take action does not exist. More than likely, they just move onto their next task. Good-bye!
But, when you offer a “freemium,” a piece of complementary content in exchange for an introduction, you open the door to an extremely valuable third group of prospects:
3. I could be ready … soon. These folks took action to look up an adviser or check out the referral a friend gave them, meaning they have a need for financial planning help. However, they are hesitant, suspicious, unsure of how you’d work with them, and generally untrusting of sales-y professionals who may make them feel uncomfortable. The majority of potential clients in the world today fall into this group. They would very willingly introduce themselves through a web form for a helpful, targeted, free workbook, but they won’t jump right in and pick up the phone to schedule a meeting. They want to build a relationship with you over time, and you can do this by setting up a structured communication system to do just that.
Kick off your engagement by giving away your knowledge in exchange for contact information and follow up with more education. Then follow up and teach again. If you do not give them the opportunity to get to know you slowly through this kind of relationship marketing system, you will never even know who they are. They will fall into bucket No. 2 every time. And that’s client revenue you’ll never see.
Imagine if you captured just two more clients per month because you offer an opportunity for the No. 3s to warm up. You let them read your emails, review your videos and understand who you are. If your average client is worth $4,000 per month, then you have added $8,000 per month or nearly $100,000 in revenue across one year by giving the latitude for a prospect to ease into the relationship. Sounds like it might be worth your time, right?
Kristin Harad, CFP®
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