Financial advisors will scratch their heads for months on end for how to expand their business and create new contacts. One strategy that is often overlooked is directly in front of you; utilizing your own social circle. This is often frowned upon by many for a few reasons. It may come across as unprofessional, unethical or just simply intrusive. However, it doesn’t have to be this way, there is a certain tactical way of wording your approaches that will excite your friends and family and not come across as the cheesy salesperson.
Timing is everything with any conversation, yet when talking about your business it is even more so. Choosing the optimal time to bring up the topic is very dependent on where the conversation is leading. Some of your friends and acquaintances may not even know what you do for a living, so letting them know this piece of information, combined with telling them you are looking for other clients is appropriate. If financial issues arise in conversation, you want to wait till the end of the conversation to tell someone that you could possibly help them with that. Judge their reaction and move on swiftly as your goal has been accomplished- they know about your services and hopefully will take note. Hopefully you are comfortable enough with this person where you can make it light-hearted or crack a few jokes.
When proposing your services to a friend or family member, you want your wording to assume that you are here to help. “I can help you with that.” “Let me know if you need an extra hand with that.” Those types of sentences will give a much more positive impression than a sales pitch. When it comes to expanding your network, individuals that your network is associated with have excellent potential. “If you know anyone else who needs a bit of extra advise, let them know they can always give me a call.” It’s important to leave the ball in their court, imply that they don’t have to do anything, just if it comes up. Asking about relatives and getting an understanding of how other family members are managing money will help too. Say if parents and grandparents are getting to the stage of life where they are needing to set up wills; although handled delicately, you could be a blessing to them. Advising individuals whom you know personally can give a new expertise to your services. You know these people better than most advisors so you have a greater knowledge of how to allocate their assets. This can bring a new sense of understanding between a client and advisor.
Social circles can be fragile and often not the part of your life that you want to be mixing in with work. But if done effectively, you can build impressively by meeting people who can bring so much more value to your advising business. If you can create connections in your friend’s family, a great deal of satisfaction can be gained from helping people who are important in your life. Financial advising is very much based on trust and respect and if you already have that on a social level, who's to say that won’t be projected onto your professional self too?