At the end of a six-month development period, we present the client’s financial road map that has been developed with their input and collaboration. This allows the client to review the important steps that have been completed and guidance they have received over this period to meet their goals and objectives. We then propose the following to them: If they feel that we have done a comprehensive and thorough job, could they recommend three other individuals we might contact to help in a similar way?
We also find that reminding our clients of this request at regular intervals enhances our ability to gain referrals. Our review meetings, usually held every four months, will cover the progress the client has made in various areas of their financial plan. It is another ideal opportunity to ask if they know of a friend, family member, or business associate who might benefit from our comprehensive financial-planning process. Because our objective as a firm is to be solutions-oriented, clients are comfortable vouching for the high level of service and personal attention that we provide and become advocates for the firm.
We also find that clients’ other trusted advisors, such as insurance agents, lawyers, and accountants, can also be an excellent source of referrals. We work hard to win the trust of these specialists as we develop and implement strategies on behalf of clients. Communication is at the forefront, and we want to make sure that all parties are working toward the same goals.
We often act in a coordinating role to ensure all relevant parties are aware of any new developments in a client’s financial or personal life and help develop strategies toward a common goal. When these third-party advisors become comfortable with our approach, they often will refer other clients to us. It is a two-way street. As we gain trust in other professionals, we will refer these professionals to our clients when there is a need for their services.
Disclosure: Securities and investment advisory services are offered through FSC Securities Corporation (“FSC”), member FINRA/SIPC. Additional advisory services are offered through Strategic Financial Advisor Corp. and Strategic Financial Services Corp. FSC is separately owned, and other entities and/or marketing names, products, or services referenced here are independent of FSC.
Photography by Fred Glasser