Active investment management’s weekly magazine for fee-based advisors

Jerry Sullivan • Vacaville, CA
Solano Strategic Financial Advisors • Securities America Inc.

I work with clients of all ages and from all walks of life, with different income and asset levels, but there are really two sweet spots for our practice. The first is composed of people about 10 years away from retirement. They are ideal clients because there is still time to make some mid-course adjustments in retirement and legacy planning, and to explore tax-advantaged strategies.

Small-business owners are also a prime prospect segment. Business owners not only have all of the classic retirement-related needs, but they also may have fairly complex business-related needs in the areas of insurance coverages, retirement plans, succession planning, and so forth. If our firm is not fully expert in an area they need, we have many external resources we can partner with. Business owners also can represent a prime source for referrals, both within their company and among people in their network.

v12-i02-advisor-jerrysullivan-350px-v3For both of these target groups, our firm’s primary resource for new client development is current client referrals. But beyond that, I believe it is important to continually develop and stay in contact with a wide network of influencers and potential referral sources.

The most fruitful area in this regard is the group of trusted advisors in other professional fields that our clients consult. We reach out on a regular basis to attorneys and CPAs in our area. One very specific marketing effort we employ is to send a “thank you” package that contains a boxed lunch to CPAs in our county every April 14th. While this is a small gesture, it has paid dividends for our firm.

I also work on developing my personal network in a variety of areas, whether it is through civic or community organizations I belong to or social groups such as my country club. The important thing here is to keep the initial contact low-key, just letting people know what we do and inviting them to come in for a casual meeting or to attend one of our informal educational events. I have found that building a wide referral network of contacts will eventually take on a life of its own, continually widening and leading to further beneficial contacts.

Disclosure: Financial Advisors and Registered Representatives associated with Iron Point Financial Advisors, Inc. offer advisory services through Securities America Advisors, Inc. and offer securities through Securities America, Inc., member FINRA/SIPC. Solano Strategic Financial Advisors and Iron Point Financial Advisors, Inc. are not affiliated entities of the Securities America companies. Asset allocation does not guarantee a profit or protection from losses in a declining market.

Photography by Joni Kabana