Active investment management’s weekly magazine for fee-based advisors
I have built my entire insurance and financial services career in Wichita Falls, Texas, which is a mid-sized city about halfway between Oklahoma City and Dallas. We have our share of high-net-worth families, many associated with the oil industry. But by and large the majority of my clients are middle- to upper-middle class people who have worked hard their entire lives and for whom every dollar counts.

They are primarily concerned about funding the future, whether that means getting their kids through college, having income in retirement, or planning their legacy. The financial events over the last decade and a half have shaken up a lot of people. Many lost both a significant piece of their assets and their confidence as they look towards the future. They want an advisor who has their best interests at heart and who possesses access to the most sophisticated tools to manage their money. I think my practice delivers on both counts.

v08_i10-Tips-350px-2There are three important ways I prospect for clients. I have established good relationships with several local CPAs and they are valuable partners in cross-referrals. I think I have taken this basic concept to a new level as I try to introduce third-party product and service providers to my CPA relationships. Rather than trying to represent a new and innovative idea, I find it is much better having it come straight from the horse’s mouth, that being the product expert. This approach just strengthens my relationships as I am bringing CPAs concepts they probably have not seen anywhere else. This leads to some productive conversations about who they think might benefit from such ideas.

Second is just pursuing old-fashioned referrals. I am not shy about speaking frankly with a client about this. If he or she, or a couple, believe I have added value to their financial and investment planning, I ask if they would be willing to put my name out there to their friends or associates. I do not push hard on this and always tell them that anyone they recommend is under no obligation to do business, just to have a quick introductory chat.

Third, I live in a values-based, community-minded city. I am an active member of the Optimist Club, the Chamber of Commerce, the local church, and several charitable organizations. The Optimist Club is a great organization where the focus is on doing very worthwhile efforts for children and having a place where like-minded people can network and get to know one another. This is personally rewarding and another  venue for building meaningful relationships.

Disclosure: Securities offered through Questar Capital Corporation (QCC), Member FINRA, SIPC. Advisory Services offered through Questar Asset Management (QAM), a Registered Investment Advisor.

Photography by Robert Hart

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