Five innovative ideas for connecting with clients
There are times when in-person events are not possible or preferred by clients and prospects. Your business doesn’t have to stop because of that. There are a variety of ways to connect. Try these ideas from MDRT members worldwide to connect with clients old and new.
1. Virtual learning with real food
We offer virtual lunch-and-learn programs via Zoom. Part of our marketing strategy has always been to provide a lunch-and-learn program to our clients. However, we pivoted to allow this to be virtual.
My staff arranges the time and sends invitations to our clients with the menu from local sandwich restaurants that deliver to the areas where our clients live. The client is then asked to respond with their lunch order, and lunch is delivered to their house or business the day of the meeting. We also encourage them to invite other family members and friends to attend.
Brad J. Myers, Court of the Table qualifier, South Jordan, Utah
2. Connecting webinars and newsletters
I offer a series of educational webinars on different topics related to financial planning mostly focused on investments.
I invite clients and prospects to be a part of these webinars and ask questions about topics that are of interest to them. I then follow up with email newsletters that engage them on that topic.
This approach is working. I am gaining clients, mainly because they don’t have to meet me until they are comfortable with my way of thinking and approach toward financial planning.
Amit Mitbawkar, MBA, CWM, Dubai, United Arab Emirates
3. Secure messaging and websites
My broker-dealer added a secure texting feature that captures client communication. The whole team has access to the messages so nothing gets missed and they can handle many of the requests. We do not use it for any marketing, which we emphasize with clients.
We also offer clients website tutorials. We have a new tool called GLANCE that allows us, once clients are logged in, to connect to their computer and see their screen. Our cursor becomes active so we can point and show them the website. We offer a 20-minute overview session to show them the features of their website, such as renaming an account. It helps them feel more connected in a time of disconnection.
Renee Hanson, CFP, CFDA, Top of the Table qualifier, Phoenix, Arizona
4. Client service via an app
Since many of my clients were not well-versed with modern technology, I needed to introduce them to the technology of digitally communicating. So I helped most of my clients download our insurance company’s service app and made sure they knew how to use it for their benefit. It allows clients to take care of their own address changes, fund withdrawals and so forth. This has taken much of the usual service requests off the shoulders of my staff and me.
Nikhil Shah, AFP, LUTCF, Kolkata, India
5. Saying so long to paper
We have stopped printing completely. We used to pay around $600 per month for printer toner and maintenance. We also had to purchase a new printer every few years. We now create online folders for all our client data and forms that sits in one location on OneDrive, and every team member can access them.
We also turned some paper-based checklists we used for client files to online forms or PDF templates that we can edit and store in the cloud. All of the advice documents are now just sent to clients as PDFs.
Our whole practice uses electronic-signing software such as DocuSign to get contracts, applications and advice documents signed off by clients. This makes it really easy for clients and, in the majority of cases, we have signed paperwork back from the client within an hour!
Aaron Kane, AFA, B Bus, Top of the Table qualifier, Rowville, Victoria, Australia