Let’s face it, not all networking tactics are created equal. Some fall flat while others skyrocket your growth. In this article, we’re spilling the beans on eight powerful networking tactics that can take your financial advising business to the next level. From building genuine connections to gaining new customers and fostering trust, this guide will help you achieve your goals.
Let’s get started!
Think of it this way: Your likely client belongs to a community — your community most likely. So get involved in that community! Get to know people who live near you, so that when they have an issue with their investments or insurance needs, they think of you first.
This strategy is effective for 4 reasons:
- It allows financial advisors to build relationships outside of their professional network.
- It provides an opportunity for financial advisors to showcase their skills and expertise in a non-professional setting. By sharing their knowledge and providing financial advice to organizations and individuals in need, financial advisors can establish themselves as trusted experts in their field.
- It affords financial advisors the chance to give back to their community, which can be a powerful way to build goodwill and create positive word-of-mouth which can lead to valuable connections and referrals.
- It is a great way for financial advisors to build their brand and reputation.
There are many ways to get involved in your community, but here are a few ideas:
- Join a club or organization. Whether it’s a sports team, book club, or business networking group, joining an organization can help you meet new people and expand your horizons.
- Attend community events. From festivals to charity fundraisers, there are plenty of community events that you can attend to meet new people.
- Hosting your event, such as a financial planning seminar or workshop. This can be a great way to showcase your expertise and build relationships with potential clients.
- Consider offering pro bono financial planning services to individuals or organizations in need. This can be a great way to give back to your community and build your reputation as a trusted advisor. Be sure to document your work and share your successes to generate positive word-of-mouth.
Networking isn’t just about meeting new people – it’s also about nurturing existing relationships. We’ll show you how to stay in touch with current and former clients, colleagues, and other contacts to keep your network strong.
Leveraging existing relationships as a networking strategy is effective because it allows financial advisors to tap into the trust and familiarity that already exists between them and their contacts.
- You are more likely to get referrals: Existing relationships are also more likely to lead to referrals. People are more likely to recommend someone they already know and trust.
- It is a cost-effective approach: By focusing on existing relationships, financial advisors can save money on marketing and advertising.
Here are some tips to help you get the most of networking opportunities from your existing relationships:
- Communicate your value proposition. Your existing network may not fully understand what you do or how you can help them. Take the time to communicate your value proposition and the services you offer. Use anecdotes and analogies to help them understand your expertise, especially when talking to family and friends that are not familiar with the finance industry.
- Provide value. Educate them or share relevant news and insights in the finance industry or refer them to other professionals when they need help. By being helpful, you build trust and deepen your relationship.
- Connect with them regularly. Don’t wait for a special occasion to connect with your existing network. Regularly schedule check-ins, lunch meetings, or coffee chats. Make sure to listen to their needs and offer solutions.
- Ask for referrals. They may know a friend of a friend who might be interested in your services. So, ask! However, be sure to ask in a professional and non-pushy way.
- Show gratitude. Show your appreciation for your existing network by sending a handwritten note or a small gift. This shows that you value and respect their relationship.
With the vast majority of people using the internet to search for information and connect with others, having a robust online presence can significantly expand your network and boost your credibility.
Note: Your online presence is often the first impression potential clients will have of you, so it’s important to make it a good one. Here are some tips for building a strong online presence:
- Create a Professional Website: Create a well-designed, easy-to-navigate website that showcases your expertise. Include a clear call to action to encourage visitors to contact you.
- Optimize Your Social Media Profiles: In addition to your website, ensure your profiles are complete, accurate, and professional. Use consistent branding across all platforms.
- Publish Valuable Content: Start a blog on your website, share articles on social media etc.
- Engage with Your Audience: Building a strong online presence isn’t just about broadcasting your message – it’s also about engaging with your audience. Respond to comments and messages, participate in industry discussions, and show that you’re a thought leader in your field.
- Utilize Online Advertising: Online advertising can be a cost-effective way to reach new clients and build your brand. Consider using platforms like Google AdWords, Facebook Ads, or LinkedIn Ads to spread the word about your practice and connect with possible customers. According to TaylorMethod by leveraging online advertising and reaching out to new clients, you can increase your chances of success and potentially earn a higher salary
Partnering with other professionals can help you expand your network and gain access to new clients. Consider partnering with professionals in related industries, such as real estate agents or attorneys, to offer complementary services. Be sure to establish clear expectations and goals before entering into any partnerships. This strategy works because of:
- Cross-referrals: Working with other professionals can also lead to cross-referrals. For example, if you collaborate with a tax professional, they may refer their clients to you for financial planning services. In return, you can refer your clients to them for tax-related services.
- Improved client outcomes: When you partner with other professionals it can lead to better outcomes for your clients. By working together to create comprehensive financial plans, you can ensure that all aspects of your clients’ financial needs are being addressed – in turn these satisfied clients would sing your praises.
Attending industry events and conferences is a highly effective networking strategy for financial advisors. Here’s why:
Firstly, these events allow you to interact with professionals in your industry, learn about new products and services, and gain valuable insights. Be sure to come prepared with your business cards, however, the most important thing is to forge genuine connections with other attendees – so, don’t be afraid to strike up a conversation with someone new.
Secondly, brand exposure. By participating in panel discussions or speaking engagements, you can showcase your expertise and promote your business.
That’s not all:
Taking out time to attend these events can lead to new business opportunities. You may meet potential clients, partners, or collaborators who can help you grow your business.
Lastly, they are ideal for personal development and professional development. When you attend workshops or listen to speakers, you can learn new skills and gain new perspectives that can help you grow your business.
When you sign-up for sales training, you not only have the opportunity to improve your sales skills, but it also provides you with the opportunity to meet experienced mentors and bond with other like-minded advisors in their cohort.
Mentors can provide valuable guidance and support, sharing their expertise and helping advisors navigate challenges and opportunities in the industry. Additionally, bonding with other advisors in the cohort can provide a sense of community and camaraderie, creating a support system that can be invaluable in building a successful career.
By taking advantage of these opportunities, advisors can position themselves for success and build long-lasting relationships that can benefit them throughout their careers.
Similar to attending industry events, when you join a professional organization such as the FPA, NAIFA, NAPFA, and Society for Financial Services Professionals, they provide a platform for connecting with like-minded professionals in your industry. And this means that you can utilize the opportunity to expand your network beyond your existing contacts.
But there’s more:
- Referral opportunities: Being a member of a professional organization can lead to referral opportunities. Members are often willing to refer business to other members who they trust and respect.
- They provide a platform for collaboration with other members. You can share ideas, discuss challenges, and even form partnerships with other members.
- Professional organizations often offer resources such as industry reports, training programs, and networking events. These resources can help you stay up-to-date on the latest trends and best practices in your field.
- Being a member of a professional organization can enhance your credibility and reputation as a financial advisor.
If you’re serious about networking, there’s one strategy you simply can’t afford to ignore: building relationships. Focus on getting to know people, forging genuine connections, and building trust. And trust us, this strategy can work wonders for your networking efforts. When you take the time to build relationships first, the results can be downright explosive. So, go ahead and invest in those relationships – it might just be the key to unlocking the next level of your business growth!
The best way to do this is by helping the other person out. If you can offer some value or assistance in some way, it will make them more willing to listen to what you have to say and consider working with you down the road.
One more thing:
Networking is not just about attending events; it’s also about reaching out. Follow up with people after meeting them at conferences or events, and send them an email asking for advice or feedback on something that they may know more about than you do (and vice versa). Also, try connecting with other professionals via LinkedIn groups – these can be very helpful if managed correctly because they provide easy access to target industries and specific job titles which makes searching for potential candidates much easier.
We hope that these strategies will be helpful to you and have also provided you with a bit of inspiration for your networking efforts. As always, if you have any questions or would simply like to chat about your own experiences and strategies for success, feel free to reach out.