Millions of individuals eventually reach an age where they understand the critical need for advice and guidance when it comes to managing their money – assets, estate and financial plans. They have worked hard, saved their money, and have big plans for themselves and their families. They may wonder, “Am I doing the right things with my money? What are others like me doing to secure their future? What if I lose all of my savings? What unexpected situations should I prepare for?” Doubt starts to creep in and they begin to ask friends, family and others who they confide in, “Do you know anyone I can talk to?”
Keep in mind, in that same time period they are being continuously exposed to articles, news and TV commercials telling them that in today’s economy it is important to seek advice from a professional. As a result, confusion begins to take place and many don’t know what they should do next. They become somewhat paralyzed and procrastinate in taking action.
This presents a unique opportunity for you. But first, you need to understand this very important emotional and psychological issue. I call it “expert anxiety.” When successful or financially prudent individuals have to reveal their personal financial situation to an expert they feel embarrassed that they may have little or no knowledge on how to manage their financial and estate affairs. Many also feel they are not well prepared to admit their planning inadequacies to someone they don’t know or in whom they can fully trust. They also have pride, so they will struggle with opening up to you because it may show weakness and/or lack of discipline. It’s likely that no college course or formal institution ever taught them what to do with their finances. They only learned how to generate income and accumulate wealth.
To grow your business and acquire new clients one of your primary purposes should be to break down those barriers and create confidence so that they do not feel alone. Confirm that what they are feeling is very common and, more importantly, that they DO have options. It’s critical that you reassure them that it is confusing nowadays with so many decisions and adjustments that need to be made in today’s changing economy. Put them at ease and make them feel like seeking you out was their first positive step toward learning more about the ever-changing strategies to protect and grow their life savings. You must earn their trust by showing them that what they are experiencing is 100% normal. Sounds simple right? Yet, I still see and hear many individuals in financial services using industry jargon, product terminology and talking over people’s heads in their marketing messages. Doing that will add to their fears and push them right back into feelings of anxiety and away from working with you.
How can you avoid scaring these valuable and concerned individuals away from you? It starts with your message, your experience, how you reach them, how you position yourself, and where you ask them to meet with you. Yes, the initial meeting place, in my opinion, is crucial. That is why I have been a huge proponent and advocate of seminar marketing for more than 20 years. Why? Because it creates a neutral site and allows you to overcome all of these psychological nuances. They meet you halfway, in the middle, on safe grounds.
- When they call in and RSVP to your event invitation they are immediately telling you (voluntarily and up-front) that they are willing to hear what you have to say – not at their home or at your office yet.
- A week or so later by physically attending your event that day with their spouse or guest re-confirms and validates their interest.
- Before you say one word at your event, they will see others just like them in the room seeking the same type of guidance. That will automatically put them at ease.
- There will be a “safety in numbers” feel and comfort at your seminar.
All of these benefits make seminar marketing a very powerful vehicle to get in front of more interested and motivated prospects that have fears, concerns and questions about their financial and estate planning. This is also an incredible opportunity for you to tell compelling stories, reassure them that there are many possible solutions available to them and offer them some clarity. Doing that will ultimately earn their trust and confidence that you are the right person that can help them with important decisions. One final thing, explain at the beginning of your seminars that it’s normal to have anxiety about financial and estate planning issues – they need to hear that from you. Validate it. Keep your presentations simple, know your material, be sincere and passionate and you will convert many of your seminar attendees to that important and elusive personal face-to-face meeting at your office or at their home…by then you will have earned it!