Referral Strategy That’s Earned Me MillionsThe biggest mistake I see from advisors: Unless someone is their client, many advisors don’t think they can ask for a referral. This is one of the most common mistakes I see, and also the most harmful – it may be costing you millions of dollars in assets. Advisors should be asking for referrals in the very first meeting with a prospect. And ask for it as early in the meeting as you possibly can. I like to do it after the pleasantries and my opener, which goes something like this:
“So my process is simple. I’m going to dig into where you’re at today, but more importantly, where you want to be in the future, and develop an action plan to get you there.”Before I begin, I’ll ask for referrals. If that seems outlandish to you, let me show you how I ask for referrals in my initial meeting with prospective clients:
“Mr. Prospect, before we even get started you might be wondering how I get paid. And I want to be 100% upfront and transparent with you. I get paid one of two ways. I earn commissions and fees on the products and services that I offer to my clients, which I assume you might have already known. But the second way that I get paid, and almost more importantly to me is referrals. I’m going to ask as we go through this process, if you find value in the information that I provide and the work that I do, that you refer me to any friends, family or business associates you think would also find value in this work. Does that sound good to you?”This is how you get ahead of the most blaring question in your prospect’s mind: How do you get paid from this transaction? A lot of people think their initial principle is what’s used to pay advisors. So it’s important to clear that up. The second part of my initial statement is simply introducing a process and asking for help. “… if you find value in the information that I provide and the work that I do…” This is honest. I’m not going to do crap work and ask them for a referral. It keeps me focused on finding the best possible solution for them that’s in their best interest, and it creates a “no pressure” environment for the prospect to give me referrals.
A Mindset That Attracts ReferralsUnfortunately, it’s not as simple as changing your language. Mindset plays the biggest role… The mindset that you can’t ask for referrals without securing a prospect’s business is a mistake. And it stems from another common misconception – that you can only provide a prospect value if they buy from you. If a prospect can’t afford to plan with you right now, you still introduced them to planning concepts they otherwise would have zero knowledge about.
Setting the TableIf you go into a meeting looking to sell a specific product, you’ve already lost. Here’s what I mean: When advisors look to sell a specific product, it derails meetings. It creates unnecessary objections and minimizes your opportunity for referrals. Think about it, which do you think is more effective? “Do you know anyone else who may need life insurance?” “Do you know anyone else who could benefit from from the process we just went over?” Looking to sell a specific product significantly decreases your chances at getting a referral. Think of it like this: It’d be like going to a doctor who only deals with patients that need pain killers. They’d be missing out on opportunities to build relationships with their patients who would come for ALL issues, not just pain. Without approaching fact find meetings in an inquisitive and unbiased manner, this referral strategy won’t work.
Belief ConflictThe other mindset obstacle is a belief conflict. The best way to explain a belief conflict is by asking you a question… Do you believe you can help anyone you meet with? Most advisors don’t. Unless they’re able to earn business from a prospect, they think it’s a loss for everyone involved. That’s why I spend so much time during the first week of our bootcamp trying to change this mindset. This mindset is both destructive, and completely wrong. Let me explain why. Financial literacy is seriously lacking – even for the most financially successful people. The work you do helps build wealth and protect families. This is real life problem solving that requires 100% conviction and a sense of urgency. The urgency I have in my work is the same urgency I’d have screaming at someone who doesn’t know they’re about to walk off a cliff. I need to speak to them ASAP. I assume that every single time I’m sitting in front of someone, it is the last ever time I will sit with them. This means it is my only chance to share with them the financial literacy that they are lacking. And if I don’t, I’d be doing them a disservice. This is the level of conviction I have and why I insist on being introduced to friends, family, or business associates who may find value in what I do. Conviction and knowing you’ve provided value go hand-in-hand. Expect them to give you names.
Bonus Prospecting Tips to Build a Multi-Million Dollar Practice: Learn More
Apply and See ResultsThis referral system has earned me and Taylor Method users millions in assets over the years. But this strategy is only effective if it’s paired with genuinely great work. And that’s where fact finding comes in. You need to know as much about your prospect as possible to give exactly the right solution(s) for them. It’s this approach that gives you the carefree cadence you need to ask for referrals at the onset. Clients will also feel much more comfortable referring you when they see that you are really interested in finding the best solution possible for them and their unique situation. Your fact finding and referral processes are the backbone to your success as an advisor. By putting this referral process into action, you’ll have a method you can rinse, wash and repeat… over and over again. Put this referral strategy to use and tell us about your results in the comments below. I look forward to hearing about all your wins!
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