Written by: Shereen Mohammed
The key to success is slowly becoming the client experience. In fact, we are on the verge of entering what experts have dubbed the “experience economy,” where the experience is more important than anything, including the product itself and price.
According to a Walker study, as soon as 2020, the client experience will outrank price and product in terms of importance. Furthermore, the Temkin Group discovered that an organization with $1 billion in earnings per year can increase their revenues by 70% within three years of investing in the client experience. This is because 86% of consumers will pay more to get an amazing customer experience, 73% say that the experience is very important when making a purchasing decision, and 65% find that a good experience with a company influences them more than advertising.
Personalization is a key element of improving the client experience. People expect to receive recommendations based on previous purchasing behavior, they expect to receive services personalized to their needs, and they expect to be treated as an individual rather than just another faceless consumer. The keyword is “expect.” Personalization is no longer optional. Consumers expect personalization and the organizations that don’t deliver will suffer for it. But how can you personalize the client experience? After all, you’re a financial advisor, not a multibillion-dollar company. The good news is that it doesn’t take a lot. Here are a few tips to help you personalize the client experience.
Put the Client First
No matter what you do, your client always has to come first. While the idea of knowing your client has been an essential part of the financial advisory world for ages, you have to take things a step further than tradition.
This is because the accepted policy is to understand a client only to the point of understanding what investment would be suitable for them. However, to really create a personalized experience, you need to know much more.
You must learn what drives your clients. You need to understand their aspirations, their motivations, and their fears. Only then can you create a truly personalized experience that will boost client loyalty to the point where they will become your advocates.
To gain this knowledge, though, you will have to develop a strong relationship with your client that isn’t limited to advising them on transactions and executing the ones they agree with. You need to actually get to know them on a personal level.
Build an Effective Online Presence
The future is online, which means that the internet is slowly becoming the main channel that people use to communicate. It doesn’t mean that financial advisors will be replaced by digital solutions. It just means that people prefer the internet to communicate.
For example, instead of calling to set up an appointment, a financial advisor can make their calendar available to their clients. They can then set up an appointment with a few clicks of the mouse.
Or, you can offer your clients the ability to see their statements and balances online via a special portal. That way, they don’t have to call or email to find the information they need.
This form of self-service is becoming increasingly important and something your clients will definitely appreciate.
Try New Things
Many financial advisors prefer not to evolve their businesses because they are worried that they’ll make a mistake. The problem is that everything needs to evolve and improve, including your business if you want to grow.
So, make sure to try new ideas all the time. Of course, test them before you implement them, but don’t be afraid to try new things. For example, some financial advisors have found great success with offering their clients the option to meet via Skype or FaceTime. It’s a small thing but something that has earned them great loyalty from their clients because they’re going the extra mile to deliver a great, personalized service.
Personalization starts with getting to know your clients. The better you know them, the easier it will be for you to develop strategies to offer them an outstanding experience. A great customer experience will earn you loyalty, which will translate into a significantly better bottom line.
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