Do investors understand the total cost of investing and advice? The problem with ideal prospects is that they tell you” they are good” meaning they are happy with their advisor. But you know they are not getting the level of service they deserve. You know they are not getting comprehensive planning, and they are definitely not getting all of the services that a comprehensive planning and wealth management firm provides. But here is the problem. You know it and they don’t.
Offer a fee audit on a prospects portfolio and financial plans
How can you let them know what they are not getting, but think they are paying for. Do a fee audit, to show them what they are paying, and more importantly, getting and not getting. Honestly, how do you feel when you are paying for something and not getting it? For example, a comprehensive written plan in all seven areas including tax, estate, risk, investments, insurance, debt and cash flow covered? Ask them, how long they have been with their current advisor? Then ask ” that’s a lot of money, isn’t it? What’s going through your mind? What did I get for all this money I paid? Then you can go over the list of services you deliver for the same or similar fee. It’s not about cost, it’s about value.
What is the intangible value you deliver?
List the intangible benefits that your ideal clients have received, such as peace of mind, comfort, simplicity, safety, security, and time. This can be part of your detailed process to outline your measurable and immeasurable client benefits to prospects. What are your intangible benefits? Write them down. This starts to form a list of things clients value.
“Price is what you pay, the value is what you get” Warren Buffett
Do investors understand the total cost of investing and advice? Consider completing a fee audit on a prospects portfolio and financial plan. Put on one page, the total dollar cost the client paid, and the advice they received in all six areas of their financial life. This includes tax, estate, risk, investments, insurance, debt and cash flow management. Then, build a process that gives your clients and prospects a forward-based, five-year estimated cost and potential benefits to help you quantify the value of your advice. Use a checklist of benefits to compare what they are currently getting and not getting, to help the prospect understand what they are paying for. Make sure they understand the total cost, in dollar terms and percentages by highlighting it on the bottom of the fee audit checklist page.
Build your process by delivering more value
When you sit down with prospects consider this exercise and discussion. Ask “ Can I do a fee audit for you to help you understand how fees impact your planning and the total cost in dollars and percentages? Would it be valuable for you to understand the total cost of what you are paying, what you get for those fees, and what you do not get? “ Ask about the planning processes they have completed, including tax planning, estate planning, insurance planning, and financial planning and ask to see the documents. This exercise will help you with your value discussion, but more importantly, showing prospects the total cost, in dollars and percentages, and help them understand the total that they are paying. It will also show complete transparency with benefits and will show your prospect instant and tangible benefits of working with you, especially if their current advisor has no process for showing their planning processes, total fees and total transparency if they show any fees for advice. It will also allow you to discuss your value of your planning processes and your progress update meetings to keep them on track, all on one page.
Key prospecting discussion
Get in a habit of people you come across every day if they understand the fees they are paying. Ask them to explain the fees as they understand it. Then ask” would you be open for me to do a fee audit to help you understand the cost (or fees) and benefits? I ask because we do this for our clients so they understand the measurable benefits of our advice along with our immeasurable benefits that our planning offers such as peace of mind and simplicity of their financial life. Our clients appreciate more comprehensive planning advice through our progress update meetings 3-4 times per year, a 100 point planning checklist, tax planning, estate planning, financial planning and investment planning ( what services you offer) in writing, does this make sense to you? Our clients have comfort knowing it is taken care of, so they can go on and enjoy the things that are important to them”. Now you have the start of a process to discuss your differences with prospects.
Practice makes perfect
Do you have a clear detailed process for making your ideal prospects fee ready? If not, who is helping you who has a proven process to help you get there? Find someone who has a proven process and has the time to help you get there. It is not just about content, but it is about practice. Who is helping you practice your scripts? Do you record your practice sessions? Imagine if the “Rolling Stones” band never practiced and only recorded once? Do you record your meetings with your client’s permission? Find a coach, mentor or manager who can help you build your process and help you practice your communication skills to articulate your value. Now go out and practice your fee audit conversation, build your process for converting prospects and providing measurable and immeasurable value to your new clients.
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