By Ted Rusinoff
Developing a streamlined client portfolio is a multi-step process but also one well worth pursuing for advisors seeking to expand their practice.
By identifying your ideal client, thinking outside the box, and playing to your strengths, you’ll be working smarter, not harder, to build your business. The result: a client pool tailored to your preferences and strengths, allowing you to boost your portfolio long-term.
Take A Step Back
Before you decide who your target clientele is, first reevaluate how you are approaching conversations with current clients. In the financial services profession, it can be easy to focus on what is bringing in the most activity or what sells the fastest.
Never forget the value of being service-minded, concentrating on getting to know the client and their needs. Not only will more personal discussions allow you to establish trust and build long-term relationships, you’ll also be better able to identify who you enjoy working with and who your preferred target clientele is. Consider that step one to building a solid foundation to grow your portfolio.
Identify Your Target Market
Next, determine your ideal target market. To seek out future clients, it can be helpful to consider your current ones. Ask yourself who your clientele consists of, who you feel you serve best, and who you enjoy working with most.
Get specific in your evaluation. Don’t be afraid to distinguish clients by factors such as age, interests, industry and income. The more you can narrow down, the more you’ll understand exactly who you want to serve.
Find Your Target Market
Once you know who you want to target, it’s time to identify where to find them. For example, if you’ve identified dentists as your target clientele, do your research to find out where they gather as a group, what they’re interested in and how you can get involved.
If there’s a dentist conference in your city, attend or sponsor the event. You might also consider volunteering at other local events if you know dentists are attending. It it’s always a win to give back to your community while making connections with future clientele.
You may already have existing relationships with clients in your desired market. Use that to your advantage to help broaden your client base organically. Ask existing clients specific questions about the commonalities of people in their industry to better understand your opportunities. For example, if you volunteer at a hospital, ask the healthcare professionals where they gather for social events outside of work.
Be Specific, But Savvy
Be careful not to get so specific with finding your desired audience that you unnecessarily limit your opportunities. You should always keep your options open.
Deploy this process to hone in on the clientele you already know you’re interested in, but be aware of the other connections being created along the way. Going back to the dentist example, you might find that, as you successfully build a client portfolio of dentists, you’ll meet people – non-dentists - within your clients’ circle of influence (like oral surgeons, orthodontists or endodontists), who share many of the same qualities that originally drew you to targeting dentists.
That’s a qualified target – don’t let it pass by…those opportunities suit you!
About the Author
Ted Rusinoff, M.Tax is Managing Partner at Wealth Design Partners and the COO for Secured Advantage. Ted over 30 years of experience in personal and business financial services and is a past President of the MDRT Foundation. He is an 13-year MDRT member and lives in Stow, Ohio.