The 4 Minutes™ Blog

What do Advisors and Trump vs Hillary have in common?

Advisors who may be tempted to “sell in May then go away” for the summer might want to reconsider that strategy given what’s happened this crazy Presidential election year so far and focus instead on aggressively prospecting and managing expectations  like leading candidates  Trump and Hillary are being forced to do. Consider the daunting challenges faced by both candidates and Advisors alike:

  • “Lesser of two evils”:  Just what does it feel like to be a recent retiree when interest rates are still at record lows and the stock market is still near record highs?  What does it feel like to be an advisor guiding clients in this kind of precarious environment for investors? My guess is its the same way voters are feeling right now with the two leading candidates who’s “unfavorable” ratings are at record highs. Its a feeling that either way we go investment wise I’m going to have to “hold my nose” and try to select the “lesser of two evils”. This lack of enthusiasm for existing choices means Advisors must attempt the unenviable task of properly managing client expectations while justifying their fees. This means “retail campaigning” one client review meeting at a time. Clients may still not be happy with their choices but at least you were there showing you cared. Can everyone remember when former President Bill Clinton famously said in that televised town hall “I can feel your pain”. As it turned out, that made all the difference.
  • “Expand your tent”: There is a raging battle between candidates for newer voters and young people in general. The same can be said for Advisors who have aging clients. The statistics are pretty grim when it comes to retaining assets after a client passes. Have you developed and implemented a strategy to connect with the next generation to improve the odds of retaining those assets? How may new ideal client relationships have you brought in so far this year? This summer would be the perfect time to expand your tent.
  • “Control the news cycle”: One of the things we hear has been the key to Trump’s success so far is his ability to control the daily news cycle and get his message across. Advisors can take a cue here and make sure clients are getting properly informed. When is the last time you offered an educational seminar designed to educate clients and prospects around a topic of interest? If you aren’t providing it rest assured clients are getting it somewhere else. I coached a team once who initially was very resistant to offering educational seminars to their clients. They insisted that because they did one on one reviews there was no need. But then they got a surprise ACAT from one of their top clients who as it turned out went to a social security seminar offered by a competitor.

The bottom line is advisors can learn some lessons this summer from the political process as clients  “vote” with their assets….

Bob David

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