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If you’ve been a financial advisor for a while, you know not every prospect turns into a client. Sometimes things don’t work out or they’re not a fit for your business.

But what about those meetings where everything seems fine—until your prospect completely abandons you and–if you’re lucky—sends you a one-sentence rejection?

Then you’ve probably committed one of 3 “sins” that turn off potential clients and make them abandon you.

In this episode, you’ll find out what these errors are and how you can remove them so you can turn more prospects into clients that put cash into your account.

Show highlights include:

  • The biggest problem with financial advisors’ websites–which has nothing to do with design. (7:28)
  • Why not turning your phone off during meetings can turn your prospects off. (11:43)
  • The only person that matters in a meeting with your clients or prospects (hint: It’s NOT you). (13:50)
  • What you can learn from broadway plays about landing more clients. (17:15)

Go to the TheAdvisorCoach.com/Newsletter and pick up your free 90 minute download called “5 Keys to Success for Financial Advisors” when you join The James Pollard Inner Circle.

Ready to learn even more about becoming the successful financial advisor you know you can be? Check out these resources:



Read Full Transcript

You're listening to Financial Advisor Marketing. The best show on the planet for financial advisors who want to get more clients without all the stress. You're about to get the real scoop on everything from lead generation to closing the deal. James is the founder of TheAdvisorCoach.com where you can find an entire suite of products designed to help financial advisors grow their businesses more rapidly than ever before. Now here is your host, James Pollard.

James: Hello, fam, financial advisors marketers. We're a big family here. You're all part of the family. You're my fam - financial advisor marketers. This is a podcast where I just hang around and flap my gums. We talk about whatever I want to talk about and today we're going to talk about pet peeves and I did a quick Google search before this show and I found out some of the most common pet peeves people have, but before I do that, I'm going to ask producer Jonathan - do you have any pet peeves? What are some of your pet peeves? [0:01:02.5]

Jonathan: I'm looking at your list and I'm like, ohh, my God - the top one? For real? Like I will claw myself out of my skin with some people. My dad is terrible at this. He does it and he like spits up and everything when he's talking and chewing and I'm like, oh my God, I've got to get out of this place.

James: So, we'll reveal number one - number one is people chewing and it doesn't… you know, it doesn’t bother me that much. I don’t really care but I can definitely see where it would be annoying. Do you have any other ones that you want to share with the class, Jonathan?

Jonathan: Yeah, no. I'm looking at your list. Well, I don’t care about the third one, but the second one is right up there. Like those top two are like I cannot stand that either. In fact, I'm like I will not do business with someone because of number two.

James: Yeah, number … me neither, I will not and I've had people who have reached out for coaching and I may or not be opening something back up for coaching in 2020. I'm kicking the idea around, but back in the day, when people reached out for coaching and I had a bunch of applications coming in because I just advertised it. [0:02:02.3]

I don’t advertise it anymore, but when I advertised the coaching, anyone who was late, and that's the second pet peeve, is people who are chronically late - that's one of the most common ones. If anyone was late, and I mean more than 5 minutes, so I quantified it. If they gave me a valid excuse within the first 5 minutes, like a real, like somebody had to die - right - and that had to be the excuse - something happened - you ran over a cat in the parking lot - something had … something serious had to happen in order for them to justify being late, but after 5 minutes, I wouldn’t even pick up the phone. I wouldn’t get on Zoom. I wouldn’t go on the Skype call, whatever it was. I wouldn’t do it after 5 minutes. I'd be like, sorry - I'm refunding your deposit. I don’t want to talk with you anymore, even if I thought they were a perfect fit. So, chronically late - I'm a stickler about that as well.

Number three is people who don’t use turn signals, and a friend of mine was talking to me about this and he was like, well if it's a piece of crap car, you know a little beater, maybe their turn signals just don’t work and I was like, well, sure, but you’ve got people who are driving Mercedes and BMWs and they still don’t use their turn signals. I'm like, turn those frigging things on. You're turning right. Turn them on. If you're turning left, turn them on. And please, keep them on for a little bit of time before you actually change lanes. I have seen people literally get in another lane and then turn on their turn signal. What? [0:03:19.1]

Jonathan: Lovely.

James: It's too late, bro. It's too late. You’ve already changed lanes. Now, here's some of my personal pet peeves, and I have gotten asked about this from Inner Circle members, which I thought was kind of weird because it's like that has nothing to do with marketing or business really, or whatever but I answered them and I figured I would answer on the podcast. So, one of my biggest pet peeves is actually yawning and yeah… and it may sound strange, but it's just everybody's got their own little quirks and mine is that I … I don’t know what it is - I just can't … I can't really stand it. I mean, one or two is okay if they're spaced apart and you don’t do it again, but I cannot stand when someone yawns like five or six times in 10 minutes. [0:04:03.2]

Like get more sleep. It's not that hard, and I … it just makes … you know, like you said, it just makes my skin crawl when people just yawn and yawn and yawn. It's like you can… it's like do you know you can fix that? You don’t have to live like that, sir. You can fix it by getting more sleep. So, more about pet peeves - I don't know how many people know this about me but I'm a pretty big professional wrestling fan and I think it's got such a rich history because if you don’t know anything about it, they used to have territories and then Vince McMann, who is the founder of WWE, the largest wrestling company in the world, he came along and gobbled them up. Now, you can learn a lot about building a business and consolidating and streamlining and systematizing and all that stuff by studying Vince McMann. I'm not going to get into it, but if you really want to know, you can Google it and figure it out, and one of my life goals is actually to meet the guy. I mean, he is a beast. His work ethic is legendary. He allegedly rules that company with an iron fist. [0:05:04.1]

He controls everything. So if anybody's got the connect with old Vinnie Mac, hook a brother up because I would love to meet this guy. One of the urban legends about Vince McMann, and I don't know if this is true or not, but one of the legends is that he hates sneezing and people say it's because he can't control it and he absolutely despises anything he can't control. Now, again, I don't know if that's true or not, but people have said that he freaks out whenever people sneeze. So, he's got a pet peeve of sneezing and another one of my pet peeves is when you're watching a movie and it's like super quiet for one scene, so you turn the volume up because I'm like I can't really hear it and then the next scene is like a jet taking off … oh… it kills me…

Jonathan: Ohhh, that's because you've got a theater in your house. Us common people don’t have that kind of sound. [0:05:57.6]

James: Well, so my own personal television, the one in the theater, it has a system where I don’t have that problem, but when I go to the movies or I go to someone else's house, especially like a movie theater, like Cinemark or whatever, it happens and I'm just like maintain the same volume the whole time. So I guess that's… you can chalk that under first world problems. With all that rambling out of the way, I want to get into the podcast, which is all about pet peeves or potential clients and these are things which turn off your prospects. You want to avoid doing these things so you can actually stand a fighting chance of turning your prospects into clients. So, let's get into it.
The reason I go off on a tangent at the beginning of every show where I ramble on is to get rid of the people who don’t want to stay and get to the good stuff. So, in case you're curious.

Jonathan: Filtering.

James: That's a secret. The first pet peeve is not being clear about who you work with and at this point I'm just beating a dead horse. I've repeated this so many times but there may be a new listener this week who has never heard me say this. [0:07:04.0]

Essentially, your prospects want to know right away that they're potentially a good fit for what you do. If someone's an engineer and she views your LinkedIn profile and you've got a headline that says, "Financial advisor for engineers," then guess what? You've done your job. She knows that she's a potentially good fit for you. She doesn’t have to guess. Same thing with your website. Prospects get to your website. Maybe you spent your money on ads to get traffic to your site or maybe you worked hard on a social media strategy to get people to your site, but when they get there and they can't see who you work with or what exactly it is that you do, that's a pet peeve, and they hate that. Your website should put it out there loud and clear that you work with a specific type of person. Always remember that prospecting is about qualifying and filtering on your website. If you say, "I work specifically with engineers," you're essentially filtering out non engineers. [0:08:05.5]

That's part of prospecting. A lot of people think that prospecting is about getting as many people as possible in a net and many as people as possible in a room. That's not true. Prospecting is about finding the right people. Finding the right fit for your business. It's about qualifying and filtering. So be clear and this idea about being crystal clear on the right fit, it goes beyond mere financial advising. It applies to the marketplace as a whole. For example, I recently bought a very specific product. I bought some adhesive foam strips and these are like the things that you put under the windows and my goal was to seal a few spots in the house and do some weather stripping. Well, it turns out that this particular type of foam was meant for sound proofing and not weather stripping. So either this company wasn’t clear enough or I'm just a complete idiot. [0:09:01.8]

I think it's a little bit of both, but I looked at the packaging and it said nothing - nothing about sound proofing foam, nothing about adhesive foam and it looked just like the stuff that you put for weather stripping. Right? It was just… it blows my mind that these big companies aren’t clear with what they do, who they serve, exactly what their purpose is, so on and so forth. But as a financial advisor, when you make it clear who you work with, you're eliminating a lot of the back and forth and wasted time that comes from prospects who aren’t a good fit for what you do, and the less time you spend with low quality prospects, the more time you have to spend on high value tasks, and that's where you can really build your business. You can become more productive because you aren’t having all of your time sucked up by prospects who will never move forward, who would never become clients and the only reason they're there is because you weren’t specific from day one about what you do and who you work with. [0:10:02.0]

Hey financial advisors, are you ready to take your business to the next level and get more clients with less stress? I invite you to join the James Pollard Inner Circle, a paper and ink newsletter that gets delivered directly to your door every month. When you join now you'll also get a 90-minute instant download called, "Five Keys to Success for Financial Advisors", a $97 value for absolutely free. All you have to do is head over to TheAdvisorCoach.com/newsletter and join today.

James: You do a good job with this, with your application and the interview at The Podcast Factory and getting people through your process. You know how this works.

Jonathan: Yeah. You know what? I am still thinking that I need to do better. I never, ever think it's good enough, but thank you for that.

James: But that's the curse with entrepreneurs and business builders - I mean, they never … it's like they're happy but they're not satisfied, if that makes sense.

Jonathan: Yeah. Eternally. Eternally not satisfied and that's what drives us. [0:11:01.0]

James: I've had that feeling so many times where I reach like my goal. I mean I have big goals that are like going to take me years, but then I have targets as well, but whenever I reach either the goal or the more commonly the target, I'm like, yeah - I reached the target but it never feels as good as I think it will. And it's like I meet a certain income goal or I meet a certain personal goal. I'm like, yeah - this is awesome, but like, I thought this was going to be much cooler…

Jonathan: What's next?

James: Yeah - what's next? And it's kind of depressing and if you've ever experienced that, you know exactly what I'm talking about, but you still want to continue striving. But back to the pet peeves, to the turn-offs, whatever you want to call them.
The second one is … it's when financial advisors answer their phones in the middle of a meeting with them.

Jonathan: Nooo, they don’t do that.

James: Some of them do.

Jonathan: No! No, no.

James: And even with me…so, I don’t go to financial advisors offices anymore. I do all my consulting and the coaching with the few clients that I have - I do it from my home office and very, very, very, very, very rarely I will go to their office and it's only if I'm in town or maybe if I'm going somewhere and I want to make it a business trip, so I will work with them for 5 hours a day, one-on-one, or whatever. [0:12:20.0]

And there have been times where I've been in a financial advisor's office, meeting and keep in mind, they're paying me a lot of money, and my time is very valuable and I'm going to help them build their business, so a minute spent with me arguably and in my humble, unbiased opinion, is significantly more valuable than anything else they could possibly be doing. Because it's not like they have access to me at any other time. It's like if I'm front of you and I'm working with you on your most valuable business tasks, then don’t you think that's what you should be doing, but financial advisors have answered their phone and just started chatting and chatting and chatting and I'm like, I'm not going to stay the extra 15 minutes - you know, if you blow the 15 minutes on the phone with you know, whoever, I'm not going to stay until 1:15 when we're booked until 1:00. [0:13:04.3]

You know, it's just not how it works, but if that's your choice to flush all the money down the toilet and avoid the opportunity, so be it. But what I'm talking about is when prospects go to a meeting with a financial advisor and they're in the meeting and going through their financial plan or whatever it may be and the phone rings and the financial advisor answers it. And it's just straight up disrespectful. Like I said, just disrespectful, and it shows that you don’t value the prospect as much as whoever is calling you. That's the message. Nobody wants to feel small, and that's what you're doing when you answer a phone during a meeting. If you're meeting with Joe, and the phone rings and it's John, and you answer the phone, "Hello, John," you're saying, "Joe, you…

Jonathan: You suck.

James: ... compared to John. I love John and I hate you." Like… that's the message and when it comes to your initial prospect meeting and all meetings for that matter, the only person that matters to you is the other person in the room with you - not your emails, not your text messages, and not your phone calls coming in. [0:14:04.6]

Speaking of emails, I had a guy tell me at one time that he went to meet with a financial advisor and the financial advisor had his computer on and the volume apparently it was all the way up. So every time an email would come in, the computer would ding, loudly, and it happened once - no big deal - you get emails - I get it. Right? Then it happened again, again, and again and the financial advisor didn't turn it off. He just let it go, the continued ding, ding, ding, ding like every 2 minutes. What a goofball. Like take a second. Put your phone on silent. Turn your computer volume off. Do all that stuff before a meeting. Get ready to make your prospect, the person in front of you, feel like the most important person in the world because during that meeting, the person is. The person is the most important person in the world because you're investing your time to help them to eventually help you. You're going to help yourself by helping them. That's how business works and value exchange works. At that particular moment in time, only they matter. Don’t let anything from the outside world come in. [0:15:06.4]

Jonathan: Yeah. Be present. I mean, that's all it is. Like learn to be present.

James: Yeah. I mean do you have any resources for that? Because I do need to work on that myself.

Jonathan: Yeah. I'm going to give you a smack in the head the next time I see you so you can't ignore me.

James: Well… let's go ahead and we'll take this thing home because the third pet peeve is when financial advisors don’t take the time to learn about their situation. Here's the thing - this is very closely related to making them feel like the most important person in the world. People want to feel special. They want to feel like their situation is unique, and I know that as a financial advisor, you've seen someone with your prospect's situation a dozen times, two dozen times, three dozen times. I know that. You've seen the same thing. You've seen the IRA 401K set up. You've seen the insurance or the lack of it. And I get it. You've seen it again and again. But you still have to take the time to let them talk and explain what's going on because whether or not their situation is unique, they are unique as people and you have to respect that. [0:16:11.5]

That's what I try to do with financial advisors. For example, I released Appointments on Autopilot, which is an email marketing system, a while back and it's been proven again and again the stuff that's in there to set appointments for financial advisors. I mean, it works way better than the boring market commentary emails or the silly monthly e-newsletters and I know that virtually every financial advisor who uses email marketing can benefit from that program. Period. I've seen it work again and again and again. So the situation isn't unique, but when financial advisors email me or they ask me questions about it or something like that, I respect them as people and I take time out of my day because they are unique. I just treat them the way I want to be treated. When they ask me something, well this worked for so and so… or how do I do this? It's like, I don’t think this will work because. It's like their situation is not unique. [0:17:02.8]

It's worked across multiple different financial advisors and different companies and different geographies and different demographics and different niches. It's always worked, but I still treat them as unique, and just like when you go to a Broadway play or some type of production - it's not the first time or chances are it's not the first time they put that play on. When you go see Hamilton in New York City and it's been running for what like a couple of years now - that's not the first time that cast has put on that show, but as far as they're concerned and as far as you're concerned, in that audience, they're going to present it to you as if it's the first time they've ever done it and this is the best show they're ever going to do because they want to make that happen and make it special for you as an audience member. So, those are the three big pet peeves prospects have when it comes to financial advisors. They are not having a clear sense of who the advisor works with. In sales, there's an old saying - a confused buyer says no. You do not want your prospect confused. You want it crystal clear who you work with. If they're an engineer, you want to have it clear as day - I work with engineers - so they have no confusion. [0:18:09.0]

They go directly down your system. Number two - when the advisor answers the phone in the middle of meetings. This is the cardinal sin and you never want to do this. Number three - when the advisor doesn’t take time to listen to their situation. Keep in mind these are only three things. In the past, I've done a bunch of private surveys. I do a lot of research. People don’t know this about me, but I do a lot of research with prospects and clients and affluent investors and all these people and I've gotten dozens and dozens of things that people have complained about with their advisors, it's just that these are three of the common ones. Maybe I'll share some more in a future podcast episode. By the way, before we really wrap this thing up, and I know we said we're wrapping it up - if you're interested in that email marketing product, go ahead and check it out - if you want to read the sales page, you can. There's no obligation to buy. Just because you go to the sales page, doesn't mean that you're going to be sucked into this vortex and all of your money is going to evaporate. [0:19:03.7]

Jonathan: Magically come out of your wallet.

James: Go to the sales page, check it out. Make an important decision yourself. Go to TheAdvisorCoach.com/appointments. One more time - that's TheAdvisorCoach.com/appointments. The product is literally called Appointments on Autopilot, and if you're interested in using email marketing to get more clients, it can change your life, plus it comes with a 100% money back guarantee, so I'm really putting my money where my mouth is, and I wouldn’t be able to offer that guarantee if it didn't freaking work. So. There you go. And in the next episode, give people a little tease - I'm going …

Jonathan: The fam.

James: Yeah.

Jonathan: Give the fam a little tease.

James: The fam gets a tease. I am going to talk about - and it's going to be a really interesting episode. It's going to be five things school failed to teach financial advisors.

Jonathan: Ooooh.

James: Yeah. These are going to be some things they won't teach you in school - high school, college, but they should. So, stay tuned. That is going to be a great thing.

Jonathan: I cannot wait for that one. Alright. So that is a wrap for another Financial Advisor Marketing. Thank you for tuning in, fam. We'll be back in your earbuds next time.

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