You're listening to Financial Advisor Marketing, the best show on the planet for financial advisers 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 advisers grow their businesses more rapidly than ever before. Now, here is your host, James Pollard. [00:31.7]
James: Financial advisors, welcome to another week another episode of the Financial Advisor Marketing podcast as always, I am your host James Pollard. And this week I do have a guest. Sometimes I have guests, sometimes I don't, quite frankly, it depends on my schedule and if I want to have guests in the first place. But I really wanted to bring this man on because he is a beast when it comes to Medicare and helping advisors understand the process and helping their clients go through the process. And I want to share with you guys that I was a bad podcast host because Brian and I had a couple of conversations before today and I didn't do much research on him. And I really regret that because when I started looking this morning to prepare for this conversation that we're going to have today, I learned like he is on his A game. He really does help a lot of advisors. He has some content on his website and we might talk about that later, but I want to let him introduce himself, tell you a little bit about him and his process. So, Brian, the floor is yours. [01:29.0]
Brian: Thanks, James. And don't be too hard on yourself, it's all good. Yeah, so Brian McArthur, I am the creator of the Medicare execution process. And I guess what I should do without going back to the day I was born as rewind a little bit, I am a retired or recovering variable annuity wholesaler. You could decide which at the end of the podcast once you, once you hear me out, but I spent the majority of my career at a wonderful career calling on financial advisors in mostly Southern California, the San Diego area, focusing on retirement income planning and trying to understand the broader financial planning process, as best as you can as, as a wholesaler. But I got a pretty decent handle on it. About six years ago, I was taking a step back from corporate America, kind of personal event take place and I just needed a bit more autonomy to navigate that. [02:27.0]
And, you know, I’ve watched wholesalers just like me spend all their time, talking about how great their relationships were with advisors and the moment that life threw them a curve ball, and they were not wholesaling for whatever reason, they all became advisors. And I just always thought, James, and in what are the world do you, you know, talk about how great your relationships are for 20 years and then go compete against your audience. It just never, I understand it, but it never got me excited. So, you know, I, I had some time on my hands. I looked around the financial planning process and I wanted to resist the temptation to do anything that was adversarial and, you know, created any friction with this community of advisors. I'd seen a lot of well-intentioned education about Medicare directed towards the financial advisor community. Typically, from wholesale distribution companies, variable annuity companies, long-term care distributors. I didn't see a lot of results, and that's not a criticism. I just, it just occurred to me over and over that maybe there was some limitations of what education alone could do. I observed that, you know, very tenured advisors who didn't go to any wholesaler meetings would go to a Medicare meeting and six minutes into a 60-minute presentation about parts ABC through XYZ. [03:49.0]
Everybody's eyes rolled in the back of their head. They weren't really sure if they learned anything, you know. So, you know, I got curious and anybody can start a business with a theory, then you have to go in the market and find out if you're right or not. So, I started engaging advisors in Southern California and just said, Hey, what, if anything, you know about Medicare unapologetically, most advisors who know a lot about a lot, you know, just said, I don't know anything about Medicare, or I know something more than nothing about it. And you know, James, I'm not a finger wager. I just tell him, tell him, look, I get it. It's complicated. It's messy. It changes all the time. The revenue's way too low for you to, or your broker dealer to want you to focus on. That being said, it felt like the great equalizer, you know, every single client, regardless of net worth, was going to enroll in Medicare. And it just occurred to me that it felt like the one part of the financial planning process where clients were looking away from their advisors for advice and how nice might it be to get them looking back towards the advisor. So that was kind of the Genesis of, you know, the Medicare execution process. [04:57.1]
James: It just, that people do have their eyes glaze over, when they listen to the process, I can't remember which article it was that I was reading online about how financial advisors, when they take their series seven and whatnot, they don't get excited about Medicare. They, when they're taking their exams, like that's the part that they gloss over. They're like, here are all the different details. Got it. Let's move on to the real stuff. And it's like, well, for someone who is 64 years old, that is the real stuff that is coming down the pike. And when I was watching one of your YouTube videos and you have an article on horse's mouth that goes in detail about this as well. You have a little bit of a challenge for financial advisors where you, you instruct them to get in contact where the 64-year-olds who are clients of theirs. Can you talk a little bit about that? I don't want to give the whole thing away. I'll let you do that. [05:43.1]
Brian: No. Sure, you know, ultimately what I like to impress upon advisors is, and coming back to the great equalizer thing, like I look at it this way, if you've ever been to Manhattan, it doesn't matter what your net worth is, you've all ridden, everybody's ridden the subway, right? Everybody has to go to DMV and things like that. Medicare, everybody enrolls, right. And I like to impress upon advisors that, Hey, look, this is good news to great news for virtually everybody when advisors like being associated with good news. Of course, every advisor is looking to demonstrate value and leadership in ways that do not tie the client's perception of their value exclusively to portfolio performance, right. I think back to, you know, years ago, MFS had come out with a brochure called Milestone Marketing, and it was basically a list of like call your clients at this age about this topic, this topic, this top, right. And you know, the beauty about Medicare is it's a deadline driven event. [06:39.7]
So, one, if it's good news two, you know, we're all trying to make a living. And you know, at the end of the day, if you backed our us into a corner, we'd have to admit we're salespeople in some way, which I don't think is, you know, that there's anything wrong with that. Personally, I don't like feeling like a salesperson any more often than I have to and I know that all the advisors I work with feel that way as well. So, the beauty about Medicare is that the, you know, in order to not feel like a sales person, there needs to be some limited resource elsewhere in a process where you're trying to demonstrate boundaries and other than Brian's desire to, you know, help a client or, or James' desire to help and advisor. So that, that deadline really puts the advisor in a position to swoop in demonstrate leadership at an unexpected time when the clients expected the least and appreciated the most. So, coming back to your question, everybody's eligible for Medicare at age 65, not everybody enrolls at 65. Most of the clients who I deal with who are all clients of financial advisors usually have quite a bit of professional autonomy. So, they can keep working until stops being fun and make the career work for them beyond 65. But an aged 64, every single client starts getting more male than you can possibly imagine from the whole Medicare industry. Whatever you think [not audible] [08:03.9]
James: I come from that world.
James: I get a lot of these mailers in a RP, they buy the list or they rent the list, I should say, they don't buy it. They rent it and they just start shoving it out there.
James: And they work if they, they work because it has the deadline, like you're saying. The deadline is one of the most important in marketing, but yeah, you're totally right they get a ton of stuff. [08:22.6]
Brian: Yeah. And I just thought, whatever you, I tell the advisor, whatever you think a lot of mail is in your head right now, over the course of your triplet, it's insane. I don't do any direct mail. I'm probably like the antichrist of, you know, Medicare insurance agents, because everybody else does direct mail. Just not the way my process works. I just teach the advisors to. Look at any time you're in a position to turn a complicated topic into something simpler, you're in a position to earn credibility. And I tell advisors, if you like anything I share with you today, your action step, if you choose to take it as you look for just your 64-year-olds. Most advisors have three to six clients who are 64 at any given time. It's not a gigantic list. If it was 20 clients, I would not have the audacity to tell an advisor to drop everything, make 20 phone calls. But it's three to six phone calls once a year. And I've just taught hundreds of advisors across the country now to call client at 64, say, Hey, it's James, can I ask you a question I already know the answer to? [09:23.1]
So how much mail are you getting these days about Medicare? And then the biggest part is I've taught the advisors to pause. Because when you ask a client who's 64, how much mail are getting about Medicare, they will reply with laughter over half the time. And the advisor looks cool and anticipatory and intuitive, and those are good looks, I'm an advisor, right? And from there the advisors say, Hey, I told you, I knew why I was calling. You can throw that stuff out because these clients are saving the material in shoe boxes. We do want you to have help with Medicare. We do not want you dealing with strangers. And the moment the advisor says that last sentence, they're now taking the client from looking away from them, for advice to looking back towards. We work best with Brian McArthur and his group; they make this easy to report back to us. This is all they do. With your permission, I'd like to introduce you to Brian over email. But it's, this whole process works to the advisor, the clients, and ultimately to my teams benefit as well because of the timing. You know, it's not that anybody people are lining up to talk to Brian McArthur it's that the advisor is demonstrating leadership with their clients at just the perfect time. [10:33.1]
James: And the more I thought about this concept and the more I really continue to think about it, the more I realized that there's something in the marketing world and it, it's kind of a running joke about the products you can create that is ultra-valuable. And the example people give is like a weight loss pill that you take one time and you lose weight forever, and you keep it off forever and ever, and ever. But what this is, it's a way to enhance your credibility. It is a way to say thank you to the client for being a client because it works for them. And they're going to get a lot of value from it. It truly is a win-win for you and the client. And I should say, win, win, win, because it's a win for you as well. And it's something that take is deadline driven. So as a marketing strategy, that's absolute gold. And it doesn't take that much time because once they have the relationship with you or someone like you, they can hand the client off. And again, all eyes, like you say, they're coming back to the financial advisor. So, it is an incredible, at least five punch marketing method that I think more advisors should take advantage of. Are there any reasons why advisors don't or why they shy away from this? [11:41.1]
Brian: You know, I now I'm approaching my 700th Medicare enrollment and what's notable about it is I guess I probably say a 100% I don't know, 99% of those people are high net worth clients of financial advisors. Now that seems really fancy and probably impresses my mother-in-law. I don't, my revenue's not any different because somebody has a $40 million portfolio. With a homeless person under a bridge. The revenue's the same me to me as, as the biggest client. I joke around with advisors and now I have several hundred advisors across the country. So now this has expanded into the advisors who I've never met and never will meet in person. I'm not saying they engaged in this process quite as quickly as the advisors, local to San Diego, but not far off, which has really been an interesting validation of, you know, my effort to kind of know the audience. But I joke around what advisors, I've got a lot of advisor partners who I never wholesale the liquor business as a wholesaler, you know, we've got this great symbiotic relationship and I'll joke around and say, you know, you never listened to me this much when I wholesale them, they sit with me, they think about it and they laugh and they go, yeah, you're probably right, but you weren't this helpful when you're a wholesaler, right? [12:55.3]
So, I mean, ultimately, I will say my revenue and my compliance is focused on the client, as it relates to, you know, Medicare rules and regulations, the ultimate client of the process is the advisor. So, the litmus test is, is everything I'm doing. My team is doing, is it reflecting positively on the funding advisor? Right? That's really our client. So ultimately the advisor engagement is where way more than I ever was in my previous career. I don't follow up with anybody. I'm not trying to sound like a snot about it. It's just that enough people engaged that doesn't mean everybody. You know, the advisors that don't, I just think it's a lot of them come around later and then other people just have, you know, other fish to fry or they're at capacity. But I will share with you that it's really been a very interesting way to work with advisors. A lot of advisors, again, that, that thirst to demonstrate unexpected leadership is so, hi, then I often take note that it’s not uncommon that an advisor team engages me. [13:57.8]
If they had to do a three to 6 64-year-olds, it feels like a lot of times and engaging their or their or their, their clients are really the ones who engage me. I mean, I have a lot of super ultra-high net worth clients. Again, it doesn't change my revenue, but it's interesting to me that that's the type of clientele that the advisors introduced to me first, because they're just looking to demonstrate leadership with the people they want to keep, you know, impressed the most. So, I don't know if that's a direct answer to your, your question is there's not much of a reason not to, you know, what I do point out is, look, what I've noticed is that when your clients enroll in Medicare at a 100 % of them will, they're going to go get advice from an insurance agent who knows everything about Medicare. Now I'm not a scare tactic guy. I'm not here to tell you that your client's Medicare agent can get your client a cat, $2 million out of LPL to do some crazy index annuity that you never would have presented, you know, on your worst day as an advisor, right. But what I will share with you because I've worn this hat seven, 700 times now, is that whoever helps your client with Medicare is going to turn a complicated topic into something simpler and earn credibility. [15:13.5]
And whoever helps your client with Medicare on Monday is well positioned to talk to your client about term life insurance on Tuesday, James, whole life insurance on Wednesday, you know, that e-money, financial plan that you spent 12 hours in putting data into and then that says black, the insurance agent says white, right? The very least it's a nuisance could be lost revenue. I try to not engage in scare tactics or anything, but at the very least, it's directing the client's attention away from you. And it's, I've just vet revalidated several hundred times now. It's so easy to get the client to look and come back towards you at the moment they're looking, right. [15:52.7]
James: Well, it's something that's going to happen anyway. They're going to do it with you, or they're going to do it without you. And if you have an easy way to have them, do it with you, why not take advantage of that? And it's not like its news. It's not like this is just going on with financial advisors. They see it coming, they know it's going to happen, they're going to apply for Medicare. It just makes total sense for what you're saying. And I, I really hope financial advisors are picking up on this message of like redirecting attention, because that's like the marketing speak of what you're doing. It's just redirecting the attention from them looking outward, looking at other people, looking at other resources. Do you use the financial by saying, Nope, Nope. Get back here and come back to me. I'm going to show you the right way. And it's so profound, it is obvious that it's so effective. And I watched a few of your YouTube videos, as I mentioned earlier. And in one of them, you explained that 90 to 95% of referrals from advisors to you end up engaging you if that's still accurate, what's your secret sauce there? [16:53.9]
Brian: Well, you know what I always point out is that is nothing I ever share with advisors is based in theory, everything I share with you is based on experience. One of the neat things about building this process was the ability to get just highly repetitive interactions and kind of test my theories and test the messaging and being very cautious and thoughtful about what syllable goes, where in an effort to get a good result under the watchful eye of the advisor. You know, when clients thank me, I tell them to thank the advisor. Again, that's really the focal point. And I tell them, look, when you call a 64-year-old at age 64, you ask them how much mail they're getting and they laugh and you say, ha ha throw it out, we have a guy named Brian, which is the short version of the phone call. I tell him, you know, if 90 to 95% of people engage me, it's not because it's such a privilege to speak to Brian McArthur. You know, if you look at people's action, what that has told me is that this is how much the clients appreciate the advisor reaching out at that moment when they expected it to least and appreciate it the most to give them a little bit of guidance, right? [17:58.8]
So, I guess some advisors get really excited and they go, Brian, you know do you want to do a review on every Medicare policy? In my, in my book, I go look, of course, that's a good use of my time. I don't wake up in the morning trying to create more work for financial advisors. So, I always tell them if you like anything, I hear it really starts with calling the 64-year-olds. Start there, ask them about the mail when they laugh, you'll know I'm telling you the truth, right. And from there you will organically figure out which of your other clients that I should speak to, right. But it's advisors on their own have a limited attention span on the things they need to communicate to their clients, right. So, this was really designed. And I just constantly, you know, every client who I enroll, I enrolled four people yesterday. That's four extra times to validate that this process is on the right path, right. And so, you know, it, it's, it's really, you know, most advisors after 25-year career, will have a hundred clients. I'll, you know, I'll, I'll, I I'm onboarding about 200 high net worth clients, a financial advisor specifically into Medicare every year, right. And it's just a different business model, you know, it's higher volume, lower revenue, but the gift of that, both to me and to the advisors who use this process is just that none of it's theory, you know, it's, it's just this constantly revalidated process. [19:22.7]
James: So, it seems highly efficient because rather than the financial advisor, I mean, there are some courses and systems and people who are trying to teach the financial advisor, everything about Medicare, so they can try to add it within their business. Some people will, it's kind of like accounting, maybe they'll hire a CPA or they'll try to go through a tax planning course. And there is value in tax planning for financial advisor’s clients. But with a process like this, I would much rather see a financial advisor, take their clients and put them in a direction where someone's already figured it out. Somebody already has an efficient process. You can crank it out. And the beautiful thing is that if someone else already has an efficient process and the client goes through that process, you're exactly right, it reflects positively on the financial advisor. So, I, I love that about it. [20:11.3]
Brian: No, I appreciate those comments. You know, when I'm engaging an advisor for the first time, one of the things I tell them is, look, I can't claim to be some noble fiduciary like you, right. I'm an insurance agent, right. That being said, and I, you know, I, it frustrates me when people play around with the term fiduciary, but I, and so let me just acknowledge that I'm not a fiduciary. I've built this process to be as fiduciary S as a commissioned salesperson, which is where my revenue comes from, can possibly do it. A few things play into that to make that possible is that number one, there's really only two ways to address the Medicare game. There's, you know, the government, once somebody is enrolled, they get 80% of their health insurance paid for by the government. And everybody gets an additional type of insurance to cover the remaining 20%. [21:02.1]
And from prescription drugs, there's only two types of policies as Medicare supplement, Medicare advantage, the incentives to the agent are not identical. They're pretty darn close. I, what I share with advisors is that the revenue incentives to the agent is kind of the difference between a $25,000 [not audible] shared a $30,000 [not audible]. I don't think I could ever be accused of steering somebody one way or the other, you know, I'm a non-utopian guy, kind of like you, which I appreciate about you. So, we just live in a world of trade-offs. So, you know, the big part of this process is being the first smiling face to show up at the height of the confusion, you know, turn a complicated topic into something simpler, get the client a good result. Help them understand what Medicare is, what it is and what it's going to cost them. A lot of my clients, all clients of advisors have higher income that drives up, you know, how much they pay for their government premiums ahead in between the eyes with that. And the first phone call, honestly, it's still really good news, even if they have super high income. [22:02.0]
But ultimately, you know, it's just guiding them to an actual result, helping them understand the timeline, you know, have no surprises. I wind up with multi-year relationships with these clients, you know, and, and I use Salesforce just like everybody else. And you know, I'm not bashful about reminding clients politely, you know, how are referencing the advisor years later, just so they never forget how we met, right? So ultimately this is designed to be a positively viewed extension of the advisor's full service, financial planning process. That's just messy and complicated enough that it's just not really worth their time. [22:41.5]
Hey, financial advisors – if you’d like even more help building your business, I invite you to subscribe to James’ monthly paper-and-ink newsletter, The James Pollard Inner Circle.
When you join today, you’ll get more than one thousand dollars’ worth of bonuses, including exclusive interviews that aren’t available anywhere else.
Head on over to TheAdvisorCoach.com/coaching to learn more. [23:04.1]
Brian: Another thing I bring up just on that, on that fiduciary mindset is the you know, there's no I-Shares in Medicare supplement plans, James. So, I tell clients, I get to the end and sometimes clients say, Hey, you know, what do I owe you? Or how do you get paid? And I say, oh, I appreciate you asking, no I'm your insurance agent on this? I said, look, the insurance companies have a couple dollars a month built into this. I don't get rich on any one of them that they pay monthly. My incentives are to keep you happy for a long period of time. And I said, you know, if, if we get to the point in the process where I say, oh, Anthem blue cross plan G is what's best for you. And I, I keep it pretty fun for the clients that said, and then you hang up the phone and say, polar and I never want to speak to that McArthur character again. You can call up Anthem and ask them for plan G. I have a sneaky suspicion if you call Anthem, they're going to tell you to buy Anthem. I might come to the same conclusion, but I'm going to look across the whole market for you. And you know, if you call the Anthem there, isn't better. Mine's not worse. They can't discount it. I can't mark it up. There's no incremental extra cost to the client when they do it on their own and use another agent, call the carrier directly or use me. And I wrap up with that explanation and tell the client, you know, but at the end of the day, I serve two masters. I don't just want to keep you happy for a long period of time. I want to keep your advisor happy for a long period of time. I mean, clients usually start laughing cause I said, you will not be less 64-year-old, whose mailbox is exploding, the Medicare. [24:34.7]
And they say, okay, I get it. I may, you know, they, they like that. And other things that are kind of more qualitative, which is kind of interesting about our businesses, you know, there's no, I mean, unless you tell me, otherwise testimonials are not allowed, right? You can't build a Yelp review for a financial advisor. I think that's against compliance. So, they certainly don't make it easy. And while I'm talking to these clients, you know, the clients thank me. I'm always referencing the advisor and I say, Hey, look, my only claim to fame, if this even is when it's, you'll never meet anybody, who's met more financial advisors in your life than me, Mr. Client. And you probably don't need me to tell you that personally and professionally your client or your financial advisor is about as good as they come. And the clients love hearing that. You know, a lot of times, man, I am the first spoken word outside the client's own brain to validate that they have a great financial advisor and there's not a lot of ways for them to test their experience you know, like I feel happy with my advisor. I hope I'm supposed to feel happy with my advisor. So, you know, it's kind of, those are just little things I've kind of integrated to make sure that the advisors are at the center of the whole thing. [25:48.9]
James: It's such a beautiful model, because like I've said before, it's efficient, it's simple. You have a way to give the advisor credibility and the advisor looks good and you're totally right when you're selling the invisible as I think Harry Beckwith calls it, it's difficult for people to know whether or not they made the right decision. And when they have a third party validating that it does provide a tremendous sense of relief. I do want to switch gears because this is the Financial Advisor Marketing podcast and one of the most common questions I get, especially now. So, we recently released a brand-new video training called the client, getting website over at TheAdvisorCoach.com/website. And when we did the launch for that, I got a lot of emails from financial advisors who were asking questions like what is a good website look like? Do you have any recommendations for websites? I use this as a template and I don't necessarily believe that people should use templates, but these questions kept coming in. And I think that your website designmymedicare.com or at least that's one of them that you're featured featured on like four or five pretty prominently. But the one I like is designmymedicare.com. [26:58.7]
And let me explain to financial advisors, I know this is a podcast. I know you're listening to this right now. So, I try to be very clear with you advisors. If you go to designmymedicare.com, you will see right at the top, before you scroll down, you will see make an appointment. It is a call-to-action button where you can click. You've got the homepage to media page, make an appointment, and then book Brian McArthur. This is absolutely critical for financial advisors to do because sometimes I will hear from a financial advisor who will ask, well, why aren't I getting more appointments from my website? And then I look, and there's nowhere ostensibly, for people to book an appointment. Well, I'm like, well, duh, that's why you're not getting any appointments. If you scroll down designmymedicare.com, you will see exactly who Brian works with. He has it spelled out right there, exactly how I would instruct financial advisors to do it. He works with clients of financial advisors, financial advisors, and broker dealers, wholesale distribution teams. He's got it right there, spelled out for you. [27:58.6]
If you scroll down one of the little secrets, I'm going to reveal this on the podcast because I want to reward the people who are listening. One of the things that I've revealed recently in my inner circle newsletters is that one of the most powerful things you can do when it comes to setting more appointments is to give your initial appointment, to give your process a name. And guess what Brian has, as soon as you scroll down the Medicare execution process, trademark. People see that they understand, he has a trademark on this process. It is his and his exclusively, his credibility just went up. Scroll down some more there's top three reasons financial advisors share with us why their advice stops at Medicare. And he has reason number one, reason number two, reason number three, he's agitating the problem here. This is a marketing secret that people use. You scroll down and he's got more credibility, he's got testimonials, he's got one call to action button to book him. He's got another call-to-action button below that you, if, and then what I think is absolutely brilliant. And I hope I'm explaining this well enough to financial advisors, where they can picture this. [29:01.8]
At the bottom of all the scrolling when you get all the way down and you can scroll no more, you have your call to action, Brian has his call-to-action buttons, broken up. If you were a client of a financial advisor, there's a button for you to make an appointment. If you are a financial advisor, there's a button for you to make an appointment. And if you're a broker dealer, there's a button for you to make an appointment. So, if you're a financial advisor out there and you're listening to this, and you're one of the people who, who has asked me about a good website or a website that is designed to actually book appointments and not just look pretty and not just be a brochure, I encourage you to at least take a look at Brian's website over at designmymedicare.com. Now, is there anything that I missed about your website or anything behind the scenes or in your analytics or anything that you want to share about your website can help people? [29:47.4]
Brian: No, I appreciate that comment. And it's great to have your feedback who knows so much about this. I think this was just kind of stumbling through the dark in, in my concept of what made sense. And of course, it's evolved over time. So, I, your, your insights really valuable and I appreciate it. One of the things you might notice, and I'm just going to say pointed out, I don't know that it works the same for everybody, but if you do look on this James you will notice and I just had this happen recently. I had a Stifel advisor go to my website and she said, you know, I went to your website because I was looking around for your phone number and, your phone, number's not on your website. And I was like.
James: I noticed that. Neither is mine by the way. I don't put my phone number on my website. [30:30.1]
Brian: Right. And she said, is that intentional? And I said, yes. So, you made a comment before and I'm, I'm spacing on exactly where to rewind to in the comment you made. But I try to create as low friction, an experience as possible. That sounds nice. Who the heck wouldn't want that, right? Because this is a deadline event. I have the Liberty to, to go more low friction, right? I don't know that trying to land a $2 million advisory account would, can be as little friction as this, but, but I would entertain people. I would encourage people to at least be open to this is I always say, I never tell anybody what to do. I just tell you what works best. Now, the website's probably a little bit of an extension on that because people have my phone number. I always guide them and say, I never tell you what to do you know. If you're open, I'll tell you what works best. Don't give your client my phone number. Tell them about me verbally. Offer to introduce us over email. I have a specific process that advisers might like to hear about. But on, on this, on the website, this goes out to the whole world. I just can't have my phone. It's just not the way the business works. So yeah, if they like it, they, you know, they click on that link. It opens up you know; the whole world uses Calendly. I feel like people misuse, those scheduling links and it just drives me nuts the way I see the average person use it. [31:52.4]
James: What do you mean? I don't want to interrupt you, but what exactly do you mean?
Brian: You know.
James: How do people use it?
Brian: One, I think it's important to validate that this thing really does run your life. I mean, if you click and you've done it, right. You click on that link, it goes right to my calendar and I treat it like a sport to call you the exact minute you asked me to, it's just a I and people, people comment on it. And this is the first thing that they comment on and it starts conversations off very positively. But but people just put it in their signature, like click a link or they say, Hey, I want to talk to you, click on my link, right. And it just always feels like it runs the risk of sounding like you're big timing somebody.
James: Yes, yes.
Brian: Which is actually a magnificent tool. What I do is, so it's probably worth talking in the context of the advisor – client introduction to me. Client makes a Phone call at age 64, how much mail you getting? Ha ha throw it out, we have a guy named Brian. Brian is going to make this easy. Reports back to us, this is all he does. With your permission, I'd like to introduce you to Brian over email. They do that, I have a specific script, nobody follows my script verbatim, which is okay, because this all still works out just fine. And it's the client said, Hey, you know, Brian, this is my client you know, Mr. and Mrs. Jones. Mrs. Jones, this is Brian from there. Those come in all day. I just hit reply to all. I've got different signature templates and it basic. And I tell the advisor, you're going to get sick of saying it, cause it's gonna say, Hey, thank you, James, Mr. And Mrs. Jones, what typically works best is if you click this link below you choose the day and time when you, who would like me. [33:28.2]
Brian: To call you.
Brian: It goes right into my calendar, which I follow religiously. With your permission. I'd like to keep James up stated on our conversation and then there is the link. And to me, I just put in a lot of thought and trial and error into presenting that to make it all about them. And they all click on the link and I call them right the minute they asked me to. And they, comment about a boy, when you say 9:30 30, you really mean 9:30. And I, and I got the same jokes I tell all day long. Well, I appreciate that comment. I get, everybody's gotta be good at something. I could never hit a baseball. So, I try to kit, call you on time and they chuckle, right. But then what that has evolved into from a time management standpoint and also a capacity to, to educate and guide clients through the Medicare execution process is when people call me, I need to know I fix this. I have a nearly full-time assistant. Analysis doesn't happen as often as it was, but man, I built this on a bootstrap with no, no extra resources for the first couple of years, James. I mean, if you called me and I wasn't expecting the call, cause I'm scheduled down in a minute, you know, usually two to three days out, if you leave me a voicemail and I wasn't expecting a call can take two and a half, two days to call you back, that that has improved. [34:45.0]
But the funny thing would happen if you leave me a voicemail and you don't hear from me in a day, and as somebody I've spoken to, you know, maybe I'd met them at 64 and now they're ready to enroll, half the time if that voicemail went unanswered for a day and a half, something clicks in their head and they go, oh, you know what Brian's got that scheduling link. And they dig through their inbox to find the last email from a year ago, and they click on the link and it just shows up. I mean, it really, it's an amazing tool if used properly.
Brian: And as a result, I don't, I really, and I'm pretty rigid about it. Like inbound phone calls to me are a little bit disruptive. They get dealt with, I mean, but the more I guide people to that link and that link on the website is a good example, but it really is pretty magical when, when used appropriately. [35:32.0]
James: So inner circle subscribers who are listening to this podcast right now, I hope your antenna just went because one of the concepts discussed in the, I can't remember the exact month, but it's a recent inner circle newsletter is about permission-based marketing. And isn't it interesting that Brian is here telling you that he has a process that works very well. And he is telling people with your permission, you can set this appointment. and sometimes advisors will ask me about the phone call thing. They'll say, you mentioned in this product, this place, this interview, wherever they hear me say it, that you should have your phone number on your website. And it's like, yes, if they, but did you finish the sentence? If you want phone calls and I ask the advisor, do you want phone calls? They say, well, yes. And then I follow up with, are you able to take those phone calls? [36:18.2]
Well, it depends because some of my advice, this is speaking as myself again. I'm not trying to put words in advisor's mouth. I will say, block out your prospecting time, block out you’re marketing. And what I tell them to do is to not take phone calls because you're stopping a known variable for an unknown variable. And when you talked about inbound calls being disruptive, that's exactly what they experienced as well. So, when I tell them to block that out and they know in advance that they're not going to be able to take that phone call because they're not going to stop the known variable for an unknown variable. Well, then that changes things. But if a financial advisor knows that he or she is going to be able to take the phone call, then it's a no-brainer to put your phone number on the website. [37:01.9]
If I put my phone number on the website, we used to have a fancy phone number, I'm not going to give it away, but it was pretty cool number. If I put that number on my website, I would get so many calls. People would be so frustrated that I wouldn't be able to return the call, cause I personally don't have a scheduling link on the website. Well, that's not true. I do, but my calendar is closed at the moment. People would be frustrated. And as a financial advisor, central listening to the Financial Advisor Marketing podcast, I want to give you something to help you win with marketing. You want to create an environment where you can appear just like Brian is telling you credible. You want to be the hero. It's kind of hard to appear credible and to appear as the hero if you're doing the right marketing stuff and I'm using finger quotes here, you're using the right marketing stuff, by having your phone number on your website and people get excited and you make that call, but then you drop the ball because you're not dropping the ball elsewhere. You're being successful elsewhere. The people calling you don't know that they have no idea. This is their first interaction with you. This is their first impression. When they make that phone call, it leaves a bad taste in their mouth. So, you have to be really careful. And I'm glad you brought that up, Brian, because I think it, it makes a lot of sense. It can help a lot of advisors. But I want to wrap this up. If a financial advisor or anyone really, I don't know who is listening to this. Obviously, the majority of listeners is going to be financial advisors, but if this falls into different people's hands, how can people get in touch with you? Do you have anything more specific and what are some next steps? [38:31.0]
Brian: Yeah so, I think when I start off all this collateral and it just hasn't been necessary. So, I tell advisors, look, even if you like everything you've heard today, we should probably meet and do a, a phone call, maybe a smaller version of this, if they listened to the whole episode. Advisors are welcome to be on a hundred percent of the interaction I have with their clients to give away the ending most advisors from 0% and I get it. But I said, look, if you're in a different state, you should want to at least join me on one of these phone calls with one of your clients. If I were, you I'd want to know that some guy in San Diego was talking to my clients about, in my absence. It's ultimately not a great use of the advisor's time to be involved in the whole thing. But to the extent that they feel comfortable, that you know, there's good results being executed you know, under their watchful eye, then that's really what the advisors want. But I always say, selfishly, I like the advisors to, I like to meet them before we do any client interaction. And I kind of encourage them, not everybody takes me up on it, like join me on at least one client phone call, selfishly, they get a front row seat to what a positive experiences is with the client. And then at that point, the advisor gets to see the positive optics that come out of this, that, that benefit them. So, I would really just say, if anybody heard anything they like, and they want to know more I would email me first at firstname.lastname@example.org. And you know, we'll spend a little bit of time, doesn't have to be too long, but just to understand who one another is. And then, you know, from there, you know, they can choose to, to start you know, client engagement. [40:09.8]
James: Use the subject line, heard you on James’s podcast.
Brian: There you go. I like that. Yeah.
James: That way, that wayyou know that maybe this is effective or maybe it's not.
James: But yeah. So Brian, with an I - email@example.com, the website is obviously designmymedicare.com. I know people are going to go cause I talked about the website and how it's set up to set appointments and it's got the niche on there and so on and so forth. But this has been awesome. I hope people at least have conversations with you about how you can help them, also help their clients. And it's just such a streamlined process and it's a way for financial advisors to be the hero in their businesses. So, thank you for this. [40:50.1]
Brian: Oh, but Hey, thank you for having me. It's I, I, I'm enjoying getting to spend time with you. It's this funny world where when you and I spoke for the first time, it's this awkward thing where I have to confess. I feel like I know you and you have no idea who I am, right. And it's, it's so interesting how much we get to feel like we know one another in this digital world, even prior to you interacting. So, I, I'm just thrilled to you know be able to collaborate with you on this. And you know, other things that we've been talking about.
James: You got it. So financial advisors hope you enjoyed this episode. I will catch you next week. [41:23.0]
This is ThePodcastFactory.com