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Most people, including most financial advisors, are weak.

They claim they’re wealthy but have maxed out credit cards. They’re afraid to ask for help when they need it. And this results in them never being able to become a top financial advisor in the country.

That’s the bad news.

The good news?

Building your discipline, asking for help despite your pride and ego, and even waking up 1 hour earlier can make you strong.

The best news?

As you become stronger, you also make yourself immune to most of your competitors who are weak, comfortable and unwilling to ask for help.

In this episode, you’ll discover the difficult, but effective way to transform yourself from a weak, middle-of-the-road financial advisor into one of the best ones in America.

Listen now.

Show highlights include:

  • How adding more clients to your business can actually result in making less money (3:46)
  • The “Vital Few” mathematical law which is the only way to become a top advisor (and how to enter this elite group) (5:25)
  • Why admitting you need help when you need it makes you immune to your competitors (and helps you become one of the best financial advisors in America) (10:24)
  • Are you making $100k per year but living paycheck to paycheck? Here are 3 things you must do today to break free (12:54)
  • How hard times can either mold you into a stronger, wealthier person or a weak coward (15:32)
  • Want to become an expert at niche marketing and put growing your business on “easy mode?” Then join my niche marketing program here: https://www.theadvisorcoach.com/niche.html

Need help getting more clients as a financial advisor? I created a free, 53-minute video outlining the steps to my “CLIENT Method,” which helps financial advisors land more clients. Watch the video before I take it down here: https://www.theadvisorcoach.com/theclientmethod.html

If you’re looking for a way to set more appointments with qualified prospects, sign up for James’ brand new webinar about how financial advisors can get more clients with email marketing.

Go to https://TheAdvisorCoach.com/webinar to register today.

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

Want to transform your website into a client-getting machine? Go to https://www.theadvisorcoach.com/website to get The Client-Getting Website Guide.

Want a masterclass training in running effective Facebook Ads? Head to https://TheAdvisorCoach.com/ads-training.

Discover how to get even better at marketing yourself with 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: This week's episode is going to be different from the regularly scheduled programming, because, at first glance, this will seem like it has nothing to do with marketing, but the more you think about it and let it sink in, you will realize it has everything to do with marketing, client-getting, and business-building.

This episode will likely offend some people and that's a good thing, because if you're even a tiny bit offended by this episode, then you should perk up and do some introspection, because I'm going to drop some truth bombs on you that will make Nagasaki look like child's play. Here we go. [01:04.4]

Our society is getting soft, timid, weak. Weak is a good word to describe it, because according to the dictionary, “weak” has two definitions. The first one is “lacking the power to perform physically-demanding tasks.” So, when I use weak, I don't really mean physical. I mean mentally-demanding tasks and emotionally-demanding tasks.

But the second definition is a better one for this context. It means “liable to break or give way under pressure; easily damaged.” This is the definition I want you to keep in mind as we go through this episode, because there are too many people in our world who fold under pressure. There are also too many people who are easily damaged.

I've been helping financial advisors since 2015. Since that time, I’ve seen the best of the best and the worst of the worst. I've seen strong people. I’ve seen weak people. But in the past few years, my business has gotten in front of a lot of financial advisors. My Inner Circle Newsletter, for example, has been growing like a weed and for good reason. A sad byproduct of that growth is that low-quality financial advisors inevitably slipped through. [02:09.1]

This is inevitable because of Price’s law, because when any business grows, the bad stuff starts happening. Not necessarily bad stuff, but low-quality people slip through. Price’s law states, half of the work in a given domain is done by the square root of the total number of people who participate in the work. That's a mouthful. But this law basically suggests that a small group of people often referred to as the “vital few” are responsible for the majority of the output. They are the few victors who get most of the spoils. In other words, if there are 100 people working in a company, then the square root of 100, which is 10, will do half the work. They have half the productivity. They'll get half the results. The remaining 90 people get the other half. Isn't that crazy? Half of the work in a given domain is done by the square root of the total number of people who participate in the work. [03:09.4]

This also applies to problem clients and amazing clients. If you have a group of nine people—so the square root of nine is three—this means three people are going to get half the results. They're going to do amazing work, and the remaining six will split the other half. That's not so bad, if you have a small group of people. If you have 100 clients, then 10 of them will provide for 50% of your happiness or the results, or whatever we're talking about here. If you have 900 clients, then 30 of them get 50% of the results.

Think of that. Let's apply that to something like my newsletter. I can go from 100 subscribers to 900 subscribers and only gain 20 top-tier superstars. I go from 10, which is the square root of 100, to 30, which is the square root of 900. [04:01.3]

Now, to be fair, it is very rare that someone is truly a newsletter subscriber and low quality. Typically, only the cream of the crop subscribe to that newsletter. But what I'm trying to tell you here is that Price’s law, a real mathematical law, not something I pulled out of my butt, not something that I'm making up to sound cool—this is a real law because I use real stats and real stuff to help financial advisors—it explains why growing bigger typically means you expose your business to people who, quite frankly, aren't going to do as well. It's sad, but it is a mathematical law.

Let's apply Price’s law to financial advisors. Imagine a group of 100 financial advisors seeking to convert 1,000 prospective clients. According to the law, 10 financial advisors—so the square root of 100 is 10, again—will divide half the prospective clients among themselves. Half of 1,000 is 500. This works out to an average of 50 clients per advisor, so because you have 10, they're divvying it up 500, so you get 50 clients per advisor. [05:04.8]

Sadly, the other 90 advisors will be forced to fight each other for the other half, which averages out to only 5.55 clients per advisor. Isn't that an insane drop, going from an average of 50 clients to an average of only 5.55 clients? That's nuts. But it is what happens, again, mathematical law, and the solution is to be part of the vital few. If you want an abundant life, you have to be part of this group. You have no choice.

The, quote-unquote, “good news” is now it's relatively easy to become part of the vital few because so many people are weak, meaning, they break under pressure. They fold easily. They give up in the face of hardships. And I’ll be honest with you, I am a weak man, especially compared to the men in my family. I'm not even going to sit here and posture like I'm better than people, because I'm really not.

I may be a better person at some things, but so are you. We're all better than some people and worse than some people in certain areas, depending on what better means. I'm probably a better email writer than you are. You are probably better than me at a lot of things. There are lots of people who are objectively better at a lot of things than me. [06:15.4]

But back to the men in my family. I have men who served in World War II. Here's a little fact for you. Did you know that fighter pilots only received 140 hours of training in World War II? What? What? Imagine that. Don't ever tell me you can't learn a valuable skill in a short period of time, because these men were out there fighting, doing dogfights, they were in the mix with 140 hours of training. That is crazy to me.

I also have men who served in the Korean War and the Vietnam War. I have two uncles I'm thinking of right now who served in Vietnam. One won't even talk about it because it was so bad. Another one does talk about it and some of the stories he tells are horrific. I mean, truly horrifying. If you're having a nervous breakdown because a prospect ghosted you, then you need a reality check because this guy was literally in a jungle fighting for his life and he tells stories that I'm not even going to repeat a lot of them. [07:11.6]

Let me just tell you, I’ll give you the gist, children would approach him with explosives. That's terrifying, and you can just fill in the rest with what happened to these children. The Viet Cong would dig holes in the ground and put bamboo sticks in them, so he'd be walking somewhere in the jungle with his crew and, boom, someone would fall in and get skewered right in front of them. This is real life, man. This isn't some movie or some book. This isn't Forrest Gump. This is real. My family members had to go through that.

If you're someone who served in the military, look, I really do thank you for your service, because I can't even imagine. I know that's like a formality for a lot of people where they say, “Oh, thank you for your service.” Look, I mean, that stuff. I mean it. Thank you for your service. [07:53.2]

The same uncle that can't talk about Vietnam, or that can talk about Vietnam, he ended up coming back to America and becoming a prison guard in one of the worst prisons in the country. I'm talking maximum security. He had to break up prison fights on a regular basis. These are hardened criminals. These are murderers. These are rapists. He has stories that will shock you from there, too. This guy was tough. I'm so weak, man. I'm like Jell-O compared to this guy.

So, those are uncles. My grandfather, he had 10 children. Ten. I see some of you on the internet talking about how hard it is to be productive if you have children. This man had 10 children and worked a full-time job. Oh, and he ran a business, and he spent time with his children. None of the kids have anything bad to say about him. He didn't ruin his relationship with them. They worship this guy. They adore him. They love him. Children, he managed to get it right. That's a strong man. He had a mentality that is just unlike anything I’ve ever seen. That’s strength to me. That's a strong man. I'm weak compared to him. [08:56.0]

I have another uncle who was a farmer. Actually, I have several uncles who did farming of some sort, but this uncle, he farmed the most, I guess. He raised horses, cows, pigs, goats. He had crops. Do you know how hard farming is? I grew up on a farm. I've talked about this a lot on the podcast. You have to feed the animals, no matter what. You have to water the animals, no matter what. They didn't ask for you to keep them. They're your responsibility and you're a terrible human being if you shirk those responsibilities.

When I see financial advisors, “Oh, it's so hard to post on social media every day. It's hard to come up with content ideas,” what are you talking about? Do you realize that this man had to go out and feed and water 30 horses, then let's just say 24 cows with bulls, 50 goats. It just goes on and on and on. This was the work that he would have to do it every single day, and you can't come up with a LinkedIn post? Get real. This is nuts to me. This man worked. He had a farm. He had a horse stable, a big one at that, and he had a business to run. [09:59.6]

There was a point in his life where he was down on his luck. Bad stuff happened to him, bad stuff happens to all of us, and he had to raise money to keep the farm going. Do you know what he did? He put all his cash on the line. I'm not talking about some of it. I'm not saying he just took a little bit of money. No, no, no, all of it. All of it. Every single solitary penny that he could find, he put it all on the line, balls to the wall.

He bought a van. He filled it with horse supplies and he started driving from farm to farm, selling those supplies. And it was a crappy van, too, because he didn't have that much money, to be honest with you. It was like $2,000. It was big, it was ugly, but it was all he could afford because he wanted to stock it with horse supplies, too. He did what he could. He then took those supplies, and he cold-knocked on people's doors to sell them the supplies.

Could you do that or are you a grown man worried about investing a couple 100 bucks per month into your business? Could you get up and show up in front of someone's house in a beat-up old van, obviously strapped for cash, and admit you need the help, or are you too proud? [11:08.8]

This man was a boss. He made boss moves and he got boss rewards. He did not stay down for long. You know the old saying, “Down but never out”? Some of you think strong people are never down. That's not true. Strong people are down all the time. Bad stuff happens, but they are never out.

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 $1,000 worth of bonuses, including exclusive interviews that aren't available anywhere else. Head on over to TheAdvisorCoach.com/coaching to learn more.

I have so many stories I could share with you. I have stories of people losing their lives. There's murders that have happened to my family, health issues, money problems, family problems, drama. Like, crazy stuff. Health issues. Real health issues, not just like, “Oh, I feel bad,” or “I feel sick,” or “I have anxiety,” or whatever. No, no, no, these are real health issues that would put you down, but, again, never out. These people, they didn't whine. They didn’t complain. They didn't use the bad things as excuses to give up. They kept going, because life doesn't stop and neither should you. [12:20.7]

If you are a strong person, you are never out. I've seen a couple of financial advisors say they struggle because they don't have accountability. They say things like, “I really need an accountability partner.” What? What is that? An accountability partner? Are you kidding me? Look in the mirror. That is your accountability partner. If you can't even muster the strength to hold yourself accountable, then that is weakness. I'm sorry, I can't even relate to that. I literally cannot relate. Imagine needing another grown man to keep you accountable. That's nuts. That's nuts to me. [12:54.8]

Lending Club did a survey last year where they found that 51% of people making more than $100,000 per year are living paycheck to paycheck. That is weakness. I don't care where you live. I know people say, “Oh, that's not that much money in Manhattan.” “That's not that much money in San Diego.” Look, you have two options. I don't care where you live, you can either cut your expenses or you can earn more money. Staying stuck is weak. That's called being out. You can be down, but never out.

If you're making 100k and you're living paycheck to paycheck, stop buying $14 margaritas with dinner. Stop going out and buying frivolous stuff because you “deserve it.” You do not deserve it. The word “deserve”, let's get the dictionary again, the word “deserve” is defined as “doing something or showing qualities worthy of reward.” Is being broke a quality worth rewarding? No, get out of here with that mess. [13:51.8]

I mentioned Price’s law earlier and I'm thinking about it again, because I'm starting to see it a lot as my newsletter grows. Let me be clear, I know this is like a rant type episode. I just want to tone it down a little bit. I want to be clear. I am so, so thankful for the people who have subscribed and for the people who are killing it. Really, I'm so honored. I love being your servant. But the sort of growth that the newsletter has experienced inevitably causes low-quality advisors to fall through the cracks.
Every so often, I will hear from an advisor who, just as an example, wants to pause his or her subscription. Typically, it's a he for reasons I’ll get into later, so he will ask to pause. That's crazy to me. Life has no pause button. You can't pause your marriage, raising children, breathing, your heart beating, none of that. You keep going. Would you tell your client to pause investing money for his or her retirement? I hope not, assuming everything is going well and you're on the path to retirement, and that is a goal. Why would you pause on your goals?

I don't allow pauses because it attracts the wrong mentality. Anyone who thinks pausing is okay when it comes to investing in yourself and bettering yourself, and improving your business, is not someone I want around me. There is no pause. [15:07.7]
Sometimes these people will give excuses about money, but keep in mind, Inner Circle members, they can ask me questions. They get direct email access to me for their questions. This means, at any point, these people could email me with a snapshot of their situation and ask for advice. I could literally tell them exactly what to do, how to do it, and the first move to make. But they don't. Isn’t that wild?

I think not asking for help is a surefire sign that you are a weak person, and I don't mean that in a derogatory way, especially not. I really don't. I do not mean that in a derogatory way, because you can change your behavior. You can ask for help. You can work on yourself. You can become more disciplined. Remember, you can be down, but you should never be out. We all go through hard times and they can either make us or break us. I want them to make you. [16:02.2]

I don't think financial advisors truly appreciate how much I want to be their partner in success. I want to help them. I want to be there for them. I am rooting for them. I want them to win. I want them to get everything in life. I want them to have money, health, happiness, a family that loves them. I want that for them. I really do. And I think one of life's greatest tests is simply being able to ask for help.

Can you put your pride and your ego on a shelf and ask for someone to help you? I can. I don't know about you, but I ask for help all the time. Even on stuff that seems silly to other people, I just go out of my way and I ask for help, because my time is valuable. I don't want to spend 10 hours trying to figure something out when I can ask somebody and get it done in 15 minutes.

And the reason I said “he”, I specifically use the male version, “he wants to pause,” is because I’ve noticed something pretty crazy. The female subscribers I have, the women, they typically lap the men. They dominate in terms of implementation results in success stories. [17:04.1]

They don't brag about it, though. A man could talk about taking his income from 200,000 to 350,000 in a year and pound his chest, and there are six or seven women who have done far more than that and haven't told anyone but me. These women are beasts.

Now, don't get me wrong, some of the men are, too. I mean, in fact, a lot of the men are, too. I mean, it’s like, I think, 70% of my newsletter subscribers are men. Don't quote me on that. It's roughly 70% and 30% women, so obviously, I'm having more men and more opportunities to hear from men, but the women that I hear from are just crushing it.

Here's what I’ve discovered based on interacting with my Inner Circle members over the years. I’ve been doing this a long time. My absolute best Inner Circle members in terms of success in the way that they approach life, and the mentality and the results that they get, are men in their late-30s, all the way up to the early-50s. They typically either are solopreneurs or they have teams of less than 10 people. They usually have families, so they understand they have to be on their A game. Time is precious. They're going somewhere. They're doing something. They’re people with visions, because without a vision, people perish. They have a drive to do more, have more, and be more. [18:15.7]

These men, for the most part, are awesome. It is a complete and utter joy to work with them. I am euphoric when I'm answering their questions because I'm put in a headspace where I am around winners, and that's what I want. I love that.
The older man, so late-50s, early-60s and beyond, they're hit or miss. Sometimes they'll subscribe because they want to revamp their business or because they get excited, and some of them stick with it and do really well. Others don't, because, I mean, they're just comfortable and they're coasting, even though I don't personally agree with that. It's a free country, they can do whatever they want to do. I respect my elders and I appreciate being able to help them, that kind of thing. It's just not that big of a deal. I don't really care either way. [18:59.2]

The younger men are hit or miss, too, but they're more extreme. They're more extreme hits and more extreme misses. Men in their 20s and early-30s are either total rock stars and doing amazing stuff-- I’ve got people who are setting company records. I've got people who are just providing for families, their families, in ways they never even thought possible. They're earning incomes they never thought possible.

I've also got people who are just complete crybabies. They whine about everything. They think, Oh, this is so hard, life is so hard. This is not what I expected, even though the sales page is 8,000 words long and tells you exactly what to expect. These are men who will brag about how much money they make and all the good work they do, and how they get bottle service at the club and how they're alpha, and all this stuff, but the credit cards get declined. I see the credit card.

When you buy something or when the transaction tries to go through, I see it getting declined, and Stripe provides a code letting me know a general reason. I don't get your personal information or anything like that, so don't worry, everything is secure. But they give a code why, so the merchant can figure out why the heck this is happening, and I’ve seen that it's maxed out. I literally see it. These are people who brag, brag, brag, but their credit cards are maxed out. If you're broke, just say that. Don't lie to people. [20:16.3]

But the women, oh my goodness, they do well across all age ranges, young, middle-aged, old. They're such a joy. They complain so much less. They don't brag about stuff they don't have, so they don't misrepresent themselves. They don't whine about how hard life is and how they call it a bad break or whatever. They study the material, do the work, and get results, period. Are there exceptions? Sure. But, generally speaking, the women lap the men by far.

So, basically, the tippity-top performers from Inner Circle members are men in their late-30s to early-50s, as I’ve described. This group is like the zenith. Then right below that is all women, all of them. They're consistently above average performers. I don't know if it's something about me or something about them. I’ve tried to figure that out over the years, but I can tell you that they are a different breed and I'm so thankful to work with them. [21:10.2]

Now, does that mean I'm excluding certain people and men of different ages? No, no, no, there are exceptions. If you are the exception, then that's fine. You can come hang out with me. We can ask questions, or you can ask me questions and get the newsletter and the bonuses and all that, and it'd be good, because the newsletter is meant only for a minuscule percentage of financial advisors, and chances are you're probably not going to qualify for it any way.

So, back to the topic. How do you eradicate weakness from your life? I have been purposefully vague throughout the entire episode. I haven't done any hard teaching or given you any specific information because I want you to realize, not everything is going to get handed to you. Not everything is a little step by step plan, and you're not going to solve your life's problems by listening to a podcast. Sorry, but that's the lesson here. You have to work to get results. [22:00.8]

If you thought you were going to listen to a podcast and you think you're weak, okay? You're like, Oh, this is finally going to help me, I guess it's a podcast. No, and that is the lesson. I want you to get the lesson. If you listen to this podcast, turn it off and do nothing. Then nothing in your life will change. You will go back to doing the same old stuff and getting the same old results. In fact, I know that's what 99% of you are going to do and you will get the results 99% of people get don't be surprised when you get them because you chose the behaviors and therefore chose the consequences.

What would happen? Just imagine. Sit back, relax, and imagine this for me. What would happen if this episode ended and you made the difficult phone call you know you need to make? Maybe that's to a prospect or to a client or to a family member or friend? What would happen if you got up earlier tomorrow, maybe an hour earlier, and you started building a prospecting campaign? Do you value your sleep more than your success? If so, sleep in. The rest of us are going to be the one-percenters who get 1% results. It's okay. It's okay. Somebody has to be the 99%. It ain't going to be me. [23:11.7]

Remember Price’s law. You have to be part of the vital few, and in order to do that, you have to do things that other people are not willing to do. Meditate on this. Let it change you, and I will catch you next week.

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