A time-tested way to grow business for financial advisors has been through referrals. Undoubtedly, prospects who come through this route convert easily and quickly. But depending only on referrals may be limiting to growth. Just as advisors recommend clients to diversify their investments, it would serve advisors themselves well to diversify their sources of getting new clients.
We spoke to a few advisors to find out how they are acquiring new clients. Here’s what they have to say.
Bharat Bagla runs his company advertisements in Kolkata’s leading English daily. “Many people in Kolkata, especially entrepreneurs, read The Telegraph. We are trying to reach out to this segment.”
Bagla has been advertising in this newspaper for the last ten months and he is receiving a good response. Encouraged by the results, he has increased the frequency of advertisements from twice a month to twice a week. “Initially, the response wasn’t good but now we have started getting enquiries from people.”
Bharat says that he uses simple messages like ‘get a free health check-up of your portfolio’ and ‘let your idle money lying in bank work for you’ in these advertisements to catch the attention of readers.
According to him, advertising on the back pages is not an expensive affair. “Advisers can use this strategy to acquire clients. However, in my view, an IFAs should first decide who they wish to reach out to. Knowing your target audience will help you choose the right publishing house and create customized messaging for better results,” suggests Bagla.
Shiney’s strategy is all about, ‘Targeting tomorrow’s investors’. She believes in spreading financial awareness among students and women through investment awareness programs (IAPs). According to her, engaging with this group is the key to achieve financial inclusion.
“Women are very good at budgeting. They save small amounts every month which can be channelized in mutual funds. Similarly, college students are the ones who will start earning in the coming years. Through IAPs, we try to inculcate the habit of investing among women and students. We explain to them how a monthly investment of Rs. 500 through SIP in mutual funds can help them accumulate wealth over the long term.”
Anand based IFA Pranav Patel has a unique way of acquiring clients. He runs a campaign called ‘Bachat Mahasatra’targeting low income groups. He sets up canopy presence in high footfall areas such as bus depots and railway stations. In order to draw people, he uses hoardings in which he raises provocative questions on issues related to household finances such as – Can you buy your dream house without paying EMIs?, Do you want to repay your loan early ? etc. Once people come to enquire, he explains to them about how inflation is eroding their savings and how can they achieve their financial goals through mutual funds.
Meerut based Virendr Pal Singh believes in growing his business through seminar marketing. He says that demystifying financial concepts to a group is always better than explaining to an individual as it takes the same amount of effort. According to him, seminar marketing helps him position himself as a domain expert.
Singh approaches corporates, associations and education institutes with a proposal to hold a financial learning event for them. Most of these institutes agree to his proposals considering his experience and testimonials from other such institutions.
Virendr believes that a seminar should have a clear and focussed message for its audience. “Make sure you customise content in a way that it would appeal to the specific audience. For instance, if you are reaching out to a group of doctors, you can create a topic like wealth guide for doctors,” explains Virendr.
Seminar marketing has helped his SIP book cross over Rs.90 lakh per month. He aims to grow his SIP book to Rs. 1 crore in the next one month.
Here are some key ways IFAs used to increase their client base,
ü Advertising in a newspaper which enjoys good readership among your target customers.
ü Sharply defining target audience before conducting an IAP, and customizing the content of the IAP to connect better with the audience.
ü Conducting a road show or campaign in high footfall areas, draw attention of the people through hoardings and display.
ü Conducting seminar marketing in corporate houses or associations to reach out to larger audiences.
What ideas have helped you add to their client base? Do write to us, and let us know.