You might have been in the financial advisory business for a while, but you still fall short of finding prospects. Perhaps you are reaching out to the wrong target audience, or you are most likely not reaching out to them in an impactful manner. That’s why we bring 7 productive cold calling tips for you that can help in getting more clients.
Does Cold Calling Still Work?
Contrary to what many may believe, this strategy isn’t going obsolete anytime soon. It is one of the oldest forms of marketing techniques and yet one of the most effective ways to connect to your audience, and that’s often been proved by many studies and surveys.
Following are 8 tips for financial advisors that ensure cold calling brings a better conversion rate of prospects turning to clients.
Google defines a cold call as follows:
“to make an unsolicited visit or phone call to (someone), in an attempt to sell goods or services.”
In fact, in most places you will find a similar definition, however, a more accurate definition would state “attempts to create a contact in order to sell goods or services in the future.”
The use of the word “attempt” shows that the goal shouldn’t be to ensure you have a client at the end of that first call. Rather it is to build a rapport and create opportunities for further contact which may result in building a better business relationship with your prospects, converting them to lead, and then to clients.
Rather than having a “make a sale attitude,” have smaller goals instead. Perhaps convince one prospect to attend a seminar, workshop, or even arrange a meeting.
Every cold-calling-related article or blog for financial advisors will tell you to have a strong introduction. What they may have skipped over is the part that comes before the actual call: research.
Better communication can only be made if you know your prospect well. After all, they will be entrusting you to guide them with handling their finances.
Listen down some important questions to ask the clients so you can know them, their habits, interests, and needs better. Better yet, send them a Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram invite to connect to them on social media. Browse their profile or check out their posts to learn more about them.
Yes, you still need to have a strong introduction. You will find that even amongst the experts there is a discrepancy on how to do that.
If you have been starting your calls with “Hi, is it John I’m speaking to? How are you, sir?” Dispense with that fake-pretending-to-care intro. Your intent is to sound considerate but in actuality, it will only confuse your lead and you will end up sounding like a typical salesperson.
Once they have deduced that they don’t know you, their immediate next thought would be “Oh! this must be a cold call.” That initial attempt you made to sound personal will actually result in the listener thinking that you don’t actually care… but are here to sell.
It would serve you better to start off with something like, “Hi, we haven’t spoken before but my name is …. And I am from… .” Introduce yourself immediately as a financial advisor and mention if you are associated with any firm or company.
Once you have introduced yourself briefly, ask if they have a minute to spare and that you didn’t catch them at a bad time. You can’t do much if you get a “No” however if it is anything otherwise, you may go on to say something like, “Thank you for taking my call. I’ll try to make it so that I don’t take too much of your time…”
This goes to show you value their time. You are also indicating that you will not keep them from their commitments and intend to keep it brief.
Make sure to pause allowing your lead to respond.
Nothing annoys a person more than getting that cold call on a Monday morning that starts of with “Hi Sarah! How are you? I was wondering if you have considered getting some professional assistance in planning your retirement…”
Despite this being the worst sales pitch for your services, there is another point to note. Don’t call at a bad time, especially Monday mornings. Don’t call during lunch hours and definitely don’t call during dinner timings.
Statistics from Baylor University indicate that the most ideal time to call is between 10 am to 2 pm and the least effective is after 5 pm.
No matter how many years of experience you have gathered under your belt as a financial advisor, it always serves well to have a script. It will allow you to reach more prospects fast, without revising the lines for every new call.
Preparing in advance will also make your call more focused and driven towards your goal. Plus it will give you a chance to rehearse. By writing a script, you can give special care to what persuasive keywords and techniques you plan to use.
Practicing well enough will also keep you from getting distracted or confused during the call, especially when you have strong objection rebuttals prepared ahead of time.
However, it is okay to be spontaneous at times. You don’t want to sound like a robot regurgitating a well-memorized sales pitch.
50% of all sales happen after the 5th contact, but most reps give up after just 2 (InsideSales).
So if you have been giving up easily, then you should stop it already. Always aim to end your call with a goal or agreement on the next step with that prospect and if they still seem disinterested or too busy to take your call, try to schedule them for a call on some other day.
Before you decide to give up on cold calling, know that the founder and CEO of Spanx Sara Blakely (Time magazine’s 100 most influential people in the world 2012) once said,
“My training of cold-calling and everyone under the sun telling me no, and my keeping going, was a huge part of the first two years of Spanx.”
So, there is nothing to be afraid of cold calling. Make up your mind, follow the above tips, be yourself and start cold calling.