Mistake 7: Failing to Sell the Value of Financial Planning

Financial advisors can sell their valueFinancial planning and investment management are not products that can be bought at the supermarket. They don’t help alleviate hunger. They don’t quench thirst. The real benefits are challenging to explain.

Yet financial advisors often fail to sell the value of financial planning and the benefits of working with them, either in what they say to prospective clients or in their marketing language.

This is the last article in my marketing mistakes series. Read the entire list here.

Learn to Sell your Value

Dealing with the compliance department has a great deal to do with how firms market themselves, plus getting “creative” with your marketing can have negative connotations and could land you in some trouble. Unfortunately I think this has lead to a complete aversion to marketing including not leveraging the areas of website development and inbound marketing tactics.

To avoid marketing micromanagement, I’ve had many clients decide to give up their series 7 license so that they can leverage marketing and success planning for their firms.

In growing your practice, have you received sales training to help you sell your services? Are you aware of the ways to communicate the wonderful benefits of having a financial plan and the ways custom investment management helps your ideal clients?

Most likely you have not worked on your sales skills as is typical of many financial firm founders. If so, this post is for you!


How do you sell the value of financial planning? Here are 5 ways:

5 ways to sell the value of financial planning

1. Sell an outcome over a service.

How are your clients better off with you as their advisor? What problems do you help alleviate? Can you explain how clients have benefited from working with you in terms of the outcome they have received? The outcomes you’re selling are fond memories that include peace of mind, time with family, vacation trips of a lifetime, and achievement of lifetime goals.

2. Be willing to walk away from clients who are not ideal.

Not everyone will be an ideal client for you. The finicky client who wants constant hand-holding will be problematic. The client who demands an investment philosophy that is one you do not believe in will clash with your values. Be willing to say “why” your approach is valuable.

3. Ask great questions and then listen.

Since clients only look for a new advisor when the last one didn’t work out, ask why they left. What changes are they looking for now? Is what they’re looking for in line with your outcomes?

4. Never compromise on price.

I’ve always said that financial planners don’t charge enough. People only value what they pay for and if you give services away for a lower price, the value will be compromised. Be willing to stand your ground on financial planning and investment management fees.

5. Realize that clients are buying a relationship with you.

Anyone can open a Vanguard account and call a service associate to receive cookie-cutter advice. The value you bring is in the relationship you build with clients. When holding client review meetings, you should allow clients to speak 80% of the time and when you do speak, speak about the true value of working with you.

Learning to speak your value has many benefits, least of all financial. Wealth Management and Investment Management are cornerstones of a successful financial life. Get your language down and speak about how you make clients’ lives better. “Sales” is not a dirty word. It’s key to your long-term success.


Here are the other mistakes in this series:

7 Financial Advisor Marketing Mistakes


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