When you are growing your business, it may feel like following leads and prospecting potential clients is all you do. You work hard to build relationships, share the value of your services, and then celebrate when you gain a new client. But what then? How do you set the stage for a successful, fruitful long-term relationship with your new client?
You need an onboarding process that introduces and welcomes your new client to your firm and makes it simple for them to partner with you to manage their financial life. How you handle these fragile few weeks communicates to them how much they can trust you, how much you care about them as a person, and how much you respect their time and energy. Here are some ways to make the onboarding process seamless and stress-free by offering a top-notch, client-focused onboarding process.
1. Set Clear Service Expectations
Whether they are communicated or not, every partnership involves expectations that both parties bring to the table. And since everyone has different definitions of what makes great service, not setting clear expectations could lead to a lot of disappointment or frustration.
Therefore, the key to a successful relationship is a clearly laid-out service standard that brings everyone together on the same page, reflecting the expectations of everyone involved. Consider creating a client service standards document that covers what the client can expect from you. Here are a few questions to get started:
- How often will you be in touch with the client?
- What information can they expect to receive from you? Regularly scheduled content? Personalized reports?
- Through what mediums can the client reach you?
- How quickly will you respond to clients’ phone calls or emails?
- Who on the team will be working with the client, and in what way?
- What is your investment philosophy, and how do you handle risk?
- What can the client expect when they meet with you?
Encourage your client to ask plenty of questions and start building a strong foundation of trust and transparency.
2. Build Trust Through Transparency
This probably won’t surprise anyone, but trust is the main reason clients choose one advisor over another. (1) Since trust is built over time, you can’t expect your new client to have complete faith in you from the start. You obviously conveyed your trustworthiness in the prospecting process or they wouldn’t have agreed to work with you, but you need to continue to build that trust through each step of the process going forward.
The best way to do this is by demonstrating a commitment to transparency. Don’t leave your client wondering if you’re holding something back or stretching the truth. If they have a question you are unsure about, be honest, then tell them you will find an answer and get back to them. Have an open dialogue about what you do, how you do it, and how much experience and knowledge you have. Share openly about your firm, introducing other team members and explaining what they do and who you can contact for different issues.
Simply put, you can’t overemphasize trust in the onboarding process. Make it easier for your clients to trust you by starting out on the right foot.
3. Make The Most Of Technology
Our whole life has integrated technology, from making appointments online to sharing calendars to paying bills. It really does seem like there is an app for everything. Because of that, clients expect their advisors to offer user-friendly technology to help them communicate, monitor their accounts, and streamline their financial life.
Adopting technology to simplify workflows and increase efficiency can facilitate your relationship and build trust. If your clients are busy professionals who travel, providing video conferencing technology increases convenience and lets the client know you are willing to be flexible to accommodate them. An online account portal allows clients to stay on top of their money without constantly contacting you. Providing robust resources on your website shows your clients that you are dedicated to providing education and improving the quality of their life. Digitizing documents cuts down on paperwork and allows clients to sign documents without the hassle of faxing or coming into the office.
Trust us, your clients will appreciate your intentional use of technology to make their lives easier.
4. Have A Robust Online Presence
These days, if a company doesn’t have an online presence with a consistent and easily recognizable brand, they can seem to lack credibility. Did you know that 81% of consumers research a product or company online before taking the next step? (2) Not only are your website and social media accounts a prime way to share your mission and personality so clients can determine if you are the right fit, but they are also a prime way to communicate with prospects and existing clients.
I don’t know about you, but if I have a question about something, I’d rather visit an FAQ page or read a company’s blog post instead of making an appointment or even a phone call. Offering free resources, relevant blog content, and sharing appropriate personal details, like community involvement and charitable causes you support, can help your prospect feel like they know you before they do business with you. Instead of a blind date, their first contact with you comes with solid background information.
Besides, one of the keys to marketing to prospects and retaining clients is to be where they are. It’s likely the majority of your niche is online and frequenting social media sites, so you should be there in a big way too. Don’t make your client work too hard to find you—be where they want you to be.
It’s Worth It
At Freedom Wealth Alliance, we believe in the power of expertly designed best practices, workflow, and process implementation for distinguishing your firm from the rest. We know you care deeply about your clients and the services you offer, so why not communicate that passion to your new clients by offering them an onboarding process that is second to none?
If it seems overwhelming, we can help. Not only do we provide state-of-the-art technology, on-site portfolio management, and an advisory meeting program that deepens your client relationships, but we support you in every aspect of your business, every step of the way. Learn more about our firm and its unique advantages by visiting www.explorefreedomwealthalliance.com. You can also email us at firstname.lastname@example.org or call Kurt Rozman at 262-798-7979.
About Freedom Wealth Alliance
Freedom Wealth Alliance is a Registered Investment Advisor providing a home and multiple affiliation options for financial advisors seeking business growth and/or succession planning, operational excellence, and turn-key placement. We created this firm to relieve your stress no matter the stage of your firm. We take the burden of running the business off your back, so you can spend your time doing what you do best and love the most. If that means spending more time with clients and prospects, you can. If that means spending more time with your family, just do it. Visit www.explorefreedomwealthalliance.com and sign up for a free account to access all the tools and resources we have developed to help you transition to true freedom and business ownership.
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