As we all know, the market environment we’re experiencing as a result of COVID-19 is unprecedented. Is it a black swan event? It depends on who you ask, but for now, I’ll quote Liz Ann Sanders, Chief Investment Strategist at Charles Schwab, because I think she put things into perspective simply and effectively:
“We really are in uncharted territory. We have a monster mash-up of the Great Depression in size, the crash of 1987 in speed, and 9-11 attack in terms of fear.”FT.com “Investors baffled by soaring stocks in ‘monster’ depression”
What is most important for advisors right now – more so than ever before – is proactively reassuring clients that you’ve planned for the unexpected.
While it’s easy to say: “Stick to the plan!” It’s much harder to ensure the message resonates with your clients.
These are not easy conversations. They are not easy in person. And they are certainly even more difficult over a Zoom meeting. It was only last fall when we surveyed more than 500 advisors about how they typically engage with clients. Our research shows that 87% rely on in-person meetings.
There are three questions to consider as you continue to advise clients virtually and have these conversations without the benefit of in-person interactions:
- How can you create meaningful connections when working remotely?
- How can you develop and share a consistent story with your clients?
- How can you personalize client communications efficiently?
How do wealth management firms and advisors solve these challenges?
Let’s take a look at three strategies that will enable advisors and client-facing teams to create meaningful connections with clients when they need you most.
Create compelling client experiences through resonant storytelling
According to Salesforce’s State of the Connected Customer report, 76% of clients expect firms to understand their needs and expectations. As we know, client expectations have become more demanding than ever before. Modern clients have grown to expect the personalized and engaging experiences they receive from big tech companies, like Amazon, Netflix, and Spotify.
Delivering this experience is a challenge for firms and financial advisors. Advisors spend valuable time trying to find, create, and tailor client and prospect materials. Time that is better spent on higher level priorities that drive company revenue.
To tell a compelling story, your advisors need content that has a purpose. Content that is relevant to each client interaction. Content that results in better conversations. Content that enables advisors to deeply engage their modern clients and prospects.
Tell a consistent story through each stage of the client journey
Another key element of the client experience is consistency. Clients expect to see – and hear – consistent messaging during every stage of their journey. A journey which starts before they ever even speak to someone from your firm. The messaging, the communication, everything needs to be consistent. That means from your homepage to your blog posts; from webinars to initial discovery calls; and from prospect to long-standing client.
The Seismic platform connects client-facing teams by surfacing the most relevant, up-to-date content aligned to the client’s journey and allows those teams to easily personalize client interactions. Marketing teams can create, manage, and distribute content at scale, across regions, business units, and independent partners, and access critical data and analytics to optimize their content strategy.
Enable financial advisors to create more personalized, engaging client experiences.
Eighty four percent of clients say personalization is key to winning their business, according to Salesforce. Delivering those personalized experiences at scale is the challenging part. But right now, when you’re conducting meetings over Zoom, it’s vitally important to ensure clients are getting the personalized attention they still expect.
For firms and advisors to effectively meet these expectations, you must find ways to streamline the preparation of client-facing materials and enable advisors to efficiently discover, personalize, and share content that has been tailored to their individual client.
Personalization comes in many different shapes and sizes. For example, it could be data driven; automatically populating client-facing content with information from your disparate systems, like CRM, financial planning, and investment reporting. It might be based on segmentation; you’re not going to show a $10 million client the same suite of services as you would show a $10 thousand client. Or, it could be based on a client’s age or life events, like buying a home, retiring, losing a loved one, getting divorced, and the list goes on.
Watch My Webinar On-Demand
On May 12th, I joined WealthManagement.com and Absolute Engagement for an interactive webinar about Creating Connection with Clients While Working From Home. The topics covered above are just a sneak peek. Tune in to the On-Demand webinar to discover additional strategies that leading wealth management firms are using to turn industry challenges into a competitive advantage. You’ll learn why 250+ financial services firms trust the Seismic platform to unite their marketing and client-facing teams to deliver the most compelling stories throughout the client journey.