Improve the Onboarding Process for Financial Advisors
As a financial advisor, an excellent onboarding experience is so much more than telling your prospective clients about yourself and your services. It is the beginning of an ongoing relationship between you and them, which means your onboarding process needs to convey confidence to your future clients!
However, many advisors may face a disconnect, which dramatically hurts their business. Unfortunately, 52% of financial advisors globally are worried about losing clients due to dropouts in their “poor onboarding experience”. Let’s fix it!
First, why is it essential to improve your prospect or client onboarding experience?A better onboarding experience can dramatically increase your success rate in converting prospects into clients. Onboarding is part of the overall client experience, which is why 73% of people say customer experience is one of the most important factors your clients consider!
You want to WOW your prospects and have an onboarding process that shows them that you are the financial advisor for them. Let's help you create the best onboarding experience for your prospects and clients!
7 Easy Ways to Improve Your Client Onboarding Process
1. Keep the information in one place
Financial advisors are busy, which is why being organized is crucial. The organization for onboarding begins with keeping the prospects information inside of a CRM. CRM stands for customer relationship management, and CRM technology allows you to keep track of names, email addresses, and much more! Keeping information of prospective clients organized will help keep you on track.
2. Share expectations with prospects
The worst thing you can do for prospects is not to share the right expectations from the start. The moment the prospect feels overwhelmed or confused, your job just gets a lot harder. Set proper expectations about meeting cadence and meeting details.
Managing expectations is all about the perception that you're giving prospects. Do you want them to perceive you as organized or messy? How they feel now during their onboarding process will fill them with confidence or not, and that's up to you!
3. Send an initial email
With a simple email, prepare your prospective client for what's to come and thank them for being interested in working with you. This is NOT an opportunity to sell yourself or your services. Onboarding takes careful consideration, which is why 52% of financial advisors globally are worried about losing clients due to dropouts in their “poor onboarding experience”.
Handwritten notes are even better than emails, and they will help you stand out if your prospect is meeting with multiple advisors at once.
4. Connect on social media
Your social media presence should help convey yourself as a thought leader and tell your prospects that you are relatable and with the times. Those without a strong social or online presence must fix that! (be prepared: more people are searching online for FAs)
Additionally, connecting with prospects can show that you are taking an additional step to know them both online and in person. Plus, you'll be able to find out specific details about your prospect that might've been forgotten, like job changes or other life events.
5. Pre-meeting questionnaire
This is an extremely important step in the onboarding process! You can gather a large amount of information about a prospect in a very efficient manner. This is highly customizable, and each advisor has their own process when it comes to pre-meeting questions. Additionally, it is important to have two kinds of pre-meeting questions… one for the first meeting you have with a prospect and another for the meeting you have when the prospect is ready to work with you
Ideas for questions during your first meeting with a prospect:
- What does money mean to you?
- Why is money important to you?
- What's important about money to you?
- What brought you in today?
- If we were meeting three years from today, what would have to happen for this relationship to be a success?
Potential questions when the prospect is ready to work with you:
- What is your job, and who is your current employer?
- What is your current income?
- What is your investment experience?
- What are your investment objectives and retirement goals?
- What has your experience been like with other financial professionals? What have you liked or disliked?
6. Add an agenda
Before every meeting, you should create and share a brief agenda and pre-meeting questions with the prospective client. This is partially tied to the above points about sharing expectations with prospects. Set the expectations. This will allow you to help the prospect feel more comfortable but also enable the prospect to add any items to the agenda.
7. Customize the onboarding documents
Make the onboarding documents stand out by adding some color to them, literally! Consider updating the design of your standard onboarding documents. Add your firm logos on each page in the upper left or right corners. And don't forget to add your contact information on the last page!