Behavioral Marketing

The Influence of Natural Behavior on Client Relationships

This post is part 1 of our 8 part series on increasing Client Engagement from our Client Relationship Performance in the New Behavioral Economy White Paper. The insights will demonstrate in practical terms how to apply predictive behavioral insights to tailor client communication and provide unique client experiences.

Behavioral Insight 1: The Influence of Natural Behavior on Client Relationships

Chris Coddington tells the story of a first meeting with a man named Frank Butler. At the start of this first meeting Frank took over the agenda and wanted to get straight down to business to address the goals he had for the rest of his life and the way in which he wanted his money to be looked after. Frank made it clear that he wanted Chris to be direct and provide him with options and recommendations. He did not need to have detailed explanations up-front, although he expected Chris to be ready if he did ask for research. Further, Frank pointed out that his comprehension style was more to learn by discussion in a one-on-one interactive setting. Also, Frank said that he liked 30-minute meetings and that he did not see financial planning as a social experience. What is motivating Franks communication style?

Great relationships, know your client, business transformation, personal development

We often assume that the way a person behaves and communicates is shaped by the energy of money or business conditioning. However, it goes much deeper than this. The correct starting point to understanding our clients relationship approach is to discover their natural DNA Behavior, the core of who they are. This is the behavior that was hard wired into them by the age of 3 based on their genetic DNA and early life experiences. The natural behavior often sits deep below the surface, and the client and advisor can be easily blind to it.

Behavioral Insight – Natural Behavior is Predictable
Natural DNA Behavior predicts how people wish to be communicated with, the type of service experience they desire and generally how they will respond to life and financial events. This behavior will then be the force driving advisory relationships and many of the clients life and financial decisions, particularly when under pressure.

When clients are under pressure they will revert to their natural DNA Behavior, as it is the
go to or flip back behavior. Pressure is often caused by money, relationships and events, which drive emotions. What we have learned is that a persons natural DNA Behavior drives how he or she uniquely wishes to be communicated with and the type of service experience that person will desire. Also, it will generally drive how life and financial decisions are made. A key point is that the natural DNA Behavior will remain inherently consistent throughout a persons life and therefore is highly predictive. Of course, people will communicate from time to time outside of their natural DNA Behavior because of current circumstances, life history, values and education. Therefore, it is also wise to know the influence of these life events on the way the clients want to be related to in specific situations and how their decision-making may be influenced.

What are your thoughts? For additional information on increasing engagement of others, visit our Communication DNA Website.


Financial Performance in the New Behavioral Economy White Paper

The winds of change are moving fast through the modern economy, and this includes the financial services industry. What we are seeing is the emergence of the New Behavioral Economy – where the client is king and behavioral finance is in. This means the approach to providing financial services will become client centered and will revolve around behavioral insights.

The Financial Performance in the New Behavioral Economy White Paper is a Behavioral Guide intended to serve as an introductory framework for advisors, so that they can improve the financial performance of their investor clients using validated financial behavior insights.

The Financial Performance in the New Behavioral Economy White Paper includes:

  • 10 practical demonstrations showing how advisors can apply financial behavior insights to help guide and communicate with their clients to more confidently make committed investment decisions.
  • Guidance on solutions for building the financial performance of clients including: Behavioral Profiling, building Behavioral Investment Policy Statements and Performance Reviews.
  • The Financial “Blind-Spots” Exercise for building initial self-awareness and reducing the negative impact of financial blind-spots on financial performance.

Click here to download the White Paper.

Using Communication DNA For Lead Generation

Do you ever find yourself thinking about how to generate leads from your lead generation activities?

Although most advisors generate the bulk of their new leads from client referral, they usually have other business development programs to enhance the growth rate of their business.? These lead generation activities range from the more traditional methods, such as seminars and mail drops to more interesting methods, like radio programs and speaking at public seminars.

For lead generation programs to be successful, you need to create a call to action to create leads for your business.? These typically include offering an investment or financial planning report or a chance to win a prize.

One of the biggest complaints and reasons that clients change advisors is poor client service.? Poor client service generally starts with a poor understanding of that particular clients communication preferences and the inability of that client to properly articulate his or her preferences.

By purchasing Communication DNA, you receive a unique link that can be put on your website, your e-mail signature, in brochures or handouts.? When a client or prospective client clicks on the link they are sent to a website to complete their assessment.? This process is very simple.? It takes less than five minutes to complete and upon completion, your client will receive an e-mail with their one-page report.? For a sample report, click here.? Simultaneously, you receive a copy of the report with, not only the report findings, but also all the contact information.

If you are doing a radio program, make the following offer.? Independent research about advisor/client relationships shows clearly that the biggest reason clients change advisors is poor communication and client service.? When was the last time that your advisor asked you about your communication preferences?? If you would like to complete a free assessment to help you articulate your communication preferences, click here.? The process will take you less than five minutes and you will receive your report immediately by e-mail.? This is a service that we offer to all our clients because we clearly understand the importance of developing client service programs based on our clients preferences.

Similar offers can be constructed for other forms of lead generation programs.

If you have not complete your Communication DNA assessment, we welcome you to do so by clicking here.

By doing so, you will also get to experience our Communication DNA follow-up process to see how you can build a similar one for your business.

Behavioral Segmentation of Your Clients

Traditionally many advisors segment their clients based on tangible factors such as the type of service they will provide to clients (eg executives, family business, life planning etc) and assets under management minimums. There is business sense in this as it focuses the business to some degree. However, segmenting your clients based on their DNA Behavioral style will further increase your marketing and service delivery performance.

Behavioral segmentation will enable you to direct your communication and marketing to specific types of clients based on who they are. For instance, a Stability Need person needs to have communication which reflects safety and security. A Lifestyle Desire client needs to hear about how your solution will grow the fun side of life for them. When you segment your clients the emotional engagement with them will increase which leads to a longer term relationship with a greater share of the wallet.

Recently I was helping one of our Wealth Mentors with his client segmentation. He had all of his clients complete their Communication DNA profile. This enabled us to divide the client base into 4 quadrants of DNA style. Interestingly, because he is a Lifestyle Desire advisor this was the largest segment category. The Wealth Mentor knows having clients of a similar style to his makes relating to them easier.

However, the other key part about segmenting clients is addressing their values and life interests. The more that the clients values and life interests are similar to the Wealth Mentors the greater the chance of a sustained connection. The values are foundational as they will be at the core of every discussion and will be important when key decisions are being made. Having similar life interests eg sports or arts gives you something in common to relate to. In the case of our Wealth Mentor, he wanted clients who shared similar spiritual beliefs and also his interest in tennis. In his practice, other advisors wanted clients who were interested in environmental issues and football. What they found was that their relationships were much stronger with clients in these zones.

Once there are common values and interests, then whether you keep the relationship with the client will depend on natural DNA behavior. This gets back to segmentation based on behavioral style.

To learn more and to get started with implementing DNA Behavior Solutions to segment your clients, click here.


Do You Know Who Your Clients Are?

No matter the industry, providers of products and services are always saying something to the effect of: “You are blind as to who is going to walk in the front door for their first meeting with you. As you work with the client a bit you have a greater collection of knowledge but still not the whole picture. It can still take 10 years or more to really know who you are dealing with”. Do you truly know the life and financial motivations of your clients? Their deepest desires? Do you know their risk tolerance? Do you know what types of products and services they want?

The reality is that most providers of products and services know very little about their clients. For the first few hours from meeting the client research shows that less than 10% is known about the client and in the medium term less than 20%. How much better off would the client and the provider be if more was known earlier?

The question I have is: why don’t product and service providers seek to find out more about their clients? One reason is that it is hard and we do not have the time. So, the key is finding a way to quickly and non-invasively get the information you want and make the client feel understood. The process must be mutual.

Our “inside out” process for serving clients is below. Most providers start at step 3 – the product providing point. Whereas starting at step 1 is key – understanding the client’s life and financial motivations. Step 2 is to demonstrate empathy by communicating on the clients terms, and then step 3 is to match the DNA of the client to the right product. Finally, step 4 is to guide the client to make the right choices.

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If you want to get started on this process, please go to and take our complimentary Communication DNA profile. Then you can see how to bring this process into your business to get to know your clients at a deeper level much more quickly for a more productive outcome.