Listening More Will Bring Enhanced Client Engagement

How are you navigating the different behavioral styles and emotions of your clients? Are you sticking to the same script for every client?? Are you distracted by the need to meet KPIs and sell services? Are you really listening to your clients and managing their different behaviors when you interact with them?

Like everyone in business financial advisors are looking for their formula for how great success can be achieved ? what Malcolm Gladwell called the Tipping Point.

For advisors under pressure to perform, focusing on truly listening and engaging more deeply with prospects and clients may well not be the priority strategy because it is considered soft. However, in reality, performance will not occur until you know how to understand the needs of each client and then communicate with them on their terms. Achieving advisory success requires you to firstly become behaviorally smart.

In a recent article in IFA by Annick Donat titled Suspend Your Point of View she writes:
But have you ever considered the frame of mind from where you’re listening from? Id never really focused
on it before and quite frankly, there are times when Im just not in the right frame of mind to do any justice to
the person Im supposed to be listening to. Effective listening depends upon the attitude you’re in at the time.

Becoming a behaviorally smart advisor to engage clients is a process. It begins by knowing and understanding your own behavioral style and then being able to apply that insight into building genuine client relationships. Is this easy? The natural behavioral style of most sales oriented sales people is to direct discussions based on their agenda and not to listen. Therefore, listening needs to become a learned behavior which is heavily focused on.

Ultimately, if you want to engage clients more deeply, start by learning to empathetically listen to them. This involves moving beyond active listing to making the client feel that you have listened. Once you know how to actively listen then it requires adapting your communication and presenting customized solutions.

Carol Pocklington is a Human Behavior Solutions Analyst at DNA Behavior, assisting with the research and development of behavioral products. DNA Behavior helps grow behaviorally smart businesses and financial advisors worldwide to increase competitive advantage using the most reliable behavioral discovery and performance development systems on cutting-edge technology platforms. Solutions are delivered in the areas of client experience management, financial personality management and human capital management.

Visit the Financial DNA website to learn more about building client engagement in the financial planning process.

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Advisors Should Practice What They Preach To Engage Clients

How much do you know about your financial advisor? How well are they managing their own life plans? Could the phrase do as I say not as I do apply to the way they conduct their financial dealings with you?advisory practice, client engagement, practice management

Trust is the key to any relationship where one party seeks to obtain advice from another. I wonder how many of us would take critical medical advice from a doctor only to discover the doctor is overweight and a smoker. How many would hand their expensive car over to be serviced only to find the mechanic drives a broken down wreck in need of attention? Why then do we receive, act upon, and rely on advice provided by a financial advisor who applies none of their advice to their own lives.

How much more would we connect with an advisor if they were behaviorally smart and understood the power of showcasing their own approach to managing their finances. Open discussions with clients should include genuine sharing by the advisor even before asking questions of the client. It doesnt need to be a lengthy monologue, but it does need to be genuine.

John Napolitano ends his article 4 Ways Advisors Should Take Their Own Advice published in Financial Planning Magazine like this:

For advisors, the stakes otherwise are too high -- for themselves, their businesses and their clients.

Financial advisors and professionals need to understand the importance to their businesses and the power that exists in understanding how to “Know, Engage and Grow” their clients to provide customized lifelong financial planning experiences that enhance relationships, build a Quality Life and navigate all dimensions of financial personality risks and biases. And this can be greatly enhanced by advisors beginning the engagement process with their clients through demonstrating their own wealth planning achievements.

Carol Pocklington is a Human Behavior Solutions Analyst at DNA Behavior, assisting with the research and development of behavioral products. DNA Behavior helps grow behaviorally smart businesses and financial advisors worldwide to increase competitive advantage using the most reliable behavioral discovery and performance development systems on cutting-edge technology platforms. Solutions are delivered in the areas of client experience management, financial personality management and human capital management.

Visit the Financial DNA website to learn more about building client engagement in the financial planning process.

Are Your Communications to Advisors Hit or Miss?

In a single day there is so much vying for our attention: emails, voice mails, appointments, research, to-do lists.? As a solution provider, you are in constant competition with other firms not to pitch your product but merely for the chance to connect!Customized messages, sales communications

In a recent report by Boston based research and consulting firm, Practical Perspectives, the typical advisor receives 50-100 marketing and sales contacts each week!? I would imagine this same statistic holds true for the advisors clients.

The consequence is that a large portion of the messaging is given cursory attention or ignored, especially from firms that advisors are not currently engaged with.

Dont get overly discouraged. Advisors say that these contacts do influence their willingness to consider a provider.

Thats good news since firms are spending huge sums of money on outreach to build awareness, loyalty and sales with advisors.

One of the most telling aspects of the report is the advice advisors give firms on how to change to get them to pay more attention to communications.

1.?? ?Make them more concise
2.?? ?Tailor the message to the advisor and the client base they serve
3.?? ?Reduce the volume of contacts

Lets look at #2 and see how a behavioral approach could solve this problem.

Your current headline message: Managing Bonds in a Rising Rate Environment

Behaviorally smart revision:

  • Goal Setting Advisor: Five strategies to managing bond portfolios
  • Lifestyle Advisor: World-renowned portfolio manager shares bond insights
  • Stability Advisor: Create the best safety balance of bonds and stocks
  • Information Advisor: Increase income by 1% by managing bond risk

Get more hits than misses by targeting your marketing message to the behavioral communication style of your clients and advisors.

Further, if your advisors can learn to do the same they will appeal to the different styles of their diverse client base with the result of higher understanding and more buy-in. This will lead to higher client, acquisition and retention.

Visit the Financial DNA website to learn more about building engagement and connection and bridge the relationship gap.

Customer Engagement Planning with your Head in the Cloud

As the year ends and plans are in place for 2013 many companies will have focused heavily on where social media fits in their business and more importantly produced endless statistics to support (or not) reasons to invest in more social media stuff. The CMOs will be all for it; the CFO will only be interested in ROI; the CTOs will have their exclusive opinions.

Customer Engagement

I wonder where the strategic conversations will turn to How can we attract and/or retain customers?

By now the majority of companies will have some elements of a social media some of which will be integrated with their CRM. But what actually needs to shift significantly to effectively engage customers for the long term lies not in the whizziness of the latest social media investment but more importantly in getting to know your customers communication style and matching service, advisors, product to them.

Social media is changing customer loyalty; suddenly customers have access to faster, wider rages of choices than ever before. Having the ability to track customers behaviors and their preferred communication style could be the difference between keeping and losing a customer.

Click here to see how you can get ahead of the game.

Social Networking ? the new Cornerstone of Business in the 21st Century and beyond

Social Networking is here to stay; its becoming the cornerstone of the way we do business in the 21st Century and beyond.

At the top of every business strategic planning meeting should be the following:

Item 1 ? how can we increase revenue by leveraging social networking across the business (not just in the marketing department)?

Consider the following thoughts:

    • Do you see social media as a useful tool in marketing but not much more beyond that?
    • Is your social networking strategy highly targeted?
    • Are the interactions you have with customers delivering sustained outcomes?
    • How successful to your business bottom line are the two-way conversations you are currently having through social channels?

Press Releases and Brochures

  • How much more successful would your marketing strategies be if they were more effectively targeted to your audience and ultimately made better use of your marketing and communication $.
  • Does your social networking empower your staff to be able to engage more effectively with each other and with customers?
  • How is social networking being utilized in your business? Do you use it to break down internal departmental silos?
  • What tools have you invested into for your frontline staff?
  • How would business grow by matching staff to customers?

The addition of Communication DNA to your social media will unlock your business for revenue growth by navigating the human differences in your business and discovering and aligning the different communication styles, behaviors and solution preferences of your diverse customers and employees.

Using Communication DNA enables your business to have customized and focused conversations with millions of people. Businesses will be able to discover the emotional decision-making patterns of customers and employees to allow for the real time customization of sales, marketing and customer service activities using cutting-edge technology platforms.

Communication DNA can make 1 to 1 customer conversations count by ensuring no part of the exchange is lost. Communication DNA matches advisors to clients, sales staff to customers, product and services to the individual providing an engaging process at all levels of interaction to acquire and retain loyal relationships.

Random messaging and exchanges can make or break relationships and business opportunities instantaneously. Businesses that implement the Communication DNA app can achieve business performance gains of 40% in personal productivity for sales and service people, 70% in team productivity and a 23% increase in revenue.

Communication DNA gives you laser focused insight into how to conduct conversations between customers and employees. It puts influence into the hands of staff enabling them to engage more effectively with each other and with customers.

Communication DNA empowers employees in your sale, service and development teams to join forces to build effective customer relationships and experiences.

Communication DNA enables you to build deeper and more effective relationships by engaging with customers at the most critical point of reference ? the first time they contact you.

Communication DNA delivers to businesses the ability to segment their customer base and their staff in a way that fundamentally changes the way you do business.

To learn more, please visit the Communication DNA website.

The DNA Behavior of Santa Claus

Have you ever wondered why Santa Claus is so reliable? He turns up on time at the homes of children all over the worldDNA Behavior, Communication DNA, Santa Claus, Christmas every Christmas Eve. Further, he is very good at meeting the present wishes of the children. This is hardly the behavior of someone who is spontaneous. Santa is totally the opposite. The answer rests in his “DNA Behavior”!!.

This week Santa Claus dropped into our website and completed his DNA profile. Obviously, he thought a bit of summer time personal reflection was in order. Even Santa can tune up his performance by learning about himself.

Based on his completed profile, Santa’s Primary DNA Behavioral style is “Information Need” – refer to his DNA Profile report here.? This means Santa is very organized, structured and pays attention to the details. Importantly, he will research every child’s wishes.

Interestingly, Santa is quite low on the “Lifestyle” Factor. He does not need people interaction for most of the year. His outing for the year is at Christmas and the rest of the year he is preparing and working.

This profile for Santa really shows how predictable a person’s DNA Behaviors are. I am sure Santa will be on time this Christmas well and every year to come.

What is your DNA Profile?? Click here to find out.

To learn more about the DNA Behavior Profiles, click here.