1. Understand her beliefs about money. What is more loaded with emotion than money? Whether the association is with power and control or security and safety, money means different things to every woman. For a woman with an abundance outlook on life, a relatively small amount of money may represent great wealth and potential. A financially self-made woman told me recently, “I love making money, but I am terrified I’ll lose it!” Create a conversation around all five areas of money — spending, saving, investing, borrowing and giving – to understand her values around money. Money may mean security or it may be the means to create a legacy. This is an important dialogue that signals you care about her.
2. Communicate to connect. One size does not fit all women. Develop a conversation around her life stage to understand her situation, needs and priorities. This study of her life will give you the insight to identify needs she probably doesn’t know she has and will drive specific planning solutions.
3. Your values are your brand. Work on clearly articulating your approach to financial planning, investing and other areas where you serve your clients. When deciding on a financial advisor, women care deeply about your approach and could care less about your brochures. Your competency is a given. Your core values are your brand. During this one on one dialogue, women are sizing you up against the criteria that mean most to them: how often do you communicate with your clients, by what means do you communicate with clients, what is your decision-making model, do you bring ideas to the table and are those ideas in her best interests or yours. Transparency is critical.
4. Fulfill the role of resource. Assume the role of resource and educator about all things financial. An increasing percentage of women report a growing or high level of financial acumen. Yet, women say that their confidence in making investment decisions lags behind their knowledge about investing and financial products. Most advisors find that the most delightful clients are the most knowledgeable clients.
5. Create community. Generate ongoing female client loyalty through community. Convert your passive referral strategy into a community for women. Align with other complimentary professionals to host regular networking events for your shared base of women clients.
By Bess Gallanis. This is part three of a three-part series about marketing financial advisory services to women that first appeared on Wealth Management Marketing in 2010.