500 day war revived

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Oct 29, 2008 12:23 am

Originally posted by The Judge



This is some advice that I would give to someone starting out for their first 500 days as a producing advisor. A new broker with no substantial contacts/connections; someone who is willing to put in the sweat equity to survive and eventual prosper. After all, survival is the key as any successful veteran broker will tell you. Some of these may appear somewhat controversal; it is simply my experience/view and what I would do. In no particular order:



- Speak to 25,000 people via telephone; business owners and corporate directories only. It will amount to 2500 leads and 250 new accounts (households). Average account should be 100k; that's 25 million @ 1% paying you 250k gross on an annual basis.



- Make an effort to open all accounts over the phone; discourage appointments (we'll revisit this theory later on) unless it is high 6 figures or a million dollar prospect. Takes too much time. With the travel, meeting time, etc; we are solely focusing on the numbers here. Eventually you'll meet with them AFTER they become clients.



- Purchase a laptop for your contact management; have this in front of you at all times and place the firm workstation BEHIND you. Too distracting and you will rarely need it anyway in the first two years.



- Have all of the compliance approved marketing material as well as new account/ACAT documents available via email to send to prospects. Make every effort to utilize this at all times to speed up the process.



- On a monthly basis, send a blast email as well as a paper-based copy of some idea/market related info to all of your prospects. This is to be done on Saturday unless you can afford to hire someone to do it for you.



- If there is no "sale" on the first follow up call, make every effort to (politely) try and disqualify them. This is done to prevent clogging up the pipeline with nice people who are (in reality) not interest or not qualified. Or both.



- Don't consider spending any of your time on seminars, networking, wholesalers. Too much time/effort with unpredictable results. These activities can be initiated after you've survived and have built a base to build on.



- Make 3 cold calls for every follow up call during the day. It insures you are always talking to new people and not getting comfortable/lazy speaking only with existing prospects who will likely treat you in a kinder manner.



- Don't solicit or accept friend or family accounts. In addition, politely let them know that you are not to be called at work before 6 pm unless there is an emergency. No time for idle chit/chat and friendly calls often turn into long conversations. Keep up contact evenings/weekends.



- Plan the next day (in particular you call list) before you leave. 30 minutes after arriving to work you should be on the phone.



- Do not take active traders for clients, especially fee-based traders. Takes too much time and interferes with prospecting.



- Ask every prospect if it would be ok to call them on Saturdays; great day to call/reach people in a relaxed state; this is the only time I would call home #'s and only after they've given you permission.



- Use regular mail and email to keep your name in front of prospects on a regular basis. However, ALL outgoing phone calls should be dedicated to asking for orders.



- During the week, gather all research/articles/etc and put it in a pile; this is to be read on Sunday when you have time, and not interfering with prospecting efforts.



- Keep diligent notes on conversations with prospects; quickly peruse them before following up and mention previous things they've said. Sets you apart and will impress any prospect.



- Promote referrals immediately after the first sale is made. Something along the lines of sending them an additional brochure for someone they may know. Do not ask for specific names, simply let them know you would appreciate any introductions.



- Be the first to arrive and generally the last to leave. Do not socialize with fellow brokers as they want you to fail. Bust your tail and impress them via your work ethic and results. You are the only one who decides your paycheck.



- Find a city that you would like to visit often, preferably on the opposite coast (different time zone). Spend 1-2 hours calling this area every day. If you are on the East Coast and calling SF, this can be done in the evening (your time) while it's still afternoon out there. Conversely, West Coast people can be calling east at 6 am.



- Keep a daily scorecard and be diligent tracking activity/results. Set ambitious (yet reasonable) goals and exceed them. Time management is crucial; waste one hour a day and you have just wasted 25 working days a year. Yeah, it's that much.



- Assume everyone has caller ID and always leave messages for existing prospects; no messages on cold calls. Leave one message a week for a prospect. And when you get a new prospect, ask them what time and what # they prefer to be contacted.



- Work for today but keep tomorrow in mind. Try and build a business that is primarily fee-based/recurring revenue. It's a great feeling to come into year 3 with 250k already "done" and to see dividends for years to come as a result of the 500 day war.



So there's a start and I'll try and add more as I think of them. In addition, I'll post some ideas on what a broker in their 3rd year should start considering doing to grow the business.

Oct 29, 2008 12:24 am

This all makes sense.. But I can't seem to get over the fact of getting 25,000 names of SBOs or Corporate Directories.... Where in the world do you get that many names from

Oct 29, 2008 5:01 pm

What are you're suggestions for a year 3 advisor?

Oct 30, 2008 7:44 pm

Getting names?

 
I learned about lists production from Bill Good www.billgood.com
 
He has a book, published 20 years ago, that has lots of great info on how to get names. The rules for getting names hasn't changed. The book  Prospecting Your Way To Sales Success. he has a recently published book as well. But the old one has the info you need.
 
Getting names is a job.
 
Here are some ideas:
 
Go to the ref section of your local library and find:
 
A local industrial directory with the names and phone numbers of business owners
 D&B business directory
reverse street directory - cruise all the neiborhoods in town Clue- the best leads are A houses in C neighborhoods.
 
Dorlands Medical directory
Directory of associations- use to find clubs and associations, many have lists for sale
 
Moving on to the local country club - many times a membership directory can be found laying around a locker room. Maybe near a phone.
 
Ask your friends and clients for lists
 
Stand in the parking lot of the largest employer in town holding a C note. Pay for a directory. One ML office in jersey held a contest - who could deliver the most corporate directories in a lunch hour. It cost some money, but the office got a directory to almost every major corporation in the Princeton area. Hello Mr. Corp employee, tell me, are you going to be retiring in the next five years?
 
Get a list of service clubs in your area and offer to be a guest speaker. A membership list is your payment.
 
Get a list of Chamber of Commerce in your state and start joining. Usually membership includes a list of members. Among the cheapest lists you will ever buy.
 
AOPA will send you a list of Airplane owners for a price.
 
OK, enough- you get the point- get off your butt, get creative if need be, don't be afraid to grow a pair if you have to and get those names.
 
The general rule is- the harder the name is to get, the better the lead will be. They, most likely, just haven't gotten their fair share of calls.
 
If all else fails or to take the lazy way out- list broker
 
All lists must have these traits:
 
name, phone number, address
 
 
 
Dec 30, 2008 5:03 pm

[quote=chief123]Originally posted by The Judge


- On a monthly basis, send a blast email as well as a paper-based copy of some idea/market related info to all of your prospects. This is to be done on Saturday unless you can afford to hire someone to do it for you.


- Use regular mail and email to keep your name in front of prospects on a regular basis. However, ALL outgoing phone calls should be dedicated to asking for orders. 
 
QUOTE]

 
I have been following the 500 day war as a way to rejuventate my business and pick up some great prospects and clients in this down market.
 
But I struggle with this part of the guidlines... Mailing an idea or market related info.. Any ideas ( I hate the idea of sending out a mutual fund pitch sheet for "name your fund of the year" but what other options are there?)
 
 
Dec 30, 2008 9:29 pm
Squash1:

[quote=chief123]Originally posted by The Judge


- On a monthly basis, send a blast email as well as a paper-based copy of some idea/market related info to all of your prospects. This is to be done on Saturday unless you can afford to hire someone to do it for you.


- Use regular mail and email to keep your name in front of prospects on a regular basis. However, ALL outgoing phone calls should be dedicated to asking for orders. 
 
QUOTE]

 
I have been following the 500 day war as a way to rejuventate my business and pick up some great prospects and clients in this down market.
 
But I struggle with this part of the guidlines... Mailing an idea or market related info.. Any ideas ( I hate the idea of sending out a mutual fund pitch sheet for "name your fund of the year" but what other options are there?)
 
 



If your idea is a good one, you should pick up the phone. If it's not good, don't call or mail.

Mar 7, 2010 10:03 am

- Find a city that you would like to visit often, preferably on the opposite coast (different time zone). Spend 1-2 hours calling this area every day. If you are on the East Coast and calling SF, this can be done in the evening (your time) while it's still afternoon out there. Conversely, West Coast people can be calling east at 6 am.

Has anyone done this and had any success? Is it legal to prospect CA via cold call?

Mar 8, 2010 10:59 am

No but I am starting next week after I pass my tests. I am taking the time now to study for my tests and build my lists(so I don't have to buy and it won't be during prospecting time)... Going to the library after lunch to check up on the lists bond guy was talking about..
 
I am pretty sure you can call any state as long as you are registered in that state.

Mar 8, 2010 11:09 am

Couldn't find "Dorland's Medical Directory", except some obscure reference about 2006 and southeastern pennsylvania.