When was the last time you thought about your health? How about your family? Your finances? Your spiritual life? My guess is you’ve thought about all of this in some way, shape or form within the past 24 hours. These questions pertain to four key psychographic motivators impacting affluent decision making: personal health, financial health, family health and spiritual health.
There may be some cynics who think, “this goes beyond what I’ve signed up for as a financial advisor,” and they’re probably right. But you should also think along the lines that, “providing value around these four key psychographic motivators will make me indispensable to my top clients.”
By the way, none of this should be breaking news as our research has long said that the affluent want their financial advisor to oversee the “multi-dimensional aspects of their family’s financial affairs.” So now the question becomes, “Where do I start?”
Considering that you’ve been hired for your investment acumen, financial planning, insurance protection or some combination—you’re most likely already adding value to your affluent client’s financial health. The key is to use financial planning as the platform upon which you start adding value in the other key psychographic motivators.
Family health is a broad area that involves immediate and extended family members, marital problems, wayward children, pets and the list goes on. Which is why this requires you, as their financial advisor, to be aware of all the goings-on within the family unit, to be a sounding board and to be able to be of some form of assistance. Assistance can take many forms: direct involvement, sourcing the appropriate expert or simply being an empathetic confidant.
Personal health is an area a lot of people don’t like to discuss, and therefore it’s easy for financial advisors to overlook until a major medical issue surfaces. We have found a natural segue into this topic is the cost of healthcare, prescription drugs, etc. These types of conversations will often tip you off to the medical issues your client is facing.
Your value can take many forms: advice from your personal experience, helping improve their insurance coverage and even sending information you’ve gleaned online. Two good sources are WebMD and nutritionfacts.org (I get daily advice from both).
Spiritual health might appear off the advice platform for a financial advisor, but approached from the perspective of being “informed”—there are numerous ways to add value. When I say “informed” I’m referring to knowing their religious beliefs, their involvement in their place of worship and the charities they support.
If you’re of the same faith and attend the same house of worship—great. But this doesn’t have to be the case, all that is required is knowledge of your client’s beliefs, the charities they support and their personal involvement. The affluent run the gamut from those who are extremely devoted, to those who might be more agnostic, to atheists. It’s not a requirement to mirror their spirituality in order to add value. We’ve seen advisors help a devoted client organize fundraisers to raise money for an addition to their place of worship, others assisted in helping with scholarship funds for schools and camps, while still others have added value by supporting a client’s charities.
I recognize this might seem like a bit much, but the secret is to emotionally connect with each of your top clients. By doing so, and keeping these psychographic motivators top of mind, you’ll find yourself very naturally adding value—and you’re now indispensable.
Matt Oechsli is author of How to Build a 21st Century Financial Practice: Attracting, Servicing, and Retaining Affluent Clients. www.oechsli.com