Can I start this thing over again

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Oct 19, 2010 12:51 am

Couple of things I wish I knew when I started. Just throwing these out for the sake of conversation.

1. Specialize. Sell index annuities. Be the municipal bond expert. Only take on veterinarians, or retired women, or Iranian grocery store owners. I know an advsior who has 10 key clients -- all of them trophy wives buying insurance on their ancient husbands. .... Specializing means you can do the same thing over and over again; also means you can become an expert, also makes referrals easier because muni buyers know other muni buyers.

2. Have a strong opinion. 'You should never own stocks.' Or, 'Stocks have never been a better opportunity.' Whatever. It has to be something to believe and you will find clients who buy in. Read and make up your own mind about what is going on in the financial world.

3. Do not take on somebody unless they fit your good client model. Bad clients drain you.

4. Most people are idiots. You can tell pretty quickly which ones are idiots. Run from them.

5. It doesn't take 10 contacts to make a client. After two or three contacts, you will know.

6. For EJ newbies, doorknocking works, but you become a generalist, and that is bad. If you must doorknock, doorknock businesses. Even better, doorknock specific businesses. (See Rule No. 1).

7. Keep your investment recommendations limited. Use one fund family or a basket of five or six funds. Use a pool of 20 stocks that you can follow until you get more knowledgable and aren't prospecting all the time.. Find an insurance company with a good back office and stick with their annuity.

8. Put together a good questionaire and use it on every first appointment. Ask non-financial questions about family and goals and hobbies and family. Listen. They will tell you what they want.

9. Get a good assistant or train her up. Most important thing is someone who will work hard.

10. You are your own boss.