Clients of a financial advisor or firm definitely appreciate seeing their portfolios grow, but there’s more to good service than that. The financial industry is competitive, so putting in the extra effort to keep your clients happy is of paramount importance.
Below, 10 members of Forbes Finance Council share tips to help financial advisors and firms add value to their services so that their clients are delighted every time.
1. Offer comprehensive services.
Clients find value in being able to access all the financial services they need—such as tax planning and preparation, retirement planning, insurance and estate planning—all in one place. Our company offers all these services because these practice areas are so highly interwoven in one’s financial life that offering comprehensive advice and strategies adds precision to planning and saves clients significant time and effort in implementation. - Megan Lezar, QuadCap Wealth Management
2. Embrace full transparency.
Transparency is a key component. A client usually knows when things are not developing as positively as hoped. Whether or not they stay with you depends on how you communicate with them. They’re more likely to stay if you are honest with them, you provide clear explanations and your prognosis is sound. - Christoph Lymbersky, CoinIX Capital
3. Keep it simple and direct.
We like to ensure every interaction that our clients have with us is simple, straightforward and honest. Expectation-setting, easygoing meetings and pleasant interactions are what our clients know to expect from us, and I think it motivates them to continue using our services. - Julio Gonzalez, Engineered Tax Services Inc.
4. Leverage proactive communication.
Proactive communication is critical to excellent service, as these relationships are built on trust. This is especially important now when traditional face-to-face meetings are not possible but clients still need to know they are top-of-mind. These close client relationships help advisors stay abreast of important changes that can have a direct impact on clients’ portfolios. - Sonya Thadhani Mughal, Bailard, Inc.
5. Refer out whenever necessary.
My clients sometimes require financial services that go beyond my scope of expertise. Whenever this comes up, I refer them to trusted advisors in my network who specialize in estate planning, tax planning, insurance planning and so forth. This way, I know that each aspect of their financial future is being taken care of by those most qualified to handle it. - Tyler Gallagher, Regal Assets
6. Offer out-of-the-box solutions.
In the current low-interest (and in some jurisdictions, even negative-interest) environment, clients seek out-of-the-box advice when it comes to investing. Nontraditional asset classes and innovative ways to deploy capital are requested by sophisticated UHNWI investors, and their advisors need to be able to identify and successfully develop opportunities even in the most challenging of times. - Lucia Waldner, CC Trust Group AG
7. Focus on increasing net worth.
We believe in focusing on net worth. By offering advice on many different levels, we can help increase overall net worth, not just the portfolio. For example, we work with a client’s tax advisors to help with tax planning. We look at restructuring debt and insurance to increase their overall net worth—because the telltale sign of financial health is the growth of net worth year after year. - Justin Goodbread, Heritage Investors
8. Help them with tax planning.
After seeing thousands of feedback forms from clients, the one area that clients find super helpful is tax planning. Reducing an investment tax bill by thousands of dollars per year is a sure way to delight a client! - Andres Garcia-Amaya, Zoe Financial
9. Keep their long-term goals in mind.
Never sell a client a product or service you wouldn’t sell to your own friend or family member. Keep their long-term goals in mind, as well as whether they’ll be immediately satisfied. Remember that it’s not just about immediate gratification, but long-term success. - David Haass, Elite Insurance Partners, LLC
10. Have them actively participate in the planning process.
Clients need to have the feeling of self-satisfaction from their participation—everyone likes to be a part of the winning team and score the most important goal. It is the psychological factor of belonging to success. We try to engage the client as much as possible in the process of portfolio allocation and show them the results in a simple, user-friendly way. - Azamat Sultanov, Fortu Wealth