Prospecting can be an arduous, hit-or-miss task, with time-consuming campaigns often resulting in just a few bites — some might even compare the difficulty with panning for gold. Increase your odds of success and make your efforts more productive by avoiding these missteps.
Being a Generalist (Exclusively)
Consider specializing in a particular niche with unique organizational, participant or plan sponsor needs such as medical practices, which may have an outsized number of highly compensated employees and benefit from safe harbor plan expertise — or financial wellness programming with a wealth management focus for high net worth individuals. Or your niche might be tech companies filled with younger employees struggling with student debt, or even professional sports organizations whose plans might have different needs in light of earlier retirement ages for professional athletes. You can still cast a wide net, but having a specialty can give you a competitive advantage with a specific subset of prospects.
Sticking to Single-channel Outreach
Tried and trusted methods such as cold calling have served advisors well historically. But times have changed and a phone-only strategy may be holding you back. Omnichannel marketing enables you to connect with prospects on whatever platform they happen to use. So, if you’re not sure whether a potential client spends more time on YouTube or LinkedIn, leverage both for expanded reach. Use social media channels alongside email and phone calls. But never carpet-bomb prospects from every direction. Always customize your pitch and craft messaging thoughtfully. According to RAIN Group Center for Sales Research’s “Top Performance in Sales Prospecting” report, it takes eight touches to get an initial meeting with a new prospect. The key to generating conversions in fewer touches, RAIN says, is to use tailored, value-focused messaging.
Only Going After Big Fish
Everyone wants to reel in that next big client, but going big isn’t always the best bet. You’ll have to out-maneuver a lot of other players for their business. Why not narrow the field and target small- to medium-sized prospects with bigger-than-average growth potential? These often-overlooked prospects can present both less competition and higher potential payoff over the long term.
Ignoring Good Old-fashioned Networking
Those who overlook the many networking possibilities all around them do so at their own peril. There’s a lot to be said for everyday interactions — and the value they can have for prospecting efforts. Starting up conversations at your local bank, doctor’s office or favorite eatery all have the potential to point to qualified opportunities. Don’t dismiss the power of ordinary, everyday connections as a way of generating viable sales leads.
Failing to Add Value
Of course, not providing great service or showing your commitment to clients is always a big mistake. After all, simple word of mouth can also be a powerful prospecting tool, and how you treat your current clients can determine how often you’re recommended to others. PlanFees can help set you apart from the competition, and it shows clients you’re looking out for them. Plans with high fees can find themselves in fiduciary jeopardy — you can add value to sponsors straight out of the gate with a complimentary fee benchmark. PlanFees’ robust platform lets you benchmark investment, recordkeeping, administrative and advisory fees in just two minutes and customize your report to plans with similar assets and numbers of participants. Use it to show existing clients your value or gain a competitive advantage with prospects.
Mining for Gold
Prospecting the right way is more than just good sense — the value of avoiding these mistakes and adopting winning practices can be worth its weight in gold. With PlanFees on your side, you can increase the odds of striking it big on your next campaign. Benchmark better — and prospect better — with PlanFees.