Landing Your Dream Client Is Just the Beginning
Today's post continues our case study series, showcasing the many creative solutions you can take when helping clients with complex planning issues. Here, we’ll explore the possible business opportunities that can result from landing your dream client.
We introduced your new “A” clients, Janice and Ed Thompson, in our previous post. The couple has an estimated net worth of $15 million, and they were referred to you by a mutual acquaintance, the Browns. Let’s start by taking a closer look at what you can do when you get a high-value referral to your practice.
Show appreciation. The Browns have such a positive impression of you and your practice that they were willing to refer someone to you—an ideal situation! So, how will you thank them? You might send chocolates or a small gift, take them out to dinner with the Thompsons, or contribute to a charity that you know the Browns care about. If you don’t have a process for showing your appreciation for referrals, consider establishing one so that it always happens.
Reinforce your value. You’ll also want to let the Browns know that you’re helping the Thompsons. This acknowledgment doesn’t mean breaking confidentiality, but it’s a good idea to reinforce both your value and the fact that the Thompsons are a good fit for your practice. Say something simple like, “I want you to know how much I enjoyed meeting Janice and Ed. I do a lot of work with business owners and families like the Thompsons, and my expertise will help solve some problems they’ve been worried about.” The Browns will feel great about giving you the referral, which could lead to additional referrals down the road.
Get the details. Learn all you can about the circumstances that led to the referral. How do the Browns know the Thompsons? Are they members of the same country club, neighbors, graduates of the same school, or colleagues from a previous employer? Be sure to ask how your name came up in conversation. The specifics might help you better understand when and how you became top of mind so that you can repeat the process.
Now, let’s turn back to Ed and Janice Thompson, your new $15 million client. What opportunities do you have to expand the relationship exponentially? Here are just a few follow-up activities you may want to consider:
- Get to know Ed Thompson’s brother, Bill. Ed and Bill are brothers with a great working relationship in their family business, Thompson Electric. Since some of the solutions you’re working on affect the business, you’ve probably met Bill at some point. More than likely, Ed has mentioned your name or the plan you’re putting in place in a positive light. What could be more natural than inviting both Ed and Bill to lunch? “I’ve really enjoyed working with you two! Let me take you both out to lunch, as a thank-you for being so accessible when I’ve had questions. What’s your favorite place to go?” While you’re at the lunch, you can mention a few special considerations that could affect Bill—taxes, inheritance, future medical needs—and if Bill seems interested, suggest you sit down another time to discuss them.
- Look at Thompson Electric as a whole. Do the brothers have a good 401(k) plan in place for their employees? You can bring it up as a discussion topic and offer to do a complimentary 401(k) review. “Ed, a great 401(k) can help with both attracting and retaining talent. Would you like me to give you a second opinion on how your current plan is working?” Your expertise can help Ed and Bill in a number of ways, from setting up a plan (if needed), to serving as an investment consultant, to sitting down with key employees for financial planning.