Generating investment leads can be a very difficult process, especially if beginning without a definite plan of action. This article will explore some basic strategies that can be effective lead generation strategies for brokers seeking to add clients while avoiding some of the older inefficient strategies.
Understanding Lead Generation
Understand the "wrong" method. Unless the company is providing the broker with leads, a new broker will inevitably find herself following the traditional lead generation strategies. This usually involves knocking on doors and making phone calls. The problem with this strategy is that it is terribly inefficient, involves a high degree of rejection and is only effective if the broker gets lucky enough to hit the right neighborhood at the right time of day. He must be fortunate enough to find a willing investor among the crowd. If the broker is lucky enough to get a phone number on the initial visit, he might find it even harder to locate the prospect over the phone. This method of lead generation is very limited in its effectiveness.
Determine the type of investor you are seeking. Create a definite plan of action. The first question that should be asked by the broker is what type of investor is being sought after. Investors come in all shapes and sizes, so to speak, in that investors have differing financial portfolios that vary according to income, investment experience, debt and the like. If the broker is looking only for high net worth investors, chances are that cold-calling or knocking on the front door simply will not work in most cases. If the broker is taking on clients with smaller portfolios, these more mundane strategies might just prove to be effective. So the first step then is to determine where the broker intends to focus his or her energies. Once that determination is made, the broker should sit down and map out a strategy of how to acquire the accounts of the intended investment group. Grab a pen and paper, your address book, business card book, and begin writing out the names and numbers of everyone you know. Also write the names of local businesses and social organizations that can be visited regularly for prospecting purposes.
Get in front of as many people as possible. A good strategy involves maximizing time and effort by working smarter. Referrals are the lifeblood of any investment related business. One way to ensure more referrals is to network. Attend local chamber of commerce meetings and other business and community group meetings and make as many contacts as possible. Attend regularly to establish rapport and trust with the other business leaders. Referral clubs are another good source of leads. These sometimes involve a monthly fee but it is usually nominal and can be recouped with one good referral. Finally, investment seminars which are free to the public often generate a tremendous amount of interest and clientele even for the average broker. By simply providing a little investment advice, some food, and establishing basic rapport, brokers can begin building their book of business with one or more new clients at a time. Furthermore, seminars can revolve around a single theme and focus on a specific investment group such single business women, couples investing for their child's education, and so on.
Host an investment seminar which is free to the public. These often generate a tremendous amount of interest and clientele even for the average broker. By simply providing a little investment advice, some food, and establishing basic rapport, brokers can begin building their book of businesses with one or more new clients at a time. Furthermore, seminars can revolve around a single theme and focus on a specific investment group such as single business women and couples investing for their child's education.
Begin executing your plan of action by asking everyone on your list for at least two to three people to whom you could introduce yourself. Make sure to follow up on each referral in a timely fashion.
Jared Lewis is a professor of history, philosophy and the humanities. He has taught various courses in these fields since 2001. A former licensed financial adviser, he now works as a writer and has published numerous articles on education and business. He holds a bachelor's degree in history, a master's degree in theology and has completed doctoral work in American history.