4 ways advisors can survive the holidays

By Ryan Parker

Bankers Annuity Brokerage


As the holiday season progresses, it’s helpful to give clients a few friendly reminders. Here are four easy ways to achieve this.

It’s that time of year again. The holidays are just around the corner, which brings the seasonal traditions of food, family, gifts and (most of all) stress! The time between Thanksgiving and New Years Eve is often the most stressful time of the year. As if worrying about where your great aunt Edna is going to sleep or how to cook a turkey dinner for 20 people isn’t enough, we all have to try to find some way to pay for all of these festivities and live to see another day.

Financial stress is one of the most difficult parts of the holiday season, and, as good financial advisors, you most likely see this as an opportunity to help alleviate that stress and gain potential clients. However, those potential clients will be so busy worrying about making it to their next ugly sweater party or getting Ralphie’s Red Ryder under the tree that any attempt at selling them something other than wrapping paper will likely fall on deaf ears.

We both know that you offer an array of services that would make the lives of all these eggnog-chugging shoppers easier, but if they won’t give you a second thought during the holidays, how can you help alleviate their financial stress?

Some simple tips are to start off early in the season before everything gets into full swing and offer smaller services or tips and tidbits of information that help potential clients budget or manage their finances in preparation for the holidays. But as the holiday season progresses, it’s helpful to give them a few friendly reminders as well. Here are four easy ways to achieve this:

Personal cards

Send out personal letters or cards to clients that thank them for working with you and for their business. Be sure to keep the message personal and avoid anything that sounds like a sales pitch or an auto-drafted letter. You can include some helpful financial information for the holiday season. Also send out cards to those whose contact information you have but who are not your clients; but once again, be sure not to sell, but just extend them a greeting and wish them happy holidays.

Gifts

For your larger clients or clients who have been a referral source, it’s a nice gesture to send them a gift, as large or small as you feel is appropriate. If possible, try to make these gifts relate in some way to your services, but once again, don’t aim at a direct sell. Thank them for their loyalty and support and continue on.
Parties

Everyone else is throwing a party; why shouldn’t you? Extend invitations to the company holiday party. This will allow both clients and prospects to get to know your employees and start to develop relationships that will go deeper than just an initial sale. This is the holiday season for your company as well, so you and your employees should enjoy it and relax in preparation for all the business you will have come January.

New Year's review

After the hustle and bustle has all died down, follow up with a newsletter to your clients and prospects recapping the past year and letting them know you are excited about what is in store for the upcoming year. This is a also good way to show off some of your services that you offer to those prospects who do not yet know of all your offerings.

Making these efforts during the tumultuous times of the season is a nice, unobtrusive way to keep your name in front of your clients and prospects without creating any additional stress. Although some might not have utilized your services this holiday season, in the wake of the seasonal craze, they are likely to realize the importance and value of what you have to offer them and climb on board for the following year.

Remember, you are, first and foremost, service providers and your primary goal is to make the lives of those around you better. Happy holidays!