Every year I receive calls from dozens of advisors who want to know what I think they should incorporate into their next year's business plan. The goal of the business plan is typically to:
- Grow an advisor's business (more clients)
- Make more money
- Somehow spend more time enjoying life
I always have a few standard topics that I think all
advisors should incorporate into their planning to accomplish these goals:
- H.E.A.P.(TM) --The best door-opening tool in the industry
- Asset protection -- Non-product pushing/easy to show value to clients
- Seven percent guaranteed rate of return -- Accumulation value w/lifetime income FIA
- Revolutionary life --The best EIUL policy available
This year, however, I'm moving college planning to the top of the list of topics all
advisors should be adding to their quiver to help their clients. In fact, I just added a new, two-hour module to the CWPP(TM) course on college planning.
It's tough out there right now for advisors. Clients and potential clients do not seem too interested in talking about their money or strategies to grow it. But if you can't talk with clients about their money, how are you going to help them and how are you going to make a living?
Why college planning? It's really quite simple:
1) You have something "unique" to say about how to fund for college planning.
For example, you can use The Safe College Plan (SCP), http://www.safecollegeplan.com
. It is tremendously powerful to tell a client that you deal with literally the only
plan in today's marketplace where a client can grow money in a tax-free college savings environment with no
stock market risk.
It's also the only plan in the market today where you can use fixed-indexed annuities (FIAs) in a completely tax-free manner and avoid the 10-percent early withdrawal penalty when funding for college savings.
If you are not using the SCP(TM) to bring in five to 10 new clients a month, you are making a tremendous mistake. You won't get rich selling the SCP(TM), but the action you will get from it will bring many new and existing clients to your office with all of their financial data in-hand to discuss their situations. You can't ask for anything better than that.
2) College savings is a very motivational topic.
Sure, clients are motivated to save taxes, grow a retirement nest egg, etc. However, if you've ever had children, you know that most parents will put their child's needs first and many will do all they can to help a child when possible, and that includes helping them pay/save for college.
3) If you deal with this topic the "right" way, you will have no competition.
I've avoided this topic for years because it's not an "affluent" client topic. One of the reasons I've now decided to educate and help advisors with this topic is because there are virtually no good educational bodies in the industry to help advisors learn the subject matter as well as how to systematically work with a client.
If you've looked at the firms that are currently in the college planning space, you'll find a few who tout helping advisors. If you know me, then you know I've researched all of the viable ones and I can tell you that they do not "get it."
Why don't the firms out there get it?
- Some firms help educate you on the "financial aid process" and not how financial products can be used for college savings.
- Some firms specialize in showing you how to use life insurance as a college planning tool and ignore the financial aid education/training. (And by the way, those who educate on how to use cash-value life insurance as a college savings tool are way off base on its "proper" use).
The bottom line: If you are not learning about and dealing with college planning, you are missing out on a golden opportunity to help your clients and grow your business. I know that you will get significant value by coming to the March seminar in Vegas, but if you can't make it, I do implore you to seek out good information on this subject so you can take your consulting to the next level.
Circular 230 disclaimer: To ensure compliance with requirements imposed by the IRS, we inform you that any U.S. federal tax advice contained in this communication (including any attachments) is not intended or written to be used, and cannot be used, for the purpose of (i) avoiding penalties under the Internal Revenue Code or (ii) promoting, marketing or recommending to another party any transaction or matter addressed herein.
*For further information, or to contact this author for information about the New College Planning Education and Sales/Marketing Training, March 19-20 in Las Vegas, NV, please leave a comment and your e-mail address in the space provided below.