Marketing to the affluent: You talk too much! Less is more with affluent clients and prospects Article added by Annette Bau on April 22, 2011
Annette Bau

Annette Bau

Tempe, AZ

Joined: October 01, 2007

Becoming involved in a niche of affluent clients requires you really get to know your audience, and you have the listening and question-asking skills required to identify their needs.

Attending this year’s Affluent Summit was the well-known marketing consultant and author, Richard Weylman. While I spoke with him, he revealed some very insightful information.

One of the worst things you can do as an adviser who wishes to work with affluent clients is talk about what you do or explicitly tell your prospects and clients how great you and your company are.

Mr. Weylman, who is the author of “Opening Closed Doors — Keys to Reaching Hard-to-Reach People,” claims that the advisers who spend the most time listening to their clients are likely the most successful. Becoming involved in a niche of affluent clients requires you really get to know your audience, and you have the listening and question-asking skills required to identify their needs.

Spending a smaller amount of time talking and more time listening may be challenging up front, especially if you’re used to talking about products and features. Your usual type of monologue just doesn’t resonate well with an affluent audience.

Asking effective questions and providing relevant answers would be a better use of your time. Ensure that everything you ask a prospect or client gives new insights into what that person needs professionally and/or personally.

According to Mr. Weylman, wealthy clients generally have problems that worry them. Your goal is to determine what they are and address them successfully. If you can do just that, you’ll win over their trust — and their business.

It’s also important to obtain information from your prospects and clients about what they enjoy doing. Knowing their favorite sports team, singer, book or similar information will help you develop effective relationship marketing techniques that will further establish trust, respect and camaraderie.

The response you give to your prospects and clients is also a key point in any conversation. You may have to fight preconceived notions of what you think the other person wants or expects to hear from you. You may also have to resist the temptation to give the same pat answer you have been conditioned to give that you learned in an out of date training program.

When your affluent prospects and clients tell you what you want, you really have to make sure that you understand what they want and can personalize the answer you deliver so that it has meaning to them. A good technique is to rephrase their question in a different way and say it out loud to them before you give an answer. This gives you more time to think and establishes that you’re both on the same page. If you’re not on the same page, your prospect or client has an opportunity to clarify their intentional meaning of the question.

So the next time you meet with a client or prospect, listen and witness the phenomenon. You may be surprised at the insights achieved from the meeting and how much your client or prospect opens up and reveals what they’re truly looking for. This will make it easier to provide them with the solutions they need to resolve their problems.
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