There is one marketing strategy that, when it's working, generates more new business
than any other single strategy. But many struggle getting it to work — maybe because it requires relying on others.
Creating strategic alliance relationships with other professionals, or even just one professional, has been proven to be the most profitable and perennial strategy in all of marketing and sales. It requires the transition from doing it yourself to finding the right professional that is willing to have a productive, two-way relationship with you.
We have done case study research with nine different million-dollar producing financial advisors
who have made these partnerships work. Through our research, we have uncovered tactics that have produced long-term mutual referrals, tactics that advisors are using to bring in a minimum of $10 million of new assets per year, per relationship! Here is an overview of the first two tactics, with more to come:
1. Creating and managing your potential strategic alliance list
The findings show that to make the partnership work, it has to start with the right professionals. It may sound obvious, but this is usually where the entire strategy fails. The advisors making it work have used similar types of criteria and research to choose the best potential alliance relationships. They looked at firms focused on similar target markets that are also actively seeking new clients, those that don’t have multiple other alliance relationships, those with the highest likelihood to become advocates, and firms that share a commitment to their clients. Meeting with a lot of professionals does not work; meeting with a carefully chosen small number based on specific criteria does work.
2. Planning for connections
The next finding in the research shows that the advisors who make this strategy work did not wing it when initially meeting with the other professionals and in meetings throughout the relationship. The key is to do research, find out as much as you can about the professional through LinkedIn
, Internet searches, and by reaching out to professionals you know in common. The planning proves to the person you are meeting with that you are clearly different than the others. You care, you are serious, and it is not all about you. It may not sound like a big deal, but it is clearly a definitive tactic for success in the case studies we researched.