Review of New York Life Investments Webinar: Women & Investing. Lessons for Success: Strengthening Relationships & Transforming Your Business
- Forbes estimates women control $14 trillion in assets and that this number is increasing. They control 70-80% of the purchasing decisions, have longer life expectancies, but hold a disproportionate percent of life savings in cash.
- Women aren’t all the same, but many feel advisors paint them with the same brush.
- Women represent a compelling opportunity by increasing their involvement in the financial planning process, helping improve financial literacy, gaining greater financial independence.
1. 62% of woman believe their investment needs are truly unique and feel as though they’re treated differently when working with financial advisors
2. 67% leave their financial advisor for something other than financial reasons: mainly a lack of personal connection and poor service.
3. Investment & financial planning knowledge are just as important and the perceived level of treatment.
4. The problem isn’t solved by being a woman or having women on staff. There are a significant number of women investors who have little preference concerning the sex of their advisor. They opt for a combination of trust, investing knowledge and understanding needs.
Note: Over a lifetime women make 26 financial advisor referrals compared to 11 by male clients. Research also shows that women are moving backwards in terms of financial literacy.
Six Key Learnings
Lesson 1: Breaking Unconscious Exclusion
Four key life stages of your female clients.
1. Suddenly single – A need to feel a sense of immediate security as the shift in their lives have brought sudden chaos.
• Be empathetic, follow her lead
• Ask how she feels in her new situation. Allow her to talk of personal life before financial
2. Married breadwinner - 42% feel patronized by their Financial Advisor. Most are likely to leave advisors for reasons other than financial.
• Check to see if her name is first on the account
• Communicate with her
• Make space in meetings to ask her questions and address any concerns.
3. married contributor- Can feel like advisors treat her like a supporting roll. Often busy and at risk of checking out of financial relationship.
• Ask for her preferred method of communication
• Ask how you can include her more
• Ask if there are ideas she’d like to share
4. single breadwinner - Most pleased with advisors but require more of a coach and a mentor.
• Provide education to her and family
• Ask if she wants you to send her relevant articles
• Ask if she wants educational resources for her kids
Lesson 2: Rethinking Roles
• Include both spouses on an invite
• Never schedule a meeting until both parties can attend
• Make a strategic plan that highlights times you’ll switch focus between spouses
• Acknowledge her when she’s in the meeting
• Address both spouses in the meeting
• Clarify how she’d like to be included in the conversation
• Communicate to all parties
• Create a follow up plan
• Can you share materials to help educate
Lesson 3: Rescuing Relationships
Do you have women clients whom you haven’t spoken with in the past year? Do some regularly blow off meetings or calls? Do you have women clients who haven’t introduced their kids to you? Do you have women clients who used to refer friends and family to you but no longer do?
Questions you can ask to diagnose your relationships
1. When it comes to your personal finances what’s the main emotion that comes to mind?
2. How can I help improve the way we work?
3. Would you recommend me to your friends or colleagues?
INCREASING CLIENT ACQUISITION
Lesson 4: Education is a Passport
Training the next generation - Encourage female clients to bring kids, close friends, or disinterested spouse.
Building networks – Host and convene women through training or social functions to build sense of community.
Crowdsourcing topics - Host AMAs (Ask Me Anything) sessions where you can answer these questions. Financial Advisor Empowerment - Encourage younger advisors in your practice to brainstorm and lead female-investor initiatives
Lesson 5 : Operating on her terms
• Ideas to operate on her terms
• Align her needs with your business
• Make small tweaks to how you operation
• Does she was to jump int discussing facts or would she prefer to discuss life before financial goals and financial standing
• Does she prefer to ask questions now or take info and come back with follow ups later
1. What can you do if you know she’s busy with work, hobbies and family obligations?
Follow her communication preference: Calls, in-person, online. Weekends or evenings if she works full-time.
2. How can you respond if she’s a visual learner?
Use worksheets, checklists, highlighters
3. How can you use technology to better engage?
Connect on social media depending on her level of comfort
Lesson 6: Results with Relationships
- Are there ways your firm can make reports more visual?
- Could you craft the numbers into a story for her?
- Do you show the connection between the reports and her goals?
- Do you track goals for her?
- Do you congratulate her when she reaches goals?
- Are there ways you can better celebrate results with her to show your partnership?