For financial advisors, one of the quickest ways to grow your practice is to acquire an existing book of business from another advisor who is usually exiting the business. While this can be a huge boon for your business, you need to handle the transition delicately and create an optimal transition for your new clients. These tips will help you gracefully handle the acquisition and keep everyone happy and informed!
- Find the Right Fit
Before you even consider buying a book of business, take the time to examine what would be the ideal fit for you and your team. The easiest way to create a smooth transition is to find a business that is similar to yours in terms of ideal client, area of specialization, values, and business model. These mutual traits will be essential in smoothing out the transition, so keep these in mind as you explore different companies to acquire.
- Ask for Assistance
The biggest asset to help you smooth out the transition will be the previous owners, as they know the personalities of their existing clients. When signing a contract, you might ask to include billable hours for personal support, or perhaps dual meetings where they can introduce you in person. These introductions are invaluable and help create a feeling of teamwork with the new clients, reassuring that they’re in excellent hands.
- Tailor Your Messaging and Stay Personal
One of the biggest concerns that your new clients will have is whether you will deliver the same level of service that they have come to expect. 91% of prospects are more likely to engage an advisor who utilizes some amount of personalization in their communications. It’s essential to build your client relationships right from the start, so ask for personalized info on each client when acquiring the business. Instead of sending out a form letter, reach out to each client personally and invite connection, or ask them to come into the office for one-on-one meetings. While this will add to your workload at the beginning of your acquisition, it shows your new clients that you are committed to their satisfaction and start your relationship off on the right foot.
- Combine Your Messaging
While it can be tempting to completely overhaul your website and messaging, your new clients will feel more comfortable with gradual changes. Keep the existing style, messaging, and website for a short period of time while gradually combining your two businesses. People tend to dislike change, especially when it’s forced on them, so keeping things familiar throughout the transition is a respectful and comforting gesture.
- Continually Reach Out
After your initial introduction, stay connected with your clients by following up at four-week intervals to ensure they are happy with your service. Continue to emphasize your availability and willingness to meet and use similar messaging as their previous financial advisor to make them feel at home. Just by expressing your support, you can decrease client turnover and make an incredible first impression on your new book of business!
As you start to acquire new books of business, these steps will help ensure a smooth transition for your clients. Finding practices that have similar ideal clients, values, and business models will allow you to seamlessly combine businesses, and personalized touches and consistent follow up will seal the deal for your new clients!