Framing Prospect Conversations Around What Motivates Them Today (And Not Their Future Goals)

When conducting exploratory meetings with a potential client, financial advisors often ask the prospect about their goals. The hope is that these conversations will help the prospect get into a positive frame of mind (by thinking about vacation, retirement, or other future aspirations) and at the same time, offer the counselor an opportunity to show how their services can help the prospect achieve their goals. However, the fact is that asking about goals has the potential to create possibilities for future disappointment or dissatisfaction, especially when achieving the goal is not financially feasible based on the prospect’s current status, in which case the counselor may be seen as a “dream”. the killer”. Even when the target He is Check, he may not feel as fulfilled as the potential client imagines (eg, the feeling of having no purpose after retirement). Thus, finding meaningful ways to frame exploratory meeting conversations that don’t focus on a potential client’s future goals can sometimes be a better way to engage and motivate new clients.

By identifying a client’s current interests and pain points and exploring strategies to address problems the potential client is facing now—rather than dreams of a future that may still be far into the future (which are much more nebulous to the client than the current situations they face today)—counselors can discover powerful triggers that can You help the prospect act more decisively (in fact, a specific problem the prospect was experiencing may be the reason they scheduled the discovery meeting in the first place!). Of course, diving into a conversation to learn about a prospect’s pain points can lead to an awkward discovery meeting. However, there are several ways to bring up the topic indirectly, which can help counselors facilitate the conversation in a more natural way. One way is to ask the prospect about current concerns rather than pain points and explore what they would like to see as a result of working with the counselor (which can reveal weaknesses without framing the question in those terms). Another option for financial advisors is to solicit the client’s “counter-targets”, which are things the person wants to avoid (eg, financial regrets), as they can act as powerful incentives for the potential client to take action (perhaps by becoming the advisor’s client!).

The first step to organizing discovery meetings that don’t address goals is to prepare a list of questions (eg, “What would you want to make sure you don’t regret?”) that can be used to uncover potential pain points, current goals, interests, and aspirations. Lists can be important because asking non-objective questions can take some practice before asking them comes naturally. In addition, counselors can consider sending some questions to the prospect ahead of time as part of the exploratory meeting agenda (or perhaps adding some questions to the meeting invitation itself) to help them better prepare for a response. Moreover, in addition to the basic questions the counselor wants to ask, asking appropriate follow-up questions during the meeting can also play a vital role in figuring out what is most important to the potential client at the moment.

Ultimately, the point is that while asking prospects about their financial goals may seem like a logical strategy for an exploratory meeting, an alternative approach that indirectly highlights potential pain points can be more effective in spurring them into action. And for consultants, not only does this method help them identify what really matters to a potential client, it can also increase their likelihood of becoming clients!

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