A new year, a new focus

the-force-awakens

A new year is here. I don’t know about you, but my 2017 started off with a big ol’ flat tire, however, I didn’t let it get me down! (Pun intended!) As the Lexus was towed away to the shop to have the tire patched, I had time to reflect and share what the new year means for me. A new year is filled with possibilities and challenges, so I felt a fresh new look was in order and a renewed focus on my writing.

Paying my respects to Carrie Fisher…

This post was started about a month ago so it was well before the world said goodbye to Carrie Fisher. I momentarily thought about changing the title, but after much contemplation, I don’t think anyone would expect that and might rather enjoy knowing they were a part of something so epic it will run for more years than we’ll likely wrap our brain around.

Four years ago…

For the FinServ community, the force has truly awakened. I predicted four years ago 2017 would be the year of calibration. Well, we are here and have much to consider. We have had exponential growth in digital and social marketing and now we have the data to back up much of what happened and understand what is to happen.

We can safely say the challenges of media shook our industry’s marketing socks, but even with the hurdles of compliance, archiving, retention, advertising guidelines, FINRA, and the presence of rogue marketing techniques, the FinServ community continues to be a bit lagging. How do we shore up this short-coming? What else is coming which we should be aware of? Why can’t things be the way they once were?

Where have all the advisors gone?

We continue to talk about the crisis of having fewer advisors for consumers to work with and yes, that is a damn shame. However, the advisor of today metamorphosized from insurance purist to a more holistic financial practitioner. The workforce is alive and well, however, we all are responsible for bringing more people into our profession.

My prediction? I think we will see more women entering this market than we ever anticipated. This comes with a new set of challenges and opportunities and I think it will be a very exciting time!

Technology is the name of the game

Anyone today who wants to argue with me that technology has no place in FinServ needs to hold on – I’m too busy setting up a Skype call, tweeting to a client, adding a story to Snapchat, and watching a video about 401(k) rollover concepts.

We already know carriers are using predictive analytics, prescription checks, and even social media monitoring to make offers on life insurance applications. It’s remiss to not keep technology at the forefront of every business in the FinSev community regardless of size.

My prediction? I think we are still on the brink of a technology avalanche and the explosion is just about here. There is still so much we can be automating in our respective business operations and many processes and procedures should be standardized through online platforms. In every situation be thinking, “Is there some way we can streamline this?” If we don’t think this way, someone else will and come in and take over our field of expertise.

In a word: Retention

I have a book coming out later this year with a 5-step program on how to retain clients in today’s very distracted world. Relationship building, fostering and nurturing continues to be the number one focus and concern of the FinServ professional. And you know what, it should be! However, many professionals really suck at it.

In the past four years, I have been in front of more than 20,000 financial professionals. During the hundreds of hours of presenting, teaching, and engaging these individuals the biggest concern brought up is, “How do I attract more clients?” Now, I know you think this is not about retention, but let me rephrase the question. What I’m really being asked is, “How do I bring in more business?” and that IS retention.

My prediction? The FinServ professional who masters the art of retention will always be ahead in the game. If this is an area you want to be better in, I’m sure I can help. If you would like to be updated when my book comes out, feel free to opt-in here and I will let you know when we have launched. Thanks for your interest!

Be a person of action – the force is truly awakened and you must know where you were to understand where you are headed. Set intentions on how you’ll be the change you want to see in our community. Be ready to make adjustments along the way, too. Make 2017 your banner year!

tips-on-traveling-in-new-york

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