From witnessing hundreds of seminars and receiving feedback from hundreds of advisors creating the presentations, I have gathered some invaluable data as to which dynamics and techniques make the biggest difference in converting attendees to appointments at your events. You’ve probably heard that you have the best probability of securing an appointment when your prospects are at their highest level of interest, during the transition from your presentation to the end of your event. That is, if you did a good job connecting with the audience… yes, that is important, very important. But more critical is how you make that transition and the things that you say before you ask for those appointment cards.
I’ve uncovered and witnessed an excellent way to increase your odds dramatically if you are genuine and you tell a sincere story about “procrastination” … a universal human trait that haunts us all. First, you must understand that the majority of your attendees are there for a financial and emotional reason. They are seeking guidance, advice and looking for answers to help them manage their life savings in retirement.
So, what your audience most likely has in common is that they have been “procrastinating” to meet with an advisor or an estate planning attorney to get their matters in order. Millions of individuals are in that situation, it’s common human behavior. Especially, when they don’t understand the complex world of investing, insurance, wills, asset protection, trusts and many other retirement planning options.
To describe the mood in your room at the start of every seminar event: they are all guarded, insecure, confused, and feeling vulnerable. They have accumulated money and they don’t really know the best way to manage their overall financial picture. Many are also embarrassed to meet with you as a result. For that reason, you have to break through those big emotions to connect with them and gain their trust that evening. That should be your only goal at the seminar. It’s not about selling a product or a service. That comes later, face to face, privately in your office.
My recommendation to convert many more appointments at your events is to tell a compelling story about “procrastinating”. All of us remember an individual or individuals that made a difference in our lives when we were young. They said something, did something for us or pushed us to do something that made a big effect in our lives as adults. I have several of my own in mind during my youth… coaches, teachers, friend’s parents and relatives, many that are no longer with us. I wish I could find some of them today to thank them and to tell them how grateful I am for how they influenced me and how meaningful it was to have had them in my life.
You and your audience will no doubt have many of those same stories in common…and because of that, that is where your storytelling becomes real and genuine. You see, those special people in our past pushed us to do something, they pointed us in a direction that made a difference or perhaps shaped our future in some way. That memory stays with us forever
Use that same example scenario that evening after your presentation to do the same for them. Explain that you did the first part to help them by inviting them to event, they did their part by showing up and now you want to be that special person that will push them to take the next most important step… to stop “procrastinating” and do something about their financial concerns. You want to be that next individual in their lives that they will someday remember and thank for helping them take action. Ask them to fill out your yellow (or whatever color) appointment card that has several dates and time options. Explain that they must select a time even if they want to change it or cancel it later. Tell them that the mere fact that they physically put it down on paper (like we were taught with our goals) is what will make things happen. By filling out your card they will take the next step into solving their concerns and attaining peace of mind.
Now, as an advisor, you become that coach, that teacher, that friend, that special individual that will make a difference in an important stage of their life… just like when they were children.
I am told by advisors that many people that come to the appointment say it was because they related to that story and even the ones that cancel that appointment after this exercise come back to them months later, when they are in need, because the advisor made an impression on them and it stuck in their mind. It works because it’s an emotional experience that we’ve all had in life. That is when the connection happens with your audience, when you are genuine and when you are just a human being and not only an advisor.
Jorge Villar is the President and Founder of RME360, a $24 million-dollar marketing powerhouse. With more than 26 years of direct marketing experience, he is known in several industries for his ability to create campaigns that garner the highest response rates. He is the innovator of the National Seminar Success program that for the last 17 years has accounted for more than 65% of the seminar events being held nationwide, with over 17 million attendees. Mr. Villar has also been very successful marketing to physicians and business owners regarding Succession Planning and Asset Protection. RME360’s marketing programs are presently being utilized by over 10,000 clients, including: top producing financial advisors, estate planning attorneys, large financial organizations, health care organizations, franchises, universities and many other industries. Mr. Villar is a frequent key note speaker at national financial symposium and marketing training conferences.
Academy Guest Blogger
American Academy of Estate Planning Attorneys, Inc.
9444 Balboa Avenue, Suite 300
San Diego, California 92123
Phone: (858) 453-2128
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