Connecting with clients has been a huge focus for advisers over the past few months, and, often, effective connection can mean the difference between whether a business makes it through a crisis or fails.
Business growth expert Keith Abraham says that as restrictions start to ease and New Zealand moves down alert levels, advisers need to think about what they’re going to do differently in the future - and also bear in mind that communication is not the same as connection, and engaging clients requires more than flicking through an email.
He says that as we move into a “new normal,” advisers should think about the methods of communication they currently use, and assess whether they’ve been relying too much on one particular outlet.
“Right now, too many people are in the mentality of just getting through it and surviving, but you have to think whether 2020 could be the moment that defines you, and gives you clarity on your pathway moving forward,” Abraham said.
“You need to start thinking about what’s new, and what you need to do differently in your business.”
“You need to engage with your clients, and there are no excuses like ‘I need to drive an hour to get to someone’,” he continued.
“You can do it in a heartbeat over Zoom, and it can just be a 10-minute face to face. And people are now more open to that than ever before, because they’ve had four-six weeks to get used to it. How many more appointments could you have?”
Abraham says that when it comes to connections, advisers need to use every medium available to them - and there are many ways to make communication more interesting and dynamic.
“Whether it’s using Zoom, or Teams, or Facebook Messenger Meetings - it’s about face to face, ear to ear, mailbox to mailbox, screen to screen,” Abraham explained.
“Firstly, picking up the phone. How many of us have drifted towards emails? And when I say screen to screen, I’m not talking emails - I’m talking text messages. I’m getting bombarded by emails and offers from people I haven’t heard from in three years - this is the wrong time to be trying to sell something to someone you haven’t spoken to for three years.
“Mailbox to mailbox - I’m talking about old school putting something in the post. That’s lumpy mail, whether it be a book, an article, or a handwritten note.
“This is not about communicating, this is about connecting,” he added.
“If you’re going to engage with your clients, you need to focus on using everything at your fingertips - and apart from a postage stamp, all of the above is free.”