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Financial Advisor Strategies for Boosting Client Retention

Date: July 3, 2024

Did you know that the average client retention rate for financial advisors is only around 75-80%?

Numerous advisors indicated that their biggest challenge is acquiring new clients and retaining existing ones.

With fierce competition in the industry, it's more important than ever for advisors to implement effective strategies to strengthen client relationships and boost retention.

Strategy #1: Improve your Communication

Communication is the cornerstone of a successful client relationship.

But this strategy isn’t simply about talking more — it’s about talking “smarter” and making every interaction with your client meaningful and valuable.

Improving regular check-ins

First, I want to talk about the importance of regular, proactive communication.

I’ve found that setting a regular schedule for check-ins, specific to each client’s preferences and needs, significantly makes their satisfaction and retention better.

Well, it’s a natural effect since you’re not only being there for them during the ups and downs of the market, but you’re a constant source of support and guidance.

Here are a few tips:

  • Schedule regular meetings
  • Use multiple communication channels
  • Be proactive

I want to stress that it’s you who has to adjust in most of the situations.

But what’s important is that those meetings are on the calendar well in advance, whether that’s quarterly, monthly, or at a different interval.

For communication, some clients prefer a quick phone call, others email, and some like the touch of a face-to-face meeting.

Your clients would also appreciate it if you don’t wait for them to reach out with concerns — anticipate their needs and address them in your communication.

Using technology for better interaction

If the lockdowns taught us anything, it’s that technology can be a game-changer in how we interact with clients.

No matter the distance or the time, we can use technology to maintain that line of communication.

If you’re new to this, you may want to look into the following:

  • Client portal
  • Mobile apps and messaging
  • Video conferencing tools

If you haven’t heard of client portals yet, they’re simply a one-stop shop where clients can find everything they need.

They’re great at keeping clients up to date with their investments, financial plans, and documents (check out Pulse360 for this).

For the rest, you know that mobile apps and messaging are great for quick updates or reminders while video conferencing tools are next to face-to-face communication.

Strategy #2: Personalize the Client Experience

This one is a little no-brainer since if you want to retain your clients, you need to show off and personalize their experience with you. 

There are three steps here:

  1. Understand the individual client goals
  2. Tailor your services to client needs
  3. Celebrate milestones

Let’s talk about each one:

1. Understand the individual client's needs

The first step is to truly understand what each client wants to achieve.

This goes beyond the surface level of financial goals and actually goes into their life aspirations, fears, and motivations.

Personally, I make it a point to ask open-ended questions during our meetings so they can freely express their concerns and dreams freely.

But take note that it’s only during the initial phase nor is it a one-time event — it’s a continuous dialogue that adapts as their life circumstances and goals evolve.

2. Tailor your services to client needs

Now that you know what their needs are, the next step is to tailor your services to meet the specific needs of your clients.

? For example:

If a client is particularly concerned about securing their child’s educational future, you should focus on strategies that highlight educational savings plans and insurance options.

For another client who might be nearing retirement, the discussions and plans might revolve around retirement savings, income strategies, and estate planning.

In addition, this is another part where personalized communication comes into play as well as customized reporting.

3. Celebrate milestones

This part is rather fun and doesn’t always have to be related to financial matters.

Remembering and celebrating important events and milestones in your client’s lives is a great way to deepen relationships.

No need to go grand here — a personalized note or a small gesture can make a big difference whether it’s a birthday, an anniversary, or a significant financial milestone.

You don’t even need a designer for this or something since you can use a tool like Canva that already has templates.

note card templates from canva you can use for a personalized note

Think of it this way:

Doing this shows that you see them as more than just a client — you view them as a valued individual whose life you are invested in.

Seriously, won’t you find it endearing if someone you know remembers an important event in your life? ?

Strategy #3: Provide Continuous Education

Educating your clients isn’t simply about keeping them informed. You’re teaching them how to make better financial decisions.

You will find that the more informed your clients feel, the more confident they are in their decisions, and the stronger your relationship becomes.

If you’re not sure how to do this, here are some ideas:

1. Host educational seminars and workshops

One of the most impactful ways I’ve seen that financial advisors can do to educate their clients is through seminars and workshops.

As you know, these sessions not only provide valuable information but also create a sense of community among clients.

If you’re doing this solo, you will have more control over the flow and you can cover a range of topics from market trends to estate planning.

My tip here is to make sure that these sessions are interactive by allowing clients to ask questions and engage directly with the content.

2. Send out email newsletters

This also works quite well if you have a blog and you use it to capture emails.

But anyway, you can send out newsletters that include helpful things like market analysis, financial planning tips, and updates on relevant legislation.

There are a lot of tools and platforms you can use for this such as:

For many of them, you can segment your client base and apply automation using flows so your content is relevant to each group’s interests and goals.

put your funnels on autopilot using convertkit

The key here is to make the information accessible and understandable by avoiding jargon as much as possible.

3. Use social media and blogs

I mentioned “blog” earlier, and together with social media, they become powerful platforms for educating clients since it’s likely that they’re using social media as well.

You can use these platforms to:

If you follow my website’s social media accounts, you can see that I share short, informative posts and even comics on topics that matter to my clients.

The benefit is that this not only educates them but also keeps them engaged with my product outside of this website.

Strategy #4: Implement Client Feedback Mechanisms

Feedback mechanisms are the secret to a more client-centered practice.

Similar to understanding your clients, client feedback mechanisms make them feel valued and heard as well as help refine your services according to their feedback.

Establishing a feedback loop

The first step is to create a clear and easy-to-use feedback loop with your clients.

For example, I make it a point to invite feedback at multiple points during my engagement with my clients.

This could be after a financial review meeting, at the end of a quarterly report, or following an event I hosted.

For non-personal methods to gather feedback, you can try the following:

  • A mix of surveys
  • Direct emails
  • Quick polls on your website

I made sure to include non-personal methods since there are times, like during the lockdowns, when you won’t be able to ask for feedback in person.

But however you do it, it’s important to let clients know that the feedback they give will be used to improve the services they receive and that you value their input.

Acting on feedback and personal responses

Receiving feedback is one thing — acting on it is where the real work begins.

For starters, you can categorize feedback into:

  • Immediate actions
  • Short-term improvements
  • Long-term strategy adjustments

This way, you can quickly address any issues or concerns that require immediate attention and plan for changes that can improve your service delivery in the short and long term.

Whenever possible, you should always respond personally to feedback, especially if it's specific or suggests dissatisfaction.

This personal touch shows that you take their concerns seriously and you’re committed to resolving any issues.

Strategy #5: Focus on Comprehensive Financial Planning

When you focus on comprehensive financial planning, you level up your relationship with your client from transactional to transformational.

This approach goes beyond mere investment advice, this includes all facets of a client’s financial life (which you should know by now).

1. Offer holistic advice beyond investments

Comprehensive financial planning involves a holistic view of a client’s financial picture such as:

  • Retirement planning
  • Estate planning
  • Tax strategies
  • Insurance needs

It’s important that you take the time to understand every aspect of your client's financial lives to ensure that the advice you provide addresses their entire financial situation.

This approach demonstrates that you're not just interested in managing their investments but are genuinely invested in their overall financial well-being.

Whether it’s planning for a child’s education, buying a dream home, or ensuring a comfortable retirement, make sure that these goals are at the forefront of the planning process.

2. Partner with other professionals

The truth is that comprehensive planning often requires expertise beyond the financial area, such as legal or tax advice.

If you haven’t already, you need to build relationships with a network of professionals like attorneys and accountants.

When a client needs specific advice, for example on estate planning, you can then facilitate introductions to trusted professionals.

This not only helps in providing seamless service but also strengthens the client's trust in you as their central financial advisor who has their best interests at heart.

3. Continuous monitoring and adjustment

Well, comprehensive financial planning is not a set-it-and-forget-it strategy.

It requires continuous monitoring and adjustments to align with life changes, economic shifts, and evolving financial goals.

You know this already, but you need to:

  • Schedule regular review meetings with clients
  • Assess their current financial situation
  • Discuss any changes in their life circumstances
  • Adjust their financial plan accordingly

This ongoing engagement keeps clients informed, involved, and reassured that their financial strategy remains aligned with their goals.

All these showcase your commitment to their overall financial success, not just the performance of their investment portfolio.

Boosting Client Retention

Over the years of practice, I’ve discovered that deepening bonds with my clients and boosting their loyalty goes far beyond just crunching numbers.

It's about striking the perfect mix of engaging communication, creating experiences that relate on a personal level, continually educating both yourself and your clients, etc.

When you genuinely understand your clients' worlds, and their dreams/fears, and then tailor your approach with empathy and a readiness to adapt, the results are remarkable.

You won't just see numbers improving — you will be building a practice rooted in trust, satisfaction, and shared victories.

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