Financial Professionals do a great job. You build relationships with prospects. You gather all the pertinent information to properly assess the financial needs of the prospects or clients with whom you are working. Then you dive into the financial planning software and diagnose their current portfolio, income needs, protection needs, risk tolerance, etc. The software spits out the most beautiful financial plan to end all plans. The prospects/clients come back to see what you have put together, and you share your work of art.
Then you hear this, “Let me think about it.” Ugh. That is a fancy way of saying “NO.” Make no mistake. They are not saying “NO” to your plan. They are saying “NO” to you and how you presented the plan.
You are not a bad financial professional and your advice is not bad. It’s just that you didn’t present the plan to the decision maker. I am not referring to the spouse to whom you didn’t pay enough attention. You appealed to their left brain. The real decision maker is the part of the prospect’s brain that reacts to emotions. You need to learn to address their right brain.
As a program manager with CUSO Financial Services, I work with many financial professionals with varying levels of experience and success. The great ones know how to connect with the right brain. They rarely hear “let me think about it” or any other disguised rejection. Their job is easier. They bring on more clients and manage more of their assets. It’s all because they’re speaking to the decision-maker.
For example, think about the process of buying a car. You can easily spend $5,000 dollars for a car that gets you from point A to point B. But it’s not the logical side of your brain that decided to get the red Mustang or the Harley Davidson. You bought it because you wanted it. Your emotions made that decision.
Human instinct, while it takes logic into account, is very often driven by how we feel about things. Then why do financial professionals spend so much time talking about returns, diversification, asset allocation and anything else displayed on illustrations and literature provided by wholesalers? Clients and prospects do not care about any of those things.
They care about making sure they do not run out of money during their lifetime. They care about traveling to see their grandkids after retirement. They care about making sure the cost of long term care does not destroy everything they worked for in the last 50 years. They care about riding their Harley across the country after retirement… ok, maybe that’s just me.
So you weren’t presenting to the wrong person…just appealing to the wrong side of the brain. If you want to avoid the “Let me think about it” response to your financial plan, you have to talk about how your plan specifically addresses what they truly care about.
When you achieve this, you will have clients for life.
For more information on this topic, read “Story Selling for Financial Professionals,” by Scott West and Mitch Anthony. I highly recommend that book.