This is your Best Marketing Strategy

Amar Pandit , CFA , CFP

Amar Pandit

A respected entrepreneur with 25+ years of Experience, Amar Pandit is the Founder of several companies that are making a Happy difference in the lives of people. He is currently the Founder of Happyness Factory, a world-class online investment & goal-based financial planning platform through which he aims to help every Indian family save and invest wisely. He is very passionate about spreading financial literacy and is the author of 4 bestselling books (+ 2 more to release in 2020), 8 Sketch Books, Board Game and 700 + columns.

Last week, I wrote about the Power of Compounding and how it is the most important wonder that every investor should see in her financial life. Sadly, it is one thing to understand it mathematically and it is another to make it work in your financial life. An inability to get compounding to work for us is one of the greatest investor (as well as advisor) failings, as one cannot really see or feel the power of compounding till it starts working for the person. I am not here to rant about compounding (you understand this) but I want to highlight a similar thing that impacts your business at a different level. Sadly, most IFAs do not see or understand the power of this strategy until they experience it themselves.

Ramesh Kolhapurkar is one such IFA. An engineer by qualification, Ramesh is in the business of investing (as he calls it) and has been in the industry for the last 15 years. He started doing financial planning around 4 years back and reached out to his college friend Aakash Varde, who was working for a software firm in Pune. Aakash and Ramesh had studied together and although they lived in different towns, they bumped into each other sometimes. Ramesh created a financial plan for Aakash 3 years ago, but Aakash did not go ahead with the implementation of the plan (and did not sign up). At the same time, he started investing through a local IFA in Pune. Though they kept meeting each other on different occasions, things had not moved ahead. Most financial planners go through a similar experience at some point of time (and several times) where they create a plan with passion but for some reason it does not resonate with the prospect or client. I told Ramesh the problem here is not about the plan, but it was an inability to get Aakash to experience and visualize the power of the plan. I was not sure whether Ramesh understood the depth of my statement.

My colleague Rupesh, who was also a part of this conversation, told Ramesh to invite Aakash for a financial planning experience. Rupesh told Ramesh “Kindly invite Aakash’s wife as well for the conversation.” Ramesh did exactly as told and invited the couple for a session together with him and Rupesh. I will not get into the details of their conversation (you got to experience it to believe it) but the outcome of this financial planning experience was magical for Ramesh.

Aakash not only signed up with Rs. 50 Lakh of surplus that he had but he also brought in the assets he had with the other distributor. Aakash told him This is one of the finest sessions I have ever had. I got amazing financial clarity on my financial life in 2 hours. What a powerful conversation.” Aakash’s wife Deepti echoed similar sentiments and they both signed up as Ramesh’s clients.

This is not where the post ends. Ramesh told me “I now understand the depth of the line you had mentioned about getting Aakash to experience the power of the plan. I always thought that just because I had done financial planning and created a financial plan for Aakash, he should sign up. I understand now that Aakash did not visualize the power of what I was doing.”

The process of Financial Planning is powerful; however, it is very difficult for people to understand the power of the process till one experiences it viscerally (felt it in your senses or at an emotional level). This is like how most people cannot understand the power of compounding. Thus, it is up to you to help them experience it or to get them to feel it. Thus, your best marketing Strategy is an Awesome Client Experience, one in which your prospects and clients will tell you “Wow”.

There can be no better and powerful marketing strategy than this as it does 2 things. First, it gets you a client and second, you get a brand ambassador who will now refer you to more people. Thus, this strategy automatically triggers the next biggest strategy “Referrals” for you. Third it makes your business stronger and protects your business from losing clients to competitors.

As you read through this, some of you are likely to think “Well, Amar is just promoting what he is doing. It’s not so easy.” First there is nothing wrong in talking about what you believe in (it is a real-life case and I challenge any non-believer to take me up on this). Second, there is a possibility that you might still not be able to visualize the power of this as it happens with many. This is because just like an investor cannot see compounding, you are unable to see this. It is normal and there is nothing wrong with it. It is very difficult for us to understand the power of intangibles.

For example, Imagine, if you had never seen a car and were only riding horses, you could never experience the power of a car. Similarly, till I had driven a Tesla, I would not understand how different it feels from the other cars I have driven. In the case of Tesla, it is a physical product that you can still see.

Imagine compounding again. Can you see it or feel it? It takes decades for you to see it and feel its power. On the other hand, it is in your hand to get your prospect to experience the power of financial planning today. For that, you must experience and feel its power. Ask yourself “Have I experienced financial planning in a world class way myself?

Charlie Munger’s brilliant quote was “Understanding both the power of compound interest and the difficulty of getting it is the heart and soul of understanding a lot of things.” I rephrase this one “Understanding both the power of client experience and difficulty of getting it is the heart and soul of understanding a lot of things in your business.

P.S. You can either read this as a nice column and forget it OR you can get in touch with us to experience the above with a real prospect or client. Now I am directly promoting what I do.