When building your business, the “little things” can have a big impact.
Finding small ways to go the extra mile for clients establishes trust, says Rosemary Smyth, business coach and owner of Rosemary Smyth and Associates in Victoria, which specializes in coaching financial advisors. It also creates a rapport that is important for client retention.
Here are five small things you can do to add value for your clients:
1. Personalize your client’s review
Tailor your annual review to suit each client.
For example, if a client likes to get right to the point and know the bottom line, says Smyth, don’t hand him or her a 70-page plan to read through.
Instead, give the client a one- or two-page summary that can be easily read and understood.
2. Mark special occasions
Celebrate milestones and events with clients to build a stronger rapport.
“Calling and congratulating people is going the extra mile,” Smyth says. Events that might warrant a call include a new house, a baby, a significant birthday or a retirement.
You can also send a card or flowers, she says, depending on the event. But a phone call often adds a more personal touch.
3. Make house calls
If getting to your office is difficult for some clients, offer to go to their homes.
For example, if you have a large document requiring multiple signatures, she says, it might be best to drop by to explain the document and have it signed. That is more convenient than mailing it back and forth — particularly if the client is elderly.
4. Make a contribution
Offer real support to your community and your clients’ favourite causes.
Donate to a client’s charity, Smyth says, whether it’s a monetary gift or participation in an event such as a silent auction. If your client is a local business owner — such as a store owner or a restaurateur — patronize his or her business.
5. Offer your expertise
Helping out a client’s family member can make a positive impression.
If a client mentions a family member is looking for help or some insight on a particular matter, Smyth says, offer to connect him or her with another professional or to offer some tips.
For example, if your client’s family member needs an explanation of registered education savings plan rules, she says, offer to have a discussion with that relative.