The most powerful marketing tool has been around for thousands of years and is largely ignored. It has been utilized since the time of the Egyptians. You’ve been using this kind of marketing since you were old enough to write…Dear Santa…
The system is the handwritten note and I’m going to tell you why it works. For 12 years I was making no more than $50,000 a year. The system I am going to tell you about catapulted me to collecting $33 million in new money and making $1 million a year of income in just two years! How? Take a look.
The Power of the Handwritten note:
- Pen or pencil — free (Your local service station will give you one for free.)
- Paper — one penny
- Envelope – one nickel
- Stamp – 42 cents
- Total cost – 48 cents
The one piece of mail that is guaranteed to be read 100% of the time is the handwritten note. If done right — your message will:
- Be kept for at least a week
- Be shared with other people you normally couldn’t reach
- Create referrals…and the most effective referrals – UNASKED FOR REFERRALS.
- Sets you apart from your competition. You will be demonstrating the Golden Rule of selling:
They don’t care how much you know
Until they know how much you care
Your competition is playing a game that can’t be won. They are all trying to prove:
- That they are smarter than each other
- That they have better customer service
You will be alone in demonstrating that you care!
The handwritten note can:
- Create over 100 referrals in a year from your top ten clients
- Create hot prospects that will be dying for you to call them
- Create a campaign that will have prospects calling you for your product
- Double your seminar invitation response rate
- Find all the money your clients have but have never told you about
Why it works
I am a commodity. You are a commodity. Financial advisors are a commodity. We like to think that we aren’t, but we are. We all look the same to the public. We all sell the same things. Our products all cost the same and we can’t put things on sale like retailers to pump up our business.
We are all basically proficient at being financial advisors much the same as dentists are all proficient at dentistry. We don’t all flock to a dentist because he is the “best.” We go to a dentist simply because we needed one. He or she had an office close to our home, we heard they were good, and they were as good, in our eyes, as any other dentist. Sorry, but for most people, that is about the same amount of time and effort they put into choosing a financial advisor.
No wonder I had never made more than $50,000 a year in my 12 years as a financial planner. I tried everything and it all kind of worked…just not enough for me to make more than $50,000 a year.
- Seminars – Expensive and risky. One failed workshop and I was $5,000 in the hole. Three failed workshops and I could be out of business.
- Newsletters – Sent out thousands and they always seem to generate enough business to pay for themselves…just.
- Newspaper Ads – Got a lot of people wanting free information…just not a lot of people buying products
- Referrals – I asked for them a lot at the beginning but after making clients feel on the spot and still not getting many good referrals I quit asking. I figured why make client feel uncomfortable when the likelihood of a good referral was slim to none anyways.
So finally, through desperation, I sat down and tried to figure out an inexpensive way (I couldn’t afford anything but cheap) for me to look different than all my competition. And I had a lot of competition. I live in Rochester, MN, the home of the world famous Mayo Clinic. Since 7% of the entire Rochester population is doctors, every broker and their brother have set up shop in our city.
Here’s what I stumbled on:
- Trying to look smart doesn’t work. They either take your information back to their current broker and he made the commission on it or they just take the information home to “think about.”
- You can’t give better customer service. Your competitors answer their phones courteously. They promptly return phone calls. They fulfilled their client’s requests quickly and with a smile on their face. Your competitors all have good customer service
- You can’t promise them higher returns than my competitors for two reasons. It’s illegal and it’s a lie. Heck, if I could actually get them the highest returns I’d be living large on a Caribbean Island right now!
I had been ignoring the Golden Rule of sales for 12 years:
The prospect doesn’t care how much you know Until they know how much you care
I had been spending the vast majority of my time trying to demonstrate how much I know to prospects and just expected them to know that I care.
THAT IS BACKWARDS!
They already know that you’re competent; they think all financial advisors are competent just as they do with dentists. What they don’t know was that you care.
How can you show them that you care more than other financial advisors?
I sat down and tried to think how I could show them that I cared more about them than my competition. I couldn’t tell them because prospects by nature are very skeptical. Their attitude is:
- Words are cheap
- Just SHOW me
So how can you show them that you care about them? If you just keep coming up with financial ideas to share with them, it’s just making them think that the only thing you care about is getting at their money.
You need to show them that you care about them as people as you would a friend or family member. People do business with those who treat them like a friend.
What do friends do?
- They share stories about what has happened to them or their families
- They help each other out
- They keep in contact
- They time for each other
The only way you can do these things is by phone or by mail. Phone is labor intensive and you run into the do not call list and making intrusive calls that cause people to dislike you.
Mail is not intrusive and can be done very time efficiently. Unfortunately, the time efficient way of mail merging form letters is a waste of money. 99% are going to get thrown away.
The one piece of mail no one throws away without reading it is the handwritten note.
So I began to write handwritten notes. A few at first and then dozens and then as my business began to explode instead of stopping…I wrote hundreds of handwritten notes and within two years, without changing anything else I was doing, I went from making $50,000 a year to over $1 million a year.