The Dallas Cowboys Acquire a Ballerina to Play Defensive Line – Part 1 of How Financial Advisors Can Become Selling Machines

Posted By on Dec 15, 2013|0 comments


Outrageous! I know, how could a ballerina weighing less than 100 pounds even line up? The truth is that she would be crushed, so it is not a real headline. However, this is what is happening when financial advisors tackle creating a business.

Financial planners are good at what they do, but they are not marketing experts. Similarly, ballerinas are good at what they do, but they are not football players. Get it?

What I would like to accomplish in today’s post is to highlight that financial advisors are quite often many things, but marketing experts is not one of them. Second, advisors who show an interest in marketing and specifically Internet marketing should seek help.

Why? Well, if for no other reason, to make you more money. To this point, the Bureau of Labor Statistics found that the median pay for financial advisors in 2010 was $64,750 per year, or $31.13 per hour. This is significantly lower than the desired salaries of the 719 advisors I spoke with in the last 12 months. That’s where sales and marketing come in. If financial advisors are intentional about growing their business, they need to have a sales and marketing plan. As I have shared in this blog before, Townsend Wardlaw turned me into a sales machine.

When I started my business, I was an investment manager. I knew I needed help so I sought out the best sales person I knew. I wanted Townsend to whip me into shape, hold me accountable and not let go.

Becoming a sales trainer for financial advisors was easier than I thought because it was a process. I learned that sales was more about being a consultant and discovering what difficulties others are dealing with, enabling them to find and create solutions and influencing them to do something that they may or may not want to do.

Sales and Marketing for Financials Advisors

Always wanting to learn more about sales and marketing, I recently contacted Jack Waymire, founder of Paladin Registry, for an interview after several financial advisors nationwide indicated how pleased they were with using Paladin Registry.

Jack conceived Paladin after he ended his career as an institutional financial consultant and founder of Lexington Capital Management, a broker dealer and RIA. Through his experience, he realized that individual investors needed a way to evaluate financial planners.

As a result, he wrote Who’s Watching Your Money: The 17 Paladin Principles for Selecting a Financial Advisor in 2004. This subsequently evolved into Paladin Registry, a website devoted to helping individuals seek out advisors with the right attributes.

The Three Categories of Financial Advisors

Before we dive more into the Paladin Registry, I think it’s important to understand what type of financial advisor you are. In my 17 years of working with financial advisors, I have found that they generally can be grouped into one of three categories: asset gatherer, investment manager and financial planner.

  • Asset Gatherer – They have entered the business mainly because they were focused on relationships and thought the industry was the best way to go about making a living by connecting with individuals. They often have a sales background and are the most adept at marketing.
  • Investment Manager – They love numbers and specifically love finding good investments. They enjoy the game of investing and like the idea of getting paid for helping clients do something that they don’t enjoy or don’t have time to do.
  • Financial Planner – They have been planners since birth. They plan trips, vacations and company projects.  They enjoy planning their own retirement and have decided to continue their passion by helping others plan and organize their financials.

The difficulty with all three categories is that none of these individuals are true marketers. A marketer is someone who is creative, likes to test words and pictures and is willing to work within the unknown.  As a result, most financial planners’ interests and abilities are different from those of a marketer. This is like the Dallas Cowboys hiring a ballerina to play on the defensive line.

This is also why great advisors make poor marketers – they don’t commit time to it and they are not intentional about marketing, according to Jack. That’s where the Paladin Registry comes in.

The Paladin Registry is focused on two things: Helping individuals have a process for selecting financial advisors and helping financial advisors market themselves through the Internet. With the help of the Paladin Registry, financial advisors in any of the categories above can become the selling machines they set out to be.

Next Steps

Stayed tuned to part two of this blog post next Monday. Not on our email list? Sign up to make sure receive the next edition of this post. In the meantime, think about which type of advisor you are and how marketing can play a role in growing your business.

photo credit: Thomas Hawk via photopin cc

photo credit: Ray Bouknight via photopin cc

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