In Part 1 of this post, I explored some of the ways Disney celebrates their guests and strengthens those relationships to build lifelong fans. And, I ended with this question for you:
So, how can you celebrate your clients like Disney does? Let’s jump into some of the ways you can accomplish this now.
It starts with recognizing the small, important things. Important dates are one thing, because OF COURSE you should be recognizing birthdays and anniversaries. What about the other things, though? How can you possibly celebrate the things your clients love if you don’t record them in some way? When you’re celebrating something as simple as a birthday, everything is tied together. Your ability to celebrate is based on having that birthday on file. Your ability to escalate your celebration is connected to having those additional details on file to provide a unique experience to them. Your ability to enable your staff is tied directly to what type of information you have about your clients and how you clearly establish ways to act on that information.
Using a simple birthday example, we can use what Disney applies to celebration to make it something really special. Sure, sending a birthday card through a marketing service is fine, but what if you sent that birthday card straight from your office signed by everyone? What if that birthday card was customized to their favorite sports team? What if that birthday card had a gift card to their favorite restaurant? What if your staff is properly educated and enabled to reach out to clients, to provide them with their favorite beverage at meetings, to small talk with them about personal details while they’re in the office? These types of details allow you to celebrate your clients, escalate that celebration by using personal connections, and enable your staff to act on those details to further deepen your relationships.
So I ask again: how are you planning to celebrate your clients in 2020? I would encourage your office to implement the ways of Disney, and that starts with the data you gather. Look for ways you can build relationships through the things your client holds close. Some favorites to consider might be:
- Sports Teams
- Alma Maters
- Car Types
- Recreational Activities
- Vacation Spots
- Pet Names
Use your CRM to track this information, but be choosy about what’s relevant to you as an office. An office that doesn’t really watch sports is going to have an awkward time trying to connect through sports, after all.
Once that data is collected, look at ways that you can turn up the celebration. Small gestures like sending themed cards, having favorite consumables in stock at the office, or connecting with conversations about traditions, hobbies, and more can bring incredible value to your relationship.
Lastly, set a clearly defined culture that gives your office staff the ability to use this information to connect. Give your team the freedom to open up conversation, to celebrate the little things, and to do so spontaneously.
According to Cerulli Associates, there are more than 300,000 financial advisors in the industry. What you do isn’t what makes you special, but rather how you do it. Hundreds of thousands of financial professionals are providing similar services as you, but are they taking the extra step to deeply strengthen their relationships?
Through Redtail’s 2019 AdvisorComms Survey of over 3,200 financial professionals, we discovered that “less than 6% of offices consider any client characteristics outside of age, income, gender or education for the purpose of crafting tailored client content”. That finding definitely jibes with my informal estimation of how many hands I saw raised when I posed my tracking client favorites question to audiences over the course of this past year. It just seems to me like we can do better in this regard, that we must do better in this regard, if we want to stand out from the crowd rather than blending into it.
By taking the time to celebrate your clients a little more, by caring about the things they care about, and by using those things to build stronger relationships, you have the potential to greatly separate yourself from others. Not by numbers, not by efficiency, but by caring and celebrating just a little bit more than the others out there.