Many agents have those amazing products that can take them to untamed financial success, but marketing is always an issue. Let’s take a look at what Apple did over the last decade with their marketing and see how it translates to you.
Apple Inc. is currently one of the most powerful and dominating forces in technology and the business world in general. They have amassed a net worth of over $300 billion and liquid assets of almost $60 billion. Apple has been in business since 1976, but the massive wealth has accumulated only over the past 10 to 12 years. Why? Keep reading to find out.
You may think that the iPad, iPod, iPhone or Mac are the reasons for Apple Inc.’s recent financial success, but that is only half of the equation. As you know, the greatest products in the world are useless if you cannot get them into the hands of the consumer. This is where the other half of the equation comes in: marketing. Many agents have those amazing products that can take them to untamed financial success, but marketing is always an issue. Let’s take a look at what Apple did over the last decade with their marketing and see how it translates to you.
Branding, Branding, Branding
Every time you see that apple with the bite out of it, you know whom it belongs to. Each time you mention an MP3 player or musical device, it’s usually called an iPod, even if it’s not. In fact, a portion of the reading audience doesn’t know the difference between an iPod and a generic MP3 player. That is not an insult to the reader, but it’s a compliment to Apple. They have pushed their brand and ideas on us so much and so powerfully that we are conditioned to think that way. The most desired cell phone out there is the iPhone.
Why? Because it’s an Apple. The Droid may be a significantly better phone, but it doesn’t matter. Apple is the cell phone giant. They have the newest ideas and put their name only on products of the highest quality. Their logo is unmistakable.
You should consider some of these same ideas. If you don’t have a logo, get one. They are a must. You must have business cards and stationery, and maybe even support a local youth athletic team. Place an ad in the local paper every Sunday for a year. Get your brand known and keep displaying it in as many places as possible to as many people as possible.
By continuing to see your logo and name, you will begin to resonate with people. Your name and company will begin to ring a bell with them and soon you will be well-known.
Associate your brand with positive things like charities, fundraisers and support groups. Keep getting your name and face out there so that when people think of financial advice, they think of you.
Use the Rule of Three
Steve Jobs took a gamble and invested significant amounts of money into marketing his three major products: the iPod, the iPhone and the Mac. The company did not focus on setting trends in every market; instead, they focused on three core ideas, and the results speak for themselves.
Some agents spend $3,000 to $7,000 per month on their marketing; on the other hand, some advisors do very little at all. It is wise to have at least three different marketing concepts running at any one time. Keeping different avenues of lead and referral generation going will ensure that you always offer your great products to new customers. Perhaps you are doing internet leads, running an ad in the local paper and doing a radio show on Sunday mornings. Or maybe you run preset appointments, do a monthly seminar and host a networking breakfast. Whatever it is you do, have three prospecting methods keeping you busy.
The same rule of three can be applied to your sales presentations. Try to keep your thought process and pitch to three main parts. This will help the client grasp everything you are saying and be able to give you proper feedback. There is no need to overload them with information right away.
For example, you can have an introductory portion of the meeting followed by a review of goals and finances and then end by setting a follow-up appointment. This rule of three will help to keep your marketing and presentations in proper order and help you maximize results.
Sell Dreams, Not Products
Steve Jobs’ technique was ingenious. His presentations never focused on specs of the product. Instead, he always stressed the product’s positive impact on your life and how amazing the concept truly was. He wanted you to see how this product will change your life and he did that through dreams, not numbers. Too many times, we focus on how great the products are and all the details of what makes them great. This is an important part of your job, but it’s not the most effective way to help your client understand the advantages of what you offer.
Talk more about the amazing benefits that can be achieved by a solid financial strategy. Don’t explain the numbers of the contract and try and relate it to the client; instead explain something that the client wants, needs or dreams of and relate that to the contract. It sounds simple and miniscule, but it will make a difference.
Think about it. You didn’t buy the iPhone because of the processor speed, the amazing retina display or the cutting edge operating system. You bought the iPhone because of the idea behind it—something that makes your life easier and allows you access to new things that were once unattainable.