Turbocharge client relationships with these 6 personalization examples
Creating solid client relationships is essential to lowering churn, improving retention, and generating referrals. But as a firm begins to grow, financial advisors must learn to balance relationship building with tracking portfolios and designing investment strategies.
Digitization of the communication process has helped. Yet, a common concern among fiduciaries is maintaining a personal connection with their clients. For that reason, many avoid automation in their marketing and communication workflows, believing that it offers only a “one-size-fits-all” approach that generalizes client needs.
This couldn’t be further from the truth.
Technology allows advisors to design a personalized experience. This applies to both their marketing and communication efforts, with the most well-known example being personalized emails. With a personalization effort, you can automate welcome emails, separate client and prospect communications, and tap into a client’s immediate needs. One study found that organizations leveraging personalization earned 40% more than their competitors.
Before we dive into how you can apply personalization at your firm and look at some examples, let’s review the scope of personalization and what it means today.
What is personalization?
Personalization is creating personal and relevant communication between two or more people. It ensures that clients feel like a person, not a number, and boosts client satisfaction. It is obligatory to create strong relationships with clients, especially if you plan to use digital or automated tools. There are various types of personalization, with advisory firms usually focusing on marketing, email personalization, and website personalization. Personalization in marketing can include both content personalization and targeted advertising with Google Ads or social media.
Essentially, a personalized experience often translates to providing relevant content or following up with clients at the right time.
Many advisors struggle with maintaining a sense of personalization while scaling their business. Creating individual, personalized messages for each client is time-consuming and can significantly slow down growth. But with continuing technological innovation, it’s become possible not only to sustain a personalized client experience but also to automate many of the processes.
And it’s incredibly effective. Organizations that use personalization may generate up to 40% more revenue than those that don’t. And over half of overall consumers say that this practice improves brand satisfaction.
In other words, a personalized experience can boost your revenue and client retention. But if you’ve never tried this tactic, it can be challenging to find where to start.
Below, we’ve listed some simple and easy-to-implement examples specific to financial advisors.
6 personalization examples for financial advisors
Unlike e-commerce personalization, which may include automated product recommendations, the toolset that works best for most financial advisors revolves around personalized content. Below are some of the six ways that advisors can leverage a personalization strategy to improve acquisition, client satisfaction, and retention.
1. Welcome emails
The automated welcome email can be considered a quick win for many firms. When you add a new client or prospect to a mailing list, you can create an automatic welcome email with their name. This can be a great way to keep you top of mind, but can also make a client feel more appreciated.
You may also be able to add additional information, such as the date, service provided, and other key details. All of these are made possible through the use of tags – a short code that inserts a client’s information directly from your CRM or mailing list data. Each platform may have its own tag versions. They are usually labeled as personalization tags.
Ideally, you will want two automated sequences if you email clients and prospects. This enables you to ensure that the recipient receives relevant information.
2. Onboarding emails
Similar to the welcome email, you can send an onboarding email to new clients with specific information. These would not be sent to potential clients but add a layer of support to your email marketing campaign. This can include key information, such as your contact details, product offerings, worksheets, risk assessments, ebooks, or other useful tools.
Often, an onboarding email is part of the welcome email automation process. You may also have different email flows based on client segmentation. For example, you may have specific materials for new clients about to retire versus families saving for their children’s education. This additional step in your client journey offers an opportunity to easily build client trust.
3. Milestone celebrations
Another personalized feature is birthday and anniversary interactions. You may choose to get an alert to call your clients on these special days, or you can send out scheduled emails or texts. Setting up a scheduled email with a template, personalized with the client’s name and relevant images, or even a video, can make this process easier to manage.
4. Content recommendations
Another way to personalize your communications is to recommend specific content to clients. This tactic is usually a part of an email campaign. You could, for example, send separate content to clients with children versus those without. As both groups would be interested in different financial objectives, you can better tailor interactions with them and stay relevant. How you should segment clients and determine the best personalized content depends on your firm’s client base and focus.
5. Check-in emails
Personalization doesn’t always relate to the client’s identity or questions about finance. It can also be proactive communication. Sending a brief check-in survey to get a pulse on a client’s feelings about their portfolio or the market can make them feel like more than a number. At the same time, it enables advisors to better prioritize which clients to communicate with based on their risk tolerance.
6. Client vs. prospective emails
Finally, it’s important to separate client and prospect communication. A client doesn’t need to be “sold” on your services. Likewise, a prospect won’t necessarily get much out of client-specific content. It’s possible to automate communication for both without eliminating personalized content.
Content personalization best practices
No matter which tactics you use from our personalization examples, it’s essential to consider the best practices. Here are some of the ways you can optimize your content personalization and client experience:
Use their name, always
One of the easiest ways to help clients and prospects feel appreciated is to use their names in emails and other communications. This process is also easy to automate, as marketing tools can pull name data from your CRM or email list with a general code.
It’s also extremely effective. For example, an email is 50% more likely to be opened if you include the recipient’s name in the subject line.
Segment your client base
Segmentation and personalization are often used interchangeably. But they aren’t the same, and it could be said that segmentation makes personalization easier. Client segmentation involves separating clients or prospects by demographic information. For example, you may divide clients by age, gender, or location. You can also make custom tags to segment clients via objectives or financial products.
Customize your call-to-action (CTA)
Often, you will not want clients and prospects to have similar calls to action. Even among clients, there may be different things you want them to do. Outside of calling your office, you may want them to download an educational pamphlet, complete a survey, or read an article.
You may find that client segments react differently to actions. For example, elderly clients may have problems completing an online survey or opening a PDF – therefore, you may want to send them information that’s easy to access. Some clients may prefer videos to reading, so you may want to direct them to specific resources.
Leverage different content types
Not everyone responds to the same content type. Some clients prefer videos, while others may like text. It can be helpful to add both types or segment clients via content preferences. You can do this by asking them during onboarding. Many email tools enable you to see who has opened or clicked on content in an email, allowing you to determine who might be more interested in what kind of content.
You can also make use of automated triggers to send content to specific clients or prospects. For example, if a prospect does not open an email, you can use automation to send another within three days to follow up or introduce another topic.
More on building strong client relationships.
Personalization is a critical tool to strengthen client communications and boost retention. However, it’s not the only way to engage clients. Check out our recent guide on client engagement for more essential strategies for growing your firm.