Three Ways to Make Yourself More Interesting
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I speak to advisors every day, helping them grow by referral and run their practice more effectively. We talk about all sorts of topics. Lately, I’ve noticed many independent advisors trying to find a way to make themselves more interesting.
When you’re surrounded by your competition, making yourself more interesting is going to help you stand out and attract people to you (both of which are great if you want more referrals). I’ve seen many examples of how advisors make themselves more interesting, but here are three best approaches that have a big impact.
1. Focus on a niche
One way to make yourself more interesting is to focus on a niche. Most advisors are nervous about choosing a niche because they’re afraid of choosing a bad one, they have no idea how to go about it, they’re afraid they’ll lose too much ‘other’ business, or they don’t think it will be profitable.
In reality, choosing a niche is highly profitable because you become seen as a true expert and people prefer to work with experts. It also makes it really easy for others to refer you. For example, I’ve helped clients develop niches to serve blue-collar workers in agriculture, equestrians, generation X, small business owners, LGBTQ+, creative entrepreneurs and divorced/widows. A good coach can guide you through this process, help you choose a niche that aligns well with you and develop the tools to effectively support it.
2. Spice up your defining statement
Another way to make yourself unique is to sound different from your competition. How many times do people ask you the question, “What do you do?” The most common response is something like, “I’m a financial advisor” or, “I do investments” or, “I do financial planning.” If you’ve said this at any time to someone, you’ve witnessed their eyes rolling or the accidental look away or the quick dash to a new subject. That’s because you sound like every other advisor and because most people have met someone like you before or know someone like you, they think they already know what you do so you become boring to them.
Time to shake it up! The next time someone asks you, “What do you do?” be different. Say something like, “As a young adult I watched my mom struggle financially as a widow so now my mission is to help widows develop financial security.” Or, “I help business owners make smarter decisions.” When the other person looks at you with interest in their eyes or actually says, “That’s interesting, how do you do that?” that’s when you know you’ve made yourself more interesting.
3. Leverage LinkedIn
I’ve begun to spend a lot more time on LinkedIn in 2020. It was a goal of mine to learn how to leverage this social media platform more effectively for my business. I’m even working with a coach to help me gain the results I’m looking for.
One thing I’ve noticed is that there are many financial advisors on LinkedIn, which is good. However, most advisors I see are simply sharing information from other people, which is certainly better than doing nothing at all. That said, it doesn’t help people on LinkedIn to get to know you. They don’t hear your voice. If they don’t get a feel for who you really are, how can you expect them to reach out to potentially engage with you?
I get it. I know compliance can put a wrench into some of your ideas. But when your competition is building their audience, establishing their personal brand, connecting on a personal level and you’re not, how can you expect to compete? I’ve coached my clients to be more personal with their messages on LinkedIn, triggering their audience to engage more and ultimately leading to people reaching out for a consultation.
Talk to your colleagues who are using LinkedIn successfully within compliance. Hire a coach who specializes in social media to help you. Find out what you need to do to get your voice heard. Social media is here to stay. You can leverage it to make yourself more interesting.
Interesting people get attention. The goal is to make people turn their head and engage in conversation. Tap into their curiosity and make them feel as though you truly understand them because you serve their unique needs. Standing out from your competition doesn’t need to be hard, it just needs to be interesting.
Michelle R. Donovan is a referral coach, speaker and co-owner of Productivity Uncorked LLC, a coaching firm that specializes in helping female financial advisors increase their referrals and get more done in their day. Michelle has written a Wall Street Journal Best Selling book, The 29% Solution (published in seven languages) and an Amazon Best Selling book, A Woman’s Way: Empowering Female Financial Advisors to Authentically Lead and Flourish in a Man’s World. To schedule a free 30-minute call with Michelle, reach out to her at [email protected] or connect with her on LinkedIn.