Although Waldron Wealth Management has realized impressive growth, particularly over the last three years, it can’t be laid to the firm’s extensive marketing or prospecting program. If anything, Waldron must have among the most passive referral approaches of any firm in the industry. Krishna Pendyala, who was a client before he became an employee, says that one of the things that most impressed him was that the firm doesn’t pitch itself to anyone. There are no seminars, direct mail pieces, requests for referrals, or any kind of prospecting. “In the space we play in we only need six to 10 clients a year,” says Pendyala. “It’s all through what I call unsolicited endorsements.”
The Waldron COO particularly shies away from the term referral. He says that when he first joined the firm, Waldron gave him all kinds of books and articles to read, most of which talked about the importance of asking your clients for referrals, but he found the idea of asking your clients to give you more clients was “really cheesy.” He knows that if you ask clients, they’ll give you names, “because nobody likes to say no,” but then you’ve got to hound those prospects to turn them into clients. Waldron and Pendyala agree that it’s much better to do an excellent job for their clients, knowing that those clients in turn will mention them to similar individuals in similar situations. They also pick up the occasional endorsement from estate attorneys that they’ve worked with in the past.