Photo credit: <a href = "http://www.freedigitalphotos.net/images/view_photog.php?photogid=2664">Stuart Miles</a>

It’s time again for the annual 100 Best Sales and Marketing Ideas. We’re looking for the best ideas from advisors and other industry experts. The best of these ideas will appear in print in the June issue of Senior Market Advisor magazine and online at www.lifehealthpro.com.

We encourage you to take our survey and get your best idea in so we can include you in the upcoming feature. If you have more than one great idea, feel free to include that as well.

We’ve already begun receiving some responses from readers. Below I’ve included some of the best so far. Just remember to get your ideas in so we can see you in print and online.

Social Media

Don’t pitch your wares! People want to do business with people they like and trust. Start a conversation, establish rapport, and you’ll build a relationship. LinkedIn Tip: Connect with friends, colleagues and people you’ve done business with. Set up the app “Job Change Notifier” (www.jobchangenotifier.com). The app sends you an email whenever your connections change their employer. Great for those working with 401(k) rollovers or simply a great way to congratulate them and keep your network engaged.

Todd Greider

Seniors

When working with seniors, speak slower than normal. Writing letters? Use 14-point type, and keep it simple and short. Your goal is to build trust and respect ASAP via both the phone and mailings. Don’t think that you can pull the wool over their eyes, and never talk down to them. Make them feel that they are important, because we are.

Donald W.Schulz

With seniors sometimes the best marketing material is the language of silence. Learn to not talk, especially the talk of interruption. If you listen long enough they will tell you all you need and want to know

Jerry Manning

Annuities

Show them where the market has gone in 2000 and 2008 and where they would be if they were in a fixed index annuity.

Jim Cadle

Workshops

We contact local churches and go speak to the retired groups that meet for lunch once a month. We do educational workshops to educate retirees of the challenges ahead, give solutions to solve the issues and educate about other areas of financial planning and estate planning. They always feed us lunch when we come; most bring a dish so there are plenty of different dishes and great home-cooked food. We use this as a way to volunteer our time and provide information for improvements in areas of stewardship. Many times, clients contact us afterward to set up an appointment for us to come to their home (non-local clients) or to our office (local clients). If we don’t get a call, then that’s OK, too. We want to educate them, and share our knowledge and expertise. This also helps establish ourselves as educators and experts all over the state.

Mark Romine