Knowing how to generate a continuous flow of high-quality referrals is among the most important marketing challenges any advisor faces. The results of a 2012 survey of financial advisors by research firm CEG Worldwide offer some interesting insights on the matter:
The top five sources of professional referrals:
- Accountants: 68 percent
- Estate planning attorneys: 61 percent
- Life insurance specialists: 35 percent
- Mortgage brokers: 29 percent
- Personal property and casualty agents: 12 percent
What were the sources of all referrals?
- Professional connections: 54.2 percent
- Clients: 30.1 percent
- Seminars/conferences: 13.5 percent
Number of client referrals received each year (by advisor income group):
- 26.7 percent received 3-5 referrals
- 12.3 percent received 6+ referrals
- 44.0 percent received 3-5 referrals
- 11.2 percent received 6+ referrals
- 23.1 percent received 3-5 referrals
- 29.2 percent received 6+ referrals
How many clients did respondents have?
- 21.2 percent had 150-299 clients
- 20.0 percent had 300+ clients
- 30.4 percent had 150-299 clients
- 33.2 percent had 300+ clients
- 35.1 percent had 150-299 clients
- 36.5 percent had 300+ clients
It may come as no surprise that the most successful advisors had the greatest number of clients and referrals, giving them the greatest likelihood of falling into the high-income ($500,000 or more per year) group.
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- 5 tips to build your referral sales
- 4 guidelines for great referrals
- Referrals: Avoid that awkward first date
Nick Ray is a business coach who specializes in working with financial services professionals. He is the author of There’s More to Selling than Making the Sale as well as a workbook on target marketing. He can be reached at email@example.com.