Over the past 15 years I have seen firsthand the struggle that women have accessing the services and expertise they desire, yet they are the demographic with the greatest need, not to mention unprecedented wealth, savings and spending power. I have sat across the desk from financial and insurance professionals and decision makers at firms, and I draw on that expertise to create proven, real-world solutions and actionable ideas that help to increase business and sales while helping women feel at home in seeking financial help. The Female Affect, which I founded in 2010, uses that experience to help firms and financial professionals grow their business.
Below are some proven actionable ideas to help financial and insurance professionals better connect with women to build the kind of relationship that is loyal, trustworthy and comfortable.
Tip 7: Ask open-ended questions
By asking open-ended questions, your female prospect will tell you more than the typical yes/no questions ever could. The more information you have, the stronger your relationship will be and you will be able to better meet her financial planning needs. Instead of asking the standard questions like, “what is your risk tolerance and what are your debts and assets?” ask questions that allow her to talk about her life, goals and concerns and how she wants to live her life in retirement. For example: what life experiences are you willing to share with me that impact your view on money, financial planning and security? When it comes to money, who was your greatest influence and why?
Tip 6: Make eye contact
Generally speaking, women view eye contact as a sign that you are taking her seriously as a client and that you are listening and care about what she is saying. We often take small gestures like eye contact for granted, but lack of eye contact is one of the major reasons women decide not to engage with a financial professional. That isn’t to say that men don’t like eye contact, but for women it has a different meaning. For women it confirms that you respect her as a client and decision maker. If you can’t make eye contact, why would she give you her money?
Tip 5: Boost her financial comfort zone
There is a misconception that women aren’t interested in being educated when it comes to finances, but that’s just not true. On average, women spend 40 percent more time than men researching financial decisions. Women want to partner with a financial professional who will take the time to help educate them so that they feel comfortable asking informed questions so that they can make confident decisions. Oftentimes women don’t just want to make the right decision, they want to make the perfect decision. While there are no perfect decisions, the more information you provide, the more confidence she will have to make informed choices, which, in turn, creates a strong relationship built on trust and loyalty.