Use Outlook Calendar Invites to confirm appointments. With technology and smartphones, this works best for my firm.
The night before your next day’s appointments, have one of your team (or you) call to confirm the appointment.
If you have more time to plan out your appointments (i.e. Buffer Days™), it may lead to further cross-selling opportunities (long-term care insurance, disability, life, investments, annuities, etc.) which may allow you to have greater wallet share with your clients and reduce the number of appointments you need to meet your goals. For a week, try scheduling six appointments, four days a week, and not scheduling appointments one day a week. Use either Monday or Friday as your Buffer Day™ to prepare for and confirm your appointments.
These clients are fortunate to work with an advisor like you. Position yourself and your time with confidence, and prepare for your appointments so you can maximize their outcomes. Have your team pre-screen the appointments as much as possible to make sure they are worth your time. At the end of the day, if a client cancels on you without respecting your time (i.e. without a good excuse or letting you know in advance and rescheduling), then think of that as a blessing in disguise. If they aren’t keeping appointments with a professional like yourself, then they won’t make for good clients.
In terms of promoting products (LTD, DI, etc.), I always assume that my younger prospects have a disability income protection plan in place and that older prospects have a long-term care plan in place. If they don’t, I act surprised (and I truly am surprised). Disability income protection is the foundation of our business. Unless someone is independently wealthy, their most significant asset is their ability to wake up in the morning and earn a living. If they don’t have a plan in place to protect that asset or, worse, don’t see the importance of having disability insurance, they may not be a good fit for your Ideal Client Profile.
Long-term care is as much about telling stories and asking questions as anything. You need to have a story of your own – a family member or loved one that was devastated by a long-term care event. If you don’t have one, borrow one! Ask your clients if they have a family member that has experienced a long-term care event. If they have, sit silent as they tell you their story. If you can reach their heart strings, you aren’t “selling” anymore but simply putting in place a long-term care protection plan to help them maintain their dignity.
Set your standards on how you prepare for and manage client relationships. Make sure you are meeting with prospects that meet those standards. If you stick to that formula, you will find tremendous success.