Annuities

Keeping Up with Amazon


Annuities

I was at a retail store over the weekend, and as I was checking out, the UPS man dropped off some additional supplies. The shop owners stopped and commented that UPS now has their people working on Saturdays as well. The UPS driver responded that by the beginning of next year, he was going to have to start working on Sundays as well. He added, “I have to keep up with Amazon.”

So, my question for you. Are you ready to keep up with Amazon when they enter the financial services space?

At some point, Amazon will most likely enter our business — if they haven’t already. Different online insurance agencies have begun peppering our clients for information to win their business. But if we continue to add value, we make ourselves irreplaceable. What is changing, however, is how people interact with us and how they choose financial planners. Type in the words financial professional, financial planner or financial services into your search engine and you’ll find 20 million hits on any one of those keywords. The way people buy things are completely different from just 10 years ago. Purchases are being driven by the changing behaviors that Amazon has created.

So, how do you cut through all the noise?

Think about how you last purchased something. Did you look online? Most likely you looked at the ratings and read some of the other reviews that previous buyers posted on the product. Searching online before buying is a material change in the way people look at how they buy products and services. They look online for words and reviews that convince them of the value of what they are buying.  

 In the financial services industry, this has a significant impact. There are three things to consider when shaping your digital presence.

  1. Change how you’re positioning yourself. With more than 20 million hits on keywords involving financial planning, you must cut through the noise, clarify your message and be crystal clear about what you do. To do that, you need to segment and target your prospective clients and make sure they understand the meaning of your message. This will attract the quality prospects you really want into your practice.

  2. Make your client the hero of their journey. Every one of us is the hero of our own journey. So, if you try to be the hero of your client’s journey, you will run a parallel path. When you become their guide, however, and help them find their way on the path, you prove your value.

  3. Maintain a nurturing email campaign. Once you have established yourself as a guide, you need to nurture your clients. Switching from attracting clients to nurturing them cannot just be a simple crossover. In today’s world, you can continue to nurture and to build trust digitally. Your nurture campaign can be programmed to deliver your message and continue to clarify your role as a guide. It can be customized for different audiences. It can allow you to speak personally to each client, while still taking advantage of automation. To make it work, however, requires effort upfront and a solid message. And it requires the ability to reevaluate and adapt to meet your clients’ current needs.

 

By focusing on these three changes, you will open yourself up to greater success both now and in the future. You’ll attract quality people, grow your assets under management and then ultimately remain relevant in the greatest shift from the workforce to retirement our country has ever seen.

It sounds like a daunting task. But it is possible.  Reach out to our team and learn more about how we’re here to help you become a High Performing Practice. After all, Amazon didn’t start out as the force it has become. Like other growing companies, Amazon watched, adapted and automated. And so can you.

Transformational Tactic

Cutting through the noise of today’s digital world is essential to remaining relevant. We can help.

Driving a Successful Retirement


Annuities

Are your clients relying on Social Security to fund their retirement? If you answered yes, you’re not alone. In fact, for 61% of us, the majority of our retirement income will come from Social Security.

The trouble with that strategy is that Social Security is set to decrease by 24% by the year 2034. With the pandemic and current economic downturn, it could happen even quicker. So, if your clients fit into that majority, it’s time to consider options that will protect their retirement despite this decrease.

Driving a car, or a career, requires focus. But how do you know what to focus on? In both cases, there’s not a single answer. You must be focused on your destination, of course, but also be watching for signs along the road. I believe that you need to focus simultaneously on short-term, intermediate and long-term goals all at once. And while it does require concentration, it’s not as impossible as it sounds.

When I was learning to drive a car, either my mom or my dad was always in the passenger seat reminding me to scan the horizon. They taught me to focus on intermediate distance — what was coming up ahead a few miles —but to also pay attention to what was happening close to the car in case something jumped out at the last second. And, of course, I needed to make sure I was making the proper turns to reach my destination — my long-term goal.

Focusing on short-term, intermediate and long-term goals also applies to retirement income planning.

It’s too important an issue to ignore when discussing income retirement plans with your clients. And, depending on where your clients live, I want to share a possible solution. It’s an annuity that addresses the unknowns of Social Security.

There’s a lot going on in today’s market.  We’re experiencing short-term volatility, largely fueled by the upcoming election. Intermediate problems are the result of the federal government announcing that they’re not planning to raise rates until 2024. It’s extremely difficult to generate income yield in a low-interest-rate environment. And finally, Social Security is at a risk for a reduction sometime between 2031 and 2035, depending upon where you think that the impact of the economic downturn will hit.

So, how do you make sure that you’re focusing in on three things?  Start by planning with all three — short-term, intermediate and long-term — concerns in mind. Just as when you’re driving a car, you should be scanning for all those varying concerns and preparing solutions for your client that address them. And most importantly, you need to be guided by the question: “How can I create a legacy for that next generation so that my client doesn’t run out of money?” And, while doing that, how can you take the risk of Social Security off the table for all your clients — not just the wealthy ones? Because the impact of reduced Social Security could be 24% or more.

Planning successfully for your current clients will help you reach your long-term goal of securing the next generation. It’s by far the least expensive client acquisition and client retention strategy available. If you’re looking for ways to take your business to the next level, make your business a High Performing Practice and learn how to behave, act and think differently to successfully navigate the greatest transition from the workforce to retirement I encourage you to reach out to our sales desk at (800) 589-3000.

We can help you take your business to the next level.

Transformational Tactic

Don’t ignore short-term and intermediate goals. They are essential to hitting the long-term goals of successful retirement and satisfied clients.

The Risk of Relying on Social Security


Annuities

Are your clients relying on Social Security to fund their retirement? If you answered yes, you’re not alone. In fact, for 61% of us, the majority of our retirement income will come from Social Security.

The trouble with that strategy is that Social Security is set to decrease by 24% by the year 2034. With the pandemic and current economic downturn, it could happen even quicker. So, if your clients fit into that majority, it’s time to consider options that will protect their retirement despite this decrease.

What percent of your client’s retirement income will come from Social Security? And, even more important, what impact will this have on their retirement and the ability for them to enjoy their retirement years? And how will you prepare them?

It’s too important an issue to ignore when discussing income retirement plans with your clients. And, depending on where your clients live, I want to share a possible solution. It’s an annuity that addresses the unknowns of Social Security.

If reductions are made, this solution has a bonus that pays a percentage of the premium over a period of five years. If reductions are not made, the solution pays a bonus for each five-year period the contract is in force.

When it comes to your clients’ longevity, you can’t be too careful. Your clients have questions about Social Security. And now you can offer more than just educational information. You can provide a solution as well.

If you’re not sure how much your clients are relying on Social Security, we can help with that too. With our Journey Guide software, we put you on the path to determining your clients’ needs. From there, you can create a financial plan that covers all aspects of retirement.

Sources: Social Security Administration 2020 Fact Sheet;
https://protect-us.mimecast.com/s/7bvmCrkM8ocr8P3MH77Bbt

Transformational Tactic

Help alleviate your clients’ fears of Social Security reductions. Offer a solution as part of the discussion.

How to Execute for Success Each Day


Annuities

Although 2020 seems like the year that just won’t quit, somehow, we are already staring the fourth quarter in the eyes. It’s almost here. And, if you’re like so many other advisors, you’re probably wondering where the year went. And you’re thinking of how you can be more efficient to hit some of those goals you set at the beginning of the year. Dec. 31 is still a few months away, and there’s still time to improve your performance — both now and in 2021 as well.

The big fight for most of us is against time. Have you ever thought of all the different things you’d be able to do with just two extra hours each day? Would those two hours be enough time to push your business to the next level?

But the reality is we only have a certain amount of time in a day, a week or a month. So, the goal is to maximize that time and to get incrementally better every day.

So, as you’re heading into the fourth quarter, there are two important things to think about.

  1. Start thinking about your business plan for 2021. Although it’s still more than three months away, your actions now will lead to revenue in January and February next year.  Determine what level of activity you need to generate revenue for next year. And start working at that level today. Don’t wait.
  2. Break down the activity into daily tasks. Once you’ve thought of the overall strategy for 2021, break it down into manageable tasks, and focus on getting better each day. Improve your performance by 1%. To do that requires you to execute effectively.

When I was a student basketball manager at Indiana under the legendary coach Bob Knight, I learned how to maximize my time. Coach Knight broke every practice down into segments of five, 10 and 15 minutes. And he maximized those blocks of time. We worked on things that we did poorly the previous day and, by doing that, we got better. We went back and watched film to figure out where we needed to improve. And, again, we got better. Everything we did was with a focus on where we wanted to up our game. We didn’t waste time but used every minute effectively.

You can do the same thing in your business. Think about where you’d like to do better. Consider obstacles that got in the way of your success in 2020 and how to turn them into opportunities in 2021. And then break that down into specific activities that will allow you to grow your business.

If you’re not sure where to start, or what to change, the first step is to enroll in our course. We’re dedicated to helping you take your business to the next level, and we’re ready to help you start. Log on for more information today.

 

Transformational Tactic

Maximizing your time, and focusing on improving each day, are the first steps to transforming your business to High Performing Practice.

Claim Retirement Victory with Guaranteed Income


Annuities

I learned a lot as a student basketball manager under the legendary coach Bob Knight. And one lesson that I really took to heart came from a sign posted in the locker room. It was straightforward and simple, and something we can all benefit from.

The sign was hung right where the players would see it as they left the locker room to head out to the court. Below a picture of an athlete in a defensive stance position were the words “Victory favors the team making the fewest mistakes.”

Even after finishing school, I’ve thought about that those words a lot. It was the perfect reminder for athletes taking the floor for a big game. And it’s a perfect reminder for advisors working to grow your business to a High Performing Practice.

And nowhere is that message more important than in retirement income planning. We often talk about how to generate income. We use REITs. We use alternative investments. We manage asset allocation for the length of our client’s retirement. But unfortunately, we don’t know how far that length of retirement might expand due to longevity issues. And that’s exactly what makes removing potential mistakes so important. It’s up to us to help our clients have victory during retirement.

One of the ways to achieve that is through guaranteed income. And the guaranteed income approach that we’re seeing a lot of success with is the Income Alpha approach that I’ve talked about in the last few blogs.

Income Alpha allows you to take care of what we refer to as mug expenses—mortgage, utilities and groceries—and then allowing fewer assets needed for income generation, leaving you with more to set aside for liquidity inside the portfolio.

And it allows for planning around long-term concerns such as longevity, long-term care and legacy issues. It’s also a great way to manage your assets under management and grow your business. Consider giving the Income Alpha Strategy a try. In the next couple of years, you’ll have built a High Performing Practice.

 

Transformational Tactic

Avoid mistakes and claim retirement victory with an Alpha Income strategy. We can help you get started today.