Below are several of the top ways that advisors are leveraging Nitrogen in their practice to delight clients and grow their existing book of business. These practices are used by advisors to coach clients for long-term success, expand their knowledge of risk, and ensure both parties are on the same page.
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Our philosophy is that you are the hero within the greater story. We want you to delight your clients, take care of their long-term goals, and help them understand risk to a greater degree.
Nitrogen assists you in not only the initial assessment of risk, but in the ongoing monitoring. For example, you can quickly scan through your clients to identify who is aligned to their Ris,k Number and who needs a review.
A frequently used workflow is to periodically review the list and make notes about which clients to follow up with regarding their Risk Number, which portfolios have drifted out of alignment for your review, and which clients may be missing either their own Risk Number or a current portfolio. Some advisors add these in the CRM for the next client meeting or quarterly review, whereas others tackle it all in a day.
Client's Best Interest
Demonstrating you're acting in your client's best interest is difficult. The Risk Number allows you to quantitatively establish you're acting in their interests. You know their needs and what is most appropriate; you have their Has, Wants, Needs, and Should Have documented.
Review the expense fees for the portfolio, use the Client Dashboard (Premiere Edition), and use quantitative methodology to demonstrate—with data—why you are recommending what you are recommending.
In the Best Interest Economy advisors can help prove to their clients they are acting appropriately by triangulating the risk represented by their Risk Number, their long-term needs, and their current portfolio. Advisors can then recommend they either keep what they have or move to a better alternative. Having the data to back you up is incredibly powerful—and comforting.
Long Term Focus
To help you guide your clients to their long-term success, through thought exercises such as the following can prove helpful:
- Generating or confirming investment ideas to address questions like, “what would happen to our risk/return plan if we took a position in ______ or sold a portion of ______?"
- Refining model portfolios to think through “How can I improve my models?” and “What if I used a different fund family?"
- During market drops, respond to concerned calls with something along the lines of “I totally understand. Let’s have you go through the Risk Questionnaire this morning. I want to take your financial pulse to make sure we’re invested correctly.”
- Walking a client through Retirement Maps to remember the long-term goal. Remind them of the Map to unveil the big picture amidst road of bumps and plot twists.
In thinking about the Six Month 95% Historical Range, using the metaphor of mile markers can help: “To get to our destination, we need to check in to get our bearings and know-how far along in the journey we are.“
Another beneficial client engagement tool within Nitrogen is Check-ins. This empowers advisors to keep a pulse on their clients and how they are feeling about their financial plan and the markets.
If you're not talking with all of your clients every single month, this is the way for you to understand the feelings and sentiments of your client base. Not to mention reach out and engage users who appear concerned, frightened, or may need to come into your office before making any rash changes.
Check-ins are simple, powerful, and effective. Many advisors use it with all their clients, whereas others use it with a select group. With Check-ins, advisors continue to guide their clients to their long-term goals.
Advisors help clients manage their future by understanding their full portfolio. For example, when you're halfway through meeting with your client of 8 years and they say, "well, but that's what my $300,000 account over here is for!"
Advisors use Nitrogen to discover held-away assets through three means: Risk Number, Portfolio Tools, and Retirement Maps.
- Investors enter their entire investable amount in the Risk Questionnaire. Why? To find their true Risk Number. The amount can’t be arbitrary; it must be realistic to that investor to properly calibrate their risk tolerance.
This is crucial for advisors to know as a client nears retirement. "Will they have enough?” Knowing of a 401(k) account, for example, assists both the advisor and the client to make prudent decisions.
- When walking through the portfolio in a meeting, the client will pour over the analysis and come to grips with the risk involved. Once they see that, "while we're at it, can you tell me the Risk Number of this other account, too?" becomes an oft-heard refrain.
- Retirement Maps brings out great excitement in clients. They see the actual probability of success in a succinct, interactive format. To top it off, for retirement accounts held elsewhere, clients then may ask to include those figures in the calculation. This gives advisors the ability to complete a more holistic review.
Nitrogen helps advisors expand their network. Clients love telling their friends about how their advisor helped them navigate the risk in their portfolio through the Risk Number. Those friends oftentimes become referrals.
Some advisors include all or some of these workflows in their practice and with their team. No matter which building blocks you use, the critical piece is ensuring the customer gets the right outcome and a great experience with you. That allows you to grow your practice, engage your clients, and build long-lasting relationships for client retention.