How to-conduct-seminar-marketing

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How to-conduct-seminar-marketing

  1. 1. DOCUMENTED BY OLATUNJI.ADETUNJI www.seowebanlyst.com SEO CONSULTING SERVICES BY SEO CONSULTING FIRMSEO WEB ANALYST®™ THE WORLD’S MOST AFFORDABLE SEO FIRM
  2. 2. DisclaimerPlease note the information contained within this document is for educational purposes only. Everyattempt has been made to provide accurate, up to date and reliable complete information nowarranties of any kind are expressed or implied. Readers acknowledge that the author is notengaging in rendering legal, financial or professional advice. By reading any document, the readeragrees that under no circumstances is TrafficLockdown.com responsible for any losses, direct orindirect, that are incurred as a result of use of the information contained within this document,including - but not limited to errors, omissions, or inaccuracies. Copyright © 2013 by SEOWEBAnalyst®™ All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means, electronic, or mechanical, including photocopying, recording, or by any information storage and retrieval system. Published by: OLATUNJI.ADETUNJI Website: http://www.seowebanalyst.com E-Mail: Visit us on the web at contact@seowebanalyst.com
  3. 3. TABLE OF CONTENT 1.) Preparing your presentation 2.) How to Conduct a Seminar3.) Financial Seminar Marketing (seminar articles part 1- part 8) 4.) How to Organize a Seminar 5.) Seminar Marketing Q & A 6.) Seminar Logistics 7.) Seminar systems 8.) Appointment Setting at Your Financial Seminar 9.) Financial Presentation
  4. 4. SEMINAR MARKETINGConducting a seminar is a great way to communicate your ideas or introducenew technologies. It is useful to know some guidelines when you have toconduct a seminar. I understood the importance of this both as an attendeeand a presenter myself.Preparing your presentationA successful seminar is the result of careful preparation of your speechand your presentation material. Here is how you can do it.Research your subjectIf you are called to speak on a topic, probably that’s because you arealready having some knowledge of it. Even so, you need to reference fromat least 2 different books. This helps you address and include points youhave not thought about. It also helps you determine a flow for theseminar.Steps to Preparing the presentationInclude a presentation. Presentations help the audience to understand theunderlying points that the speaker has to say especially if the subject israther vague.
  5. 5. The presentation should have an Introduction and a conclusion. Theintroduction can include a summary of the topic and a brief overview ofwhat the speaker will be saying for the rest of the duration of theseminar.The speaker should determine how long the seminar will take andaccordingly create the presentation slides. Thumb of rule is approximately2-3 minutes per slide if the speaker intends to skim through the slidesquickly. And around 5 minutes per slide if the speaker intends to explainthe slides with small examples. For example, if the seminar is supposed tobe 40 minutes long, there should be around 16 slides if the speakerintends to quickly skim the contents of the slide. Make sure the content has a ``flow to it. By flow I mean that the content that comes later can depend on the content which comes in first, but not the other way around. This is a common mistake. The speaker tends to explains a point that should have come in later, in the beginning itself. This tends to confuse the attendees because they have not gained enough insight into the topic to be able to grasp the new information. The Look and feel of the presentation is extremely important.Avoid too flashy and too plain presentations. A presentation withextraordinary text effects look naive and detracts from the importance ofwhat the speaker has to say.At the same time, avoid plain presentations as the attendees perceive thatthe speaker has probably not prepared enough. Use well designedpresentation templates which are freely available or at a low cost. Thetext size of primary points should be uniform as far as possible.Secondary points should have a smaller font size to show its reducedsignificance. Secondary points are indented under primary points.Include pictures or graphs instead of text wherever possible. ManagementGuru CK Prahalad, in a seminar on Indias innovation possibilities,explained the efficacy of the Jaipur Foot in a picture that showed aphysically challenged person running with the Jaipur foot. Though theaudience had already heard about the Foot, they were visibly amazed andtouched as they saw the picture.The way text is arranged on the presentation slides is also important.Speakers sometimes make the mistake of putting up points and theirrespective explanations also. Not only does this practice increase thenumber of slides, but it is a sure shot way to lull the audience intosleep. So thumb of rule is to use minimum text, and make sure whatevertext you put up is a point, not an explanation of a point. If you intend
  6. 6. to give out detailed points for reference, do not include them in theslide. It just makes them cluttered and anyway the audience just cannotkeep up with the stream of points you list out to them during the seminar.Use handouts instead for such points.It is very important to include within the seminar content, examples andcase studies. Examples illustrate the speakers point in a moreinteresting way which the audience is immediately able to relate to.Examples and case studies have the power to touch an audience, relate tosimilar experiences and thereby be eager to learn more. Sometimes smalljokes too make the seminar livelier.HandoutsThe speaker should prepare handouts as well, especially if the audience issmall. Handouts will contain all main points of the seminar as well asthose detailed points which cannot be included in the seminar slides butare useful for reference later. Include within the handout, a list of anyreference books used to prepare for the seminar. This helps the audienceto read or followup on the same topic later.Listen to your voiceThe speaker should listen to his seminar using a Dictaphone( or taperecorder) and play it back. It is possible to immediately detect the partsof the seminar that could be corrected or which dont sound right. If theseminar sounds interesting to the speaker, chances are that others wouldalso feel so.During the seminarOnce the seminar is prepared, relax!! Most of the work is done.List out your seminar itineraryThe speaker should make sure that the audience knows how long this isgoing to take. Give a brief idea on the important aspects of your speechso that the audience is aware where they are during the seminar. Thenstart with an introduction. Many people fail to give out a decentintroduction before they delve into the subject, perhaps because they wantto be quickly done with the main parts. An introduction helps bring peopleinto sync with the subject. The speaker can also emphasize the benefit theaudience will get by hearing the seminar out. It would be something likethis "The topic I am going to speak today is about xxxxxx and through thisI hope you will be able to gain yyyyyy."Style of speakingThe speakers voice should reach everyone, especially if it is a largeaudience and if there is no adequate sound system. Not able to clearlyhear is probably the first way to lose interest. Similarly the seatingshould be such where everyone can easily see the speaker and thepresentation.
  7. 7. The speaker should be relaxed and should be able to casually bring outexamples of as many points he is taking. Examples have the power toimmediately make the audience understand the point and be in sync with thespeaker.Speakers attention has to be on the audience. The speaker can probablyglance occasionally at the presentation, but remember to make eye contactas often as possible.The general thumb rule in a seminar is for the audience to understand thesubject first before asking questions Interactions can be initiated afterthe seminar. But during the seminar the speaker is the one who has to bestrictly speaking. While an interactive seminar may seem livelier for thespeaker, in fact it is lively only for the speaker and for the person whois asking questions. Others immediately lose interest. So in the interestof the larger audience, the speaker has to make sure he does not lose gripover the audience even for a minute. That means avoiding asking audiencesquestions during the seminar or encouraging discussions during theseminar.So how do people ask questions? They should do it after the seminar duringa Question answer session. Any questions they have during the seminarshould be written down by the audience and asked after the seminar. Thespeaker could make these rules clear to the audience prior to startingwith the seminar.After the seminarAfter the seminar is over, there could be a question answer session whereaudience can ask questions. As the audience is more aware of the subjectnow and not burdened with their own questions, they can easily understandthe replies to other questions.Now the speaker could try to get feedback from the audience about yourseminar. Of course this applies only if the seminar is conducted within acompany or among people who will come back for more seminars. The speakershould try to understand if the subject was interesting to the audienceand in particular "useful" to them or their department. This way it ispossible to understand whether to continue to build on the details of thesame or similar subjects in your next seminar.In Poornams Development department, we conduct feedback sessions afterevery seminar to know whether the topic is useful for furtherimplementation within the department. This way we were able to include JAD(Joint Application Development) and Inspection Review methods to ourprocesses. The seminar became an extremely useful method to increase theknowledge level of staff and to improve our processes also. If thefeedback session wasnt there, probably people would have forgotten aboutthe seminar and its uses to the department. Remember the speaker is apowerhouse of information on the topic and that knowledge should not gowaste if it is useful to the organization.
  8. 8. ConclusionFinally ensure that seminars are always are conducted in an organization.Besides drastically improving knowledge levels, it brings about anunderstanding of the immensity of the vast unknowns in our profession orfor that matter any profession. This in turn eradicates complacency.Another surprising benefit of conducting seminars within organizations isthe increased confidence levels found in the speakers. Generally once aspeaker has conducted a seminar, he rarely stops conducting seminars andgoes on to become good enough to speak outside the company to a moregeneral audience.As complacency is eradicated, a renewed interest in learning is developedand most speakers turn to writing articles and reading more books. Mostimportantly, the fresh inflow of new ideas enters the organization as manyof these ideas are implemented. The audience which listens to the seminaralready know much of what is spoken and are ready to accept changesbrought about by the new systems introduced as a result of the new ideasintroduced by the speaker.All in all, seminars benefit the organization, the audience and mostimportantly the speaker.
  9. 9. How to Conduct a SeminarThree Criteria For Seminar AttendeesIt amazes me that big insurance companies and securities firms will go togreat expense to create ineffective seminar programs to help their repsobtain new clients. Anyone can be effective at conducting a seminar withsimple observation of human behavior and measuring what works.Large financial institutions have a great focus on the presentation, theappearance of the slides, the handout materials and all other aspects ofwhat will occur in the seminar room. NONE OF THIS MATTERS--THIS IS NOT HOWTO CONDUCT A SEMINAR THAT MAKES MONEY. The presentation and the handoutmaterials are irrelevant if the seminar room is empty. Filling up the roomwith qualified candidates must be the absolute priority focus of anysuccessful seminar program. So if youve wasted money on fancy lookingseminar slides only to have a dismal failure, know that there is hope whenlearn how to conduct a seminar correctly and put all of your attention onattendance.Filling up the room is a function of two main factors: * Invite the RIGHT audience * Construct an invitation that is EMOTIONALLY compelling
  10. 10. If you want to conduct a seminar thats profitable, you need to select anaudience that will come to a seminar. Note that some target markets willnot attend a seminar so you cannot prospect everyone with seminars. Forexample, if your market is baby boomers, forget public seminars.Successful baby boomers are largely two-income professional couplesworking 10 hours a day, traveling coast to coast for their job, shuttlingtheir kids to and from ballet, piano and soccer and trying to keep theirmarriage together.You think they will come to your seminar "How to Plan for a SecureRetirement?" No way--this is not the audience you want to conduct aseminar that produces profit. Youve selected the wrong audience who hasno time to attend seminars and is not sufficiently motivated. (And why doyou want to prospect these people anyway—isn’t most of their investablewealth locked up in 401k or stock options or their home?)The right seminar audience has these features: * They have the time to attend your seminar * They have some EMOTIONALLY compelling issues that you can address * They have access to their moneyTo conduct a successful seminar, the two groups of immediate fit areseniors and business owners. Seniors have plenty of time and they areEMOTIONALLY compelled to protect their money.Business owners have the time—ONLY AT LUNCH, and they are EMOTIONALLYcompelled by a number of factors such as keeping their business alive,paying less taxes and having more time with their families.So the first lesson in how to conduct a seminar is inviting the rightpeople!This means you wont make it work if you want to do a "product" seminar ortalk about managed money, stocks, annuities, etc. You will fail becauseyou are focusing on the thing you want to sell, rather than a specific,homogeneous, identifiable target market. So concentrate on who you want asnew clients, not on what you want to sell.Lets discuss the second critical factor necessary to conduct a seminarthat works —an emotionally compelling invitation.For our example, lets continue with the title above "How to Plan for aSecure Retirement." This is a boring, unspecific, non-emotionallycompelling title. Lets say the same thing in a way that will move peopleto learn about becoming better savers and investors: * "Avoid the Two Reasons Why 95% of People Must Cut Their LivingStandard When They Retire" or * " Why Your Neighbors Children Can Afford to Attend Harvard and YourChildren Cant" * "Study Says People Between 35 and 50 will Never Be Able To Retire--Except for These 10%"
  11. 11. Do you see that by using powerful, emotional language, you can take thesame idea and form it into a title that hits between the eyes? Below thetitle, your invitation should have six EMOTIONALLY compelling sub-titles(bullet points). Youre beginning to see that the "how tos" of conductinga successful seminar happen BEFORE the seminar and its all in themarketing.The third item regarding your target market is that they must have accessto money. Retirees do. They have rolled over their retirement plans into aself-directed IRA. Business owners do—they control the investments intheir retirement plans as well as their non-qualified assets.Before choosing any market for seminar marketing, make sure they meet thethree criteria listed above.Financial Seminar MarketingSeminar ArticlesProspecting With Seminars-Still a Winning FormulaIf you’ve developed the opinion that seminars don’t work for building yourbusiness, read this article.Seminars don’t work when they are done incorrectly. Make a few changes,and you can have 70 people, every month, attend to hear your wisdom. Overthe next few weeks, I will discuss a separate seminar tip in each edition.The combined use of these tips will successfully fill up the seminar roomand fill your calendar with appointments.The first issue is matching your message to the market. It’s a simple ideathat many professionals skip over, assuming they know the audience. Forexample, let’s assume you want to market a seminar to people age 60 andover. To develop a winning invitation, you need to know how these peoplethink. You cannot assume that your market thinks like you do. If you’re 40years old, you probably want to know about opportunities to make money.But people over 60 (in most cases) are not motivated to make more money.They care about preserving capital. Their biggest concern is fear oflosing principal (their “hot button”). So is it any wonder that youropportunity-oriented seminar titled, “How to Maximize Profits with theRight Mutual Funds,” doesn’t get much of a response?You could triple your attendance with the right title, such as “Six WaysRetirees Ruin Their Finances.” This title appeals directly to their fearand will pull in the attendance (I have very successfully tested thistitle over a dozen times). Whichever target market you choose, you reallyneed to know their most significant emotional concern. If you can title aseminar addressing that concern, you’re halfway home. If you’re not sure,don’t make assumptions.For example, do business owners care most about more profit (which wouldbe an easy assumption to make)? Or is their greatest concern having morefree time with the kids? Until you really know the answer, your marketingcannot be very effective because you don’t know your market’s hot button.
  12. 12. To learn what motivates your market, you need to speak with severalmembers of your audience, one to one. If you find several hot buttons, Iwill tell you how to use them all next month.Financial Seminar MarketingSeminar Articles part 2Prospecting With Seminars—How to Fill Up the Seminar Room Every TimeSecond in a seriesWant to construct a winning seminar invitation? I have discovered (after13 years of experiments and $150,000) that a winning seminar invitation—one that fills the room with qualified attendees, has three components: * An emotionally grabbing title * Emotionally compelling specific bullet points * Biography of a speaker that attendees want to hearLet’s discuss item two, bullet points. While a strong title will captureyour reader’s attention, the bullet points sell your prospect on attendingthe seminar. The more compelling your bullet points, the larger youraudience.Although your invitation will be to attract retail clients, here’s anexample of some bullet points aimed at financial planners:Title: “Open 15 New Accounts Every Month”Bullets: * How I Built a $50 Million Book Doing One Seminar a Month * Secrets of Making Your Seminars Consistently Profitable * Pack the Seminar Room Every Time * See More Prospects Face to Face in 90 Minutes than You Can Qualifyby Phone in a Month * Know The 6 Critical Factors of Seminar Success * The Error on Your Invitation Which Cuts Attendance in HALF! * One Small Change to Any Invitation Which Boosts Attendance by 25% ! * Seminar Topics to Never Discuss (if you want to close business) * Where to Find The Most Qualified Prospects for the Best Mailing List * How to Avoid the Error in Mailing Which Gets 50% of Your InvitationsTossed In The Trash, Unopened! * How to Close Appointments Right At the Seminar Rather Than Beg forThem on the Phone the Next Day * How to Pack 50-60 People in the Room Every Month Even in Areas Where"Every Broker is Doing Seminars"It’s the bullet points that make you want to know more, to take action andattend the seminar. When you can do the same on your seminar invitationsfor your prospects, you will have a full audience.Each bullet point captures a “sub-group.” While all of your prospectsshould be from a qualified list (more about that in a future article),there are groups within the list with distinct concerns.
  13. 13. For example, I deal with financial planners who get good seminarattendance, but do not close appointments. They would respond to the abovebullet point, “How to close appointments right at the seminar.” Anothersub group might be planners who get plenty of appointments, but do nothave sufficient attendance. They will respond most to the bullet point,“One small change in the invitation that boosts attendance by 25%.”Therefore, the more relevant bullet points you have, the more sub groupsyou will capture, the larger your seminar attendance. In fact, if I send3,000 invitations for an investor seminar, I have calculated that eachbullet point is responsible for six buying units in attendance.How can you learn to write bullet points like this? It will take somestudy, but some excellent references are:The Ultimate Sales Letter - by Dan Kennedy andWords That Bring You Riches - by Ted NicholasFinancial Seminar MarketingSeminar Articles part 3Prospecting With Seminars—How to Fill Up the Seminar Room Every TimeThird in a seriesIn the previous two articles, I discussed selecting the right market anddeveloping a winning seminar invitation for the selected market. We arenow 70% of the way to filling up the room with qualified attendees. Westill need to address invitation delivery.There are three ways you can invite people to a seminar: using callers,using direct mail and using newspaper advertising.Here are the pros and cons of each:Using callers consumes a lot of your time in hiring, training and firing.You will also need some office space and additional phones. For each hourof calling, you can expect callers to obtain one attendee that willactually show up (three prospects will say they will attend, but yourfallout rate will be 50% to 70%). I paid callers $5 per hour plus $5 perbuying unit who attended. The best aspect of using callers is the lowcost, the worst aspect is the time you must commit to managing them.Newspaper advertising is far too expensive and ineffective in mostmetropolitan areas. I have never gotten a good return from newspaper ads.Inserts however (the newspaper will insert your flyer into the fold of thenewspaper) are inexpensive and effective. Additionally, you can focus yourinsert distribution on selected zip codes. For every 10,000 inserts, Iobtain 18 buying units to attend my seminar. I spend a total of $500,which yields a cost per attendee of $27. The negative aspect of inserts isthat you may have unqualified attendees since you cannot pre-qualify theattendees by other than zip code.
  14. 14. Direct mail is by far the most effective method to use in metropolitanareas. The cost per attendee is the highest, but the quality of theattendees is the highest and the seminar produces more business and thegreatest profits. By sending 3,000 invitations to a highly-targetedaudience, I typically obtain 35 buying units in attendance—a cost of $35per buying unit. I highly recommend using this more expensive methodbecause it produces the best end-results—more qualified, new clients thathave money to invest.The above discussion provides a brief review of the major tradeoffs amonginvitation methods. There are other tradeoffs and issues to consider ifyou practice in a less populated or rural area.Financial Seminar MarketingSeminar Articles part 4Prospecting with Seminars—How to Fill up the Seminar Room Every TimeFourth in a seriesAs a stockbroker, I gathered $50 million of assets in less than five yearsby doing one seminar a month. Any insurance agent, financial planner orinvestment advisor can have similar success with seminars. The biggesthurdle for most professionals is filling the room with attendees and mylast three articles have covered the issues of writing a compellinginvitation and how to best use it (telemarketing, advertising or directmail).Today, I will cover two additional issues—the time and location of theseminar. These two variables can have a major impact on attendance. Myexpertise is in prospecting the senior market (age 60+ retirees). If youapply the following concepts to your market, you will also select theoptimal time and location.Seniors (retirees) generally rise early in the morning and schedule golf,tennis, shopping, doctor appointments, dentist appointments, and meetingswith the accountant or attorney on weekday mornings. Therefore, I neverhold a seminar on a weekday morning because I would be competing with alot of other activity in my prospect’s schedule. My seminars are scheduledeither for Saturday mornings or weekday afternoons at 3:30 p.m. I alsonever schedule evening seminars because some seniors tell me that they arereluctant to drive at night as they notice their night vision is not asgood. Additionally, single females have a safety concern, making themreluctant to venture out at night. By simply observing my target market’sactivity pattern, I am able to select the best possible seminar times tomaximize attendance.Do you really know the scheduling patterns of your target market?I select a seminar location that is well-known, convenient and in neutralterritory. Some financial professionals attempt to hold seminars in theiroffice buildings. Bad idea. This is not neutral territory and someprospective attendees will not come for fear of being trapped in a high-pressure sales situation. Think about buying a car—whose turf are you on—is it comfortable for you?
  15. 15. Therefore, never use your office as a seminar location. Rather, use alocal restaurant that has existed for 20+ years—a place which everyone intown knows and likes. It’s familiar, neutral and well-located. You do notneed to feed your audience just because you use a restaurant for yourlocation. Many restaurants are happy to rent an extra room or even openfor your seminar at a time when they are normally closed.What about hotels? They are perceived by some prospects as a place fortransients and may associate you with the snake-oil salesman who is heretoday, gone tomorrow. Additionally, some hotels place their conferencerooms in a location requiring your prospect to negotiate a maze ofhallways. Do you want your prospect to enter your seminar frustrated?A country club location can send the wrong signal. Some people could feelintimidated that the seminar must be for “upper class” people or some mayeven misinterpret that the seminar is for club members or golfers.Financial Seminar MarketingSeminar Articles part 5Seminars—The Big Difference in Effectiveness Between the Single-sessionand Multi-Session ModelsMy main prospecting tool has always been seminars. I pack 65 people in aroom and raise $1 million per seminar. What could be easier?Over the years I have experimented with the single-session seminar (a 90-minute presentation at which I solicit appointments right at the seminar)and the multi-session class style seminar (four-sessions over 4 weeks for2½ hours each).The people who market these multi-session seminar systems explain that themore times you have contact with the prospect, the higher your appointmentratio. Therefore, they contend, you will open more new accounts. Whilethis is true, it ignores the quality issues: * Is the extra presentation time of a multi-session seminar (10 hoursvs. 90 minutes) worth the higher appointment and new account ratio? * Is the quality of attendee the same? * Which system brings more qualified appointments and larger newaccounts?Having used both systems, I prefer the single-session seminar for thesereasons: * I get better quality attendees. I have many people attend my onesession seminar with net worth of $1 million to $5 million. Thesewealthier and often busier people, will not sign up for a multi-sessionseminar spanning 4 weeks. *
  16. 16. I get more sophisticated attendees. I personally do not wantprospects who have little investment experience. I want seasoned clientsbecause they can distinguish between good advice and the run of the milladvice. These people make better clients because they have a betterunderstanding of the game. They do not call every time the market drops.Additionally, I noticed that the information packaged into the multi-session systems is basic or introductory. The more experienced,sophisticated investor is not interested in how a mutual fund works. Theyalready know that. * I get more attendance. Many people are busy and will not commit to afour-session class. But I can attract many of these people to a short 90-minute, one-time presentation. Therefore, I have more attendees at the onesession seminar. * I can do a single-session seminar every week if I desire, but afour-session seminar lasts the entire month. Therefore, the single sessionmodel allows me to meet more people during the same time span.Bottom line: I get 23 appointments from the 35 households in attendancewith a single-session seminar (65% appointment ratio) as opposed to 18appointments from 20 households at a multi-session seminar (90%appointment ratio). Therefore, I am getting more appointments from thesingle- session seminar because I have higher attendance. Additionally,the attendee quality is far higher at the single-session seminar.The people invited to the single-session seminar meet a qualification thatthey have at least $100,000 to invest. The multi-session seminar, oftenoffered and advertised through an adult school or community college, isopen to the public, and the attendee may not be very qualified. Many ofthese attendees want to know what to do with their $30,000 portfolio.My seminar experience has taught me this:A single-session seminar requests a short time commitment from theattendees. As a result, you can attract better qualified attendees andmore attendees resulting in more assets gathered and larger new accounts.Financial PresentationSeminar Article part 6Your Financial Seminar Presentation —Product or ConceptYou have two basic choices when giving a seminar presentation —it can befocused around product or concept. At the risk of over-simplifying,product seminar presentations work best with a lower-end audience, andconcept seminar presentations work best with a high-end audience. I will
  17. 17. arbitrarily define lower-end as people with investment portfolios lessthan 5200,000 and higher-end as those with more than $500,000. To be evenmore simplistic, we can label these two groups inexperienced andexperienced. Let’s look at some examples of various financialpresentations.If you want to sell annuities, you can successfully use a seminarpresentation to a lower-end audience who will make investments in the$10,000 to $40,000 range. These people have a product orientation, are notlooking for an “advisor” and just want a “good investment.” To such agroup, you can present at them for 90 minutes about product features andprovide a financial presentation about simple concepts like tax deferral,risk vs. reward and compounding.So if you look to make product sales, this approach will work.If you seek to develop a high-end audience who puts money undermanagement, is willing to pay you a fee and is looking to bond with anadvisor, you cannot give financial product presentations. Such prospectswill leave the financial seminar with little or no respect for you becausein most cases: * They already understand the basic features of many investments andinsurance products * They do not want to be sold a product * They understand basic concepts such as tax deferral and will feelthat you are junior leagueTo this group, you must have a concept seminar presentation, ideas such asasset allocation, estate planning, providing for grandchildren, six waysto reduce income taxes, socially conscious investing, using debt to createwealth, ways to dispose of real estate without tax, etc. All of thesefinancial concepts can lead to lucrative relationships where you mayindeed sell products or services. But the product will be the tool toimplement the concept. The product must be subordinate to the concept.If your seminar results have not been as expected , do you deliver theright message to the wrong market (i.e. a financial presentation onproducts rather than concepts)?Your Post Seminar AppointmentTurning Seminar Attendees Into Post Seminar Appointments--what to do atthe first appointmentIn the other articles, I have covered how to fill up the seminar room andhow to set appointments right at the seminar.If you follow the plan, you have 10-20 appointments with qualifiedprospects. What should you do at the first appointment?To the appointment, get every prospect to bring a copy of their tax returnand their list of investments. Tell them to bring these items at the close
  18. 18. of the seminar and you will get 100% compliance. The structure of yourfirst post-seminar appointment is as follows: * First 10 minutes—shmoozing, smiling, rapport building * How long have you lived in the area? * Do your children live nearby? * You have great tans, are you golfers? * Next, get down to business.Give you a brief explanation of what you do (proceed to explain yourservices in 60 seconds—no jargon, explain benefits).Say this early in your post seminar appointment: “So that I make sure wecover any questions or concerns you have in our hour together, let me jotthem down so we won’t forget.” Most every prospect has two or three itemsthey want to discuss because you told them at the seminar to jot downtheir questions or concerns. It’s amazing what people will do when youinstruct them.Then proceed in your post seminar appointment with fact-finding. Askquestions so that you can put together an income statement and balancesheet right on the yellow pad in front of you.“Folks, tell me about your sources of income. * Are you receiving any pensions? * Social Security? * Rents? * Interest/Dividends? * Etc.Now let’s take a look at your investments," (they have brought in theirstatements or their balance sheet).As you look these over you make some unsettling comments, if appropriate,about their investments. "Do you know what you’re really earning on theseinvestments?How long have you had them?Do you know, off hand, your original investment?" (this will often be ontheir statement on in the records they brought to our meeting)"How did you come to own these investments?" (the prospect reveals theirun-systematic method of investing)."Okay. Let me give you some helpful feedback.You had two concerns that you mentioned in the beginning. Now that I knowmore about your circumstances, I can tell you this" ( proceed to providesome useful, but unspecific direction or advice). "We can get together
  19. 19. some specific recommendations regarding those issues (e.g. a long termcare quotation, analysis of an annuity, review of their trust, etc). Withthose specific recommendations, you will have precise answers to yourquestions.”“Additionally, I would like to print you reports on each of yourinvestments so that you can really see what’s going on. Some of these arefine, but some of these quite frankly, are clunkers.” (The prospect alwaysagrees saying something like, “we know we should have sold some of thesebut...”).“Folks, let me propose this. Let’s schedule a time to meet next week (sameday and time). I want to put together some answers to your questions andlet’s review the reports I will get on each of your investments (subscribeto Value Line and Morningstar on CD-ROM which gives you the reports youneed). This is not a lot of work, but will take me three hours. My normalrate is $150 per hour, so if you think that $450 would be reasonable toisolate which investments you should sell and what you should do about(their two issues), then let’s meet next week.”If they say they want to think about it, that’s great! Because you justlearned NOT to waste your time with these people. If $450 is a barrier toproceeding, then goodbye! Ninety percent of the people want to meet againand will ask you, “should we pay you now?” These are the types of clientsyou want.If you are in a situation where you cannot charge fees (i.e. not aRegistered Investment Advisor or IAR), it is more difficult to test aprospect’s seriousness. All you can do is ask, “Mr. and Mrs. Jones, whenwe meet next week, if my recommendations make sense to you and you seethat there are ways for you to do better financially, will there beanything that would stop us from doing business together?” I don’t like toask this question as I find it presumptuous, but it’s better than spendingthree hours putting materials together and then finding out his brotherworks at Merrill Lynch!Use the first post seminar appointment to fact-find. Be clear that theobjective of the first appointment is to schedule a second appointment(assuming you want to work with the prospect). Do not try and closebusiness at the first appointment. This system will result in largeraccounts and doing more comprehensive business with new clients.Financial Seminar MarketingSeminar Articles Part 7Turning Seminar Attendees Into ClientsIn the previous articles, I have covered how to fill up the seminar roomand how to close appointments right at the seminar. (see previous articleslisted at seminar articles on marketing and appointment setting).If you follow the plan, you have 20 appointments with qualified prospects.In the last article, I explained what I do on the first appointment.Today, I discuss the second appointment, the closing appointment.
  20. 20. With seniors, do not try and close at the first appointment, unless theyask for a specific product or solution and they are seeking to be closed.In my practice, that occasionally occurs, but I always seek to make thesecond appointment. It gives me time to make a compelling presentation andclose for ALL of their money, not just some of it. At the secondappointment, I will typically do the following: regarding their mutualfunds, I print out a one-page Morningstar report for each of their funds.I will point out under-performance, excessive fees, duplication ofholdings, inappropriate categories or other problems I see with theirfunds.This hard evidence is usually sufficient to close the business and movethe client funds under my management. Of course, if you do not want tosell performance, then develop your own hard evidence why you can dobetter for the prospect and put it on paper.As to stocks, I subscribe to the Value System on CD-ROM, which allows meto print a nice graph of each stock relative to the S&P performance overthe past 10 years. The prospect can easily see which stocks have under-performed the market and we can isolate candidates for sale. Again, I amshowing the prospect some hard evidence from an independent source.If you have been attempting to close with just a verbal explanation ofyour good ideas, you are losing sales. Put it on paper and show evidencefor your recommendations.If we are looking to get long-term care insurance, I show the prospect alist of the 10 largest insurers in the U.S. and then I show them quotesfrom three of these on a small spreadsheet. I also show them policyrankings from Consumer Reports. Its easy to pick out the least-costcompany and explain differences between the policies verbally. Mostprospects will make their decision based on the Consumer Reports articleand the cost. Having 3 companies side-by-side on one spreadsheet and thearticle makes closing the sale easy for me. Presenting this type of third-party hard evidence is a most convincing way to close business.Similarly, if the situation calls for life insurance or other estateplanning issues or any other financial issues (e.g. exchanging an existingannuity), I will put some comparison on paper.I do not use any financial planning software as I have never found anyprogram that caters to my clients, age 60 and over. So I use only an Excelspreadsheet and Word as my presentation software (along with Morningstarand Value Line reports as mentioned previously).Appointment Setting at Your Financial SeminarHow to Set Appointments With 65% of Attendees Right At Your SeminarIn prior articles, I have addressed filling up the seminar room. In thosearticles, I solve the most frequent problem of financial professionals,getting adequate seminar attendance.In this article, let’s discuss appointment setting with your seminarattendees.
  21. 21. My specialty is in dealing with people age 60 and over (they’re the oneswith money). In motivating this audience to set appointments, you need tounderstand their emotional hot buttons and you also need to remove theirpotential objections.I use this general outline at the close of the seminar as the crux of myappointment setting process:I announce that I need a small favor from them. I need them to completethe evaluation form they received at the beginning of the seminar (andwithout taking a breath) and that the evaluation form is also theirlottery ticket today.Let’s face it, most people could care less about filling out evaluationforms, so I give them a reason to do so. They can win something bycompleting and returning the form. If your appointment setting process isto be successful, theres got to be a payoff for the attendee toparticipate.My evaluation form gets them warmed up with some specific questions beforeI offer them the opportunity to set the appointment with me. I never askfor an appointment, rather, I give them the opportunity to request anappointment. This may seem like semantics, but this approach is far morepowerful. With the right wording, you will be in the control position ifthey request the appointment of you, rather than you requesting (beggingfor) an appointment with them. As a result, people who request theappointment keep it. If you request the appointment of the attendee, youwill have large fallout and many will not show up. (if you have thisproblem, get this CD on ending your appointment cancellations).To further solidify the appointment, the attendees select an appointmenttime and date right on the evaluation form! Why leave this open and tryand nail it down the next day? Or worse, if you can’t get the attendee onthe phone the next day, your chance of ever having an appointment willfall precipitously. If you dont have a structured appointment settingprocess to secure a time and date right there, youre sunk.Attendees sign up for the appointment with me because I promise twothings:1. I will make no attempt to sell them anything at that appointment.2. I will show them at least one significant financial mistake they aremaking and not even aware of.As a result, I ask for and get 100% of the appointments to bring in theirlist of investments and tax return.Do you think you could do business with someone who comes to your officewith their list of investments and tax return and wants to hear what youhave to say? This method of doing seminars and appointment setting rightat the seminar is so successful, I can’t imagine why any professionalwould ever make cold calls!
  22. 22. By the way, to end the seminar, I collect and shuffle up the evaluationforms and select a winner. The winner receives a free copy of my book,Retirement Investing!Using the techniques outlined in these articles, I get 10-20 newappointments every month, in my office with qualified prospects.How to Conduct a SeminarThree Criteria For Seminar AttendeesIt amazes me that big insurance companies and securities firms will go togreat expense to create ineffective seminar programs to help their repsobtain new clients. Anyone can be effective at conducting a seminar withsimple observation of human behavior and measuring what works.Large financial institutions have a great focus on the presentation, theappearance of the slides, the handout materials and all other aspects ofwhat will occur in the seminar room. NONE OF THIS MATTERS--THIS IS NOT HOWTO CONDUCT A SEMINAR THAT MAKES MONEY. The presentation and the handoutmaterials are irrelevant if the seminar room is empty. Filling up the roomwith qualified candidates must be the absolute priority focus of anysuccessful seminar program. So if youve wasted money on fancy lookingseminar slides only to have a dismal failure, know that there is hope whenlearn how to conduct a seminar correctly and put all of your attention onattendance.Filling up the room is a function of two main factors: * Invite the RIGHT audience * Construct an invitation that is EMOTIONALLY compellingIf you want to conduct a seminar thats profitable, you need to select anaudience that will come to a seminar. Note that some target markets willnot attend a seminar so you cannot prospect everyone with seminars. Forexample, if your market is baby boomers, forget public seminars.Successful baby boomers are largely two-income professional couplesworking 10 hours a day, traveling coast to coast for their job, shuttlingtheir kids to and from ballet, piano and soccer and trying to keep theirmarriage together.You think they will come to your seminar "How to Plan for a SecureRetirement?" No way--this is not the audience you want to conduct aseminar that produces profit. Youve selected the wrong audience who hasno time to attend seminars and is not sufficiently motivated. (And why doyou want to prospect these people anyway—isn’t most of their investablewealth locked up in 401k or stock options or their home?)The right seminar audience has these features: * They have the time to attend your seminar * They have some EMOTIONALLY compelling issues that you can address * They have access to their money
  23. 23. To conduct a successful seminar, the two groups of immediate fit areseniors and business owners. Seniors have plenty of time and they areEMOTIONALLY compelled to protect their money.Business owners have the time—ONLY AT LUNCH, and they are EMOTIONALLYcompelled by a number of factors such as keeping their business alive,paying less taxes and having more time with their families.So the first lesson in how to conduct a seminar is invite the rightpeople!This means you wont make it work if you want to do a "product" seminar ortalk about managed money, stocks, annuities, etc. You will fail becauseyou are focusing on the thing you want to sell, rather than a specific,homogeneous, identifiable target market. So concentrate on who you want asnew clients, not on what you want to sell.Lets discuss the second critical factor necessary to conduct a seminarthat works —an emotionally compelling invitation.For our example, lets continue with the title above "How to Plan for aSecure Retirement." This is a boring, unspecific, non-emotionallycompelling title. Lets say the same thing in a way that will move peopleto learn about becoming better savers and investors: * "Avoid the Two Reasons Why 95% of People Must Cut Their LivingStandard When They Retire" or * " Why Your Neighbors Children Can Afford to Attend Harvard and YourChildren Cant" * "Study Says People Between 35 and 50 will Never Be Able To Retire--Except for These 10%"Do you see that by using powerful, emotional language, you can take thesame idea and form it into a title that hits between the eyes? Below thetitle, your invitation should have six EMOTIONALLY compelling sub-titles(bullet points). Youre beginning to see that the "how tos" of conductinga successful seminar happen BEFORE the seminar and its all in themarketing.The third item regarding your target market is that they must have accessto money. Retirees do. They have rolled over their retirement plans into aself-directed IRA. Business owners do—they control the investments intheir retirement plans as well as their non-qualified assets.Before choosing any market for seminar marketing, make sure they meet thethree criteria listed above.
  24. 24. Financial Seminar MarketingSeminar Articles part 8Prospecting With Seminars-Still a Winning FormulaIf you’ve developed the opinion that seminars don’t work for building yourbusiness, read this article.Seminars don’t work when they are done incorrectly. Make a few changes,and you can have 70 people, every month, attend to hear your wisdom. Overthe next few weeks, I will discuss a separate seminar tip in each edition.The combined use of these tips will successfully fill up the seminar roomand fill your calendar with appointments.The first issue is matching your message to the market. It’s a simple ideathat many professionals skip over, assuming they know the audience. Forexample, let’s assume you want to market a seminar to people age 60 andover. To develop a winning invitation, you need to know how these peoplethink. You cannot assume that your market thinks like you do. If you’re 40years old, you probably want to know about opportunities to make money.But people over 60 (in most cases) are not motivated to make more money.They care about preserving capital. Their biggest concern is fear oflosing principal (their “hot button”). So is it any wonder that youropportunity-oriented seminar titled, “How to Maximize Profits with theRight Mutual Funds,” doesn’t get much of a response?You could triple your attendance with the right title, such as “Six WaysRetirees Ruin Their Finances.” This title appeals directly to their fearand will pull in the attendance (I have very successfully tested thistitle over a dozen times). Whichever target market you choose, you reallyneed to know their most significant emotional concern. If you can title aseminar addressing that concern, you’re halfway home. If you’re not sure,don’t make assumptions.For example, do business owners care most about more profit (which wouldbe an easy assumption to make)? Or is their greatest concern having morefree time with the kids? Until you really know the answer, your marketingcannot be very effective because you don’t know your market’s hot button.To learn what motivates your market, you need to speak with severalmembers of your audience, one to one. If you find several hot buttons, Iwill tell you how to use them all next month.
  25. 25. How to Organize a SeminarSeminar LogisticsWhen you organize a seminar, these are the issues to attack in order ofpriority. Make a seminar organization timeline working back from yourseminar date so that everything is done on time.What do you want to happen—e.g. do you want to get 15 appointments fromthose that attend? If so, assume that you will get appointments with 1/2of the attendees so you will need 30 buying units in attendance to get 15appointments. Assume a 1% response to your invitation (if to the public)so you will need to send 3,000 invitations if using direct mail. When youorganize a seminar, the economic results are your first priority.At the end of the seminar, what incentive will you give people to meetwith you? Also, what will you say to remove their hesitancy (i.e. fear ofbeing sold)? Seminar organization most be designed around how you convertthe attendees to appointments (and ultimately clients).Who do you want to attend? This dictates the list that you rent when youorganize a seminar.What will the seminar invitation say when you organize a seminar? How willyou write the compelling copy? Will you do it yourself or hire acopywriter? If printed, what is the size, format, type of paper and color?(Note that the copy on the invitation is 5x as important as the graphics).Will you use direct mail invitations, newspaper inserts, newspaperadvertisements or telemarketers? How far in advance of the seminar willyou extend the invitation to optimize the response when you organize yourseminar?What day and time will you have the seminar and at what location?
  26. 26. What will you do to entertain the seminar attendees during thepresentation so that they have a good time? This is overlooked when mostseminars are organized because seminar presenters mistakenly think thatthey are there to convey information and thereby gain credibility and haveattendees think they are knowledgeable. However, attendees will morereadily set appointments with people they like than people who areknowledgeable.What information will you present at the seminar? Will you talkextemporaneously or will you use any audio/visual aids such as PowerPoint,overheads or a flip chart? Although the actual content is the leastimportant item when you organize a seminar, many seminar organizers put itfirst. But the content is least important, because if you dont fill theroom with the right people and have an air-tight mechanism to closeappointments, then it doesnt matter what you present to an empty room orto a crowd that does not set appointments.Seminar Marketing Q & AFinancial Advisor Seminar MarketingWhere can I get a good seminar attendee list?You need to first know exactly who you want to invite. At the library,find the Standard Research and Data Service (SRDS). Its a catalog ofevery list you can rent. For simple age and demographic lists both CIS andAmericalist are high quality. These are the lists we use for our seminarsystems. Whats the best way to invite people to a seminar, to market yourseminars? Direct mail allows you to target exactly the audience youdesire. Also, direct mail produces a higher quality seminar attendee thantelemarketing or newspaper adsIf my attendance is low, how can I fix that?Most of the time, low attendance results from a non-compelling invitation,i.e. poor seminar marketing. Your invitation must be emotionallycompelling. For example, this seminar title will bomb: "InvestmentOpportunities for 2003." This title has a good chance of succeeding: "Howto Avoid the Three Biggest Threats to Your Estate—for Owners of ApartmentBuildings." This seminar title is focused on a narrow audience (so whenpeople get the invitation they say "this is for me!") and people are muchmore motivated to avoid threats (avoid fear) than they are to pursueopportunities (a logical, rather than emotional motivator). You can learnto write better invitations by studying books such as The Ultimate SalesLetter by Dan Kennedy, Magic Words That Bring you Riches by Ted Nicholas,Cash Copy by Jeffery Lant. If you want to excel at seminar marketing, youmust learn copy writing or hire someone that has expertise.My attendance is good, but I dont get many appointments. Why is thishappening?You maximize your appointments in these ways: 1. Get people to like you 2. Show them that you have their interest as a priority and that otheradvisors (and their current advisor) does not 3. Understand that your job at a seminar is NOT to educate people. Theymay get educated as a by-product, but educating people WILL NOT get you
  27. 27. appointments. You get people to like you by telling stories, telling jokes(if you like to), smiling, answering questions succinctly and clearly,becoming a good speaker (join your local Toastmasters Club), being polite,and making friends as attendees arrive. Like them and they will like you.You show your superiority and the fact that you are on the side of theinvestor by introducing each topic with a phrase like: "I think mostadvisors dont explain this very well, and maybe on purpose…" "As you knowfrom reading the newspapers, Wall Street does not have your best interestin mind. Heres what they seem to leave out when selling you mutualfunds…" "I think that most investors never get the following explained tothem by their advisors….."Your entire seminar marketing effort will be for naught if all you do isstand in front of a room, present some good ideas on slides and reciteyour memorized script. People are not interested in hiring robots.My attendance is good, but the quality of attendees is not.You need to set your income or net worth criteria on your mailing listhigher. If you are using ads or flyers, you must insert a criterion inyour ad or flyer like "For investors with investment portfolios of$500,000 or more."I get a fair number of appointments, but almost no new businessYour sales skills or sales process needs work. Either take the DaleCarnegie sales course, the Sandler Institute sales course.Why bother to market seminars if your selling skills are not top notch?My attendance used to be good but has declined. Why?The interest and "hot buttons" of your market change, and if you keepsending the same old invitation, it stops working. You must listen closelyto your prospects to find out their current "hot buttons" and change thetopics or approach of your invitation. One key to successful seminarmarketing is to survey your prospects--send a survey or do a focus groupor call them on the phone and ask what financial concerns they have. DONTGUESS.Whats the best location?A restaurant is best even if you are not serving food. Plenty ofrestaurants will rent a room to you or rent a room with coffee only.Whats the best time of day and the best day?That depends on your audience. For business owners, its lunchtime orbreakfast Tuesday through Thursday. For seniors, its during daylighthours and varies based on the area of the country.Whats the best way to keep in touch with people after the seminar?Send a monthly newsletter. Any less frequently than monthly is a waste ofmoney as people are too busy to remember you after 90 days. The newslettermust have your picture and be sent monthly. For a newsletter that getspeople age 55+ to contact you, seehttp://www.javelinmarketing.com/newsletterHow can I avoid cancellations of post-seminar appointments?
  28. 28. Many advisors have this problem. We recently did a presentation on thistopic attended by over 300 advisors. The one-hour presentation withaccompanying PowerPoint can still be obtained here.Financial Seminar PowerPoint PresentationThe Science of Winning SeminarsIn this hour-long multimedia presentation, Larry Klein walks you throughthe most important aspects of successful seminar presentations.Recommended for high-speed internet connections and Internet Explorer 5.5or higher.Note that while its not essential to use PowerPoint, unless you are apolished speaker, you want audio-visual assistance. Using overheads or aflip chart looks cheap and unprofessional. DO NOT use PowerPoint to put abunch of words on each slide—use the slides for charts, tables graphicsand illustrations. If you only have a few such illustrations, then onlyhave a few slides. You can have 6 slides or 36 slides for a 75-minutepresentation; do not get hung up on the number of PowerPoint slides youhave. Likewise, keep flashy transitions and un-needed effects out of yourpresentation to avoid looking "gimmicky."Seminar LogisticsSeminar Locationseminar location "I have used Javelin Marketing seminar invitation servicefor several years and have found them highly efficient as well aseffective. In my experience, they are actually less expensive, with abetter invitation than local and large mail houses and their mailing listsare always up to date. I would recommend anyone to use their services."Matt F., Reno, NVTo fill up the room, you’ve got to make it easy for prospects to attendwhich means the time of day, the seminar location and the distance thatthey have to travel have to be convenient for them. In other words, yourseminar logistics must fit your prospects. Lets first consider seminarlocation and distance.Distance is the perceived distance. In a major metropolitan areas, peoplewill generally not drive more than 20 minutes to come to a seminar. Twentyminutes in a big city could be three miles just because of the traffic. Soyou have to think about not what the actual distance is but how is itperceived. That’s really the big issue when selecting the seminar locationand planning your seminar logistics. I have people that live 12 minutesaway from me by car down a major interstate freeway. However, those peoplethat are 12 minutes away are on the other side of the tunnel and they arein the next county. And even though they are only 12 minutes away, I cannever get them to a seminar in my county, because in their mind, it seemsfar away. So perceived distance is the issue when selecting seminarlocation.
  29. 29. How far people will actually drive and consider it to be close or far is alocal issue. If you are out in the country, in a rural area, and peopledrive 30 minutes to go to the supermarket, then you can probably invitethem to a seminar location 30 to 40 minutes away and you will fill theroom. Invite people in a metropolitan area to drive 30 or 40 minutes;forget it. It’s never going to work. So you must know what people considerclose and what people consider far when selecting your seminar location.Therefore, distance logistics are a function of your local area.Let’s talk about types of seminar locations. If you come from theinsurance business, you were probably taught to go sell life insurancepolicies at the kitchen table. The reason you were taught this is becausethe kitchen is the favorite room in the house. It’s the favorite room inthe house because the favorite activity of Americans is eating and that’swhere you do that…in the kitchen. So it’s a room they like. Plus, it hasall these favorable connotations…it’s about holiday and family, all thatwarm, fuzzy American lifestyle stuff happens in the kitchen. So it’s areally good place for people to generally feel good. What’s the closestseminar location you can use outside of their house that looks like theirkitchen? It’s a restaurant, because food is served there.Hopefully, you pick a restaurant that they’ve been to before. So don’tpick a new restaurant in town. Don’t pick an obscure restaurant. For yourseminar location, pick the restaurant that’s on Main and Broadway, the onethats been there for 30 years. Why? Because people will more likely cometo a place that’s familiar than unfamiliar…its just human nature. Whenthey look at your invitation, they say….where’s this at? Oh, its over atthe Cape Cod House...great!. That’s the reaction you want to get. If theyhave never heard of your seminar location, you run the risk of them notcoming just because they haven’t heard of it, don’t know where it is, andpeople don’t want to make an effort. They don’t want to look at a map.They don’t want to find out.You may need to drive around some and look for the right seminar location.Optimally, it will be right in the middle of your prospecting area. If youcan’t think of a good seminar location, call the local Chamber ofCommerce, tell them you are doing a seminar and ask them which restaurantsor seminar locations they recommend.Be careful of seminar locations that are high-end or low-end. If peopleperceive the location is low-end, they can likely infer something aboutthe seminar. For example, if you use a school or a library….an adultschool, community college…something like that, then the richer guy that’san experienced investor will infer that the seminar is too basic. Hes theguy that you want to come because he’s got all that money but you canteven get him to walk in the door. He looks at the invitation, "Where’sthis at?…oh, it’s at the library. They’re going to be talking aboutwhat…mutual funds 101? I’ve invested in funds for 30 years, I wont learnanything there." So he assumes just from the seminar location that yourconversation is so low-level there’s nothing he can get out of it.Same thing with a high-end seminar location. You hold it at the countryclub…and the guy who gets your invitation is a retired plumber. He’s got a
  30. 30. $3 million net worth, but it’s all in CDs because he doesn’t know anythingabout investing money. He gets your invitation. He thinks maybe I shouldgo to this and learn something about this. And then he sees…where is it?It’s at the country club. Ive got to get all dressed up. I can’t wear mycoveralls there. You intimidate him with your seminar location so don’tpick a location that’s too high-end.The person you are looking to attend is the “Millionaire Next Door" asdescribed in Tom Stanleys book. He’s approaching age 60 or he’s a littleover. He owns or has owned his own business. He has a $3.7 million networth. That’s the guy. Then if you invite him to the country club, some ofthem are going to be intimidated and they just won’t feel comfortablethere and they won’t come. Just as others will feel that the library is a"junior league" seminar location. A well-known restaurant is a neutrallocation that everybody will feel comfortable coming to. The next questionis—do you serve food?Seminar Logistics IITime and Dayseminar logistics "This was the second time I utilized your turnkeyseminar invitation service and it was such a pleasure being able to savetime by placing such an important aspect of the seminar process onautopilot! The entire process was elementary from start to finish, not tomention the price was right! I would highly recommend taking advantage ofthis application versus trying to reinvent the wheel. Thanks again foryour support with my seminars!"Steve G., Tucson, AZA successful seminar requires the right time and day for the attendees,just part of your seminar logistics considerations. Say youre invitingretirees—you have your seminar during the day. Why? Because retirees willtell you as they age, their night time vision fails first. So they try andavoid driving at night. So if you invite seniors at night, you are goingto lose about 15 maybe 20 percent of your attendance because people try toavoid things that might harm them. Unless it’s really important, they willavoid it. You will never know that. They’re not going to call you up andsay I don’t drive at night. They just won’t show up. So it’s not likeanybody ever tells you this. I guarantee you….pick 10 seniors and callthem up and ask them how’s your nighttime vision? "Oh, it’s getting worseevery year…" they’ll tell you. The other thing about seniors is themajority of them are of a particular sex, which is female. And females, atany age and particularly in major cities, have a safety concern aboutgoing out at night. So you are going to lose even more people because youare using nighttime hours. So if you are inviting retirees and seniors,please invite them during the day. Daylight hours are when you are goingto get your best attendance. Know your target market and get your seminarlogistics correct regarding the right time to maximize attendance.Business owners major constraint is that they’re busy. So you need toinvite them during a time when they have allocated for this type of stuffor will take a break. So I said don’t serve a meal…this is the exception.You don’t need to serve breakfast or lunch to business owners. Meaning you
  31. 31. are using the food as bait. It’s that if you don’t use those times, theywon’t come. Those are the times that the average business owner says,"Sure I’ll go to a talk. I stop for breakfast every morning anyway. So ifI have breakfast at this place and listen to a talk fine," or "Yeah, Ialways try and meet with a client or take care of some personal business.So sure…absolutely…why don’t I go listen to this talk and I’ll havebreakfast at the same time?" So for them using breakfast or lunch is atime-saving mechanism, not you waving some advertisements at them or goingin for an unsolicited sales pitch.When I did this with business owners, I gave them a sandwich buffet. So Istarted talking at 12:15 (it was slated to start at noon), they made theirown sandwich and were ready to listen. So the point is, it wasn’t like Iwas spending unnecessary amounts of money wooing these people with caviarand delicious lobster bisque.That wasn’t the point of the food.The point of the food was that they needed to eat lunch, and all I wasdoing was facilitating their need for a good meal while giving my talk atthe same time. I killed two birds with one stone and serving both partyswants in a non-threatening atmosphere.If you are prospecting a market other than seniors or business owners,you’re going to have to find out what’s the most convenient time for them,and whatever you do, don’t assume. That’s the most dangerous thing you cando is assume. You have to call up 12 of them and ask them if you weregoing to a talk about finances, insurance or money….issuesfinancial…investment stuff. What time of day would be most convenient foryou? You ask 12 people and if 8, 9, 10 of them say the same time, bingonow you know!. But that’s the only way you can find out. Please don’tguess at this.Seminar Logistics IIIMeals and Dinner Seminar Marketingdinner seminar marketing "I just want to say that I have been usingyour seminar and invitation system for nearly one year now. I have to tellyou it is great, prompt and professional. I have not had any problems withthem at at all, I am not easy to please and my assets under managementhave increased 300% with no end in sight. I also love the fact that NF Comprotects the territory. I am building quite a nice practice with theseseminar tools. I dont know what I would do without it. Dont stopLarry!!!"Jeff C., Salon, OHJust because you select a restaurant does not mean you need to provide theattendees with a meal or make it a dinner seminar. Many restaurants willrent you a room for $250. I use a local well-known restaurant on Saturdaymornings. This restaurant is normally closed (it’s open for lunch anddinner), but they are happy to open for me and serve a continentalbreakfast (I don’t consider this a full meal as no one will come just forthe juice, muffin and coffee). Even though the restaurant is not making
  32. 32. money to accommodate me, it’s free advertising for them. I get the wholemain dining room; they charge me $7.50 per person.You dont have to do dinner seminars, and you dont even have to serve ameal, but always serve some type of refreshments at minimum. It’s yourdecision if you want to provide meals (a must if you are an NASD licensee,because your invitation cannot contain compelling language). Here’s theargument in favor of serving meals and understanding why many advisorsemploy dinner seminar marketing:1. You will get twice as many people to attend2. The additional people that attend because of the dinner are “eaters”and not motivated to be there for the right reason3. In the course of our presentation, some of the eaters may decide tomeet with you and become a client.So, if you end up feeding 60 people dinner at $15 each, you have spent$900 on meals. Even if you invest $30 per dinner ($1800 total), if evenone of those “eaters” becomes a client and you earn $5,000, then yourdinner seminar investment was well worth it.Make sure that your seminar invitation is clear and says "dinner served"or "refreshments" if thats all youre providing.I provide a continental breakfast but NOT because it draws people. Afterall, who is going to get up, get dressed, and drive to the seminar forsome juice, coffee, and sweet rolls? I provide the breakfast for mybenefit—it gets caffeine and sugar in their bloodstream and puts them inthe perky mood that I want. The refreshments are a mood enhancer—not adraw. When you use food to draw people you will attract eaters rather thanbuyers, but as explained above, this may be well worth it. Meal or not,ALWAYS have refreshments.Let’s say you have a continental breakfast provided, or you decide to makeit a dinner or lunch seminar. DO NOT use a buffet format. If you wantattention from the audience, once you start talking NO ONE should bemoving around. Make sure the waiters know NOT to enter the room once youstart. Coffee, condiments and everything must already be on the table toavoid movement and noise.Talk while they eat dinner or lunch. It is not necessary to wait untilthey are done eating or have them wait to eat until you’re done. Bytalking while they are eating, you make efficient use of their time andyour time. And people are never in a better mood than when they are eatingSeminar SystemsWhat You Need to KnowMost Seminar systems are not actually systems. They are merely a bunch ofslides, which are the least important part of a seminar system. The mostimportant part of a complete seminar system is the method to fill the
  33. 33. room. As the ministers say, "you cant save the souls in an empty church."So the first things to look for in a seminar system are the instructionsand details on how we will get the room filled with the right people.Fill the room with your seminar systemMost seminars system vendors solve this problem by telling you to feedpeople a meal. If you want to attract "eaters" rather than buyers, servinga meal makes sense. I have never done this and have been one of the mostsuccessful seminar producers in the country. The reason that most seminarsystem vendors tell you to serve a meal is because they dont knowanything about marketing. The way to fill the room with the right peopleis to have a compelling seminar invitation (note: NASD licensees mustserve a meal because they will not be permitted to use compellinglanguage). A compelling invitation is always more important than servingfood.Compelling means you appeal to peoples emotions. To write a seminarinvitation that appeals to peoples emotions requires that you havestudied the science of copy writing. Most seminar vendors have not takenthe time to do this so they merely tell you to spend lots of money, feedpeople, and fill the room that way.Get Appointments at the seminarThe next most important aspect of the seminar system is a process forgaining appointments at the seminar. Youll find most seminar systems weakin that regard. The seminar system will most likely include a little cardto give the attendees and that card has a little check-off box forappointments. This check off box says something like, "yes Id like tomeet with you." This is a totally insufficient way to get appointments.Why? Because you will spend the next week chasing people to tie them downfor a specific meeting time. This is not only a huge waste of your timebut it puts you in the "one down" position. In other words, you are the"chaser" and you have the weak position in the relationship. You demeanyourself and lose all professional standing. Do you know any doctors,lawyers or accountants that chase prospects for appointments? If theseminar system you are considering does not have a highly structuredprocess to gain appointments, pass.Any worthwhile seminar system will show you how to: 1. Get appointments with firm dates and times right at the seminar. 2. Show you how to take away the attendees fear and give them anincentive to set an appointment. 3. Show you how to conduct a presentation that is focused solely onmaximizing the number of appointments.In closing appointments, you must take away peoples fear and give them anincentive. The item that people fear is that they will be trapped in ahigh-pressure sales situation with you. So you must take away that fear.How do you do that? By telling them, "if you make an appointment to seeme, I wont sell you anything, thats not what the appointment is for."Secondly you must give people an incentive, which means you must know whatyour audience considers a worthy incentive. In most cases, that incentiveis not a thing (e.g. a software CD showing how to reduce your mortgage
  34. 34. payments). An incentive is also specific. You do not offer a "freefinancial review" because people don’t know A) what that is, and B) don’tknow what the benefits are. It is too vague and does not compel them toact. You must provide an emotional incentive because people actemotionally, not logically.In my case, since I prospect seniors, I know that their greatest financialfear is making an irreversible financial mistake. So a huge incentive toseniors is to be shown what financial mistakes they are making that couldbe very costly. So I tell my seminar attendees if they come to see me, Ipromise to show them at least one financial mistake they are making thatthey are unaware of. This is a significant incentive to seniors to comefor the appointment, as they fear making financial mistakes. This is acompelling emotional benefit for them. That incentive will of course bedifferent for different niche markets.The presentationBut the third part of any seminar system (and the least important) is theactual presentation. Many vendors think that pretty slides or goodinformation make up a good presentation. This is false. You are not thereto educate people. I always advise financial advisors that if you educatepeople, you will never earn more than a school teacher. Your only goal inyour presentation is to have people want to make an appointment with youat the end of the seminar. I have found after 18 years experience, thatwhen employing a quality seminar system, you make attendees want to set anappointment in two ways:First, you have them like you. How do you do that? You entertain them.Look at who we pay the most in our society. We pay entertainers and sportsfigures the highest salaries. In other words, our culture values beingentertained more than anything else. Therefore, if you want people to likeyou and value you, you entertain them. This is probably different advicethan youve ever heard.How do you entertain attendees? Just like entertainers do. You haveseveral choices: 1. You can tell jokes. If you are not a good joke teller then donttell jokes. 2. You can tell stories. Tell stories from your clients, stories fromyour family or stories from your own experience. 3. You can play an instrument. You need to compose some simple songsand lyrics with financial topics. Maybe you can write a short song abouttaxes or investing in the stock market or purchasing insurance. When youplay your guitar and sing your songs, people will love it. You endear themto you. 4. Do magic tricks. Its easy to learn half a dozen magic tricks thatwill illustrate the points you want to make in your seminar. Again, peoplewill really appreciate the length you go to entertain them and make yourpoints in a very clever way. 5. Compose poems. Make up poems about various financial topics and thenmemorize them. People are always amazed when someone can memorize alengthy poem.
  35. 35. The other thing you want to accomplish during the presentation is to showpeople why you are superior to their current advisor. You do this byshowing them you are their champion and their advocate. Heres how you dothat: during your presentation, you start each topic with a sentence like,"Folks, many advisors do not explain the following to their clients verywell. They dont want you know what kind of fees are included in themutual funds you buy. But I think its important that you know. So let meshow you."Most advisors would never talk about fees in mutual funds because theybelieve if they do so, the attendees will never want to buy a mutual fund.This is a mistake. In fact, the attendees will never want to buy mutualfunds from anyone other than you—the person who tells them the straightstory. People are not stupid, they know mutual funds have fees in them.But youll be the first advisor to ever come clean about this, and showthem exactly what fees are included. Or maybe when youre explaining acertain type of insurance you say, "Folks, maybe youve noticed that theinsurance companies all have really large buildings. They know how to makea profit. And while insurance is a very important aspect of your financialsecurity, I want you to be smart buyers. Let me give you a few tips thatmost insurance agents never tell their clients or prospects."So all through your presentation, you point to other advisors or to WallStreet or to the insurance industry or to big corporation executives or tosome "bad guy." All throughout, you remain the good guy. You positionyourself as the first person to show them "the dirty laundry." Theattendees will not only respect you, they will want to deal only with you.From then on, they will want to have you as their advisor as opposed totheir current advisor who never explained those issues to them.So, up until now, you thought that a good seminar system was about goodfacts or good slides with pretty graphics, or educating the attendees.These things certainly make for a solid presentation, but welcome to thereality of what really works. You entertain and show them why you areclearly the superior advisor. The result will be appointments with 60% to90% of the attendees.Appointment Setting at Your FinancialSeminarHow to Set Appointments With 65% of Attendees Right At Your SeminarIn prior articles, I have addressed filling up the seminar room. In thosearticles, I solve the most frequent problem of financial professionals,getting adequate seminar attendance.In this article, let’s discuss appointment setting with your seminarattendees.
  36. 36. My specialty is in dealing with people age 60 and over (they’re the oneswith money). In motivating this audience to set appointments, you need tounderstand their emotional hot buttons and you also need to remove theirpotential objections.I use this general outline at the close of the seminar as the crux of myappointment setting process:I announce that I need a small favor from them. I need them to completethe evaluation form they received at the beginning of the seminar (andwithout taking a breath) and that the evaluation form is also theirlottery ticket today.Let’s face it, most people could care less about filling out evaluationforms, so I give them a reason to do so. They can win something bycompleting and returning the form. If your appointment setting process isto be successful, theres got to be a payoff for the attendee toparticipate.My evaluation form gets them warmed up with some specific questions beforeI offer them the opportunity to set the appointment with me. I never askfor an appointment, rather, I give them the opportunity to request anappointment. This may seem like semantics, but this approach is far morepowerful. With the right wording, you will be in the control position ifthey request the appointment of you, rather than you requesting (beggingfor) an appointment with them. As a result, people who request theappointment keep it. If you request the appointment of the attendee, youwill have large fallout and many will not show up. (if you have thisproblem, get this CD on ending your appointment cancellations).To further solidify the appointment, the attendees select an appointmenttime and date right on the evaluation form! Why leave this open and tryand nail it down the next day? Or worse, if you can’t get the attendee onthe phone the next day, your chance of ever having an appointment willfall precipitously. If you dont have a structured appointment settingprocess to secure a time and date right there, youre sunk.Attendees sign up for the appointment with me because I promise twothings:1. I will make no attempt to sell them anything at that appointment.2. I will show them at least one significant financial mistake they aremaking and not even aware of.As a result, I ask for and get 100% of the appointments to bring in theirlist of investments and tax return.Do you think you could do business with someone who comes to your officewith their list of investments and tax return and wants to hear what youhave to say? This method of doing seminars and appointment setting rightat the seminar is so successful, I can’t imagine why any professionalwould ever make cold calls!
  37. 37. By the way, to end the seminar, I collect and shuffle up the evaluationforms and select a winner. The winner receives a free copy of my book,Retirement Investing!Using the techniques outlined in these articles, I get 10-20 newappointments every month, in my office with qualified prospects.Your Post Seminar AppointmentTurning Seminar Attendees Into Post Seminar Appointments--what to do atthe first appointmentIn the other articles, I have covered how to fill up the seminar room andhow to set appointments right at the seminar.If you follow the plan, you have 10-20 appointments with qualifiedprospects. What should you do at the first appointment?To the appointment, get every prospect to bring a copy of their tax returnand their list of investments. Tell them to bring these items at the closeof the seminar and you will get 100% compliance. The structure of yourfirst post-seminar appointment is as follows: * First 10 minutes—shmoozing, smiling, rapport building * How long have you lived in the area? * Do your children live nearby? * You have great tans, are you golfers? * Next, get down to business.Give you a brief explanation of what you do (proceed to explain yourservices in 60 seconds—no jargon, explain benefits).Say this early in your post seminar appointment: “So that I make sure wecover any questions or concerns you have in our hour together, let me jotthem down so we won’t forget.” Most every prospect has two or three itemsthey want to discuss because you told them at the seminar to jot downtheir questions or concerns. It’s amazing what people will do when youinstruct them.Then proceed in your post seminar appointment with fact-finding. Askquestions so that you can put together an income statement and balancesheet right on the yellow pad in front of you.“Folks, tell me about your sources of income. * Are you receiving any pensions? * Social Security? * Rents? * Interest/Dividends? * Etc.Now let’s take a look at your investments," (they have brought in theirstatements or their balance sheet).
  38. 38. As you look these over you make some unsettling comments, if appropriate,about their investments. "Do you know what you’re really earning on theseinvestments?How long have you had them?Do you know, off hand, your original investment?" (this will often be ontheir statement on in the records they brought to our meeting)"How did you come to own these investments?" (the prospect reveals theirun-systematic method of investing)."Okay. Let me give you some helpful feedback.You had two concerns that you mentioned in the beginning. Now that I knowmore about your circumstances, I can tell you this" ( proceed to providesome useful, but unspecific direction or advice). "We can get togethersome specific recommendations regarding those issues (e.g. a long termcare quotation, analysis of an annuity, review of their trust, etc). Withthose specific recommendations, you will have precise answers to yourquestions.”“Additionally, I would like to print you reports on each of yourinvestments so that you can really see what’s going on. Some of these arefine, but some of these quite frankly, are clunkers.” (The prospect alwaysagrees saying something like, “we know we should have sold some of thesebut...”).“Folks, let me propose this. Let’s schedule a time to meet next week (sameday and time). I want to put together some answers to your questions andlet’s review the reports I will get on each of your investments (subscribeto Value Line and Morningstar on CD-ROM which gives you the reports youneed). This is not a lot of work, but will take me three hours. My normalrate is $150 per hour, so if you think that $450 would be reasonable toisolate which investments you should sell and what you should do about(their two issues), then let’s meet next week.”If they say they want to think about it, that’s great! Because you justlearned NOT to waste your time with these people. If $450 is a barrier toproceeding, then goodbye! Ninety percent of the people want to meet againand will ask you, “should we pay you now?” These are the types of clientsyou want.If you are in a situation where you cannot charge fees (i.e. not aRegistered Investment Advisor or IAR), it is more difficult to test aprospect’s seriousness. All you can do is ask, “Mr. and Mrs. Jones, whenwe meet next week, if my recommendations make sense to you and you seethat there are ways for you to do better financially, will their beanything that would stop us from doing business together?” I don’t like toask this question as I find it presumptuous, but it’s better than spendingthree hours putting materials together and then finding out his brotherworks at Merrill Lynch!Use the first post seminar appointment to fact-find. Be clear that theobjective of the first appointment is to schedule a second appointment
  39. 39. (assuming you want to work with the prospect). Do not try and closebusiness at the first appointment. This system will result in largeraccounts and doing more comprehensive business with new clients.Financial PresentationWhat No One Tells You About Seminar MarketingSeminar marketing is a very powerful way to sell professional services.But most everything you read is shallow advice. In this article, let’sfocus on one aspect in detail—how to convert the maximum number of seminarattendees to clients. I learned this valuable lesson from giving over 200financial seminars personally and training thousands of financial advisorsin financial seminar marketing. (You can find a link to articles thatfocus on other aspects of seminar marketing at the end).Unfortunately, most seminar presenters have the assumption that they wantto accomplish one of these objectives in their seminar: 1. Show the seminar attendees how much they know. These professionalsassume that if the seminar attendees see them as well informed, welleducated and knowledgeable, the seminar attendees will want to set anindividual appointment. But this logic is flawed. These professionals areeducators and if you educate people, you’ll never earn more than a schoolteacher. That’s because education is not motivation. The seminarpresenter’s job is to motivate the seminar attendees to action. Educatorsdon’t do this. Educators are in the business of telling and informing.Motivators are in the business of persuading and enrolling. 2. Confuse the seminar attendees. These professionals believe that ifyou confuse people, they will seek you out to get clarity. I don’t thinkthis is a valid seminar marketing model. The average person is attracted
  40. 40. to someone who explains things in a way to give clarity not obscureclarity. Confusing people can do nothing but alienate them and leave yourseminar attendees saying “I’m more confused now then when I came in.”People don’t like to be confused. 3. Scare them. Seminar attendees don’t like to be confused and theydon’t like to be sacred. That is unless you share the same market ashorror movie producers—teenie boppers seeking a thrill.You get an insight into what seminar attendees really want when you lookat who we pay the most in our society. We pay entertainers and sportsfigures the highest salaries. So it’s clear, that as a society, we want tobe entertained. Therefore, if you want to attract people, if you want tomaximize the appointments from your seminar presentation, entertain yourseminar attendees.Being an anal, information retentive CPA, it took my speech coach a longtime to convince me—when I give a presentation, think Hollywood. Shetrained me to see that the presentation must have the elements of ablockbuster movie. Seminar presenters need to entertain with stories withhumor, with music, with magic, with intrigue, with mystery. What you wantto accomplish in the seminar is to get people to LIKE YOU. And you getthem to like you if they have a good time, i.e. entertain them.“But I’m not musical or funny and I can’t do magic tricks,” you protest.Then you simply need some props to assist your milk toast personality. Andthose props are NOT a bunch of PowerPoint slides (unless the slides havehumorous cartoons sprinkled throughout or embedded music that provide ahumorous commentary on your seminar content or video clips of popularmovie scenes).You can in fact learn some jokes or learn some magic tricks or learn somehumorous stories. If you cannot do this on your own, then simply find aspeech coach (your local chapter of the National Speakers Association canhelp you). But whatever you do, don’t invest thousands of dollars in yourseminar marketing and then not get a ton of business from the attendees.
  41. 41. Visit www.seowebanalyst.com WEB MARKETING TUTORIALS, VIDEO TUTORIALS, LIVE WEBMINARS,SEARCH ENGINE OPTIMIZATION LESSONS, HTML , GALLERY, & CSS TUTORIALS, FREE EXIT ADVERTWINDOW SCRIPTS AND SO MUCH MORE….ONLINE RESOURCES TO BUILD YOUR WEB MARKETING !ALL FREE!Visit www.seowebanalyst.com for more information!Cheers,SEO Web Analyst®™OLATUNJI.adetunji info@seowebanalyst.com

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