Advisor Perspectives welcomes guest contributions. The views presented here do not necessarily represent those of Advisor Perspectives.Dan Richards

Last week, I got a call from an advisor who used a simple idea to set up meetings with three $2 million prospects. This advisor, Jon, used some research from one of my recent columns to jumpstart conversations about critical issues for the wealthy.

In May, I wrote about a US Trust research study of 450 high-net worth Americans with investments of at least $3 million.  This study identified significant gaps in estate and financial planning and substantial communication issues with spouses. 

Creating the impetus to meet

For some time, Jon had been cultivating eight affluent investors, each with at least $2 million. He used this survey to approach these prospects with a unique offer – and had already got in front of three of them as a result. None of these were cold; in every case he had been cultivating them for some time and already had a low-level relationship.

That being said, he had found it a struggle to set up meetings. 

Jon’s first step was to create a list of 21 areas where the US Trust survey showed many wealthy investors had substantial shortcomings in their financial and estate plans or in communication with their spouse. 

Next, he mailed the eight prospects a hand written card, saying that he had just come across some new research with almost 500 wealthy investors, identifying significant gaps in 20 aspects of their estate and financial plans. He then promised to call within the next week, to see if they’d like to sit down for 30 minutes to get a reading on where they stood in these areas compared to the participants in the study.

When Jon called, he got voice mail in seven of the eight cases. In the one instance where he got a prospect live, they agreed to meet for a coffee the following week at the prospect’s office. In the next few days, three of the seven prospects with whom he’d left messages called back, curious to learn more; he set up meetings with two of these, while the third asked him to call back in June.