There are a number of ways to source the super-rich (those with a net worth of $500 million or more). As I've said in previous columns, some approaches are more effective and consistent than others. For example, having a dual-impact brand and focusing on referrals, more so from influencers than clients, is the optimal way to go.
There are ways to motivate influencers to direct their wealthiest clients your way. Moreover, these methods are predicated not just on your ability to do a good job for the client, but also on your ability to add value to the influencer's practice.
If your objective is to work with the super-rich, you'll likely need to identify and work with a meaningful number of influencers, as very few of them have more than a single or a handful of super-rich clients. Or you could choose to be part of an elite professional network.
Elite professional networks are primarily composed of a combination of the usual suspects of legal, accounting and financial professionals. The members work cooperatively to source and share super-rich, or at the very least extremely wealthy, clients.
Members of the network usually fill multiple roles. There are typically four distinct, but interrelated, roles within every network: "rainmakers," client facilitators, meta-facilitators and specialists.
Let's examine each of these roles.
The rainmakers are the heart of an elite professional network because they bring in the extremely wealthy clients. Any member of the network can try to be a rainmaker, but it's usually the same professionals who tend to bring in most of the extraordinarily wealthy clients.
Good rainmakers don't rely on just their personal and family connections. That can take you only so far. Professionals who rely on this method tend to run through their connections and are done, with little ability to restock their Rolodexes.
Rainmakers who consistently bring new clients to the network are usually thought leaders in their respective fields. Thought leaders are much more capable of generating new relationships-principally with influencers-that can maintain a steady flow of extremely wealthy clients.
As thought leaders, these rainmakers can distinguish themselves as icons among the super-rich and influencers, consequently making themselves the go-to professionals for their particular expertise. This enables them to regularly bring super-rich clients to their elite professional network.
The very nature of the elite professional network is predicated on sharing enormously wealthy clients with other members of the network. It's important to note that the sharing must be highly proactive. This means members should work to keep non-members away. The responsibility for this falls to the client facilitator.