Good communication is essential to success as a financial advisor. Talent alone won’t help if you’re unable to effectively communicate the advantages of your practice, in order to gain new clients and then retain them.

Thus you must acquire strong communication skills in two areas:

Your approach, where your goal is to get your message out and convert people into clients.

The quality of service you provide afterward, which determines whether you will be able to retain those clients.

In this column, I’ll offer suggestions on the first point and cover the second in a follow-up column.

If you believe that ads in print or electronic media will immediately pull in lots of new clients, you’re mistaken.

Actually, the first thing a good communication campaign should deliver is a lot of inquiries. Depending on how you respond, these folks might become clients.

To attract inquiries, your written and verbal communication must be three things: 

Clear. Avoid jargon and clichés, and don’t condescend. Use simple, precise terms that convey exactly who you are and the value your firm offers. 

Concise. Avoid repeating yourself, and save details for the right forum.