A coaching alternative, the marketing consultant aims for the top line.

In the May issue of Financial Advisor we talked about coaching, a process that can take an internal or external focus. Some coaches help you look inside yourself for the answers that will make you a more successful advisor; at the other end of the spectrum are those coaches who focus more on your production skills.

Now, imagine that the spectrum actually continues beyond the latter end to encompass an even more external approach, the marketing consultant for whom any internal focus is strictly accidental. Or, as Russ Alan Prince says of his clients, they're simply successful producers "who want to make even more money."

Yet, as with coaching, there are many ways to skin this cat. Bill Bachrach helps you develop real trust with your client. Bill Good gives you the marketing system you never had. And Russ Alan Prince turns million-dollar producers into multi-million-dollar producers.

Bill Bachrach: Values-Based Selling

Says Mark Little, a San Antonio advisor with Wall Street Services Inc., "I was already my broker-dealer's top producer at $388,000 a year, but I was miserable. Earning commission income from 1,242 accounts, I was seriously considering quitting the business." After meeting Bachrach and going through his program, Little had fired all but 17 of his clients. "With referrals from the 17, I built back up to 100 clients. Now my production is at $1.4 million from fees but, more important, I've got my life back. With Bill's value-based planning approach, I give a higher level of service to my clients and spend about three days a week doing it."

Bachrach is both a marketing consultant and a coach, the latter being a high-end, one-on-one program. But most advisors come to him for his three-day Values-Based Selling Academy, an offshoot of his popular book, Values-Based Selling: The Art of Building High-Trust Client Relationships (Bachrach & Associates Inc., 1996).

"I started training others in 1988, after being a retail advisor with Merrill Lynch. No one at Merrill could teach me how to get wealthy clients. My sales manager suggested I work my 'natural market,' which was other broke 26-year-olds-not a good path to success. A mentor helped me create what is now Values-Based Financial Planning ... the process which, for me back then, was getting wealthy people who'd had unsuccessful relationships with brokers to transfer all their money to me," says Bachrach. What did he know that other brokers didn't? Simple. Explains Bachrach, "The person clients will do all of their business with is the one who can create with them a meaningful rather than superficial relationship. Values-Based Selling is my strategy for stealing clients from other advisors. If I know I can do a better job than the client was getting done elsewhere, I've earned the right to serve that client."

Are top producers Bachrach's primary clients? "No. I believe you have to go where the problem is the worst if you want to change something," he says. His mission, therefore, is transforming the financial services industry from one of salespersons to one of trusted advisors.

With 30 employees and a new CEO, Bachrach has developed a serious training company. For $2,995, you can attend his intensive, three-day Values Based Selling Academy. Or $19,500 will get you one year of personalized coaching. If you just want to dip your toes in the water, you can pay $599 for Bachrach's self-study program, Values-Based Selling Mastery System.

But why, I wondered, is it necessary to teach something as fundamental as trust? "It's an unlearning of the sales techniques the wirehouses have taught these people," explains Bachrach. "If you want to not be trusted, just show up behaving like a salesperson. Brokers are car salesmen that dress nice. I'm not teaching people to develop trust so much as a methodology that creates trust; otherwise, they're just learning another way to manipulate the client."

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