Perhaps one of the most undervalued skills an advisor can have is the ability to tell a story. When done correctly, storytelling can become a crucial asset for advisors. That is because each company’s product and service have a unique story to tell and how it relates to their customers. So why does storytelling matter for financial advisors? And more importantly, how can they become better at it?
Why Storytelling Matters for Financial Advisors
Stories are driven by narrative and when it comes to finances, everyone has a unique story to tell. Advisors who can make sense of a potential client’s situation by telling a story and guiding them through their financial journey, have the potential to win a client for life. The reason is because stories drive purpose; our brains are wired in a very sensual way. Stories provide a very direct impact on these senses, where presenting just numbers and stats alone are unable to achieve.
Why Narrative Matters
The reason why narrative is so powerful is because without it, people can lose direction and get lost. Not having a clear direction can make people complacent and feel like they are unable to achieve, or even see their goals. That’s why having a narrative is so meaningful; it gives prospects and clients the direction allowing them to understand where they are going and most importantly why. Missing this component in their financial planning can result in them dropping out or switching advisors altogether.
Storytelling Engages People
Perhaps one of the most powerful effects of being able to tell an effective story, is the engagement factor. Unlike static numbers, a story gives the prospect a foundation for understanding the entire situation. It puts the prospects directly into your solution and lets them walk the journey with their own eyes. This alone is an extremely powerful process for selling, but can become extremely useful to simplify what it is you are providing them from the prospects point of view.
The Art of Telling the Story
Every story has five main characteristics: Characters, Setting, Plot, Conflict and Resolution. Since the plot and characters will revolve around what is important to them in the story, to start with, you need to understand your client’s particular situation. What is their unique need or concern that they find themselves in that particular setting at the moment? The conflicts, as you can imagine, are all of the tangibles and intangibles surrounding the Setting and Plot of what could potentially go wrong. And finally, the Resolution are the steps and process you can provide to help assure these things won’t happen.
By connecting all of these dots in dealing with your potential new clients, you can tell a unique and engaging story of why they need you and how you and your services fit into their financial puzzle.