Female investors are an attractive client base for financial advisers, but reaching out to those prospective clients requires a refined approach, according to a panel of advisers participating in an InvestmentNews webcast last Tuesday.
“I began focusing on women when I noticed at the start of my career that they weren't being invited to the table,” said Heather R. Ettinger, managing partner at Fairport Asset Management LLC.
To bring in more clients, she began building educational programs for female investors, including those whose lives are in transition because of widowhood or divorce.
A woman client must feel comfortable expressing how she feels about financial matters, said Jeff Stoffer, principal at Stoffer Wealth Advisors LLC.
He holds group meetings for women to discuss not just their financial needs and wants but also to share emotions attached to money.
“There are financial events in their past that continue to affect how they handle money today,” Mr. Stoffer said. “You can get people to articulate their values.”
Branding also plays a big role in attracting female investors. Panelists recommended getting involved with community events and hosting parties that combine networking, fun and personal finance.
The events can be tailored to certain demographics.
Ms. Ettinger caters to female executives with deck parties in the summer. The attendees — typically eight to 12 women and a mix of clients and prospects — respond best to invitations sent via e-mail and Evite.
NO PRODUCT PUSH
Meanwhile, social events for older women start out with an invitation and a follow-up phone call, Ms. Ettinger said.
Nothing is sold at these parties; they are strictly networking events.
Cathy Curtis, an adviser with Curtis Financial Planning, hosts events that she calls “Food, Fun, Fashion and Finance.”
The food and featured fashion designer are the fun elements, but she also invites experts to discuss health care, taxes and other major financial issues that these prospective clients will confront.
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