If you've been in business for more than 10 or 15 years, chances are you still remember what I affectionately call the “Technology Dark Ages.”
Do you remember when almost all business communication was done by fax? Or how about when you had to pull off and find a pay phone to contact a client you were about to meet?
While those technologies improved our lives and made it easier to do business, they are antiquated compared to the technology at our fingertips today. Now we can call our clients as we drive down the road. Even more amazing, we can email them documents using the very same device we use to make phone calls.
Of course, technology is always marching forward and giving us new and better ways to do things. With this in mind, I want to share seven technology hacks and tricks that every financial adviser should know about.
Technology Hack #1: BombBomb.com In a world where we are all constantly flooded by emails and trying to figure out how to keep our inbox at a manageable level, BombBomb.com is one of the coolest communication mediums I've seen in a long time.
Imagine the ability to break through the email clutter by connecting with someone via a personal video message rather than another boring email. BombBomb allows you to shoot a personal video direct from your phone or laptop and literally have it in a client's inbox (or in hundreds of clients' inboxes) five minutes later. Not only that, but imagine knowing exactly when each client or prospect opens your email and views your video. If you happen to put a link in the body of the email, you'll know when they click on it too.
BombBomb.com helps me break through the email clutter and get the attention of prospects and clients when I need to. Not only that, it gives me the ability to see the analytics on the back end. This is a must-use tool for all financial advisers.
Technology Hack #2: Mobile Assistant My good friend Corey Westphal was definitely ahead of the curve when he created MobileAssistant. Think of Copytalk with live real people doing the transcription services behind the scenes. In fact, this entire article was written by me transcribing it through MobileAssistant and then having it emailed directly to me.
Now imagine the ability to sit down with a client for an hour, scribble a bunch of notes and then within five minutes of them leaving your office you've transcribed all of your notes by voice recorder and they're emailed to you and your office staff within about a four-hour window. You can do this with Mobile Assistant.
Not only can you use it to archive your notes, but you can also delegate follow-up tasks to your team so that once you've completed a meeting, the wheels are in motion to accomplish all the required tasks. This alone saves me hours a week.
One more thing: From a compliance and suitability standpoint, imagine having every single one of your notes transcribed and archived in your CRM without having to type a single word. I hope you're starting to see why Mobile Assistant is an incredible service that I couldn't live without.
Technology Hack #3: Google Voice Google Voice is amazing. It provides you with a second phone number that includes call forwarding, voicemail transcription, caller ID and all kinds of other time-saving abilities. Surprisingly, Google Voice is still free. If you aren't using it to create your own client concierge hotline (More: Client concierge frees up advisers), you're missing an incredible opportunity in your business.
Also, for advisers out there who have multiple marketing funnels like radio or public seminars, it's a great way to track the specific return on investment of your marketing funnels as you now have a dedicated 24-hour hotline specific to that marketing activity.
Technology Hack #4: Join.me In the world of screen shares and conference calls, Join.me is top of class. After trying just about every service in the book, the ease of use and simplicity of joining screens via Join.me is the reason it beats competitors. It has both free and paid-for options depending on the functionality you need.
You don't have to download software. There's no clunky phone number or email entry, just a simple interface with a link and the ability to record conference calls with video. If you're using screen shares and you aren't using Join.me, you're not using the easiest service out there, in my opinion.
Technology Hack #5: ACECAD DigiMemo Pen This is a real-life notepad that captures everything digitally on your screen so you can literally do a yellow pad presentation on your computer. I use it all the time during screen shares as well as during my Elite Advisor Blueprint strategy sessions.
Not only can I save and edit these files, it also allows me to convert them to a PDF so that I can easily share my handwritten notes with my clients. I couldn't do my business as I do it today without this incredible gadget, it turns a virtual appointment into a personal experience.
Technology Hack #6: TimeTrade Imagine the power of being able to schedule all your appointments without an assistant. This is the power of TimeTrade. It literally plugs into your existing calendar and allows email recipients to pick and book their own times based on which time blocks to which you choose to allow them access. This saves a ton of time (no pun intended) and alleviates much of the busy work that might normally fill your assistant's day.
Technology Hack #7: Google Hangouts Who else has sat through a boring webinar? How many minutes go by before you're checking your email on the other screen, playing your favorite time-wasting game on your iPhone or doing something else to pass the time?
Well, imagine if you could keep 100% of your audience's attention while sharing the same type of content. This is a Google Hangout as now you have live video conferencing options for free where literally it's like you're sitting around a boardroom table having a live conversation with up to 10 attendees at one time. We've used this service to host small mastermind groups among our existing clients and are still learning new and fun ways to utilize this service.
Added bonus: You can use a service called Webinars OnAir that allows you to stream a Google Hangout via YouTube and also archive it via recording. Check it out if you want to try Google Hangouts in a larger format of more than 10 attendees.
Every year, new developments in technology are released. Many of them can help you streamline your business, saving you both time and money. It's important for you to invest in your “technology education” so that you remain on the cutting edge.
I hope these technology hacks allow you to squeeze more productive hours out of each and every week! Please share comments on any of the technology hacks I may have missed or some of your other favorites.