Most of you should know by now that I operate differently than others who advertise online for financial services. Last week my marketing partner, Jeremy, came here from Texas so we could brainstorm some new ideas for getting people the exact type of information they want. Keeping this environment low pressure for you is a major priority for me and it’s important to send just enough but not too much information.
That lies in stark contrast to most others who operate in a similar fashion. I know with certainty that if you sign up on another website you are likely to receive endless phone calls until you change your phone number or give in to the sales pitch. All those guys want is a warm body with a rough demographic match and they will do everything they can to sell you an annuity.
I’m different because I don’t care if you buy an annuity but I do want to make sure you find useful information regardless of the outcome for me. Over the years I estimate that more than 30,000 people have signed up to get more information from AST. I have probably had extended conversations via phone or email with maybe 20% of those people. We had interactions and some became clients because they called me. The others have received the same information as you without being harassed or bothered in any way.
I keep track of all the appointments I have and run numbers to analyze whether my ad spending is worth the eventual payoff. So far this year, of all those meetings, I recommended an annuity for just about 43% of the people who asked me for advice. That means more than half of all people came to me, shared their information and goals and I told them that they didn’t need an annuity. Some people who don’t need an annuity buy one anyway because they like the security and opportunity provided but most do not.
It’s safe to assume that this year matches prior years and that I have communicated directly with about 20% of the people who signed up on the website. If I only recommended an annuity for 43% of those people it translates to an annuity recommendation for only 8.6% of the people who come here.
That’s seems pretty low-pressure to me, especially considering how far others will go to get you on the phone. I don’t expect any sale to make my week, month or career so it won’t do me any good to shove you into something that doesn’t work. All advisors, whether fiduciaries or not, are looking out for self-interests but I promise I’ll never look out for mine at the cost of yours. Knowing that my pitch rate is so low should allow you to relax and be more comfortable reaching out for a fair assessment.
Just this week I emailed back and forth with a man who has been reading this newsletter since the beginning. He was interested in buying a product that I could sell but didn’t want to. There are some that fall outside the scope of what’s appropriate for the type of planning I do. He understands the product and likes the opportunity provided. I recommended he go for it with another advisor who had shown him the contract but reminded him to reach out to me any time for a second opinion on the advice he gets elsewhere.
He got what he wanted and I kept my principles intact. That approach makes what I do more enjoyable. I sell annuities for a living but I will never sell one that doesn’t fit. I don’t care if you buy an annuity because it’s not going to change my life. You should only buy an annuity if it changes your life. As you field the constant phone calls from others, take some time to consider which approach works best for you.
Have a nice weekend…