1.1 Introduction to the Business Development Institute

Typically, industry business schools focus on the technical aspect of a sale to a business owner. Is that the obstacle to an advisor's success in penetrating the business market? Here is our theory: If you can successfully get the business owner engaged in a process to plan ahead, you have a high likelihood of affecting change for the better. The Business Development Institute focuses on how this is done.

Biggest obstacles for agents

  • Not enough of the right prospects
  • Don’t know what to say to engage the prospect

Traditional Business Schools

  • Focus on insurance solutions
  • Focus on products

Three Success Steps

  • Prospecting for ideal clients
  • Understanding fundamentals
  • Engaging business owners

1.2 Small Business Market Needs You

While plain hard work is effective much of the time, if we plan ahead, just as we advocate our clients to do, we can achieve intentional success. Let's learn how to be intentional in our approach and think out our prospecting, questions, markets and more. If we can engage the business owner, change can occur for the better.

Consider an intentional approach

  • Engage small business owners

Three M’s of Small Business Marketing

  • Market Potential - Size and scope of market
  • Multiple Opportunities - 7 Topics
  • Meeting their Needs - Not being approached by advisors

1.3 Small Business Target Marketing

This module will explore how target marketing can provide you with an unlimited number of ideal prospects. By targeting markets, one can define their ideal prospect, receive more referrals, become more competent to solve their problems and simplify the whole sales cycle. This module will explore how to choose and qualify a target market.

Intentional Prospecting

Target Markets simplify prospecting

  • Narrow and Deep Prospecting

3 S’s of Small Business Target Marketing

  • Settle on Target Marketing - Top of mind solutions
  • Selection of Target Markets - Three C’s criteria
  • Suitability of Target Markets - Access, Interest, Qualified

1.4 Target Market Data

Once you have identified the 5-7 targeted small business markets, we have to gather the data that includes the market members. This becomes our cold prospecting list, which will be warmed up in the next section. Learn what sources are available and what level of detail can be found from each source. Now that we have identified the desired, qualified markets and the sources of data, we are prepared to construct our prospecting lists for each market.

3 Step Process

  • Validate Target Markets - Prior to data collection
  • Gain Access to business owner data - No cost approach
  • Create Neighborhood List - From COIs and Internet

1.5 Market Access Using 7 Touches

One of the common contributors to a low engagement rate between advisors and small business owners is the mismatch of agendas. Agents give up after an average of about 3 touches and the average small business owner has to be courted through 5-7 touches before they have the confidence to proceed. We will teach the 7 touches, significantly improving the engagement success. With practice, an agent will be able to shorten the process to 4 or 5 touches.

Why – What – How process

Why are clients reluctant to engage

  • 6 reasons for client’s reluctance

What are they thinking

  • No, until they can say Yes

How do you build a relationship – 7 Touches

  1. A Professional Compliment
  2. The Next Day
  3. A Few Days Later
  4. The Disruption
  5. First Meeting
  6. Second Meeting
  7. Analysis and Presentation

1.6 Accessing the Market Through Networking

In addition to target market research through databases, an advisor can shorten the process by implementing a targeted networking campaign. Not only can networking groups be frequented (e.g. Meetup.com), but industry specific meetings can also be attended for maximum effectiveness. Learn how to integrate directly into the target industry as a market planning specialist.

Target networking – 3 Types of groups

  • Associations
  • Homogeneous groups
  • Heterogeneous groups

Become a Networking Master

  • Create a to-do list
  • Marketing Meetings

1.7 Business Owner Must Have Conversations – Priority Profile

This module is at the heart of eliminating the reluctance to plan on the part of the client, as well as the agent. For different reasons, their reluctance diminishes by going through a process of prioritizing the business owner's planning, based on each topic’s importance and relevance. Learn how to set up, conduct and follow up this meeting and be well positioned to pursue the planning priorities of the of the business owner.

7 Topics of conversation with business owners

  1. Exit planning
  2. Protect from losing key person
  3. Estate & personal benefits
  4. Getting money out of my company
  5. When owner can’t work
  6. Executive benefits
  7. Employee benefits

1.8 Direct, Quick Engagement

Sometimes, you are not afforded the opportunity to build up trust, confidence and interest in going through a process. Sometimes, you have to cut to the chase and ask a poignant question that immediately interests the business owner to explore that topic further. Considering the 7 topics introduced in the last module, we will present questions to ask regarding all of these topics, with an emphasis on those of the greatest interest. While there are no magic questions, there are some significantly more effective than others.

Top of mind concerns – Direct approach

Key Questions for each of the 7 Topics

  • Used individually or collectively
  • Priority Profile