Social Hub

Social Hub

For those of you who are used to listening to me, you’ll know that I’m a big advocate of Planners specialising in a particular life stage or transition – it’s how you become an expert in the human issues that tend to accompany that particular stage. And when you specialise, you’ll find that you have a whole host of clients who are all going through the same experiences – that’s why I’d like to touch on the idea of social hubs.

You’ll become an expert in the human emotions for a particular life stage

It really doesn’t matter what life stage or transition you specialise in – it could be young families, school fee planning, first time buyers or divorce.

But what you’ll find is that, by specialising, you become an expert in the human emotions that relate to that life stage. Why? Because you’ll see your clients experiencing the same emotions, time and again. The same anxieties. The same worries.

And this is where things get interesting.

Shared experiences bind us together

Think back to the friends that you’ve had over the years.

At particular moments throughout your life, you make friends with people who are going through the same lifestage. It might be that you had young children at the same time, or maybe you were all at the same stage in your careers.

The fact is, we are drawn to people who share similar experiences and emotions to us – it’s something that binds us together and connects us. If someone else has experienced what you’re experiencing – and understands how scared, anxious or happy you are feeling – there’s a level of trust there. You build a relationship that’s based on common ground.

Yes, you may leave that friendship behind when you transition to a new life stage, but at the time, those shared experiences draw you together.

And the more intense the transition, the more painful the experience, the more likely you are to seek out people who are going through something similar. It’s human nature. And it provides immeasurable comfort and reassurance.

Can you create a social hub?

My point is, you have all these clients – all going through a similar stage or experience. Could you create a social hub for them, where they can connect with each other and build relationships?

Think about it.

Your clients are all going through the same, human stuff. They are all looking for support, sympathy and empathy. They are also looking for someone they can trust – someone who understands what they are going through.

What could be better than connecting with others who are going through exactly the same thing?

Even better, you are their common link. They trust you. And they trust your firm.

So, plan some social events for them. And no, I don’t mean something awful and awkward like golf. I’m talking about getting people together in your office for a glass of wine after work on a Friday. Or arrange a meal for clients who you know are going through something similar.

What do your clients need?

But don’t just stop there. Are there other services that might really help those clients of yours? Can you build links with people who provide those services, and help your clients to access them in a safe environment?

Perfect example – if you deal with clients who are at retirement stage, can you build a relationship with a local travel agency and negotiate a discount for them? Brilliant – invite that travel agent along to your Friday night wine event. After all, what’s one of the first things that someone who’s recently retired will want to do? Take a holiday – travel! See if you can provide your clients with a trusted partner.

Social hubs achieve 2 key things

Use the social hub that you have and you’ll achieve 2 important things:

  1.  You’ll add value for your clients by helping them to connect with people who are going through the same experiences as them.
  2.  You’ll also widen your own client base. How? Because each person who comes along will probably bring a friend for companionship and support. And if they are all part of the same social hub, it’s likely they might need your services too.

Ready to knock your clients socks off?

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