Why you should target female clients

January 30, 2014 by

As the definition of the traditional family changes, so does the traditional female role.1 More than ever, women are taking leadership roles in the home, at work and in the marketplace.2

Yet, the financial services industry has been slow to accept women in their new role as chief financial officer of the household.

In my previous blog, “Who bought the kitchen table,” I discussed the failure of the financial services industry to connect with women, and cited the need for effective communication in order to acquire and retain female clients.

The “Women, Money, and Power Study” commissioned by Allianz Life Insurance Company of North America (Allianz) supports these findings, and identified four factors financial professionals must understand before effectively communicating with women.3

The first step is to understand why you should target female clients. The Allianz study gives several reasons:3

  • Lack of knowledge: The study discovered 90% of the women respondents feel at least somewhat financially insecure. Help women feel good about their financial decisions in your effort to become a trusted resource.
  • Referrals: Women typically have a larger circle of influence than men and tend to give more referrals. By gaining her trust, you may get access to her networking system.
  • Loyalty: Acquiring a female client may take more effort initially. But, if you build a relationship with her, she’ll be a loyal customer.
  • Women and legacy: To women, legacy is more than wealth transfer. It’s about handing down values, traditions and memories. Take a holistic—not just a financial—approach.
  • Impact of Divorce: Many women say that divorce changed their financial outlook. These divorcees may want to handle their money differently and could potentially be good prospects.
  • Mortality rates: Women live an average of 5 years longer than men.4 So, not only are women assuming control of more wealth; they will likely be responsible for their wealth longer.
  • Small-business ownership: Women-owned businesses have shown rapid growth. This represents an emerging opportunity for financial professionals.

Now that you understand why you should target female clients, we are ready for the next step in effectively communicating with women—understanding how life events influence financial decisions. Watch for my next blog in the series.

1 Allianz Life Insurance Company of North America, “The Allianz Women, Money, and Power Study: Empowered and Underserved” (2013) available at

2 FleishmanHillard and Hearst Corporation, “Women, Power & Money: Wave 5″ (2013) available at

3 Allianz Life Insurance Company of North America, “Help your clients find solutions that fit.” (2012) ENT-324-N

4 National Vital Statistics Reports, Volume 61, Number 3, September 24 2012.


Kristine Garrett

Kristine Garrett joined Brokers International in 2012 as a Marketing Project Manager. She brought with her a strong background in sales and marketing that she uses to write helpful blog tips and marketing ideas to grow your business. Kristine shares a hobby farm near Panora with her husband, farm critters and beautiful bulldogs. 11854-1/30/13

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Five Social Media Post Ideas – January

January 27, 2014 by

This is the perfect time to create a social media schedule. Our social media post ideas series was created to help you do just that.

This month’s focus is on adding images to your Facebook posts. According to this survey, photos and images on Facebook generate 53 percent more likes and 104 percent more comments than the average post.1

So get creative and think of fun ways to integrate images into your posts to create more engagement.

Here are some ideas to get you started.

  1. Entice your readers: Ask your audience to stop in for an annual review. Make sure they know fresh coffee and donuts will be available during their visit.  Grab their attention with a photo of the goodies in your reception area.
  2. Show them the real you: Post a photo of yourself and your family doing something fun. Thank customers for their support that allows you to enjoy your free time. Social media is about building relationships. The more your clients feel like they know and trust YOU; the more likely you’ll create long-lasting relationships.
  3. Take them away from the everyday: Post a picture of a desirable vacation spot, and ask them to share their dream vacation. Tie your post back to your business by adding a link on how to financially plan for a trip.
  4. Share content. This could be anything from a feel-good image to an info-graphic with interesting statistics. The things you share don’t always have to relate to your business, this humanizes you. Just be sure to think before you post and avoid controversial topics—keep it educational.
  5. Publicize your community involvement: Give your clients a behind-the-scenes look into your work outside the office. Take pictures at community events and post them. Showing you are involved in the community builds trust and credibility.

Make sure to credit the original owner of any articles or images you share, and don’t forget to refer to compliance guidelines.

To read our previous post ideas, click here to see the series archive.

Hubspot. “Photos on Facebook Generate 53% More Likes Than the Average Post [NEW DATA].” Inbound Marketing. Hubspot, 25 Nov 2012. Web. 13 Jan 2014. <>.


Katie Dunn

Katie Dunn is a graphic designer and social media writer. She joined Brokers International in June 2013. She is responsible for graphic design and the maintenance of Brokers International’s social media platforms. When not at work, Katie enjoys volleyball, golf, running, biking, graphic design projects, and cheering on the Hawkeyes. ADR-1372

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What works for Kevin

January 23, 2014 by

I joke around with Kevin that he’s the “great Kevin Klug.”

It’s not only an affectionate nod to his steady production, but also an acknowledgement that he’s great to work with.

Kevin and his colleagues at Secure Retirement Solutions in Green Bay, WI are focused on building long-term business relationships with their clients. And they also take time to develop personal relationships. They are a team of professionals who work to find solutions that are in the best interest of their clients.

That’s why Kevin is the focus of this installment of “What works ”

Kevin-KlugName: Kevin G. Klug

Firm name: Co-owner, Secure Retirement Solutions, Green Bay, WI

Years in industry: 15

Specialty (if applicable): Retirement/income planning strategies

Licenses: Health and life

College: A.A., Communications, San Antonio College, San Antonio, TX


1) Why did you decide to work with Brokers International?
I’d originally worked with Brokers International for four years. When I left for another opportunity, I found out the grass wasn’t greener on the other side. I grew to miss the one-on-one experience and interactions with the people at Brokers.

You’re not just a number at Brokers. It’s not just about premium. You have a name; a face; a family; you’re a real person. Here, it’s about building relationships. It’s not always about the money.


2) What was a piece of advice that you received early in your career that has stuck with you?
It’s not necessarily a piece of advice, but there are two things that I live by: One, never tell a lie. If you never tell a lie, you don’t have to remember what you told someone. Two, never say something about somebody that you wouldn’t say in front of them.

It’s all about how you treat someone. I try to treat my clients like they are my parents. I want to make sure they’re being taken care of.


3) Tell us about a recent interaction with a client where you really felt like you helped them.
I wholeheartedly believe in helping my clients be proactive in their retirement strategies.  I have a case that I talk about, which highlights the importance of looking forward.

I was doing some strategizing with a husband and wife. He had entered early retirement because of the onset of multiple sclerosis. We sat down, and put together a strategy. Shortly thereafter, he died suddenly from a blood clot in his lung, caused by the MS.

Because we had just met, and put together a strategy to protect their income, his wife didn’t have a drop off in their income. She was able to have a level of reassurance about her retirement strategy. My goal is to help people through the good times and the bad.



Travis Redfern

Travis Redfern is a Relationship Manager for Brokers International. He works closely with key producers to help identify products and services that they can use to grow their businesses. Travis has been with Brokers International since 2002. In his spare time, he enjoys hunting, golfing, team roping, time with friends and family and escaping to his “man cave” to watch football. ADR-1263

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Putting pen to paper for your brand

January 16, 2014 by

Let’s address writing; my favorite part of developing a brand.

I’m a bit of a word bully around the office (and at home).  I’ll always edit out the use of ellipses for emphasis. I can’t stand a split infinitive. Jargon makes me verklempt.

I wholeheartedly believe that good writing is an integral part of good advertising, marketing and promotion.

David Ogilvy, legendary advertising executive (called the original “Mad Man”), believed that good writing was key to selling products. He penned a memo to the Ogilvy & Mather staff in 1982 titled “How-To-Write.” Click here to read the 10 tips from his memo.

Ogilvy was no advertising dummy. He helped Dove become a best-selling soap in the United States by promoting that it contained one-quarter moisturizing cream. He also helped companies like Rolls Royce, American Express and Sears.

What does this all mean for you developing your brand?

You may have the best logo, coolest colors and great pitchman for your product. But if your ad, website or brochures are poorly written, you can’t communicate effectively. If you can’t communicate effectively; you can’t sell.

So how do you work on your writing?

  • Hire a professional copywriter.
  • Read, and follow, Ogilvy’s 10 tips from his memo.
  • Read books about writing. (I recommend On Writing Well by William Zinsser.)
  • Have someone else read your writing before you publish.
  • Read. But don’t just read novels. Read other advertising.
  • Write for your audience; not yourself.

It’s one thing to have a tagline that is a grammar bender (Got Milk?). It’s another to have a brochure full of typos, run-ons or completely confusing copy.

Don’t ruin a first impression with bad writing.


Rebecca Prescott

Rebecca Prescott joined Brokers International in March 2013 as a Marketing Project Manager. Before joining Brokers, she worked extensively on branding and product marketing. She also has a strong writing and graphic design background. Rebecca loves branding, grammar, swatchbooks, live music and her family and friends.

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5 steps to fix a leaky sales funnel

January 10, 2014 by

Drip…drip…drip…our kitchen sink had a leak. At first I tried to ignore it—then the water bill arrived. So, I booted up the computer and searched for “how to fix a leaky faucet”. According to the search results, I could fix it in 6 easy steps.

Two trips to the hardware store, 3 acetaminophen tablets and 15 steps later, I fixed the leak.

Fixing a leaky sales funnel won’t require a trip to the hardware store. But to alleviate headaches and push your prospects through the sales funnel, you should create a drip campaign.

A drip marketing campaign is when you periodically engage with a prospect or customer through channels such as direct mail, social media, phone calls or email. Drip campaigns typically consist of a sequence of messages sent according to your prospects needs, interests and their stage in the sales funnel.

Here’s how to create a drip campaign.

Step one: Choose a segment. Look at your existing database and determine where your clients fall in the sales funnel. Pick one segment you’d like to start “dripping on” and map out a campaign. For example, if you’d like to start with new workshop attendees, you should map out a welcome campaign.

Step two: Decide on your desired outcome. What do you want the person receiving your communication to do? Do you want them to call you, sign up for a webinar or attend an event? Identify the desired outcome in the initial campaign development phase. It will guide your entire process and allow you to measure your effectiveness.

Step three: Create content. For each stage of the sales funnel, you need to construct communications that are simple, relevant and engaging. For example, if you are putting together a welcome campaign for workshop attendees, send them additional educational materials based on your workshop topic.

Step four: Mix it up. There are many ways to reach out to your clients (email, direct mail, social media, phone calls, etc). Use a variety. Each person responds to information differently and has communication preferences. By mixing up your delivery methods, you have a better chance to reach your target.

Step five: Repeat. Replicate this process until you have relevant content to speak to buyers in each stage of the sales funnel. Soon, you will have enough material that you can drip on clients through the entire process.

This blog is an overview of how drip marketing campaigns can help fix a leaky funnel. Watch for upcoming blogs that will go into each of these steps in detail.


Kristine Garrett

Kristine Garrett joined Brokers International in 2012 as a Marketing Project Manager. She brought with her a strong background in sales and marketing that she uses to write helpful blog tips and marketing ideas to grow your business. Kristine shares a hobby farm near Panora with her husband, farm critters and beautiful bulldogs. 11854-1/30/13

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