By Matt Kaas, Life Marketing Consultant
With the significant advancements in technology over the last decade, it is not surprising that more and more financial professionals are using technology as part of their everyday practice. In fact, the ability for financial professionals to work remotely, be mobile, and constantly have up-to-date information at their fingertips has become the name of the game.
According to a study by InvestmentNews of over 300 financial advisors and registered representatives, a staggering 99% of financial professionals use a smart phone and 90% of financial professionals have access to their computer systems or software remotely. Another 81% of financial professionals regularly use financial strategy software when making recommendations to their clients. And, in 2014 it’s estimated that independent firms spent on average almost $110,000 each on technology., 
We’ve focused a lot on how technology can be a resourceful tool for financial professionals and streamline efficiencies in their practices, with technologies such as electronic applications, quoting tools, and marketing campaigns to constantly stay in front of your clients.
Technology can do some incredible things for financial professionals. However, it is imperative for financial professionals to remember that the sales process is meant to be a face-to-face communication with your client, and that face-to-face sales will help create an opportunity for more successful selling than technological or virtual interactions with your clients. Oxford Economics studied the effectiveness of virtual meetings and other forms of interaction via technology and determined that face-to-face meetings were more effective for 65% of existing clients and 85% more effective at converting prospects into new clients.
For complex financial transactions, buying decisions are made on the basis of personal relationships and trust. Body language, facial expressions, and tone of voice are great examples of emotional cues that are not as easily received through phone conversations or emails. A Forbes Insights study surveyed 760 business executives, of which 91% said that face-to-face meetings were critical for persuasion, 82% said face-to-face meetings were necessary for decision making and 78% said that face-to-face meetings were important for establishing trust.
Financial professionals are often discussing detailed financial strategies or other financial services with their clients. And the biggest inhibitor to sales for financial professionals may be the inability to effectively communicate value-add messages to their clients. In-person meetings can be the best forum to clearly articulate the value of the solution you are proposing to the client, correct any misconceptions the client might have, and inform the client of additional benefits, advantages, and considerations.
For sales concepts that can easily be done on a notepad and that you, as the financial professional, can immediately take away and use with your clients to improve your face-to-face client meetings, give me a call at 800.321.3924 x133.
Matt Kaas | Life Marketing Consultant
Ann Arbor Annuity Exchange
Ph: 800.321.3924 x133 | Dir: 734.786.6133
 "2015 Advisor Technology Study” InvestmentNews. 8 Feb 2015. Web. Accessed on 28 Mar 2016 at http://www.investmentnews.com/section/specialreport/20150208/TECHSTUDY2015
 InvestmentNews Research. “How advisers are using technology today” InvestmentNews. 8 Feb 2015. Web. Accessed on 28 Mar 2016 at http://www.investmentnews.com/article/20150208/INFOGRAPHIC02/150209941/how-advisers-are-using-technology-today
 Finn, Gavin. "Face-to-Face Selling Is Still Effective" 1Marketing Daily. 15 Oct 2015. Web. Accessed on 28 Mar 2016 at http://www.mediapost.com/publications/article/260461/face-to-face-selling-is-still-effective.html
 Murphy, Robert. "The Value of Face-to-Face Marketing in a Virtual Age" MarketingProfs. 20 Sep 2011. Web. Accessed on 28 Mar 2016 at http://www.marketingprofs.com/articles/2011/5938/the-value-of-face-to-face-marketing-in-a-virtual-age
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