Investment Management

Partnering with Centers of Influence

A center of influence is a professional who strives to build a meaningful, long-term relationship with a select group of clients, such as:

  • Accountants
  • Realtors
  • Estate Planning Attorneys
  • Mortgage Brokers

Here are some tips for cultivating mutually beneficial relationships:

  • Set aside 15-30 minutes a week to make calls to potential centers of influence
  • Concentrate on those professionals that work with your preferred kind of client
  • Find 2-3 (of each profession) that you feel comfortable with
  • Maintain and work on the relationship, by arranging periodic lunches and get-togethers
  • Consider creating or joining a network group of like-minded professionals who meet once or twice a month
  • If it’s not working (you send referrals but don’t get any back) consider another one

Targeting one of the best sources of referrals: CPAs

  • Join key organizations in your area with strong CPA representation
  • Brand yourself as a specialist with CPAs in a distinctive market position, such as trust and estate or retirement planning
  • Target CPA firms with similar client bases, by age, size, specialties and major tax issues
  • Contact CPAs of your existing client base about client issues of mutual concern
  • Suggest, in addition to your subject matter expertise, predetermined referral fees or revenue sharing to make a relationship worthwhile for them
  • Serve the referrer by keeping them in the loop, thus generating more referrals
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