The Golden Hook

The Latin proverb, “He fishes well who uses the golden hook,” applies as much to investment advisors as it does to anglers.

A hook is an opening sentence or two that piques curiosity. “It was the best of times, it was the worst of times,” is a classic hook from A Tale of Two Cities. The reader is drawn into the story and compelled to read more.

Advisors can use hooks to capture clients’ attention and differentiate themselves from other advisors. In order to achieve these two goals, a hook must be “golden.” A hook transcends to golden status when it inspires inquiries, pushes the pitch forward, and leaves clients wanting more.

Here’s an example of a golden hook in the retirement income solution stratosphere:

“We customize withdrawal strategies to deliver a ‘paycheck’ for a specific period
while  managing cash reserves to meet long-term needs. As clients access their
cash, we replenish it based on careful evaluation of trends in the market and a
careful analysis of income and dividend-producing securities within each portfolio.
We refill cash reserves at the most opportune times, so long-term growth is not

This hook effectively creates questions in the prospect’s mind. He wants to know about the intellectual underpinnings of the cash replenishment process. He wonders how spending is monitored and what happens if actual spending exceeds projections. He compares this strategy with the reverse dollar cost averaging technique every other advisor pitched.

Most importantly, the prospect is now curious about you. You’ve said something new. There’s depth to your strategy and it touches on hot buttons. That makes you pretty interesting.

Maintain the attention you won with a few declarative statements like:

  • Long-term growth doesn’t have to be sacrificed in exchange for a
    fixed income solution.
  • This strategy doesn’t limit your ability to use principal.
  • There isn’t a fixed rate of return with this approach. Instead, we
    tailor the cash allocation to meet your short-term expenses and long-term goals.
  • We don’t leave your long-term goals to chance.

The prospect is hooked. Go ahead and reel him in.

To learn how to structure customized distribution strategies for your clients, click here.

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