In today’s episode of The Virtual Financial Advisor Series™ Pat Quinn returns to the podcast. Pat is a presentation coach and the head speaking trainer for Advance Your Reach. He has worked with some of the greatest speakers in the world including Daymond John, Grant Cardone, Dean Graziosi, Michael Hyatt, John Ruhlin, and has helped over 1000 financial advisors increase the effectiveness of their presentations.
My previous conversation with Pat is one of the most listened to episodes in our archive, and people still tell me often how much his framework for successful presentations has helped them. This is why I knew I needed to bring Pat back to the podcast for the Virtual Advisor Series to discuss how to take what makes an in-person, physical presentation so effective and utilize it in the digital space.
Here are just a handful of the things that you’ll learn:
- #1: How to adapt Pat’s proven live presentation framework to work even more effectively in the digital space. [11:28]
- #2: The major mistakes financial advisors make in both physical and digital presentations. You’ll learn exactly how to keep your listeners engaged in an environment full of distractions, and the specific things that need to change to avoid tone-deaf messaging. [23:05]
- #3: How to adapt your speaking style to reassure listeners and project confidence in times of crisis, no matter who you’re speaking to. [40:37]
- [04:56] How to leverage ego bias to your advantage as you make financial presentations in uncertain times.
- [09:20] Why this moment is a massive opportunity for effective speakers and presenters in every industry.
- [12:30] The common mistakes that kill conversion rates both in-person and online.
- [15:30] Why your call to action can’t just come at the end of your presentation – and how to up your conversion rate by interweaving this call to action into your content.
- [20:30] Why “whoever teaches the most wins the sale” is not a winning strategy, online or offline.
- [25:00] The reason your opening story MUST change if it’s not from the last 45 days to avoid coming across as tone deaf.
- [35:00] Why speaking from your chest voice – your heart voice – projects calm and confidence.
- [37:25] How to make people feel smart and empowered as you tell stories and make your presentation.
- [40:33] Why people make decisions differently during VUCA times – and how to use “Two Truths and a Lead” and other strategies to push listeners to take action.
- [49:30] How financial advisors can use this moment to grow this business all over the world – and why retirees are now more open than ever to embracing technology.
SELECTED LINKS FROM THE EPISODE
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[00:00:26] Brad Johnson: Welcome to the Elite Advisor Blueprint, the podcast for world-class financial advisors. I’m Brad Johnson, VP of Advisor Development at Advisors Excel and it’s my goal to distill the best ideas and advice from top thought leaders and apply it to the world of independent financial advising.
In today’s most recent episode, in our live streaming series, where we really have focused on helping financial advisors adapt to this post-COVID-19 world we’re currently living through, we’ve focused on things like conducting Zoom appointments and transitioning seminar concepts to webinars. And that’s where Pat Quinn comes in. We wanted to bring him back for Round 2, to talk about what stays the same and what changes when it comes to transitioning from seminars to webinars. By the way, this conversation was originally live streamed almost a month ago, I believe, and it’s been available in our private Facebook group. So, if you’re just now hearing it on the podcast, and you’d like to join a community of over 750 financial advisors from all over the world with the goal of navigating this virtual financial advising world, go to BradleyJohnson.com. Click on the button in the top right-hand corner to join our private Facebook Community and get access to these conversations as they happen, including the ability to ask the live Q&A to guests like Pat.
Now, getting to today’s guest. For those unfamiliar with today’s guest, Pat Quinn, he’s a presentation coach and the head speaking trainer for Pete Vargas’ Advance Your Reach program. He has coached the likes of Daymond John, Grant Cardone, Dean Graziosi, Michael Hyatt, and John Ruhlin, as well as over 1,000 financial advisors to increase the effectiveness of their presentations. My previous conversation with Pat, Episode 57, for those that want to check it out, is one of our show’s most downloaded and listened to episodes in history. I’ve literally had advisors tell me that they listen to this episode before every live presentation they give as a refresher on the framework for both presenting to and motivating an audience to action.
[00:02:32] Brad Johnson: This is why I knew I needed to bring Pat back to the podcast to discuss how to take what makes an in-person physical presentation so effective and transition that to the digital space. So, here are three of my biggest takeaways from this episode. Number one, how to adapt Pat’s proven live presentation framework to work even more effectively in the digital webinar space, essentially, what stays the same and what changes. Number two, the major mistakes financial advisors make in both physical and digital presentations. You’ll learn exactly how to keep your listeners engaged in an environment full of distractions, and the specific things that need to change to avoid tone deaf messaging. And number three, how to adapt your speaking style to reassure your audience and project confidence in times of crisis.
Okay. Before we get to the show, I wanted to make sure to mention Pat’s upcoming Signature Talk Execution Workshop, which could be your secret weapon to crafting a presentation that converts. I know he’s helped many of our offices that we work with nationwide. Pat is now accepting applications for his workshop so I highly encourage you all to go check it out. Also, as a reminder, if you aren’t already a member of our private Facebook group, you’re late to the party on this conversation as I’ve been live streaming these episodes as they happen. Both access to Pat’s Signature Talk Execution Workshop as well as the private Facebook group can be found at BradleyJohnson.com/76. Or if you’re on a mobile podcast player, simply scroll down to the show notes and there should be links right there in the notes. And with that, as always, show notes that include links to all the resources, books mentioned, and people discussed are available there as well. So that’s it. As always, thanks for listening. And without further delay, my conversation with Pat Quinn
[00:04:27] Brad Johnson: Welcome. So, Brad Johnson here. I know many of you in the group, obviously, know who I am but I’ve got special guest, Pat Quinn, joining me today. Welcome to the show, Pat.
[00:04:35] Pat Quinn: Thanks for having me.
[00:04:37] Brad Johnson: Well, so here’s the plan. Before we even get into any of your bio, why they should listen, what you’re actually an expert at, we were talking live here so I figured right out of the gates live, we’d share something that you were talking about that financial advisors really need to think about during uncertain times with how they present. So, I’m going to flip it over to you, Pat.
[00:04:55] Pat Quinn: Absolutely. One of the things that I’ve been talking to advisors about during this critical time of communication is leveraging ego bias to your advantage. Ego bias is the idea that we all want to be in control of situations and then these volatile times and these times when we don’t know how long things are going to last and how different things are going to be, everybody wants to be in control. And so, when you’re communicating, one thing that you want to communicate to anyone you talk to is that you are going to be the determining factor. Not chance, not circumstance, but the choices you make and the decisions that you make are going to determine the outcome. Whether you come out of this better off than you were before, or worse off than you were before isn’t going to be determined by chance or by the government or by the virus. It’s going to be determined by the decisions that you make right now, by the choices that you make and the actions that you take. You are the one who’s going to determine the outcome.
People love that, especially in a time like this when things are so uncertain and the complex problems that we’re dealing with, people are grasping for control because so much of their life feels out of control. And the person who stands up and says, “You are the determining factor. Don’t leave this to chance or circumstance. You’re the one who’s going to determine the outcome,” people are going to flock to that person and want to work with that person. And they’re going to move away from people who say, “Well, it’s really not up to us.” And so, leverage ego bias to your advantage and you’re going to see more customers coming in your door.
[00:06:27] Brad Johnson: Well, I appreciate that, Pat. That’s stellar advice right now and one of the reasons I wanted to have you on. So, I know many of the people in the group here and many of the people listening to the podcast, they’ve obviously listened to the Elite Advisor Blueprint of which I’ve had you on before and it’s still one of my most downloaded episodes, in fact, that you’ll appreciate this story. I went up to Strategic Coach in Toronto and there was a fellow advisor in the group, a guy named Joe, and he’s like, “That Pat Quinn episode.” He’s like, “That was gold.” He’s like, “Literally every time before I go to do a live seminar, I listened to that on my way to the seminar so I remember the framework, what I need to hit out of the gates, you know, kind of the file system that I need to share so that my audience can understand what we’re going to get into.” So, as I was thinking about this virtual advisor series, I was like, “Well, I need to bring Pat back on,” but now what we need to dive into is how does that shift as we move from presenting physically in a physical location to digitally and virtually which is, obviously, the world we’re in today with COVID-19.
So, let’s just share for those that haven’t listened to the first episode. Number one, go back and listen because, Pat, here’s the full framework in there but just a little snippet of your background, what brought you into the professional speaking coaching world that you’re in today, and then we’ll dive into some tactics that advisors can use.
[00:07:45] Pat Quinn: I actually didn’t get my start as a professional speaker. I got my start as a professional magician and worked magic for 10 years. At the end of that, I realized that I probably needed to get a real job and I became a public school teacher and taught high school math for 12 years. During that time, I picked up an advanced degree in how adults learn. And so, I really bring two things to the table. The first is a little bit of stagecraft from my years of doing magic, and the second is a real understanding of how adults learn. I’m hyper-focused on the audience. I’m hyper-focused on the audience, whether it’s in the room with you or watching you online because I only have one measure of success. My measure of success is not that people would come up to you afterwards and say, “Wow, you’re an amazing speaker.” My only measure of success is that people would want to do business with you after your presentation. Whether you have five minutes to present or 55 minutes to present, what we want is the audience to take the next step to reach out to you and say, “I want to do business with you. I want to engage with you further.” And for that reason, we’re just hyper-focused on the audience.
And I’m super excited to be back, Brad, because I think this is one of the greatest opportunities in the world for advisors. It’s just a huge opportunity here right now because all the barriers are down. If you think about the barriers of getting someone to a live presentation, they have to leave their house and they’re busy because they have so many other things to do. And right now, those two barriers are absolutely removed. They no longer have to leave the house. They can watch you online, and they don’t have a hundred other things to do. There are no live sports on television. They have really consumed all the Netflix they can consume. The time, and I don’t want to have the inconvenience, are completely gone. In addition to that, people are hungry for new content to consume. They’re constantly looking for new content to consume. I read the other day that people are consuming eight times as much online content as they were prior to this. And their problems are bigger than ever.
[00:09:45] Pat Quinn: I always ask people, “Do you think people have more problems now, or fewer problems now?” And everybody says, “Well, more problems now.” And that’s why I say to everybody listening to this, they need you now more than ever. They need you now more than they did 60 days ago. And so, there’s just a huge opportunity here with a hungry audience that has not a lot of other things to do to reach out to them, and they’re looking for new solutions to new problems, and you can be those solutions.
[00:10:12] Brad Johnson: Awesome. Awesome. Well, and that’s what I’m excited about today is we’re literally going to dive in. And before we do, just for those listening in, number one, if you’re in the private Facebook group right now, my team will be monitoring the chat. So, if you have questions, I will literally moderate, feed those right to Pat so we can actually have some live interaction here today. And by the way, if you’re sitting out there and you’ve got friends that present or friends that are trying to figure out how we navigate this new webinar world, invite them into the group right now so they can be a part of this conversation as well. So, a couple of things just as I was looking here, Pat. I’m going to build you up a little bit bigger so everybody knows, hey, this isn’t Pat’s like first day on the job coaching at speaking frameworks. So, you’ve worked with Daymond John in the past, Grant Cardone, Michael Hyatt, John Ruhlin. I know our mutual friend, Pete Vargas. You do a lot of coaching in conjunction with him in his Advance Your Reach platform. So, you’re taking a lot of these frameworks that you’ve developed over years of doing this and now we’re going to talk about how do we shift and apply that to the virtual world.
So, I think you were sharing, hey, let’s just talk about what we keep and then what we change. And for those that want to go back and listen to the full framework, go listen to the first episode I did with Pat because we get into all the details but, Pat, I’m going to flip it over to you. So, what do we keep from a live presentation and a physical location like a restaurant? And what do we change when we go digital into the virtual world, in your opinion?
[00:11:37] Pat Quinn: Sure. I’ve been fortunate, as you mentioned, over the last 10 years to work with some of the greatest speakers in the world, New York Times bestselling authors, six different Olympians, two different astronauts who’ve been in space. But most of the people that I work with every single day are not professional speakers. Most of the people that I work with are business owners, just like your listeners who are trying to continue to grow their business during this difficult time. And one of the things that I’ve been able to help them with over the last 60 days or so is realizing that you don’t have to throw everything out that you have been doing. There’s actually quite a bit that we want to save from our original presentation that we used to do live in the room, and from our original conversations that we used to do one-on-one with people across our desk. And so, the first thing you want to save and make sure that you keep is how you open your presentation. How you open your presentation is not to dive right into your content. You want to make sure that you’re connecting first with what we call an opening heart story.
The opening heart story is a chance for you to connect to your audience. Now, some people would tell you that in that opening story, you should tell them your deepest, darkest moment, and go to the most painful point in your life. And we don’t believe that actually converts well into customers. We have a saying, “Criers aren’t buyers.” But whatever story you have chosen to tell in your opening heart story, we think that story needs to change now but don’t miss the opening part. The opening part still has to be a story that connects to the audience, that state. We might swap out an old story, a childhood story, or an early-in-your-career story for a story within the last 45 days. But the idea that we’re going to start with story, that we’re going to start with heart, absolutely stays the same. The second thing that we want to make sure we keep is great content, content that actually solves a problem for the audience.
[00:13:34] Pat Quinn: What is still not selling and what is still not drawing eyes and viewers are presentations that just describe the problem. If you spend your whole presentation just describing the problem, you’re going to see your viewership just decline over the course of any online presentation. And so, you want to make sure that you’re offering real solutions. Now, the solutions that you’re offering might be different than they were two months ago. You might address different problems. You might address them in a different way. You might shorten that part of your presentation a little bit because an online audience is more distracted than a live audience and it’s not rude to leave an online presentation but it is rude to walk out of a room with a live speaker. And so, we want to make sure each of these parts absolutely is the short and tight as we can get it. So, that opening story has to capture it. It has to really grab them from the very beginning so they don’t choose any of their other 10 other options. And then that content has to address their current problems. It has to address their current thinking and has to address their current needs.
The third thing we always want to keep is a distinct and easy call to action. A great presentation doesn’t leave you five options. It doesn’t even leave you two options. A great presentation leads to a single point of decision. Do you want this or not? Now, for many of you, that single point of decision is do you want to have a conversation or an appointment, which would probably be online now, and do you want to have that or not? But here’s what you need to know because a lot of people make this mistake. They wait until the end of their presentation to bring up the appointment or to bring up the next conversation and that’s a mistake. If you get to the end of your presentation and that’s the first time they hear about how do you work with people after the presentation. As my mom would say, that cake is already baked. You’ve waited way too long. You need to talk about the appointment what we call embedding the appointment earlier in your presentation, in the content part of your presentation. That hasn’t changed.
[00:15:43] Pat Quinn: You should still bring it up early. And here’s why. Because as human beings, we don’t do anything that we don’t rehearse ahead of time. We don’t take any action that we haven’t rehearsed dozens of times in our head before. And if you get to the end of the presentation, and say, “Oh, and by the way, you should schedule an appointment with me,” people are going to be like, “What? What is this about? I haven’t heard about an appointment. I can’t decide right now.” But instead, if 10 minutes into your presentation, you tell a story about someone who is listening to one of your online presentations last week, and they click the link to schedule an appointment or they enter their name and phone number and we call them the next day and we had a great conversation with them, people are going to have 20, 30, 35 minutes to rehearse signing up for that appointment. They’re going to be able to picture what it would look like to have a next conversation with you, how it would feel to have the next conversation with you.
So, when you get to the end, and actually logistically tell them how they would sign up for one of those appointments, whether it’s to click a link and schedule it or enter your name and phone number, and somebody from our office will call you right away, whatever the next step is, only give them one option. You should be painting a picture of what that looks like all throughout your content so when you do get to the end of the presentation, they’ve been rehearsing. When you get to the end of your presentation and offer the next conversation, offer the appointment, they shouldn’t say, “What?” They should say, “I thought you’d never ask. I’ve been thinking about this for a long time.” And if you set it up right in your content, tell the right stories, give the right examples of other people who’ve heard you on a presentation just like this, and made the step to schedule an appointment or to have a conversation or enter their name and phone number then when you get to the end and say, “Here’s what you do next,” they’re going to say, “I thought you’d never ask.” They’re not going to be surprised by then.
[00:17:40] Pat Quinn: And then the last thing that you should keep, the last thing that you shouldn’t change is how you finish your presentation. A lot of people finish their presentations with a tactical call to action, schedule the appointment, pick a time, get out your calendars, click the link, whatever it is. I don’t want you to end there. I want you to finish with an emotional close. I want you to tell one more story at the end that will appeal to their emotions, not to their tactical. Because here’s the thing, there’s two types of decision-makers in every audience and that didn’t change from a live room at a restaurant or a library. That didn’t change when we moved it online. Half your audience are tactical decision-makers and they’re going to love your tactical solutions and your tactical next steps. But remember, half of the world is also emotional decision-makers. And if you sell to couples, and I know you do, you should know that most married couples are one tactical decision maker married to one emotional decision-maker and either one of them can veto the next conversation.
And so, you want to make sure you are appealing to both of them with a final closing story, an emotional story that reminds them why you do what you do and how it will feel after they’ve taken these next steps. And so, when you put it all together, the core of what you want to keep is the four-part story braid framework. Open with story and we may change that story but make sure you open with an emotional story, teach great content that offers real solutions, not just describing the problem, and embed the next step into that content. Have a clear single call to action that easily tells them what to do next, there’s no decision to make, and finish with an emotional heart story. Those are the things that you absolutely want to keep as you move your presentation from in the room with people to online with your audience.
[00:19:33] Brad Johnson: Awesome. Appreciate that, Pat. That was super succinct. Great framework there. As a reminder, those of you that are watching live, just go ahead. My team will be monitoring the chat. So, if you have questions for Pat, go ahead and feed those in and I’ll take those as we go along here. So, a couple of thoughts, Pat, that I’m getting a ton of questions from advisors on. What’s the timeframe, the time you should present live, like if I was doing this in a restaurant versus via webinar, you hit a couple of times that attention span and, hey, digitally, you can just get up and leave the room versus if you’re in a restaurant, probably not going to happen. So, does that change digital versus physical location when you’re presenting timeframe to present?
[00:20:11] Pat Quinn: Well, if you’ve heard me present before, you’ve heard me advise that your presentation should be shorter. I think your live presentation should be shorter. We want your live presentations finished 55 minutes after they start and I know many advisors struggle to get there. And you struggle to get there because you’re still under this mistaken impression that whoever teaches the most wins the sale and that is simply not true. Whoever teaches the most has a tired, hungry audience at the end of a live presentation. And whoever teaches the most online has a very small audience at the end of their presentation. And so, I think you definitely want to be shorter than the live presentation, which in my mind would be shorter than 55 minutes. I think your perfect length of presentation online is probably at 40 minutes. I’m okay if you want to go a little bit longer than that. But you have to ask yourself, does teaching one more thing actually get me more customers? And the answer is no. And the reason it’s no is because fewer people are going to hear your call to action.
If your content is great, and you’ve got people asking a lot of questions and you really feel like you’re connecting with the audience, you might go 45 or 50 minutes, but I would like you between 30 and 40 minutes. I’d like the call to action out there in 30 to 35 minutes. And one thing that’s extra important in an online presentation where the distractions are high, and the attention span is low is to roadmap your presentation real succinctly at the beginning. After you finish that opening story, you want to roadmap your presentation and tell them the specific problems you’re going to solve for them today and give them a timeframe for that. So, what you want to say is something like this, this is after your opening story, “And so, on the next 20 to 30 minutes, I’m going to teach you these things. I’m going to solve these problems for you,” and make them super sexy, make them super sizzly, so that people are like, “Wow, I can’t leave this. I know that ESPN Special’s on right now, but I can’t leave this. I know that my kids are crying and want to go to bed but I can’t leave this.”
[00:22:15] Pat Quinn: Like you want to make sure that you’re previewing of what I’m going to teach tonight is extra sexy. And the way to do that is to talk specifically about the problems you’re going to solve for them like, “If you just saw your numbers go down, I’m going to tell you this.” “If you’re worried about will this come back, I’m going to teach you this.” “If you’re worried about not making contributions this year because your income just got cut by 40%, I’m going to help you with that.” Like whatever you think the biggest problems are that your audience is dealing with right now like what were they discussing as they fell asleep last night, what were they discussing over the dinner table tonight, those are the types of things you want to preview that you’re going to solve for them or address for them and you want to make sure that you preview that so they know why it’s worth it to listen for the next 20 or 30 minutes.
[00:23:04] Brad Johnson: Great. So, now you’re tiptoeing into the next topic I want to talk about which is tone-deafness because I see some of it out there right now where let’s go to pre-COVID-19. Every financial advisor out there, they were looking at their 2020 marketing calendar, it was all laid out beautifully, and then this hit, and everybody’s like, “Oh no, what do I do?” and kind of freak out mode. And I think a lot of advisors just shift and they said, “Well, I was going to do…” you know, I’m looking at April, what is today? 27th. And I had a nice little Social Security optimization event at Ruth’s Chris or wherever they’re having it and they’re like, “Okay. Well, now I’m just going to shift that to a webinar.” So, Pat, you’ve done a lot of studying with how the brain works. And so, what’s the risk of tone-deafness right now? If I just say, “Oh, we’re in the middle of COVID-19 and here’s my webinar on Social Security optimization,” how should they maybe – it’s not like they don’t need to still optimize their social security. We’re just living in a different world, a different environment now.
So, how would you start to craft that, like you say, super-sexy things to stick around for? Do they need to make sure they’re addressing the current world and the current thing we’re facing right now? Or can they just do marketing as was before?
[00:24:17] Pat Quinn: The answer is yes. They need to change and there’s some specific things that you need to change. And so, let’s start in the beginning. That opening story that you’ve been telling, that needs to change. And we really don’t want a story from more than 60 days ago. You know, the purpose of that opening story is to connect with the audience to say, look, I’m like you, I feel what you feel. I worry about what you worry about. I struggle with what you struggle with. And so, it’s a little tone-deaf right off the get-go to be telling a childhood story or to be telling a story even from a year ago. The story that you want to tell, even if it’s a short one, is the story from the last 45 days and you want to make it a universal story. And I talked about this I think the last time I was here. I coached someone who’s climbed to the top of Mount Everest. And when he tells that story at the beginning of his presentation, how many people can relate to going to the top of Mount Everest? And the answer is no one in his audience can relate to that.
I coached a different speaker who talks about arguing with their spouse about whether the toilet paper should come out over the top or under the bottom, and when he tells that story, how many people in the audience can relate to it? Every single person in the audience. See, I don’t judge your opening story based on how many people come up to you afterwards and say, “Wow, that was an amazing story.” I judge your opening story based on how many people come up to you afterwards and say, “That same thing happened to me.” And so, to have an opening story that, number one, recognizes the elephant in the room that this is kind of weird. We’re doing this online. I’ve been doing this in the room with people for years. And here’s the thing, we’re all experiencing it. You just described it, Brad. They had a plan for the whole year. They had a plan like I’m going to do 20 seminars in the spring and 20 seminars in the fall. I got a plan. And overnight, that plan was tossed out the window. Well, the beauty of it is that’s the exact same emotion that every living human being with a retirement plan has been feeling like, “My wife and I have a plan. We have an advisor and we have a plan.”
[00:26:21] Pat Quinn: And like overnight, it feels like that plan was tossed out the window. So, you’re actually experiencing many of the same emotions that your audience is experiencing. And so, all you need here is a simple universal story of looking for toilet paper in the store of getting irritated like you thought like spending a month with your family would be a really cool thing but it’s not as cool as you thought, because we’re kind of all on each other’s nerves right now. Our dog groomer actually called us the other day and said, “Hey, we found a loophole in the state rules and I was wondering if your dog needed to be groomed because it’s been a long time?” And I said, “Yeah, can you do people too?” because everybody needs a haircut right now. Like those are the universal things that you just want to talk about because it, number one, recognizes the elephant in the room that this is kind of a weird time. And number two, it just connects. There’s never been a time when the entire world is experiencing the exact same thing at the same time.
Usually, the haves are experiencing one thing and the have nots aren’t or the Democrats are experiencing one thing and the Republicans aren’t, that United States is experiencing one thing and the rest of the world isn’t. There’s never been a time when the entire world is experiencing like the exact same thing at the exact same time. There’s never been a better time to connect. And so, I think you’re foolish to tell a story from more than 45 days ago because that isn’t what we’re connecting with right now. So, the first thing I would do is change your opening story. And then we got to talk about content. Because the problems people have now and the worries and concerns maybe is a better way to say it are not the same worries and concerns that they had 60 days ago. Now, there’s always going to be some universal concerns, income in retirement. When can I retire? But you have to twist those just a little bit maybe from when can I retire to will I still be able to retire at that same time?
[00:28:19] Pat Quinn: Or I was okay with my income plan. Will I still be okay with my income plan? Then I think you can probably take some of the topics that you’ve been talking about and just twist the problem that you solve a little bit even if you just add still, or in this special time, is this still right? I just think if you add still to each of your problems that you solve and each of the questions that you asked, that’s going to be one thing that you’re going to do. And then I think the other thing to just address is volatile times. And some of you have already have that as some of your content, how to deal with a volatile market, how to protect yourself in an up and down market. Clearly, we’re living in uncertain times. Clearly, we’re living in ambiguous and volatile times and I think you want to address planning for retirement in those times. And so, conversations with your existing clients, asking your existing clients and prospects what are your biggest stories, what questions do you have, and making sure you address those early on.
Both in your road-mapping when you say here’s what we’re going to talk about today and in your content when you actually address those problems. I think your examples, and we talked about embedded examples, examples of people who have heard you speak, signed up for an appointment, you had a conversation with, I think all of those examples should be from the last 45 days. I actually don’t think people want an example from three years ago of somebody who just waltzed into your office on a perfectly sunny Tuesday afternoon, sat down in your office and plan their retirement because that’s not the world we’re living in right now. We’re living in a world where we have fear, where we have isolation, where we have a volatile market. And so, I think if you have stories of helping people in the last 45 days, and I hope you do, that you tell those stories that, “Somebody called me the other day.”
[00:30:17] Pat Quinn: One of my longtime clients called me the other day and said, “Hey, what about this?” and I was doing a webinar just like this some two weeks ago, and somebody clicked on the link to sign up for an appointment. And when I got on the phone with them, they said, “Hey, Pat, we were going to retire at the end of this year and now we don’t know what we’re going to do at the end of this year because we’re not making any income the last 12 months before we retire. What’s the deal?” and address those. But watch what I did with that story. With that story that I just told, I not only mapped the customer journey from webinar to click, from click to phone conversation, from phone conversation to I solve your problems. I also recognize that the advising that I’m doing now to people isn’t the advising I was doing three years ago because the problems are different. And so, change the opening story, change the content and the problems you’re solving for people, and change your examples to examples of helping people within the last 45 days.
Now, you’re not the advisor for yesterday. Now, you’re the advisor for today. Now, you’re not solving old problems that If they still exist, I’m certainly not worried about them. Now, you’re solving new problems that are top on the mind that are right in front of me every single day and then I was just talking to my spouse about at the dinner table last night. Now, you’re relevant and they’re not going to be able to take their eyes off you.
[00:31:42] Brad Johnson: So good. So, there’s so much in there. So, I’m glad this is a podcast that’s being recorded because people can hit rewind on that section. The analogy I’ve been making lately and I just want to get your feedback on this, Pat, it’s not like now we’re not building holistic financial plans but most of our advisors we helped them proprietary process, name it, trademark it, and it solves these problems, income planning, which you mentioned, investments, taxes. Well, you’re still doing all of that planning. In fact, it’s probably 10X more important today than it was prior to the COVID-19 situation we all find ourselves in but now my analogy has been it has different wrapping paper on it. So, maybe you did Roth conversions prior. Now, back to your sexiness, well, that’s actually one thing that’s more beneficial from a tax standpoint than it was before COVID-19. Because account might have dropped a little bit. So, to do a Roth conversion, typically, there’s now less tax consequences. So, that might be something, “Hey, we’re going to talk about the one tax planning tip that’s actually more beneficial today than it was before the COVID-19 crisis.”
Would that be like some messaging, where you’re still technically building the same plan? We’re just updating it to this last 45 days like that’s essentially what we’re talking about here, right?
[00:32:55] Pat Quinn: Absolutely. And the word that used in there, Brad, was “still”. That’s still something that we want to do and now… So, those two words “still” and “now” is a great time to do it. Those are things that you absolutely want to build into. Let me give you two other things that I think you should build into your teaching. One thing that you definitely want to build into your teaching is what we call status quo bias. Status quo bias and advisors probably know status quo bias better than any other profession is the idea that we don’t like to change. We like to keep things the same. And you know that because many of the people you speak to already have an advisor and getting them to leave an advisor is an extremely difficult task. And so, we all have a status quo bias. We all want to keep things the same. So, one of the things you can do to calm people at this time, too, and by the way, everything that I’m going to talk to you about in the next few minutes you can do in your initial presentation. But these are also things you should be doing on the phone with people one-on-one every single day.
Status quo bias is to recognize that people don’t like to change, and so to highlight the things that don’t need to change. And you might notice that I’ve used a little status quo bias on you here today, Brad, by telling you the first thing I wanted to talk about today wasn’t the changes you should make to your presentation but the things that you shouldn’t change about your presentation. And so, when you’re talking to somebody, you want to have your customers or a prospect on a seminar online, one of the things you should talk about is let’s talk about the things that don’t need to change. Here are the things that don’t need to change. The most important thing we’re looking at is still your monthly income on your retirement. That doesn’t change. What else doesn’t change? What doesn’t change is we want to do this as tax-efficiently as possible. That doesn’t change. What else doesn’t change? What else doesn’t change is we want to make sure that your family is protected, protected not only from volatile markets, but also protected if something would happen to you to make you unable to work or if you would pass away that your family would be protected.
[00:34:57] Pat Quinn: These are the things that don’t change. Now, when you get to this part of your presentation, drop your voice. We want the two words every advisor should be thinking about when they’re presenting online is lower and slower. People in volatile times, people in times of uncertainty are drawn to the confident dominant person and the confident dominant person has a deeper voice. The confident dominant person doesn’t talk fast. I think about it this way. It’s one way to think about it. You have three different voices. You have a nose voice. When you’re talking with your nose voice, your nasally, and naturally, when you talk out of your nose, it’s going to be a higher tone and you’re going to talk faster. You’ve got your throat place, which is a little bit deeper when you’re speaking from your throat, and you slow down just a little bit. But the voice I want you to speak from is what we call your chest voice or your heart voice.
And when you’re speaking from your chest voice or your heart voice, the tone drops, which indicates confidence. And your pace automatically slows down when you’re speaking from your heart and from your chest. And when you’re speaking lower and slower, people who are panicking, people who are anxious, people who are afraid, will mirror you and match you. And research actually shows that their pulse rates will drop as you lower your voice and slow your voice and their pulse rates will drop and they might not be cognitively aware of the fact that, hey, my pulse rate just went down. But what they will hear, if you hear this, when you hear certain people on the radio, you’ll be like, wow, that’s just a calming voice. I just feel at peace when I hear that person. And what you don’t realize they’re doing is going low and slow on you and your body is actually matching it as you hear it.
[00:36:47] Pat Quinn: And I got to tell you, these times, if I have a financial advisor who’s going low and slow, and I’m hearing it and my pulse drops, it’s not a conscious decision, like, “Hey, I’m going to work with him because I wouldn’t have to take my blood pressure medication anymore,” but we are drawn to it. We’re drawn to the person who we think can guide us through this and going low and slow, and reminding people of the things that don’t need to change is one thing that you should build in every one-on-one conversation and into every presentation that you give. The second thing that I think this is a great time to do in your presentations is to make people feel smart. We all have had an experience in the last 45 days where we just feel like we used to have this figured out and now I don’t know much. I used to think I knew how to do life and now I’m thinking I don’t know how to solve this problem. I don’t think there’s anybody in the world who knows how to solve this problem. I feel kind of stupid right now. And so, presenters always lead an audience into feeling smart or feeling stupid. Let me give an example. I’m sure everybody read the book, The Firm, and they know the scene where the character played by Tom Cruise walks into a room and he thinks he’s going to be fired, but he actually passed the bar. I’m sure everybody saw that.
Now, you see what I did there? I took something, a piece of knowledge that some people have, and some people don’t and I assumed that you had it, and not everybody has it. And so, how does that make the audience feel? Well, if you knew the scene I was referring to, you don’t get any bonus points for that because I assumed you knew it. If you don’t know the scene I’m referring to, you feel stupid right now because I said, “I’m sure everybody knows it.” And so, I made the audience feel stupid by doing that. Now, I could just shift that just a little bit and say something like, “You know, there used to be a television show. It was a talk show that was on for many years. Some of you may have heard of it and you may have probably heard the one name of the host, Oprah Winfrey, or just Oprah. And Oprah was online the other day saying this.” Now, look how I twisted that. I took a fact that just about 99% of people know that there used to be a talk show host named Oprah Winfrey but I didn’t say everybody knows this.
[00:38:59] Pat Quinn: I said, “There’s a talk show host from a few years ago that maybe some of you have heard of and her name is Oprah Winfrey.” Now if you know it, you’re like, “Wow, I knew that one. I’m pretty smart.” And if you didn’t know it, you don’t feel stupid. So, by making that switch, instead of assuming knowledge, assuming that they don’t know it, and then being like if you know this like, “Really, that’s cool,” and you make people feel smarter in your one-on-one conversation. So, you just want to affirm, you know, if they have made moves, how smart those moves were, if you did purchase an annuity with a client to talk about what a great move that was right before this happened, if you have moved some money out of certain places into certain places, how smart that was to do that, to make people feel smart. Because just like in a time of rapid change to remind people of things that don’t need to change, in a time when people are feeling and the world is kind of feeling like stupid here because we didn’t see this coming and we don’t have a solution, to remind people of what they do know, remind people of what they got right, remind people of that, and they’re going to be more likely to be drawn to you and want to work with you. And they’re certainly going to want to listen to you for a longer period of time because when I hang out with you, I feel smart. When I hang out with other people, they’re talking about things I don’t know about but when I hang out with you, I feel smart. And everybody is drawn to that.
[00:40:22] Brad Johnson: Awesome. Okay. So, I’m looking at the clock and I always run into this with you, Pat. Too much to talk about, not enough time. So, we were talking right before we went live here and I’ll preview this and I’ll let you take it from here but here’s one thing I’m running into with a lot of advisors. Back to that feeling smart and everybody not feeling very smart right now, well, and I know you’ve studied a lot of psychology, so maybe we get into that as well. So, here I was sailing along in February. I’m a retiree looking at the 401(k) account, feeling pretty good, unemployment all-time low, markets on an 11-year bull run, everybody’s feeling warm and cozy inside. And now this hits literally the fastest drop in the United States of America’s history 22 days to get to negative 30% even faster than the Great Depression took to get there. Now, everybody’s very uncertain. And now I’m the advisor checking in and they’re getting a lot of uncertainty paralysis, “Oh, man, I would have loved to talk to you, Pat, right before this but I’ll tell you what, when things get back to kind of normal I’m going to give you a call and I’m going to decide to move forward but right now I just I can’t do anything. I’m frozen.”
So, let’s talk about that. Maybe we end there because you were talking about how to take action during times of uncertainty but there’s some psychology and some paralysis going on there right now. So, how would you address that if you’re an advisor?
[00:41:42] Pat Quinn: There is a lot of uncertainty and there’s a lot of paralysis in the people that we’re speaking to right now. And there’s actually a ton of research on this. We call these VUCA times. VUCA stands for volatile, uncertain, complex, and ambiguous times. And Richard Thaler actually won a Nobel Prize in Economics for looking at behaviors during these volatile, uncertain, complex, and ambiguous times. People make decisions completely differently during VUCA times than they do during times when they feel safe and comfortable, and the world is more predictable. And so, I want to give you a couple of very specific things that you can do to help people take action because you’re absolutely right, Brad. The natural response when we experience fear and the natural response when we experience these volatile, uncertain, complex, and ambiguous times is to freeze and say, “I’m not going to do anything right now because things are changing right now.”
And so, I already talked to you early on, the very first thing we talked about was ego bias, making sure you remind people that you are going to be the determining outcome. You’re going to be the one who determines how we come out of this. Whether you take action or not is going to decide that. The second one that I want to talk to you about is something called pacing and leading. And of course, Robert Cialdini has written a lot about pacing and leading. And like I said, it’s a complicated concept. So, maybe some people in your audience played a game at a party or when they were a kid called two truths and a lie. Two truths and a lie is where you say three statements about yourself. Two of them are true, and one of them is a lie, and the other people at the party have to guess which one was the lie. Well, I have a different game that you should be playing with your prospects and in your presentations called two truths and a lead. And what that means is that you should make two true statements, two sentences that are true, and then the third sentence should lead them down the path that you want them to go.
[00:43:41] Pat Quinn: So, let me give an example. We know. We’ll start the first two with the phrase, “We know,” just to remind them that they’re true. We know that these are volatile times. It’s a true statement. Everybody recognizes that as a true statement. We know that we can’t predict the future. It’s a true statement. Everybody agrees it’s a true statement. We don’t have to belabor it. So, those are two truths. And now I can put a third statement there that asked the audience to do something or tells the audience to do something or gives the audience a piece of advice. And the audience will assume it’s true because I’ve hit them with two trues in a row. And there’ll be twice as likely to take that action because I couched it right after two truths. So, we know that these are volatile times and we know that nobody can predict the future. But there has never been a better time to take a second look at your retirement plan than right now. And there it is.
Nobody’s going to question whether or not there has never been a better time to take a second look at your retirement plan than right now. Why? Because I paste them with two truths. And then the third statement, they’re twice as likely to take that action than they were before. So, all you have to do to implement this, and by the way, you don’t do this for your whole presentation. Pick a couple of very distinct things that you want people to trust, and believe, and to do, and then come up with the truth that you want to put in front of them. And so, “We all are experiencing a new normal right now. Everyone has done things in the last 45 days that we didn’t anticipate doing a month ago, two months ago or a year ago. Now is the time to take action, so that you can protect what you’ve earned for your retirement.” There it was. Two truths followed by a statement that I want you to do.
[00:45:38] Pat Quinn: And you can actually use this to get people to sign up for an appointment, to get people to be open to a second opinion, to get people to be open to making some changes. You can use this for anything that you want. We call it two truths and a lead. And it’s two true statements followed by one statement, and they will absolutely follow you down that statement. Let me give you one more thing that you should do to get people to take action in this volatile time and that is to leverage congruence. Congruence is the idea that we want to live congruent lives, that we want to live true to the person that we believe that we are. And the way that you utilize congruence in your online presentations is early in your presentation to ask the audience something about themselves. And so, if I were going do this in an online presentation, I would say, “Are you the type of person who when a crisis happens, are you the type of person who believes you should take action? Or you should freeze? Are you the type of person who wants to help? Or you want to just sit there and let things happen to you? Why don’t you type into the chat box right now, whether you’re the type of person who takes action or you’re the type of person who freezes.”
And everybody will type it in. Now, this does a couple of things. If you’re in an online presentation in a place where they can actually type things into a chat box, this gets them participating in the presentation. So, now you’ve got some of that interaction that you love in your dinner seminars or your educational seminars, where you’re talking to people and you’re bouncing questions off of people. Those of you who really thrive on that can sometimes use the chat box to take advantage of that and say, “Are you the type of person who likes to take action to protect your family or just let things happen to your family? Why don’t you type in the chat box right now, take action or let things happen?” And everybody to commit that they’re the type of person who takes action. That allows you 20 minutes later near the end of your presentation to make the simple statement, “If you’re the type of person who likes to take action to protect your family, now is the time to set up an appointment for you and I to talk.”
[00:47:41] Pat Quinn: And what you’ve done right there is box people in. They have one of two choices. You can either be congruent or be non-congruent. And this is one of the strongest dynamics in the world, is you want to live a congruent life. It is really I’ve boxed you into a corner. You’re either going to schedule the appointment or you’re going to be non-congruent and nobody wants to be non-concurrent. And so, here’s how this works. Early in your presentation, ask people to declare what group they are in. “Are you the type of advisor who is going to just sit and let this COVID-19 ruin your business? Are you the type of advisor who’s going to take bold action and continue to grow your business during this important time?” And I get everybody to say I’m going to grow my business. Then I say, “If you’re the type of advisor who wants to grow their business during this important time, not just let it die, here’s what you should do next.” And you have two choices. You can either be non-congruent or you can take the action that I recommend.
Things like pacing and leading or two truths and a lead or building congruence in your presentation are the very types of changes that we’re helping advisors with every single day in our two-day workshops. We have a two-day virtual workshop where we actually take your entire presentation, the one that used to give as a dinner seminar or has an educational seminar, and we make it work online. We change your opening story and choose the right story. We change your content and build the embedded offer into it. We build in making people smart, status quo bias, ego bias, pacing and leading, and congruence all into the presentation for you. It’s a two-day virtual workshop, but you walk away with it with a virtual presentation that can be used to help grow your business during this important time and it comes with six months of follow up one-on-one coaching. I’ll watch your presentations that you’re actually giving to live audiences and I’ll give you feedback on them so that you can get better and better each and every time that you do it.
[00:49:44] Pat Quinn: So, Brad, we’ve been really excited to help advisors through this time. As I said, in the beginning, I think this is one of the greatest opportunities because the barriers are down to listening to advisors. The barriers of time of not wanting the inconvenience and not having other content to consume, those are all removed and this is a great opportunity for every advisor listening.
[00:50:04] Brad Johnson: I couldn’t agree more, Pat. And that’s one of the things one of my mentors shared with me, look at something through the lens of what does this make possible. And something you and I both have heard for the last probably decade-plus of working with entrepreneurs is what if someday I could just take these amazing trips and the money just keeps pouring into the business and I’m like, “Well, five years from now.” Literally, I was just reading an article the other day, now, everyone in the world regardless of age knows what Zoom is. So, the barrier to being able to interact digitally has completely evaporated from society. And so, if you now are able to change the messaging where it can connect through mediums like we’re chatting right now, and it also blows off the geography, right? Like you’ve seen a lot of advisors where they could only present at the local steakhouse down the road. Well, now you figure this out. I mean, it’s basically the world is your oyster.
[00:50:55] Pat Quinn: The barriers are down. I think a lot of people if they were given the opportunity to do some virtual presentations a year ago would have said, “My clientele is 50, 55, 60. They aren’t going to do that.” Well, my wife leads a Bible study of 50, 60-year-old women, and they’re all on Zoom every Wednesday morning for two hours and they’re having a blast. They’re comfortable with it. They turn on their cameras. I mean, the world is learning a new way to do things and you can take advantage of that opportunity.
[00:51:23] Brad Johnson: To that note, I’ve just had yesterday 5 PM, my mom’s whole side of the family of which all of her brothers and sisters are mid-60s and up, they were all on Zoom. So, it is possible to interact with what I would say our typical advisors’ demographic now. So, well, Pat, I just want to say thank you. As always, you over-delivered. I think for those advisors that are listening in on this live stream, first off, if you’re not in the Virtual Advisor Facebook group, get in there. We’re live streaming directly into this. So, if you’re hearing this on the podcast later, you’re just getting it later because you weren’t in the Virtual Advisor group. And I know Pat even was open to hopping in there, and maybe taking a few questions here and there as well. So, that was very kind of you, Pat. I appreciate that offer. And as you can tell, this is why we have Pat come in and train when we could all meet in one physical location. So, Pat’s trained a number of our advisors, and I just want to thank you, Pat, for coming on and doing the same thing digitally.
[00:52:18] Pat Quinn: Appreciate it and thank you for the opportunity. I think the things that we talked about today, when implemented correctly could make this an opportune time for the advisors rather than a dry time. I think it’s an opportunity for growth, rather than an opportunity to keep the status quo and I’m excited about that.
[00:52:37] Brad Johnson: Well, Pat, I will let you get on to the rest of your day. Thank you so much for joining and until our paths are able to cross again in the real world.
[00:52:44] Pat Quinn: Thanks a lot, Brad.
[00:52:49] Brad Johnson: Thanks for checking out the latest show. On to this week’s featured review. This one comes to us from Matt Dodge, who was kind enough to connect with me on LinkedIn and shoot me a note. And this review blew me away. Very, very kind words. So, I appreciate it, Matt. Matt says, “The standard five stars. I’ve referred this podcast to more advisors than I can remember. The guests are awesome, the content is great. But the one constant is Brad and his ability to ask the right questions at the right time and deliver timely content. He’s got his finger very much on the pulse of this industry and I look forward to doing yard work now so I can catch the latest conversation. Needless to say, my yard’s never look so good. Five stars aren’t enough.” Matt, appreciate it, man. You know, one of the things sometimes you take for granted kind of as Malcolm Gladwell coined it the 10,000-hour rule and some people dispute that.
But I would say the more time that you’ve spent perfecting a craft, or in my instance, listening to financial advisors’ needs from all across the country for going on almost 15 years now, you start to see themes and gaps where a lot of advisors really need help. And that’s simply, I guess it’s a good lesson for all of us is if you can simply look at your target market, your audience, and listen and see where they need help, that’s really all I’ve tried to do on this podcast is bring on resources, thought leaders, authors, that I know their expertise can help fill a gap or a need for financial advisors out there, wherever you may be. So, that’s my goal, Matt. I’m glad that you’ve got the added benefit that you can also multitask and the yard’s looking good as well. So, just want to say thanks. That’s going to be my goal to continue to get some rock star guests on here that can help you all out and appreciate you taking the time to leave the review. That means a lot and helps the show get found by other advisors out there that need help as well. So, glad we’re serving you.
[00:54:52] Brad Johnson: Well, that’s it for this week. And for those of you that have interest in diving deeper or figuring out how you may be able to have our team help you implement many of the ideas shared on the show, my day job happens to be consulting financial advisors from all across the US on how to grow their business and design a practice that serves them versus them serving it, which unfortunately happens sometimes. And yes, I can promise you it’s possible to grow your business and work less. It’s a model we’ve replicated over and over in markets all over the country. So, if you’d like to apply to see if it makes sense for us to have a one-on-one conversation on how to overcome what may be getting in your way, you can do that at BradleyJohnson.com/Apply. It takes about five minutes to fill out the application so we can understand what your business looks like, what challenges you may be facing, and how myself and my team may be able to help. Taking the first step is as simple as applying at BradleyJohnson.com/Apply. That’s all for this week. Thanks for listening in, and I will catch you on the next show.
[00:55:55] Brad: Thanks for listening to this episode of the Elite Advisor Blueprint. For access to show notes, transcripts, and exclusive content from our show’s guests, visit BradleyJohnson.com. And before you go, I’ve got a quick favor to ask. If you’re liking the podcast, you can help support the show by leaving your rating and review on iTunes. Not only do we read every single comment, but this will help the show rank and get discovered by new listeners. It really does help. Thanks again for joining and be sure to tune in next week for another episode.
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