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How to Talk to Affluent People Without Sounding Tacky with Charlotte Beyer

Charlotte Beyer offers valuable tips on how financial advisors should talk to wealthy clients and prospects so to avoid sounding tacky.

I was honored to interview Charlotte Beyer, founder of the Institute for Private Investors and the Principle Quest Foundation, because she is someone for which I have great respect. What I love about Charlotte the most is her tactful ability to straddle both sides of the wealth management line between advisor and investor; she allies with the investment community at the same time as acting as an advocate who truly understands the challenges and struggles that wealthy families face. Advisors can learn a great deal from Charlotte about how to communicate with affluent people without sounding like “that advisor” and the mindset you should embrace if you want to be successful in earning their trust.

In this episode of the Sara Grillo podcast, listeners will learn:

[0:45] What Charlotte is working on nowadays. She sold her company, The IPI, and decided that she wanted to make a difference in the world for women by creating her foundation.

[3:14] Examples of how most advisor marketing fails to connect and empathize with the affluent families it is intended to reach: cliché, jargon, being too shallow and not really getting to the real issues, peppering with bad or overly simplistic questions, reading from a script, and/or being just downright boring.

[4:14] Charlotte explains the origin of bad advisor marketing. Where does it stem from? The answer will surprise you.

[5:20] What Charlotte recommends as the right questions that advisors should ask. Try these, advisors!

[7:13] The #1 thing advisors should do to put investors at ease, according to Charlotte, right at the start of the meeting.

[9:40] What smart firms do to maximize the soft skills an advisor needs: empathy, listening, nurturing, caring.

[12:46] What style of fee Charlotte finds that investors prefer instead of an AUM fee – a smarter way to charge fees based on complexity and time spent rather than just the straight 1%.

[15:00] Charlotte’s 10 principles for successfully working with clients. Hint: for more information, read her book Wealth Management Unwrapped (info below).

[19:55] Rip up the marketing brochures! Rip up the marketing brochures! But, if you have to do one, here’s what Charlotte suggests.

[21:56] The value of creating a community of trusted peers for your wealthy clients and why it will make a difference in your practice.

[25:00] The way to ask for feedback from your clients without coming off as awkward or making them feel uncomfortable or annoying. You need to know this information – you need to be this self aware as an advisor – if you want to create a powerful brand. You are not going to weaken the relationship if you ask the right way – you are going to do the opposite and strengthen it.

Please subscribe, rate, and review this podcast!

Resources cited in this show

What Rich Clients Really Want vs. What Financial Advisors Say = Total Disconnect by Sara Grillo. Read it here:

Wealth Management Unwrapped by Charlotte Beyer. Get it here:

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How I Built My Lead-Generating Social Media Empire with Winnie Sun

Winnie Sun talks about how financial adviors can get leads from social media by building an empire.

Is it actually possible for financial advisors to get leads from social media? In this episode you’ll hear from Winnie Sun, founder of Sun Group Wealth Partners. Winnie built her digital empire from scratch through commitment and hard work to the point where it has been a source of new clients. Yes, Winnie! Here’s the story of how she did it and the advice she gives to other advisors who wish to do the same.

In this episode, listeners will learn.

[0:56] How and why Winnie got started on social media and built her presence to where she now has over 300k followers on Twitter and 28k followers on LinkedIn.

[2:09] The experience of getting her first lead via social media.

[3:57] The time and level of commitment it took to build a large following.

[7:36] How Winnie leveraged a relationship with a publicist to reach her success.

[10:01] Some of the things she did that Winnie feels worked in her favor.

[11:00] The things many advisors do that don’t necessarily help lead them to clients.

[15:24] Leveraging promoters and influencers.

[16:27] The best way to work with compliance to get content approved with minimal disruption to the process.

Thanks for listening and everybody please subscribe, rate, and review my show!


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Diversity in Financial Advising with Jocelyn Wright

In this episode of the Sara Grillo podcast, we discuss diversity in financial advising with Jocelyn Wright.

In this episode of the Sara Grillo podcast, my guest Jocelyn Wright of Ascension Wealth Management and I discuss the important topic of how to increase diversity in the field of financial advising. This is great advice for those who are trying to increase diversity on their team, at their firm, or for those who are advocates of diversity in general.

In this episode, listeners will learn:

[0:55] What Jocelyn is working on currently – an initiative with the American College to double the number of African American financial advisors in the profession over the next 10 years, as well as creating opportunities for women. Awesome, Jocelyn!

[2:36] What does inclusion mean?

[6:03] How diversity has been a factor in her work as a financial advisor in her own practice.

[8:31] The value of shared experience in relating to the people you serve. Example: being a female breadwinner.

[13:50] Some of the characteristics women may have that could potentially give them the ability to succeed as financial advisors.

[14:50] The one or two most effective things that are most effective in promoting diversity within financial advising.

[18:51] How compensation can be a roadblock for those entering the profession. Tips for advisors entering the profession about how to hit the ground running. Our advice on how to get the pipeline full and take advantage of all resources so that you can get established in your business quicker and financially comfortable more easily.

Please subscribe, rate, and review this podcast!

Resources cited in this podcast

Wallace, Kelly. (2016, Oct 7th). Husbands of female breadwinners most at risk for cheating, says study. CNN. Retrieved from

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Ep 13: How to Make Your Social Media Look Gorgeous with Guy Kawasaki of Canva

This episode discusses how to Make Your Social Media Look Gorgeous with Guy Kawasaki of Canva.

I was deeply honored to have the pleasure of having Guy Kawasaki as a guest on this episode of The Sara Grillo Podcast.

Guy Kawasaki is the chief evangelist of Canva, an online graphic design tool, as well as a brand ambassador for Mercedes-Benz and an executive fellow of the Haas School of Business (UC Berkeley). In the past, Guy was the chief evangelist of Apple and a trustee of the Wikimedia Foundation. He is also the author of The Art of the Start 2.0, The Art of Social Media, Enchantment, and nine other books.

In this episode, Guy Kawasaki and I will discuss how Canva has essentially done for financial advisor social media what the Excel spreadsheet has done for financial planning and the opportunities that digital marketing presents for advisors looking to meet affluent clients.

Listeners will learn:

[Frame 1:26]

How is the word of graphic design being democratized and how this changes the game for financial advisors. Just as the word processor enabled you to do your own writing without having to find a professional to do it.

[Frame 5:59]

The future of communication in business is moving towards pictures and video and away from blogs and the written word. Simple text doesn’t work anymore. You have to have graphics and they have to be beautiful. The bar has been raised, and it has been raised for everybody.

[Frame 7:30] Guy addresses the belief that many financial advisors have that affluent people are not on social media. Guy says that social media is a viable channel for financial advisors who want to meet somebody with $1MM or more of net worth.

The complaint you hear now from many younger people is that “Oh my gosh, my parents are on Facebook now.” What this means for financial advisors. Hint: it’s good news!

[Frame 9:48] What Guy thinks of the high end investment firms who try to solicit him as a client on social media or by cold calling.

[Frame 11:05] What it would take for a highly successful, business savvy person like Guy to leave his financial planner of 15 or so years. What to say, and what not to say – hear his take on things.

[Frame 13:50] How does Canva prevent entrepreneurs from making the typical mistakes they tend to make in business?

[Frame 15:24] Is the W-2 bound for extinction or is the Gig Economy bubble bound for collapse?

[Frame 17:17] Guy’s recommendation for the next hot app that people should be looking at.

Thanks to everyone for listening and most of all thanks to Guy Kawasaki for being my guest. If you found this show useful, please subscribe, rate, and review this podcast!

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How to Talk to Millennials so They Actually Listen

The fact that millennials are the next generation of wealth is well-documented. What remains to be explored, however, is how advisors can best design their practices to communicate with Millennials as clients. Using the right words is an important part of reaching this population. Advisor language has typically been dry, impersonal, and full of cliché and jargon. This has to change if advisors want to retain assets and succeed with intergenerational wealth transfer within their books of business. If not, fee compression and roboadvisors pose a very large competitive threat.

This webinar will teach advisors what they need to know about how to communicate effectively with Generation Y. It will cover:

  • The buzzwords that been commonly used in the past but won’t work with Millennial clients and should be avoided.
  • Terms and phrases that Millennials are more open to hearing, and that advisors should integrate into their communications with clients
  • The tone and voice that advisors should use when communicating with Millennials
  • What body language, office design, and choice of apparel (tie or no tie?) say that words never could
  • Client follow up strategies using digital communication that will be more effective than ones of the past
  • And more!


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Don’t Fight the Robos! – with Betterment’s Cara Reisman

Despite what is commonly believed, financial advisors aren’t competing with the robos; you are competing with your own ability to provide higher value.

Robos are not your enemy but an opportunity to overcome fee compression if applied strategically. Technology has arrived whether you like it or not. Embrace what it has to offer, learn a few new things, and go deeper to provide the value that your clients will pony up the dough for.  In this podcast with Cara Reisman of Betterment for Advisors, we’re going to teach you exactly how to get that done.

Show notes:


How does this work from the point of view of the client?  Do they see the roboadvisor brand or the advisor’s brand?


Who pays? Does the advisor or the client pay?


Where are assets safekept? What are the advantages of having the roboadvisor also be the custodian as opposed to using a third party custodian?

[4:53] How in depth do the services really go? For example with tax loss harvesting. How frequently do you actually do this for the client’s portfolio, and if so what are the gains or trading cost consequences?


Betterment has over 400 advisor firms (not advisors, but advisor firms) using the platform today. How are they using this platform to scale their businesses? By automating the back office, it allows the advisor to bring their value to the table. That value may be defined by bespoke financial, tax, or estate planning. Or maybe the advisor wants to focus on business development and building relationships.

[8:59] The word “roboadvisor” means so many things. Is Betterment still a roboadvisor, really?

[11:44] How advisors who want to massively scale their businesses can use roboadvisors. These platforms are tools that you can use strategically. They are not the competition; that is a myth. A common use case is an advisor who is focused on wealth management as opposed to investment management. Perhaps they want to stay in touch with next generation clients but don’t want to suffer through serving clients who don’t meet their minimums, perhaps the children of their affluent clients. Yet at the same time they want to be there 20 years from now when the client inherits wealth or finally does reach the level of assets you’d desire.  You can streamline the operations so that ultimately you are position to go full service when the right time comes.

And you can do this profitability using this technology.

It’s not about changing your entire business. It’s not exclusive. You don’t have to use a platform like this for all your clients, just the ones where it makes sense.

[15:50] What roboadvisor platforms should advisors consider as options, and what are the benefits and drawbacks of each?

[20:19} Three action items that advisors who are thinking about using a roboadvisor should take.



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Ep 10: Join “Team Text Message”

If you’re not texting your clients, here’s why you should join “Team Text Message.” In this interview with Jonathan Maddock of Redtail Technology, I cover the reasons why your clients are expecting this from you (across all age groups and demographics) , texting do’s and do not’s, and the rules you should follow when texting with clients.

In this message you will learn:

[1:13]  What percentage of people are texting vs. what financial advisors are doing.

[3:04] When a financial advisor should text vs. using email or calling.

[7:04] Why you want to be an early adopter of text messaging.

[9:00] Text messaging as a way to improve prospecting success.

[13:01] How text messaging can help improve satisfaction levels for millennial clients. How advisors can use text messaging to scale their practice and ensure that they retain the clients who will be the next generation of wealth.

[19:30] The digital experience and why it’s not just for millennials

[21:26] Rules of texting (including no-nos that you shouldn’t do)

Please subscribe, rate, and review!


Sources mentioned in this podcast:

JD Power. (2018, March 29th). Millennial Investor Loyalty Hinges on Advisor Relationship, Not Technology, J.D. Power Finds. Retrieved from

Maddock, Jonathan. (2018, July 2nd). Advisor Perspectives. The Surprising Data on Text-Message Usage by Advisors and Clients. Retrieved from

Skinner, Liz. (2017, August 16th).  Advisers turning to text messages to communicate with clients. Investment News. Retrieved from

Smith, Aaron. (2015, April 1st). U.S. Smartphone Use in 2015. Pew Research Center. Retrieved from

Burke, Kenneth. (2016, May 24th). 73 Texting Statistics That Answer All Your Questions. Text Request. Retrieved from




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Ep 9: Communicating to Influence with Steve Sanduski

As financial advice becomes more automated, how do you justify your (higher-priced) value as a human being? Join me and my guest, the great Steve Sanduski of Belay Advisor, as we discuss how to communicate with your clients in a way that increases influence.

We’ll talk about the increasing role that robadvisors are playing in the delivery service, how we see this changing in the future, and what advisors can do to find that vital sliver of services where they provide unbelievable value. We’ll also talk about achieving emotional closeness with the client and how vulnerability, sincerity, and storytelling can help accomplish that.

Show Notes

This episode will teach you:

[2:10] Too many advisors look, act, and talk the same. How can advisors differentiate themselves? You can have all the communication that you want, but if it’s the same message as everyone else, you’ll fail to set yourself apart.

[4:16] Why repelling people by taking a strong position on a particular topic is totally fine.

[7:07] If you’re a financial advisor, how many clients do you really need to make a nice business?

[8:55] Fee compression and embracing technology solutions to improve, not reduce, margins. How do you implement this technology within your business model?

[11:09] Why you’re not competing with the roboadvisors

[12:00] Where the real value is delivered in the advisor-client relationship

[14:04] Let’s say that technology can handle 25% of what a financial advisor has historically done. If it’s 25% today, it’s going to be 35%, 50%, etc. That number is going to get larger and larger. The piece of work that an advisor can deliver, the real value. Is going to get smaller over time. But the value that a consumer will place on that shrinking piece of value is going to continue to expand over time. You have to focus in on that sliver of value that you can provide that no technology will ever make obsolete and be the absolute best you can be.

[15:32] Example of the sliver of value

[17:20] Leveraging your humanness. What can the human brain do that no machine can do?

[18:30] The loss of the community and breakdown in family structure and how that has disconnected us as a society emotionally. What should advisors know about how to influence and reach people emotionally in this disconnected world?

[21:48] Getting your clients together and connecting them, creating your own community within your practice.

[25:00] Why love isn’t enough. Loving your clients doesn’t necessarily bring connection. Storytelling has the power to change someone else’s thinking. Influence doesn’t happen by overpowering people with facts. Start with a story. That story needs to be emotional, it needs to have a point, and a truth to it. When you share that story and the person connects and opens up, then they become open to hearing your facts.

[30:00] Showing emotional vulnerability as a way to bring clients closer and make them more open to you.

[31:52] Three actionable things you can do to increase your ability to influence through communication.

Please subscribe, rate and review!


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Ep 8: Knock Out Networking with Michael Goldberg

Episode 8 is my funniest podcast so far. Today we have Michael Goldberg as my guest. Michael is the CEO of Knock Out Networking, which helps financial advisors and brokers make more “knock out”?connections. He’s also a repeat TedX speaker and an avid boxer. You should see his right hook!

Show Notes

Summer is notoriously slow for business and typically not a great time for financial advisors and brokers to win new clients. The reality is that it’s all in what you make of it. The summer slowdown is a misconception – it doesn’t have to be this way!

Here’s how to leverage the summer slowdown to your advantage, bring people’s guards down, and kick up the pace of your business development flurry of jabs and uppercuts that will make you a networking champion.

Ring the bell – ding ding ding! Let’s begin with Round One.

This episode will teach you:

  • [5:36] Avoiding being a snoozefest: how being fun and/or funny brings the best out of other people
  • [6:11] If there’s no connection, the best elevator pitch in the world is not going to do anything. How can you give people the right feeling when you meet them? Beginning the conversation in a way that promotes trust.
  • [7:42] The physical effects on someone’s body when they laugh and why it makes it easier to connect.
  • [10:53] Example of how to open up a conversation with someone you meet at a networking event
  • [12:20] How to take the conversation from social mode into a business conversation
  • [14:00] How to know when to ring the bell and end the round – the gracious way to end the conversation
  • [18:33] How to follow up with someone you met at a networking function on social media such as LinkedIn. What you should do and why you should do it within 24-48 hours.
  • [19:18] How to prep the person for follow up so that you’ll have higher probability of success reconnecting after the conversation is over. Connections do have a shelf life.
  • [20:40] An easy way to use social media to make sure you don’t forget what the conversation was about without having to go through lengthy documentation.
  • [23:20] Five action steps for successful summer networking

Thanks for listening and please subscribe, rate, and review!