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The “No BS” Keynote Speaker

Sara Grillo NYC Financial Services Keynote Speaking Topic List

Hi there and thanks for visiting my page. My name is Sara Grillo and I am a financial services keynote speaker based in New York. I specialize in discussing financial communications.

Companies hire me to speak because I answer the following questions:

  • How can the client-facing people at my company get more attention from clients by using creativity instead of the same old cliche and jargon?
  • What does it take to communicate effectively in the modern age? How is this going to change over the next 5-20 years?
  • What are some mistakes that people at my company may be making as they communicate with clients, vendors, strategic partners, and each other?
  • As demographic groups within the financial industry change, how does my company need to change to be able to accommodate the up and coming people who will be playing a bigger role in the future?

Below you will find a list of my best talks. Contact me if you think your team would benefit from hearing about these. Each talk is 45 minutes long and the cost ranges from $5,000 to $10,000 depending upon location and other factors.


Each talk has to option to include stunt such as burning an insurance policy up on stage, chocolate fountain, karoake skit, etc. These are available upon request.

How to Throw Down on LinkedIn

Financial and insurance advisors report limited success reaching new clients or recruits through online platforms such as LinkedIn and Facebook. In this seminar, you will learn techniques that have been proven to create new opportunities for advisors such as:

  • Messaging strategies that allow you to communicate with your online network and avoid coming across as 99% of advisors do, making them become part of the noise and causes people to want to ignore them
  • Follow up strategies to stay in touch with your online network spanning multiple methods (newsletter, phone, etc.) that integrate with your online brand, reinforce your value and key messaging points, and move you one step closer to your target
  • Branding strategies that will convey a powerful message with words that go beyond the typical industry jargon and set you apart from the rest of advisors

The internet is very powerful for advisors of all types who are trying to reach people of all types, but succeeding online takes skill and advanced knowledge that few advisors have. This seminar will fill in the gaps suffered widely across the industry and provide a remarkable advantage to those who are willing to integrate this knowledge into their practices.

How to Throw Down on YouTube

YouTube is one of the fastest growing search engines on the internet and an opportunity that very few financial advisors have not yet tapped.

In this seminar specifically designed for financial advisors, Sara will demonstrate techniques for getting your brand out on YouTube and finding new clients. You’ll learn:

  • Why YouTube is the #1 opportunity for financial advisor marketing in 2019
  • What the very few financial advisors who have been gigantically successful on YouTube have done
  • Why the rest of the competition won’t do this – and why you should!
  •  How to create a YouTube platform that will serve your target niche
  • Techniques for going about the more advanced strategies such as YouTube advertising
  • What not to do on YouTube

The Cool Way to Talk About Insurance

There’s nothing that makes people want to run the other way faster than a financial advisor trying to push insurance. In this joint presentation, Sara Grillo, CFA, and Barry Flagg, CFP® will break the pattern by teaching advisors how to communicate with higher integrity, transparency, and clarity when they speak about insurance to clients and COIs within their practice.

Advisors will learn:

  • The questions you should ask clients and COIs within your practice to bring to light the truth about the last, largest, most-neglected, and worst-performing asset on their balance sheets
  • Integrating talks into your practice about the numbers that matter – how including certain metrics can lead to higher insights about the true costs and performance of people’s life insurance policies.
  • How to use Prudent Investor principles to eliminate the competition still using misleading, inappropriate, and unreliable policy reviews
  • How to align your practice with the “clients’ best interests” movement

This talk will include special effects such as Barry Flagg lighting a life insurance illustration on fire because that’s certainly a higher and better use of them than for product selection (Optional).

Getting That First Meeting with a Female Prospect

The fact that women are the gender of the future for advisors to focus on is well documented. There’s been a great deal of commentary from industry thought leaders about what women want and don’t want in an advisor.

What remains unaddressed, however, is the roadmap to the sale: the practical steps advisors can take and what they need to do in order to get in front of more qualified female clients. This talk will propose 5 specific marketing strategies for advisors to follow to get the first meeting with female clients.

Intended audience: female and male advisors of all types, broker/dealer, hybrid, RIA firm, independent, wirehouse, etc.

The COI Code: How to Talk to Attorneys and Accountants Without Sounding Tacky

Attorneys and accountants are some of the best possible referral sources for financial advisors, but very few are able to crack the code. This talk will cover how to crack in and get past the boundaries these COIs are putting up, why they are disconnecting from you, and how to communicate in a way that connects, empathizes, and allows them to see you as a valuable resources that can improve their business profitability rather than another advisor looking for a handout.

Advisors will learn:

  • How gaining more influence over the COI requires a deeper understanding of their business and the challenges they face.
  • Why COIs disconnect when you try to help them
  • Methods for financially empowering your COI partners by skillfully managing your practice
  • Best tips for understanding and defining the roles the COI and the advisor play in the financial planning process including consultative questioning methods that reinforce practice discipline
  • Questions not to ask a COI
  • How to maximize financial planning for the COI impact through wise practice management
  • Advice for positioning your practice as an advocate for the CPA
  • How to position yourself as a financial planning resource to them, one with answers that are available on an ongoing basis and through various methods.
  • How to do all of this in a way that makes you not sound tacky

A Guide to Talking to the Next Generation Children of Your Clients So They (Actually) Listen

The fact that Generations X and Y 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 and build relationships with the next generations of their clients’ families. If not, fee compression and roboadvisors pose a very large competitive threat. Using the right words (as opposed to the dry cliché and jargon), using digital communication methods, and rethinking branding elements such as your attire and office design play an important part in reaching this population and ensuring continuity in your practice.

This presentation is highly interactive and includes quiz questions involving volunteers from the audience where chocolate and prizes are awarded for correct answers and calisthenics are required for incorrect answers (optional).

Workshop: The Toolkit for Building a Brand that is not a #FinancialCliche

The ability to differentiate yourself as a financial advisor matters now more than ever. Yet most advisor branding is a constant stream of jargon, cliché, and sameness.

In this three hour workshop, advisors will learn:

  • What qualifies as a valid brand vs. an invalid brand
  • How to design a LinkedIn page that expresses your brand and attracts attention
  • How to explain what you do without sounding like a cliché
  • 6 phrases not to use when you talk about what you do
  • Email and out of office messaging with style and personality
  • How style of dress, personal grooming, office design, and pets can be used to reflect your brand
  • Blogging, podcasting, and other content strategies that should be done in a cliché-free fashion, and how to achieve this

This presentation is highly interactive and includes quiz sessions involving volunteers from the audience.

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How to Choose What Sara Grillo “No BS” Content is Best for You

This article talks about what content of Sara Grillo's videos, podcasts, and blogs about financial marketing is best for you.

By now you may have gathered I publish a ton of content on the internet. Honestly, it’s great stuff. I have a “No BS” policy and there’s a ton of value you can get if you want to know about financial marketing.

But with so much to choose from (podcasts, videos, blogs, etc.), where can you find what you need?

Here’s a quick guide.


In these videos I discuss overall financial marketing strategies but do not provide actionable tips. These videos are highly entertaining and funny.

Click here to subscribe to my channel.


This is the only place in anything I publish where you can actually get practical and actionable tips about financial marketing.

For a monthly fee, I provide general guidance and advice in my other content, but to be honest if you tried to DIY based upon that it there’s not a high likelihood that you’d succeed. There are just too many details that I leave out.

It’s kind of like the famous chefs.

If Julia Child gave you her cheesecake recipe, it wouldn’t be enough – there’s no way your cheesecake would come out as good unless she gave you step by step direction and demonstrated visually.

To be real you would probably waste a lot of time trying to DIY on this.

You get three videos a month teaching you the mechanics of how to get online leads. You also get a private members webinar each month where I provide group coaching. These videos are short and to the point in my signature “no BS” style.

Click here to join my membership.

If you are the DIY type, then the Sara Grillo Membership is for you.


On my podcast I discuss overall financial industry themes and interview thought leaders such as Michael Kitces and Ron Carson. I also post my rap songs about financial marketing here. Highly entertaining and humorous but again, no practical and actionable content.

Click here to subscribe to my podcast.


I have written over 100 guest blogs for Advisor Perspectives magazine, mostly about marketing. These articles are extremely snarky. Examples: Advisor Bios Stink, How to Tell if your Website is Worthless.

Click here to visit my author page.

Which one is right for you?

If you have any questions which one is for you, please let me know and I can point you in the right direction.