I have become convinced of something in the past 12 to 24 months.
I am convinced that one of my primary objectives as your advisor/coach is to compete for your brain cells and claim them with the truth about investing. Further, I’m convinced that this is an unending, uphill battle against a very powerful marketing engine that is bent on convincing you that they can beat the market.
Every day you and I are bombarded hourly from 100’s of directions with 1000’s of messages. Each one of these messages comes at you from some source that has a plan. Most often, it’s a company’s business plan, a plan that manifests itself in an advertisement, a community-service bulletin, a press release, and dozens of other formats.
The method is simple: Need – Solution – Risk Free Offer.
First, the Need is presented. This could be something you lack. It could be something that makes you anxious. It could be something that you have always wanted or even an opportunity that you are missing out on. You are gently reminded of how deserving you are of such things. You now have a need.
Then SOLUTIONS are posited. Possible solutions that others have tried are no good. Most solutions that have been available until now have left us even more lacking, frustrated, or anxious than we were before we tried them. We need to try something new. Now we are curious; we really want to know how this drama ends. How are we saved from certain ruin!?
Calmly, the OFFER is presented. It’s simple, it’s doable, it’s a win-win – because its risk free. “You can sleep on the bed for a month before you have to commit.” “Just test drive one, no strings attached.” “Full money back guarantee.” “Now only half price with the mail in rebate.” “Earn 10% off on your purchases if you open this card.”
All of a sudden you want something that 5 minutes ago you did not even know existed. No, not want, you NEED it. Two or three more ads and it’s a done deal.
Ever wonder why Bud Light and Miller Light sell so much beer? Their product doesn’t even taste good. Let’s be honest. There is little to these products other than the bitter aftertaste and the promised alcohol content. Now you can even get it in the “light” version to maintain a “healthy” lifestyle. They even have runners in their commercials now. Are they serious?!! Drink this beer if you want to look like that? Come on!
Don’t even get me started on the financial ads! A whale coming out of the water means we should use that company’s suite of products. A bull walking powerfully up a ridgeline to the top and standing on it confidently – I guess that’s supposed to be me somehow after achieving new levels of success using their services. Another company says that they understand how the price of rice in India affects the corn production in the US. Now there’s bull!
The best one yet – the company that wants you to believe that once you sign on with them a green line magically appears on the ground and you know exactly what do to from here on out. “Turn here” they say.
I am sure that many of my clients are able to sift through most of these ads and determine what is something they need and what isn’t. Yet, I find myself becoming emotionally tied to these companies and I like some of the ads. They are powerful as they connect with my anxieties about money and my emotions.
They’ve done the research and know that if they can make the general public anxious, then they can make them move.
More movement creates more fees. Fees are a part of their business plan.
At the January client event last month one of my clients asked me this: “So what are your goals for this year, Evan?” Essentially what she was asking is this: What is your business plan?
I knew my answer then because we sat down at the end of 2010 and wrote it down.
We will be holding four events in 2011 for you, my clients.
My one goal is to get you there.
I have one objective in these events:
To create disciplined investors who have peace of mind about their investments and financial future while gaining market returns over long periods of time.
In these events, I hope to see the following:
- Celebrate the victories in our lives together – grow as a community and help each other. Also to share life’s tougher loads.
- Motivate you to set and achieve your goals both personal and financially.
- Convey simple and powerful truths about money and investing that will make a tangible difference in your portfolio and in your life.
And we have!
One of my new clients recently cut up all of her credit cards and committed to make her cash budget work this year. This is a personal win for her, and a few of us celebrated this together.
Four of my clients lost loved ones this past year. All are both grieving and celebrating the lives of those they lost.
Another client was sitting at his table during the meal and for the first time wrote down a number. This was a dollar amount that he wanted to achieve in his retirement fund over the next 25 or so years.
The time was also entertaining. “Fun” was a word that a few of my clients actually used! Yes, fun! At a seminar about investing! Be careful!
And all the while, you are learning to be better investors, developing the skills and disciplines that are needed to set and achieve your financial goals.
I am convicted that you need this regularly in order to maintain the discipline amidst the “noise” that is all around you.
Peace of Mind comes from knowing where you are going and what you need to do or to believe in order to get there. And then doing it.
So you will be receiving emails and phone calls encouraging you to come when you can. We will not be shy. We will pay for dinner!
We really want you to attend four times a year! You will be more likely to set and achieve exceptional goals if you are a part of this process.
I am focusing all of my efforts on making these times awesome and engaging, fun and educational.
I need you to be there.