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This Financial Advisor Got Me to Change a Major Habit. Can YOU?

This morning I went on a long walk with my four-legged coworker Max and I listened to a podcast that I thought might spiritually recharge me. As is usually the case, I got something unexpected from what I was listening to. Because instead of feeling motivated spiritually, I felt supercharged in an entirely different way.

I decided to make a change in my finances.

Now, the reason I'm telling you this is not to give you the financial advice I took away from this interview. I'm telling you this because obviously this financial planner said something so powerful and in such a way that not only made me, Jane Investor, want to make a change... it made me question how he did it.

The interview was on Rachel Hollis's podcast RISE and it was with David Bach, the author of many books about finance, including Smart Women Finish Rich. To be honest, I wasn't too interested in the topic when I started listening, but I stuck with it because he did something I've been telling financial advisors to do for years: He caught and captured my attention with a story.

If Mr. Bach had started out with percentages and straight-up investment advice, my eyes would have glazed over and I would have immediately switched the interview. Instead, he started talking about how his grandmother, a strong-willed, working-class woman, took it into her head to take over the family finances as a young mother and the result was that she eventually became a millionaire.

The way he told the story allowed me to picture this woman brown-bagging her lunch when all of her friends were eating out. I could relate to her struggle as she made small changes that created big results. He talked about how the first year she spent investing, she lost everything because she didn't know what she was doing - and then kept learning. Overall, the financial advice that he was giving was wrapped up in this story that resonated with me and made me feel ready to make a change.

The Latte Factor

We've all heard it: Stop your Starbucks habit and invest that money into your retirement.

This metaphor is not new and, frankly, most of us investors who are determined to NOT make changes inwardly roll our eyes when we hear it. And being the smart guy that he is, I'm sure David Bach probably knows this. But here's the thing: He knows it's a metaphor. However, he knows it's a concept he can expand on that puts simple investing in terms that those of us who are scared of money understand.

Once again, at the end of this portion of the interview, I was ready to make a change. One of the next calls I make will be to my financial advisor asking how I can make some small changes that, after listening to this interview, I hope will create big results.

And, once again, it got me thinking about my clients. I have one question for you:

What's your "latte factor"?

What's your message? What's your metaphor that will speak to your specific client? How do YOU specifically put things in a way that will make a client listen to you or read something you've written and not only be motivated to make a change...they're excited about it too?

When I think of everyone's specific "latte factor" it reminds me of the elevator speech that we're all encouraged to have. We should all have a message ready to go when someone asks us about what we do. How about a message that's ready to go that motivates even one little change for the better for our ideal client?

With this in mind, I would encourage you to do the following:

1. Think about 3 specific problems you'd like to solve for your ideal client.

2. Create a short narrative or metaphor that will convey your message in a way that will capture your client's attention.

3. Make sure that message has one simple take away that the client will not just want to implement...they're excited to do it.

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