Cold Calling Ban
Written on 22/10/2019

There was a small article in FT Adviser recently regarding cold calling.

Now specifically this was in connection to Cold Calling for pensions and outlined a "raid" by the Information Commissioner's Office (ICO) on a business in Chichester.  There was a ban implemented by the ICO on any Pension Cold Calling on 9th January 2019 which prevented any form of cold calling including emails and texts. On the face of it this article might suggest that no cold calling is allowed in respect of pensions but if you read the article and the original ban from the ICO, it states that only FCA authorised people may make such approaches. (Unless the person had previously consented to being contacted – in which case it isn’t “cold”)

It brings up a good point. 

Marketing/Cold Calling to get new clients, is it a dying method or is it still acceptable in today's over regulated world?

There have been serious scares over the recent use by regulated firms of non-regulated "Introducers" who pursued what might be considered "soft targets", ex-British Steel staff for example and that opened up a whole can of worms over how advisers get hold of new potential clients. Here it has been suggested that the introducers used very suspect and unethical practices to get the people to agree to speak with advisers about transferring their British Steel DB pensions into SIPPs. Many of these transfers were then seen as highly suspect and so the whole chain of events became subject to regulatory scrutiny.

But we all have had that concern surely? How do we get new clients? 

Businesses need to grow and traditionally (and still highly advocated by banks and lenders) it was new clients that were the "Holy Grail" and existing ones were not so important. Volume/numbers were King, the more new clients you brought on the better you were (or so it seemed) and the more money you made and the happier your boss was.

But I thought that the advisory world had moved past that "eat what you kill" culture and that we had all agreed that farming a nucleus of good paying clients happy was better for all concerned?  

Looking after your clients is more important for your business than bringing on new ones. Consider this, you end up with 30 good quality clients where you provide all of their financial advice, not just investment. You look after them for 20 years as they move through the financial "Life Cycle" and then finally manage their accumulated monies in retirement, then you get referrals from them without asking. All of a sudden you don't need new clients very often, as you are busy enough looking after clients that you have come to know very well and then you really are the "Trusted Adviser". Then you can sell your business with genuine embedded value!

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