So far this week we have focused on target marketing estate planning services to blended families, baby boomers, and women.Today we focus on one of the most important niche markets for your estate planning marketing: small business owners.
Why is this niche so important to you? Because wealthy households own businesses.
"What is surprising is the composition of asset holdings among the rich. Most of their wealth is in the form of unincorporated business. They are owners of small businesses or professional practices. Stocks, bonds and other financial assets represent less than one-third of their assets." -- The Rich & the Poor: Demographics of the U.S. Wealth Distribution
Additionally, the business is consistently the single most important portfolio asset among the wealthy. Oftentimes, the business IS the estate. And this presents unique estate planning challenges, especially at the retirement, disability or death of the primary business owner.
Those challenges will include:
- Providing support for a surviving spouse
- Determining business continuation within the family
- Equalizing an inheritance among children who are not all active in the business
- Providing for key non-family employees
- Providing liquidity (cash) for business debts and taxes
Here are some tips for marketing estate planning services to business owners:
- Business owners are easily identified through a variety of list compilation services, and you can easily narrow your focus to specific sizes and types of businesses within almost any market area.
- Business owners typically work with professional advisers in a number of areas, including accounting and property/casualty/liability insurance.
- Business owners are used to consulting experts and professionals, and may be less intimidated about seeking legal advice than non-business owners.
- A portion (or all) of your services may be considered a business expense, payable with a business check -- which is easier to write than a personal check.
- Note that business owners may be very busy, bottom-lined oriented, and fast-paced. They may expect you to meet them on their own turf, make doing business with you very convenient for them, and you may be surprised (at times) by the abruptness with which they can interrupt and ask for a bottom-line cost-benefit analysis. In other words, you may have to flex your style to meet their demands, but the payoff could be substantial because ...
- Business owners tend to network extensively with other business owners. They are highly inclined to make referrals, and to seek referrals from their trusted colleagues. Becoming a trusted adviser to one business owner can open up a world of ongoing opportunity.
Of course, your website, blog, e-newsletter, personal networking, direct mail and social media are all important marketing channels for reaching business owners. Our Essentials clients benefit from compelling, relevant content and strategies to reach business owners, fundamental throughout The Essential Solution®. In addition, you may want to consider incorporated our targeted workshop entitled, "Saving the Family Business," which outlines the fundamental steps necessary to plan for the survival of the family business.