Best Time for Annuity Seminars
Retirees generally rise early in the morning and schedule golf, tennis, shopping, doctor appointments, dentist appointments, and meetings with the accountant or attorney on weekday mornings. Therefore, never hold a seminar on a weekday morning because you would be competing with a lot of other activities in your prospect’s schedule. Schedule your annuity seminar either for Saturday mornings (when retirees put their weekday activities on hold) or weekday afternoons at 2:30 p.m. By a weekday afternoon, retirees have completed their morning schedule and your only competition is Oprah.
Try and avoid scheduling evening seminars because some retirees tell me that they are reluctant to drive at night as they notice their night vision is not as good. Additionally, single females have a safety concern, making them reluctant to venture out at night. If you were having seminars for younger people, all of these guidelines would be different as you would seek to fit their schedule and lifestyle.
Choose the right message
Retirees are concerned with security and are afraid of making irreversible financial mistakes. This means that they are far less concerned with performance statistics, and favor capital preservation. (Unlike a younger attendee that wants performance as they look to future financial security).
Thus your annuity seminar title should address their concerns and their fears rather than a product. The seminar should star you – the problem solver and trustworthy advisor, not a money manager or wholesaler. Seniors buy trust in a person. If they trust you, they’ll hand over the money and tell you, “If you think this is good, then let’s do it.” While younger investors spend more time analyzing details of products and doing comparison shopping, the retired investor is far more attuned to analyzing you.
The topics you choose should focus on you as a problem solver for emotionally compelling problems relevant to seniors. Some examples of emotionally compelling topics for the senior market include:
a. Mistakes Retirees Make With Their Finances and How to Avoid Them
b. Six Ways Retirees Can Cut Income Taxes and Save More Money
Never have the word "annuity" on your seminar invitation or it will look like a sales pitch for annuities and people will not attend. Additionally, don't make your seminar a sales pitch about annuities but rather the benefits of annuities.
Doing it right
Keep in mind that eyesight fails with age. For this reason, you may wish to avoid really large rooms for your annuity seminar and choose a setup that gives all clear view of you and your screen if you use slides. Here are a few additional rules for your presentation:
a. Make slides high contrast—dark print on a light background or vice versa.
b. Keep words on each slide to a minimum. Avoid small text (24 point minimum in PowerPoint)
c. Drop all jargon. Use simple, easy to understand terminology. For example, never use the phrase “fixed annuity,” but ask “do you have the type of annuity where the principal is guaranteed but the interest rate has been falling over the last 10 years?”
d. Never speak for more than 75 minutes—people get bored
e. Have a system for closing appointments right at the annuity seminar—do not wait until the next day
Confirm your appointments at 8 am the next business morning. Retirees rise early and leave the house. It’s best if you confirm in person. Do not delegate this to an assistant or you will lose appointments. This is an important additional contact in building the bridge between you and your soon-to-be new client.