Slideshow 7 Ways to Market Yourself as an Income Distribution Specialist

  • June 18 2012, 5:23pm EDT
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7 Ways to Market Yourself as an Income Distribution Specialist<br><br>

According to the U.S. Census, by 2020 there will be more than 100 million Americans 55 years of age or older controlling an enormous percentage of the country’s total personal financial assets.

Clearly, retirement income distribution represents one of the greatest opportunities of the past several decades for financial advisors who want to make a significant difference in their clients’ lives by addressing one of their largest financial concerns.

Here are some tips for advisors who want to market themselves as retirement income distribution specialists:

Source: Zach Parker, MBA, CFP, first vice president of income distribution and product strategy for Securities America.

1. Don’t Put the Cart Before the Horse<br><br>

Before you begin branding yourself as an income distribution specialist, take the time to become knowledgeable about this phase and the various strategies for converting accumulated assets into an income stream that will meet clients’ retirement needs.

Market downturns have many advisors rethinking systematic withdrawals to better understand the impact of sequence of returns during the distribution phase.

The Retirement Income Industry Association (RIIA) now offers a Retirement Management Analyst designation. Check it out and see if your compliance department approves of it.

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2. Re-Evaluate Your Unique Value Proposition<br><br>

Does your unique value proposition apply to retirement income distribution? Does it stress accumulation? Does it help clients and prospects understand the difference between accumulation and distribution? Does it touch on the needs/benefits of retirement income planning?

Spend the necessary time reviewing and testing your UVP on your existing ideal clients to ensure it resonates with your target market.

3. Two Sample UVPs That Say It All<br><br>

These ideas might help jump-start your own UVP:

We organize your hard-earned assets, insurance and estate plan to help simplify, consolidate and integrate every aspect of your financial future.

We help our clients transition to retirement by creating a livable income plan.

4. Taglines Can Be Tricky<br><br>

Don’t forget about your tagline. It also needs to convey the UVP; if not, it won’t be effective in helping you market yourself as an income distribution specialist.

A tagline distills the heart of your UVP into a single phrase. They often show up under your logo, so it’s important to create a tagline that will work long-term. It should be relatively short and packed with action words.

“Retirement Income Distribution” – the descriptive words themselves are long – nine syllables in that one phrase alone – and they aren’t words most clients normally use together.

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5. A Good Way to Create Your Tagline<br><br>

As a beginning exercise, go back to your UVP and try highlighting just the action words or eliminating the filler words.

You might also reverse the order of the words or change the endings slightly. Take a look:

We organize your hard-earned assets, insurance and estate plan to help simply, consolidate and integrate every aspect of your financial future.

So possible taglines would look something like these:

“Organizing Your Hard-Earned Assets for Your Financial Future”

“Integrating Every Aspect of Your Financial Future”

6. Time for the Conversation: No Jargon!<br><br>

If you’ve been focusing heavily on accumulation for the past several decades, it’s now time to begin the conversation with clients and prospects and explain the difference between accumulation and distribution.

Creating an interactive conversation that uses analogies, examples and stories can help them understand the importance of having a plan for converting assets into income during retirement.

Some may not clearly understand the definition, so steer clear of jargon and use language such as “converting your portfolio into retirement income” or “creating income from your investments to fund your retirement.” That will hit home.

7. Putting It All Together: Client Night<br><br>

Now that you are comfortable with your skill level, you have new UVPs and taglines that you can put into action. This will be the perfect time for a client appreciation night or an evening workshop about retirement income distribution.

You might consider inviting couples to your event, which will help get your message through loud and clear to them.


A study by Fidelity Investments in 2009 found only 38% of couples reported that they make decisions on their retirement finances together, an issue that can cause uncertainty for couples in retirement.

An event focusing on retirement goals of couples can help uncover areas where spouses may have very different ideas about what they need. This type of event can be effective with clients or prospects, in large groups or small. Keep in mind that your goal is to assist couples (your clients and prospects) who need this type of complex, comprehensive planning. And a retirement income specialist like yourself is just the person to do that. Good luck.

Also see:

10 Easy, Actionable Marketing Tips For Advisors

7 Marketing Tips Used by Elite Financial Advisors

9 Marketing Tips for Retirement Plan Advisors and TPAs

10 Critical Social Media Tips for Advisors

Chicken and Egg: How to Grow Your RIA Practice From Scratch