This post was authored by Charlotte Stark, Dunham's Marketing Communications Associate. If you have questions concerning today's topic, please call us at (858) 964 - 0500. Hold us to a higher standard.

Working so closely with clients as a regular practice can keep us busy - and those busy schedules may lead to a dip in the quality of the personalized customer service we provide to our clients. What if I told you that your investment in customer service may be the most important investment you make every day?

It's true! Practicing superior customer service can save you money and lead to a return on the time and energy spent even greater than that of acquiring new customers. Here are just a few of the things continued customer service may bring you and your business that can give you a jump start of your competitor.

Separating Your Service

In financial services, especially to clients who may not be as financially savvy as their financial advisor, the options for effectively managing your money can begin to look very similar. Excellent customer service, especially if it's customized, is something you can offer to set yourself apart. If a client can always count on you answering and returning their calls, treating them like a human being rather than an accounting number, and listening to their concerns with that problem-solving lens, you will set yourself apart from larger firms that just can't offer such granular care.

Justifying Your Means with Ends

It can be hard for clients to swallow a higher fee for their financial advisor - that is, if it seems like a financial advisor is only providing services that are exactly the same as a big firm with bargain basement prices. Every time you go above and beyond for your clients, you are reinforcing that the higher price they pay you is returned in abundance by superior service. Add safeguarding their assets to the best of your ability and you have a compelling argument for exactly what you're worth.

Earning that Referral

The cheapest and highest quality marketing you can invest in is word-of-mouth referrals from clients who adore you and your service to clients-in-waiting you haven't even met yet. Your hands-on, people-cenric touch with your clients earn you valuable real estate in their thoughts when someone they know is looking for financial services. This goes beyond simply saying "Oh I use X" when asked what financial firm your client uses. Instead, all those big decisions that your clients makes that you guide them through, like purchasing a home, a car, or retiring is a potential point of entry for discussion with friends and family.

This is just a handful of the reasons good customer service is still worth every bit of attention you give it. It has the power to change our business for the better and gives back what we put into it more reliably than many other day-to-day investments. The next time you feel stumped when prospecting, try taking a look at your customer service practice and seeing how much value you can add.