Kansas City practice provides food and learning opportunities for clients during the pandemic
The pandemic offered many challenges to financial advisors. As face-to-face meetings with current and potential clients were practically nonexistent, advisors had to get creative with how they stayed top-of-mind with their clients. Sarver Vrooman Wealth Advisors, a practice with WFAFN, decided to bring a new meaning to the term “dinner meeting.”
Peter Vrooman, CFA®, CIMA®, CRPC®, CAIA®, and Jonathan Sarver, CPWA®, who are partners at the Kansas City, MO, based investment practice, have long considered education to be a cornerstone to the mission of Sarver Vrooman Wealth Advisors. Clients have enjoyed learning advanced topics and educational content that Vrooman has learned through his Chartered Financial Analyst® certification as well as his other specialized designations. The duo has developed multiple white papers about a variety of topics. Sarver even authored a book in 2016 called 6 Essential Practices for Income Investors, which educates readers on the basics of income investments, including annuities, bonds and stocks. Vrooman and Sarver typically also host multiple educational seminars a year that include a complimentary lunch or dinner for their attendees. With most restaurants either limiting or prohibiting in-person dining in 2020, they decided to see if they could host these events from the comfort of their own homes.
“We are lifelong learners, but we want to make sure we share what we’ve learned with our clients,” Sarver explained. “With restaurants closed, it threw a wrench into our lunch and dinner seminars, so we married the takeout concept to our educational seminars. We had a great deal of success holding virtual ‘grab and go’ lunch and dinner seminars.”
In an effort to support the community, only local restaurants were selected to cater the events. Vrooman and Sarver also worked directly with the proper channels to make sure they were meeting all state and local COVID-19 guidelines.
“Clients like to know you’re working hard and willing to go the extra mile,” Vrooman stated. “They can get a nice meal, but also learn something. We feel that even after things go back to normal, there will be a demand to do these events virtually.”
Besides hosting seminars, the advisors were also able to stay in contact with their clients by hosting regular Zoom meetings and distributing consistent newsletters, update letters and emails.
They were also proactive with providing updates and outlook calls with clients and setting up client meetings on a more frequent basis. This educational and high contact approach led to a retention rate of more than 99-percent.
“I think some clients will want to continue doing regular meetings virtually,” Vrooman said. “Having this availability actually opens us up to new clients both regionally and nationally. People are getting comfortable on Zoom and it almost doesn’t even matter where they are. They can get the same benefits.”
Since they came over to Well Fargo Advisors Financial Network in 2019, Sarver and Vrooman have been provided with technology, compliance, support and the flexibility to run the kind of company they want. A company where the client always come first.
“We made a decision that we would be able to serve our clients better by working as independent practice owners,” Sarver said. “Clients like the new dynamic and see that we place their interests first before the firm’s interests and our own.”
These interests include always keeping their clients educated on the markets and sharing any additional knowledge along the way.
Investment products and services are offered through Wells Fargo Advisors Financial Network, LLC (WFAFN). Sarver Vrooman Wealth Advisors is a separate entity from WFAFN.