When working with clients either in-person or virtually, understanding their money mindset helps firms provide an exceptional client experience. We asked Ben Martinek, CFP®, EA, CSLP® and his team at Bona Fide Finance to share how they use DataPoints assessments to get to know prospects and clients in their financial planning practice.
Tell us about Bona Fide Finance and its approach to financial planning.
Using a goals-based approach, Bona Fide Finance delivers value to clients by creating a financial base from which they can live the life of their dreams. The team at Bona Fide Finance empowers their clients to win with money by crafting plans that trade away the hustle and bustle of the daily grind for the relaxing satisfaction of “having enough.” Currently, we serve many clients virtually and in-person in the Bismarck, ND, area. We were serving many clients virtually before Covid-19 and firmly believe in the benefits of the virtual model. We love being able to connect with our clients where and when is the most convenient for them. What separates our firm from other financial planners is our knowledge specializations in student loan debt planning (with special attention given to the tax ramifications of debt forgiveness), alternative investments including real estate (which many planners shy away from), and individuals pursuing FI.
How do you use DataPoints in your practice today?
DataPoints is useful in creating a formal data gathering process that we can make sure to hit with all of our clients. We mostly use the Building Wealth, Financial Perspectives, and Investor Profile assessments. The Building Wealth test is used as a lead capture tool, while the Investor Profile assessment is used towards the middle of our process. The Financial Perspectives assessment is used as part of our initial client data gathering stage.
How does working with DataPoints benefit your practice and clients?
The DataPoints surveys allow us to create a deeper client relationship that goes beyond just the numbers. If we are working with a married couple, we can see if their attitudes towards their finances differ significantly. Using that information is invaluable to us in creating an exceptional client experience.
What advice do you have for financial planners who want to add assessments to their practices?
Don’t just use the survey once and forget about it. We like to revisit the surveys before all of our client meetings and ask clients to take them several times over the course of our relationship. This gives us a great chance to check-in with the client and makes sure their attitudes and values haven’t changed in significant ways. Sometimes the very act of taking the survey alerts the client to shifts that they weren’t even aware of!
What insights can you share with those who want to work with a financial planner?
The Millionaire Next Door is a fantastic primer on sound financial principles applied to every individual and person. We like to joke that we are ‘boring’ financial planners. We don’t chase returns and the latest crazes. We are more than happy to help our clients achieve their goals slowly and steadily. Our focus is on helping clients create lifestyles that are in sync with their values and resources.
Learn more about Bona Fide Finance here.