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Stop Making Meaningless Client Calls

by Bill Cates

PLEASE make sure you and your team members don’t make calls like the one I just received.

(Yes – This is almost verbatim for how the call went down. And I was very polite!)

Bank Rep: Hello, Mr. Cates. This is Angie calling from M&T Bank in Clarksville, MD. I’m calling to let you know that I’m your representative here in the Clarksville Branch. I see from our recent email exchange that you’ve moved to Annapolis and are using the M&T Branch there. Is there anything I can do for you here in Clarksville?

Bill: No thanks. I live in Annapolis.

Bank Rep: I can set up an appointment with the branch in Annapolis. Everyone should meet with their banker from time to time.

Bill: No thanks. I’m all set. I have no need to meet with a banker at this time.

Bank Rep: Okay. Is there anything else I can do for you at this time?

Bill: No thanks. I’m all set. Thanks for calling.

This is not the rep’s fault. This is bad training based on a bad strategy.

Someone probably said something like this to this young person, “We need to be in touch with our customers. Call all of our customers to see if there’s anything we can do for them.”

Staying in touch is a great strategy, but only if there’s purpose and direction.

This is bad training for two reasons:

  1. She didn’t know a lick about me other than I was no longer in her territory (but decided to call me anyway).
  2. She wasn’t given any questions to ask that might elicit some response from me – other than, “I’m all set.”

    What if she was given a checklist of, “The 7 ways customers underutilize their bank,” OR “The 7 financial considerations you should make at least once per year”?

    Something! Anything that might teach me something, or get me thinking a little deeper about my financial situation. Anything that wouldn’t make me regret answering the call.

    She could have asked about any loans I might have and what interest I was paying – to see if her bank could do better. Anything!!!

“Checking in” for the sake of “checking in” is a waste of time – for everyone involved.

On the other hand, calling clients to see how you can add more value – educate and illuminate – might lead to more business opportunities. At the very least, you’d leave them feeling better about you – not worse.

Have a purpose. Think about adding real value. Know who you’re calling.

And don’t forget ALL our resources – many of them free – are waiting for you at

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