Staying Top of Mind with Brigitte Gillis

Brigitte Gillis
Director, Product DFY Marketing Solutions
November 23, 2022

By leveraging the power of marketing automation and targeted content, nurturing leads and engaging current clients has never been easier.

As an advisor, what does staying top of mind mean to you?

By leveraging the power of marketing automation and targeted content, nurturing leads and engaging current clients has never been easier.

In this week’s episode, we have one of White Glove’s very own — Brigitte Gillis. Brigitte drives the growth and development of lead nurturing and client engagement programs at White Glove. These programs have been created to help financial professionals uncover more opportunities and turn prospects into clients — completely hands-free.

Listen to this week’s episode to hear Brigitte share marketing strategies to help you stay top of mind with your prospects.

Brigitte and Lara discuss:

  • The importance of strategic lead nurturing and client engagement
  • Why do prospects take specific actions and what do they respond to
  • Why she is passionate about understanding the needs and desires of her audience
  • How advisors can leverage marketing automation tools to convert leads


Get more clients with consistent communication. Don't leave money on the table – Engage with your clients →

About our Guest:

Brigitte Gillis is a member of White Glove, and she has spent her entire career focused on consumer behavior. Brigitte drives the growth and development of White Glove’s lead nurturing and client engagement programs. She’s very passionate about helping advisors turn prospects into clients completely hands-free. Brigitte’s focus is finding her target audience, why they take specific actions, and what they respond to. She is passionate about understanding the needs and desires of her target audience and she excels at delivering the best in class user experience at White Glove.

Currently, Brigitte is working to design and build relationships through educational content to help financial professionals uncover more opportunities.

Podcast Transcript

Voiceover: Welcome to the Fast Podcast. Financial Advisor Strategy Talks with Lara Galloway, SVP of Financial Education at White Glove. Lara provides advisors with an opportunity to hear from some of the best minds in the business, follow along to learn quick tips to help you grow your business from gaining new leads, to keeping current clients engaged and everything in between.

Now onto the show.  

Aric Johnson: Hello, and welcome to the Fast Podcast with your host Lara Galloway from White Glove. Lara, how are you?  

Lara Galloway: Hey Aric. I'm doing great. How are you?  

Aric Johnson: I am doing fantastic. I see that you have a guest on the show today who'd you bring on?  

Lara Galloway: I have Brigitte Gillis, and I'm so excited to have Brigitte here with me today.

Brigitte is a member of White Glove and she spent her entire career focused on consumer behavior. She is worried about who her audience is, why they take specific actions, what they respond to. She's just passionate about understanding their needs and their desires, and she wants to make sure that she [00:01:00] delivers a best in class user experience at White Glove.

Brigitte drives the growth and development of our lead nurturing and client engagement programs, and she is working to design and build relationships through educational content. These programs help financial professionals uncover more opportunities. So she's very passionate about helping her advisors turn prospects into clients completely hands free.

Aric Johnson: Wow, that, I mean, that sounds like a pretty big job, Brigitte, thank you so much for being on the show.  

Brigitte Gillis: Thank you so much for having me.

Lara Galloway: So Brigitte, I'm so excited to have you here.

Brigitte Gillis: I'm so excited to be here.

Lara Galloway: You know all about podcasting. You've helped our advisors do podcasting in the past. So can you just tell me a little bit about your role and your experience here at White Glove?

Brigitte Gillis: Sure. So I've been with White Glove for a little over two years now. I've been hyper focused on everything that advisors need to do to be a thought leader in their space. Everything from sort of after they've [00:02:00] acquired their lead, right? So how do they stay top of mind with their prospects? How do they uncover all of those hidden opportunities?

And equally as much as how do they maintain relationships with their existing clients? So, on the product team, I like to say that we have lots of balls in the air that we can never let drop. So we're focused on sales, technology, and the user experie.  

Lara Galloway: Okay. You just mentioned something really important that I think is so great because you know, everybody at White Glove, we're always focused on lead gen, right?

Getting new people in, helping our advisors get in front of their target audience. But you said something I think is so critical and I think is one of the things that I really wanted to focus on today. Keeping top of mind. So just take a step back for me a minute and just tell me why is it so important for an advisor to remain top of mind for these leads that they've met through their workshops?

Brigitte Gillis: Sure. You know, I was thinking about this a little bit on my drive into work today and I thought okay, how do I put this into a perspective? And it's like, imagine if we were a retail company, and we only focused on selling to a [00:03:00] customer the first ad that they saw and that's all we ever did, and we just hoped that we were able to close them at that moment, right?

That would seem a little bit ridiculous, right? So we have remarketing. We have paid ads, we have banded cart emails. All of those tactics are used because we know that people don't convert the first time that they see a product. Right? The same is true for a financial professional, right? We don't know when people are ready to move forward or to seek guidance.

Just because they may have attended a seminar to gain information doesn't mean the time is right or they've been fully convinced. And advisors are not mind readers. They don't know when that next time is going to come. It is inherently important to continue to drip and educate those people to show the value that they can provide because that is just money sitting potentially in their inbox or in a spreadsheet that they are doing nothing with those leads.

Because they're only focused on the people who are ready right now.  

Lara Galloway: That sounds really smart. I [00:04:00] appreciate you explaining that. I think about all of the companies that focus all their advertising on getting first time clients, right? Just like you said, and then they get them, and then where's the loyalty program?

Right? What do you do to keep those people thinking about you and to be there when they're ready to work with us? Right? So I think that's such a great point. And admittedly, you know, a lot of advisors are not marketers, they're not experts at figuring out how to stay top of mind when you say drip, I know I want to hear a little bit more.

I want to go deeper on that, and especially if you can tell me some ways to make that easy for advisors rather than them having to figure out how to run all the stuff themselves. Like any automation or anything you can suggest.  

Brigitte Gillis: For sure. I think that being in this industry, I quickly learned who is my target audience?

One, advisors do not have a lot of time and they also do not have a lot of resources. So I think that's why White Glove has been so beneficial to them with our done for you approach. And [00:05:00] not to say that advisors have to use us, but I think either having an in-house team of people who can execute the same things or hiring an agency or a business who can do take these things off their hands.

Listen, marketing moves at the speed of light, social media, all of these things are moving all the time. So unless that's their dedicated career, don't expect them to be up to date and know how to do all of these things. And that's why they need to have professionals who it is their current job.

To know how consumers behave, where are they going, what are they looking at, How can we get in front of them in the correct ways.That shouldn't be on an advisor to figure out.

Lara Galloway: So can you talk to me a little bit about the automation side of it? It's like, okay, we have the resources.

We're not asking advisors to have another career in marketing, but help me understand how this is easy, because it sounds like a lot of work if you have to just keep remarketing, that kind of stuff that you were talking about.  

Bridgitte Gilles: Yeah, so we have certainly done [00:06:00] for you approaches as I mentioned. And so we have built a marketing automated solution, which helps keep the process completely hands free for our advisors.

So everything from compliance, approvals to publication. The advisors don't have to do anything themselves, so that's huge. We work with our compliance team to integrate their approval system through our process. And so each advisor gets assigned a dedicated account.

Their person is in charge of their social media posting, their email marketing, all of their compliance approvals, any changes that might come from compliance. We handle all of that for the advisor. So really all we ask of them is to hop on a call every once in a while, check performance, give them some feedback of ways that they can be a little bit more hands on if they have the time and energy or a staff member who can support them.

But we really want to show that we can do this for you. So you can sit back and take the appointments that we're putting on your calendar.  

Lara Galloway: That's amazing. And yeah, who doesn't want to wake up and [00:07:00] see more appointments on your calendar from people that have heard you speak or had some interaction with you over time, but have now decided I'm ready to take that next step.

Exactly. Yeah. That's fantastic. So you do it all. I'm sure you've got some stories of some advisors that maybe have tried doing some of this on their own or maybe have tried different approaches. Have you seen any big mistakes and are there certain areas or certain strategies that you would tell your advisors to avoid when it comes to sort of an automated marketing campaign like this?

Brigitte Gillis: Yeah, I think what I've seen is what they buy is not always what they get. And they've been a little bit misled by how easy, per se, some competitive tools might be. But then you get into the interface and it actually requires a lot of work, right? It might seem simple to use, but the advisors get in and it's a ton of configuration and time and they have to understand who they are dripping [00:08:00] to? What is the message? How are these overlapping?  

Like that is a marketing person's identity to be able to do that. And so even if maybe they say the platform itself is easy, it doesn't mean that understanding how to execute it is. And so I've seen when we have advisors who are like, “oh, they've told me it'd be easy”, and it's certainly not right.

Or hiring different firms to do different things, and having overlapping messages perhaps, or not understanding how many times they're reaching the same audience. Is it a different message? What are they saying? And that can get really confusing for consumers. And so having one source the people who are coming in like your lead generation and the follow up really makes it a consistent tone.  

So it does seem like all the messages are coming from you, even if you're hiring a third party person to do it for you.  

Lara Galloway: That's amazing. I can imagine that sort of a Frankenstein approach of a lot of different marketing methods and platforms and providers [00:09:00] could result in some pretty experiences for the end user, for that prospect that we're trying to nurture and build that rapport and that trust with, right?  

If they're getting three messages a day versus one every three months, you know, because the marketing programs don't really overlap or aren't really overseen by one person.

That could be troublesome.

Brigitte Gillis: For sure. I see a lot of advisors who start like a monthly newsletter or a quarterly newsletter and they do it a couple of times and then it's like, well, you built sort of an expectation you didn't fall through, so what message does that send?

So consistency is also very important in your approach. If you're going to start something, be dedicated to it. I think that a lot of advisors don't see through a hundred percent.

Lara Galloway: I want to switch gears for a second and just talk a little bit about the audience and just, you know,  we're able to use marketing automation tools like our Nurture and Engage program that we're talking about here.

We're able to use tools like that [00:10:00] to reach the leads that are generated from workshops to also engage with any other clients in the advisor's database. But what about the reach that an advisor could have maybe outside of their target audience? Why would it be beneficial? For them to reach people that are maybe a little bit younger than the retirement age.

Could you just talk to that a little bit, because I know that's something you're pretty passionate about as well.  

Brigitte Gillis: Yeah, for sure. I think we see a lot of advisors who are hyper focused on the people who are ready right now to retire that they can help and that's great. But I think that there is a ton of value in people like me who are a little bit older who are getting established in their career and are starting families and going through all of those big life events who benefit a ton from financial education and guidance from a professional.

Because as we build wealth, we might be the ideal client. Right. And going back to what I mentioned previously, we don't know when people are ready so [00:11:00] having younger people in your drip, we are constantly trying to educate people on what's forthcoming, what is big and scary and kind of looming to get people to have that initial conversation with a financial professional.  

There's so many things I didn't know that I needed to consider about retirement or even just as I get older, like how my 401K options should change or about having to take required minimum distributions as I get older and like navigating social security and all of those things that I would've been like, Oh, it's fine.

I'm just going to retire and live on a beach, but like, I'm in my thirties and I'm already thinking about that stuff. I am already seeking financial guidance because I think it's super important to have that. And I think they're missing a lot of potential market by just avoiding people thinking that I don't have enough wealth, or I'm not qualified for retirement quite yet.

Lara Galloway: What I love about what you're saying too is if the advisor has been able to just drip, drip, drip on that younger audience, on those [00:12:00] prospective people, it's no heavy lifting on their part. They're just getting these automated messages that are carefully curated by the team that works with you, right?

For the advisor. These are carefully curated emails and social posts that these prospects get overtime. The younger target audience gets overtime getting it again and again and again builds that trust over time, right? And so, when I or you are ready to take action, you're not going to go to Google to try to find a financial advisor.

You're going to go to the person that's been spending that time educating you. Right?

Brigitte Gillis: A hundred percent. And like who is more likely to come into an inheritance per se, right? Not somebody probably in their sixties and seventies who's already retired, but somebody likely in their mid forties. And so if they have that established trust from someone they might have seen giving financial education.

I might know exactly who I should reach out to if the day comes that I inherit something rather than, like you said, going to Google and trying to figure it out myself or going to [00:13:00] competitor because I hadn't had a relationship formed.

Lara Galloway: Such a good point. And you know, we also know that people in their thirties and forties are still changing jobs quite a bit, and you move from one retirement plan, you move from one 401k,  you're actually freeing up money that a financial advisor could help put into a Roth or some other vehicle that could be, or a life insurance policy or something that if the advisor is speaking to this group of people, which it can be kind of hard to get this generation's attention too, right?

So if you've got those people in your audience as an advisor and you continue to drip on them, hands free, easy peasy. Not taking any effort, not taking any thought to produce this kind of really relevant content.

If you've got that over time, again, you just become that person that is a very familiar person in their inbox, to go to when needed. So I think that's such a great recommendation. I really love that. Yeah. I wanted to ask, just, [00:14:00] you know, thinking about this too, it's important when advisors spend money, when they spend marketing dollars, it's important for any business owner and any individual to measure the results of what they're getting.

So how do you talk to people about this because you're not getting something that you know turns a profit right off the bat. So how do you advise your clients that are using a nurture and engage program like White Gloves or some other platform, how do they define whether or not they're successful?

Brigitte Gillis: Yeah, I think that tends to come up a lot, right? They want to know what's my roi? What's my roi?  Long term nurturing is not something that is like a guaranteed timeline. I'm not going to say do this six months and you're guaranteed three clients, or, you know, all of that is dependent on how qualified or how good your lead book is that you're providing to me.

Or the leads that we're getting from White Glove takes time. It might be whether the market is a little bit more shaky than normal, right? People might be more amped to want to speak to a professional. But I think that [00:15:00] ultimately, What I hear advisors say is especially if they're doing events and or however they acquire their leads, they've already been bought, I highly doubt they're getting free leads.

Right? So they've spent the marketing dollars to acquire that lead. So having it sit there in an Excel document or in a CRM system doing nothing does zero for them.  So paying a little to drip on them if they get one client, it's basically paid for itself, right? Because now you're getting the value of the money you've already spent to get zero value, right?

You're already kind of in the hole if you got nothing from them. So all of the success stories we hear from advisors are,  “Oh, this person attended an event in 2015 or 2016, or I just randomly met with this person one time and they've been on my newsletter list and they're going through a divorce now, or they came into money, or, um, they got a new job”, right?

So these life events that we talk about that we can't predict when people will need the help but they kept staying on the newsletter list for a reason. They could have unsubscribed if it was irrelevant to them [00:16:00] and they're like, “Oh, I remember this guy. He sends me an email every couple months, right?”

So I'm going to reach out to him. And then they turn over these clients that otherwise probably would've just gone to a competitor had they not followed up with them. Because I don't think they would've remembered somebody from five plus years ago from one.

Lara Galloway: You know, I asked you earlier about mistakes, and I got to thinking that this is another big mistake, is to pay for leads and then do nothing with them.  

A hundred percent.  I mean what are you even doing? Right? Like you've got an opportunity and you just walk away from it.  To actually have that opportunity to turn that lead and so much of a larger percentage of your leads into clients because you just have an automated drip campaign like we offer.

I think that's very smart. I love that. This is really helpful. I think any advisor listening to this should reach out and just figure out how they can make sure that they're doing some sort of very coordinated, carefully curated [00:17:00] automated drip campaign to the people that are in their book right now.

Whether they're prospects or clients, they both need nurturing. And maybe we just take a step back too, because we've talked a lot about prospects, but talk to me about the client's side. I mean, if you've got a client. Isn't it just enough to do an annual review and, and call it good? I mean, is that dialing it in, phoning it in?

What should we be thinking of as a standard? Like how often do advisors need to be talking to their existing clients?  

Yeah I think that one annual review is certainly not enough. I think that we know advisor's time is limited and the time that they do have, they want to be hyper focused on prospects.

Which is totally understandable. That's why we are just as focused on the prospect side as the client side. Because when, like I mentioned, if the markets are shaky or people are near retirement or in retirement, those are the people who are most worried and they want to hear from the advisor.

They want the advisor [00:18:00] to be reaching out proactively to say, I know things are scary. Stay the course. We have a plan if you're worried, schedule some time. But we really want to minimize fear and minimize the amount of time they're having to deal with uncertain clients so they can focus on prospects.

But clients deserve the TLC right there, investing a lot of money, time, faith and trust in them. So we want to continue to build that relationship. It doesn't always have to be picking up the phone or doing something as personal. It can just be a simple newsletter that lets them know I'm here, I'm listening to the news, I've got my ear to the ground.

That's great advice. Thank you for that. So I always love to wrap up this section because everything we do with the FAST Podcast is helping our advisors be successful. I would love to hear from you what your definition of success is. Is there something that drives you in your personal life or your professional life? [00:19:00]  

Brigitte Gillis: Success for me is continuous learning. I've always been driven in my career to navigate to where I feel like I can learn the most and be working with leaders who I'm learning a lot from. So I think that as long as you are open-minded to learning more and absorbing what's around you, you will continue to grow and excel.

For me, success is just always learning and staying humble.

Lara Galloway: You’re talking to another learner right here. I say this a lot on these podcasts. I love learning too. Education is so amazing and there's so much you can tap into. It's really exciting and fun. So I appreciate you sharing that.

Do you have a personal mantra as well? Is there something that drives you just in your personal life and the way you see things?

Brigitte Gillis: I don't know if it's a personal mantra, but I've had bosses tell me, Oh, you know, Brigette, she always asks, Why, why, why, why? And I think that's part of learning, right?

Like, [00:20:00] why do we do this? Why do people do this? Like, understanding how things tick and so I can break it apart and see if there's a better fit. I'm not very much a, “this is how it's been, it's how it always is”, type of person. So I think there's always ways to improve, not just for the sake of change is not change.

Things move at a fast pace so staying top of mind with how industries change and user experience change and technology changes. It's important to continue to ask “why are we still doing this?” Is this correct? And if the answer is yes, that's good.

And if the answer is no, let's fix it.

Lara Galloway: I love it. I can tell our advisors are in very good hands with me. I have no worries about the future here with you in charge, so that's awesome. Well, thank you so much for being here, Brigette. It was a pleasure chatting with you on the Fast podcast.

Brigitte Gillis: Thank you so much for having me.

It's been awesome.  

Aric Johnson: This has been a fantastic podcast Brigette. I love that last piece that you said, quite honestly. Always [00:21:00] asking why. That's kind of where I'm at, you know, when I was a kid I got yelled at a lot for taking things apart because mainly I couldn't put them back together. But I always wanted to know why.

Why does this work? Why does this do this? How does it work?  I think that a lot of your clients, right, are asking how does this work? And it's so complicated. They have a team there with you guys that can help them to take some things apart, but they know how to put them back together. So that's the best part.

Lara, thank you so much for doing this. Do you have any closing thoughts or contact information if people want to reach out and learn more about all the services and everything that they heard today on the podcast?  

Lara Galloway: They're always welcome to email us at info@whiteglove.com and they can find out all about the programs that Brigette runs for our nurture and engage for prospects and clients.

Aric Johnson: That's fantastic. Brigette, thank you so much for being on the show. Of course, Lara, thank you so much for facilitating this. This has been fantastic and our last thank you always goes to the listening audience. Thank you for tuning in and listening to the Fast Podcast with Lara Galloway. If you have not subscribed to the podcast yet, please [00:22:00] click the subscribe now button below.

This way. When the podcast comes out, it'll show up directly on your listening device, and we humbly ask you to share this. Rate it and leave a review As this actually does help others find the show. Again, thanks for listening today. For everyone at White Glove, this is Aric Johnson reminding you to live your best day every day, and we'll see you next time.

Voiceover: Thank you for listening to the Fast Podcast Financial Advisor Strategy. With Lara Galloway, your go-to source designed to help you grow your business. Have questions about the topics covered during the show? Visit our website at www.whiteglove.com or email us at info@whiteglove.com. Don't forget to click the follow button to be notified when new episodes become available.

The information covered and posted represents the views and opinions of the guests and does not necessarily represent the views and opinions of White Glove. The content has been made available for informational and educational purposes. The content is not intended to be a substitute for professional investing advice.

Always seek the advice of your financial [00:23:00] advisor or other qualified financial services provider with any questions you may have regarding your investment planning.

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