For as long as I can remember, I’ve been fascinated by the pioneering spirit that exists within leaders across all types of industries. Perhaps, this is because I, too, was bitten by the entrepreneurial bug early in life, selling insurance out of my college dorm room. I’m certain, however, even those who have little desire to be the rainmakers or the mover-and-shakers of the world are equally impressed by innovative minds. Put simply, it’s exciting to be in the presence of someone who believes to their core their product or service can change people’s lives.

As a financial advisor and a business owner, you need to exude this same kind of passion for your profession. Not only is it important for job satisfaction, but, quite frankly, the average client expects it. Want proof? Watch ten minutes of the hit TV show Shark Tank. Whether the product is a useful tool like Breathometer or a goofy concept like I Want to Draw a Cat for You, you’ll end up being wowed by these men, women, and children who are bold enough to bet on themselves. Winning over the consumers at home and the even tougher sharks, like Excell keynote Robert Herjavec, isn’t easy, but many of these entrepreneurs are successful due to their sheer ability to articulate their value.

I have no doubt you will face a few sharks this year. Instead of hearing the theme song to Jaws when these predators appear, arm yourself with the tools to easily persuade prospects and put even the most objective investors at bay. These two Shark Tank inspired strategies can help you keep your head above water.

Shark Strategy One: Prepare a Strong Pitch

If you’ve never seen the show, the very first thing the featured entrepreneurs do is deliver a powerful pitch to the panel of sharks. This initial impression has the ability to instantly attract financiers or, just as quickly, turn off investors.

While we don’t recommend going into an infomercial-like opening when meeting prospects, there is something to be learned from the contestants heart-felt enthusiasm. The next time someone asks you what you do for a living, are you prepared with an answer that immediately grabs their attention and leaves them wanting to know more?

To make a lasting positive impression, you need to polish and practice your introduction. You only have seven seconds to shape a prospect’s opinion of you, making preparation the key to achieving a warm response. Your introduction shouldn’t sound like a sales pitch. It should be a concise statement which demonstrates your unique skills and value.

Shark Strategy Two: Formulate a Plan to Overcome Objections

A good first impression can quickly fall apart for contestants on Shark Tank. Failing to produce numbers or answer important questions can mean the difference between millions of dollars and going home empty handed.

Objections are a natural part of generating new business. Sooner or later you will run into a prospect who asks tough questions and expects fine-tuned answers. This is a great opportunity for you to once again provide relevant information and supply data which proves your firm can help them reach their personal and financial goals.

Often, investors are most concerned about the cost of your services. The best approach for overcoming these objections is to focus on the relationship you offer clients. Work hard to earn a prospect’s trust by showing them you are proactive and your interests are aligned with theirs.

The next time you find yourself in dangerous waters, remain calm and collected by developing a perfect pitch and a plan to overcome objections. When you allow your passion for your profession to shine, you can make prospects lifelong clients. Remember, confidence and likability can sway any shark.

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