College planning is a fast-growing niche within the financial services industry. Many financial professionals are beginning to see the various benefits of integrating this service into their businesses, but it is important to always keep in mind the number one goal; getting the student into college.
In this episode of Money Script Monday, Gabriel lays out an easy to follow plan for incorporating a college service center into your financial planning practice.
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This post is intended for financial professional use only.
Welcome back to another episode of Money Script Monday. My name is Gabriel Lindemann. I'll be your host today.
Today, we're going to be talking about using a College Service Center to capitalize on a new market.
What does that mean? Well, in today's industry, college planning is a fast-growing niche in our marketplace, especially in financial planning.
Why? Because anytime you talk about college planning, people that have kids are really, really interested and there's immediate deadlines within college planning.
You can't procrastinate. If somebody says they're interested, you have to move on it ASAP because of the deadlines applying for college.
There's two types of college planners in our industry.
There's a real college planner, who's only and main focus is getting the student into school.
While there's a second college planner, which I don't even want to give them the title of college planner. They're really a hack.
All they really do is sell a Modified Endowment Contract, and they think by doing it that way, that's a college plan.
It's not. It's a cry. It's bad for our industry.
If this continues to happen, I really see regulation getting involved in the college planning industry. It's our opportunity to self-manage it to do what's right.
At LifePro, we wanted to come out with a program so all our financial planners can incorporate college planning into their practice.
But more importantly, do it correctly and do it so that way, it benefits, and it safeguards the families.
College Planner Checklist
With that being said, what does a real college planner do?
The most basic function is they help prepare FAFSA reports. Second, EFC reports.
Most people that only do the funding side, they think that once you do fill out a FAFSA form and the EFC report, they're done.
Like I said, those are what we would consider hacks. They're not real college planners in the industry.
They also do school selection. You're trying to get the students in the top private schools in the country, while in paying state school prices.
This is probably one of the most important features of a real college planner.
Top school acceptance. They get the schools into their top three schools.
Many Service Centers, especially the one that we partner up with, they have over a 98% success rate that if you follow their program, they're guaranteed their students to get into one of their top three school of their selection.
Now, by picking those top three schools, they just can't go to Harvard or Yale. It has to be realistic what they can qualify for. And more importantly, based on what their needs are.
Essay prep. Very important. Too often or not, you hear these horrible stories where these great writers write an essay, where they talk about their favorite dog, their boyfriend, something that's not inspirational, on a college exam.
It's not required. They're going to prepare the students to make sure their essays are correct for the school that they want to attend.
Test prep. That's very important. You might have a student that needs more help in math versus science or English versus math. But they prepare you for the testing for that school to get you involved in.
The most important part of it, and this really separates the good college planners from the mediocre ones, is personalized counselor.
Anybody can outsource FAFSA, EFC reports. But to give them a counselor that's going to be with them from freshman, sophomore, junior, senior, that's four years of support, is tremendous.
If you think about it, what the personalized counselor is supporting what the schools would be doing if they had more resources.
I think right now if you read The LA Times or New York Times, in any public school, 300 to 500 to 1 students per counselor, they're just overworked.
They want to do their best, but they just don't have enough resources to help them. Being able to offer your students, your clients a personalized counselor that's going to be there all the way through is worth its weight in gold.
Now that we're talking about what a college planner does, let's talk about Service Center.
Now, not all Service Centers are the same. There are some good ones and there are some bad ones. Let's take a look at the latter.
You have basic things as a same program. It doesn't matter if your kid wants to go to Harvard or San Diego State or Pepperdine or Cal State LA.
The same exact program A through Z. It's not customizable. It doesn't matter if you're a Liberal Arts or an Engineering major. It's the same core program.
In these programs, they try to make it more affordable. They're looking to make it $1,000, $1,500 a session or per student.
With that being said, you're really attracting the more the lower income families because their claim to fame is, "We're going to lower your EFC."
That only works really, for families that make under $60,000 or $70,000, with 1 student.
Most of the time in our experience, those are the families that don't participate or have the resources or assets that do funding opportunities in the future.
Those Service Centers do a niche, but unfortunately, they're going after lower income families.
It's more of a sheltering assets, if there's anything, to lower the EFC, not really target marketing those families making $200,000, $300,000 a year that we want to go after the heavy assets.
Now, let's compare the difference. Now, if you have the opportunity to work with a custom that would tailor it to your student.
If your student wants to go to Pepperdine and be an engineer, or UCLA and wants to be a doctor or a lawyer, they're going to customize the program to help them get into the school of their choice.
This is key.
Also, that's going to charge a little bit more because they're targeting higher income families.
They want to target families that make $100,000, $200,000, $300,000. By doing that, you have to show our resources.
By targeting upper echelon families, they're going to have more assets. They're going to make more income, so there's funding planning opportunities in the future.
And lastly, as I talked about before, providing a personalized counselor, you're having a counselor that's going to be with your son or daughter all the way through.
They're going to say pros and cons. They're going to be honest. They're going to be giving the parents of the families full reports on the progression of what their students are doing.
Again, this is something that's going to complement what the schools, could be doing or are doing if they had more resources.
So we're not trying to badmouth the schools at all. We're trying to support them and give the students an extra edge. It's so competitive nowadays to get to school.
LifePro’s Tailored Service Center
Let's talk about our opportunity. We came up with an exclusive partnership with one of the top college planning firms in the country.
We helped them co-brand and co-create a Service Center that's only going to be offered through LifePro.
This is a once in a lifetime opportunity that your competition can't bypass or go around you.
Hands-on training. We have a exclusive hands-on training to teach you how to sell the Service Center, but more importantly, how to transition from selling the Service Center to college funding plans.
Marketing collateral. We have presentations. We have FlipBook. We have videos. We have LifePro's marketing team to support you to make you successful in this arena.
And here's something that's really unique. There's many times a financial planner that wants to incorporate college planning, they want to sell the Service Center, make some money on that, but more importantly, they don't want to be a college planner.
It's hard. It's a lot of work. They'd rather just partner up with a college planner and work on case splits.
We've selected some of the top college planners in the country in our program. These are guys that are closing 80%, 90%.
So, of 10 cases, they're closing anywhere from 8 to 9 cases out of 10. This is remarkable.
And what's really cool, if you've partnered up with them that they're going to be exclusively working with LifePro, but more importantly, that you're working on 60/40 case splits.
What means you, the producer, would get 60% for giving them a qualified lead, and that they would hit 40%.
By their close ratio, they're going to close 8 out of 9 out of every 10 possible funding opportunities. This is a no-brainer.
So if you're interested in partnering up with LifePro and using our service center to increase your business, but more importantly, offer a service that's guaranteed and proven to help kids get into the top, private schools in the country, while paying state school prices. Honestly, you're going to feel better about yourself because you're helping the family all along the way, give us a call.
Please call LifePro at (888)543-3776. Call your FSR or give me, Gabe Lindemann, a call at LifePro. Thank you. Happy selling.