1. Acquire Expertise as a Financial Planner
Financial planning is a knowledge-based business. You should preferably have a background and experience in financial planning and management. Formal training or certifications should be obtained wherever necessary. It is also a good idea to stay updated with the latest happenings in the financial markets, and be on top with very current knowledge and information. The key is that the financial planner should be able to offer real value to his clients and possess the skill and ability to achieve financial success for his clients.
2. Obtain a License and Local Authority Approvals
Determine if you need any local government permissions to operate a financial planning company in your region. Fulfil all legal obligations before starting the business. License may be required if you plan to offer specific financial services such as advice on insurance and mutual fund investments. Complete these formalities before going ahead with offering your services to customers.
3. Make a Business Plan and Budget for First Year
Estimate your start-up costs and prepare an expected sales, revenues and expenses budget for the first year of business operation. This budget should be a part of your detailed business plan that should cover various aspects of the business. It should also include your expected sources of finance from where you plan to raise funds for the initial investments in furniture, equipment, training and licenses.
4. Determine the List of Financial Planning Services
Financial planning is a vast field. You should identify the core areas where you will be offering your services to potential clients. Stick to the areas where you possess expert knowledge and experience. At the same time, consider areas where there is a latent need for financial planning in the market where you plan to operate your business.
5. Make Necessary Affiliations and Partnerships
Once your financial planning business is set to be launched, initiate the process of affiliating with various financial agencies, lenders, insurers, investment bankers and others whom you may need during the course of your business. Create a business network so that you do not operate in isolation of the financial market. Hire key employees or make partnerships where necessary to complement your financial expertise.
6. Devise an Advertising and Marketing Strategy
Even if you are a financial planning wizard, you still need to inform people of your existence. In a crowded marketplace, it is not possible to achieve success without an effective sales and marketing strategy. Distinguish yourself from your competitors in terms of your business presentation and service offerings. Consider innovative Internet-based advertising and SEO marketing for cost effective results. Price your services carefully, and do not be out of sync with the prevailing price conditions in the financial planning services market.