South East Asia

2 months

How Financial Planners can maximise Social Media to gain raving fans and long-term clients with Eewen Keah – Transcript

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SUMMARY KEYWORDS

clients, people, financial advisor, community, financial planning, friends, money, financial, malaysia, post, group, financial advice, journey, financial literacy, manage, financial planner, dialect, comprehensive financial planning, struggles, years

SPEAKERS

Eewen Keah, Gwen Lazarito

 

Gwen Lazarito 

Hey, guys, welcome to another episode of the financial advisor, South East Asian podcast when here and today we have a financial advisor from Malaysia. And she works closely with generations Y and Z if I’m not mistaken. And she manages their wealth, of course, as a financial advisor. And she effectively utilizes social media to attract and get her message out there. So please help me welcome you in Kenya. Welcome to the show un. Hello, goons, and hello fellows audience. Right. So I’m very glad that you’re here. I mean, you were referred to me by by Kevin. So shout out to Kevin Neo for being such a great help in, you know, referring me to all the really awesome financial advisors in Malaysia so that I can pick your brains and all that. So he referred me to you, he said that he was really keen to listen to our podcast, because you have some gold nuggets to share with regards to your financial advice journey. So I wanted to start with that. So if correct me if I’m wrong, but you are in the business for about a decade now. Is that right?

 

Eewen Keah 

Not a ticket, but it’s almost six years?

 

Gwen Lazarito 

Six years, so almost six years. Oh, cool. Right. So that’s actually a quite an achievement to be in the financial advice business. Because if I know this correctly, it takes a lot of or there are a lot of processes in order to become a financial advisor in Malaysia, if I’m not mistaken, like you have to have certain credentials, right? And so can you tell us about your your origin story with regards to your journey as becoming a financial advisor? Like, how and why did you become a financial adviser?

 

Eewen Keah 

Okay, thanks, grants for introductions of my profiles. And how I started in this financial advisor since actually I started my services since 2013. When I first graduated from my university, as an insurance advisors with gray Eastern is one of the most established insurance company in Malaysia. And then after that, in three years later, I found out that I couldn’t provide a full comprehensive financial planning to my client, because I’m just a traditional title insurance agent, which is I can only provide a single financial solutions to my clients. Then I further studies I pursue my further studies in registered financial planner RFP with Malaysia Financial Planning Council, and that I got my iPad to exam and then I applied the license because in Malaysia, we need to have credentials to acquire the license so that we can carry out financial planning advisory service. So my journey is to my journey to become a financial advisor is pretty straightforward. I just jumped from an insurance background to a financial advisors to give a better service, more comprehensive financial planning to my clientele. And then how I started is that, you know, that I was when I was small, I was living in other states, not in KL, Kuala Lumpur. So yeah, so at that time, I discovered that I had not enough money. So I also don’t have the knowledge to how to manage my own finance. So my first intention to start this career is I want to learn how to manage my own finances and growth, my money at the same time, so that I can afford the things that I want. And also because I am not born in a rich family, and the only way to accumulate money or wealth is only true saving, not investment. And then you can imagine That my father works in MNC companies for more than 30 years. And the only way our family saving money is through our employee pension funds that that is so called the retirement funds in with the government. And yeah, yeah. So you see from here, we can truly tell we were losing out. So many opportunities because of lack of financial literacy. And the clothes are not learning about financial planning is expensive. So this is the reason I want to foster a healthy and positive learning about financial planning in our community, especially for the young people and

 

Gwen Lazarito 

millennials. All right. So I’m really glad that you that you brought that up, new one, because there’s actually a lot of us here in the Philippines with a similar journey as well. So it’s actually the same for me, too. The reason why I’m very interested in the financial advice industries, because I went through the same sort of journey as you did as well that our parents didn’t really have, or didn’t actually have the access to the education, the financial education that they needed, and so that they relied on heavily on the pension that was provided by the government, or they can get from the government, which isn’t enough. And, you know, it’s really nice that there’s a lot of people now, including you, that has that passion to teach other people what they know, because it’s very liberating, you know, when you realize that, oh, so I can do this with my money. And if I do this, then I can have more of the things that I want in the future. Right. So I’m glad that you’re part of that,

 

 

of the cause

 

Gwen Lazarito 

of, you know, forwarding financial education to and have for other people to have access to it. So now, fast forward a few years later, we now have like a very successful career, but in between those the six years that you that you’ve been in the industry, did you get into any kind of struggle before you reach this certain period where you’re able to help a lot of people like, was there a time that you thought? This is, like, not a very easy career for me?

 

Eewen Keah 

Yeah, sure. struggles. I think every industry has its own struggles, including the financial planning industry. So we have to wear different many hats, like including yourself, my financial planner, investment, investment advisor, psychologies, marketers, speakers, social media specialists, yeah, to market our services, so that other people can see what we are doing right now. And most of us can wear some of these had well, and they are always one or two roles that will buy most struggles for me. So like, for example, managing a trust issue is almost like a daily challenge in my career, because we have to build, to build enough trust, to be able to gather enough information from our potential clients. And because the more information we gather, of course, have to be prepared, present and implement sound financial advice that will improve their financial situation in the near future. So so so in this speech means we I actually spend a lot of time and with my clients, with my prospect to understand them, listens to their stories, and it looks like maybe one month, two months to try to get to know them well, before I actually get into financial planning topic. Because it’s actually for me, financial planning is not just about the money. It is about a life is a process, but it’s not a destination. So, so when you can do this well build enough trust with your clients. And this, this kind of relationship is built for the long term. So we are from the strange To become friends. Okay, yeah, yeah. So in this times while the times building trust, it’s actually took a longer time for me. So sometimes you have to struggle in terms of financial, especially when you first step into this business. Right. Yeah. And then yeah, and another challenge is you have to manage your clients expectations. Because yes, I agree. Yeah. Because because so many of them sees us as a financial expert financial advisors that can give them very good investment returns, things like that. So, yeah, in this, we have to give some of the education’s to the ends that you’re in by investment, sometimes you will, if you’re asking for too high returns, of course, it will come to a higher rate. So there is no like high returns with low risk or even no ways guaranteed returns. And, and that is not impossible, that is impossible to do in the financial markets. So so in this, in this managing clients expectations, we have to show our clients, how our roles can add value to them. value is that various cannot be measured somehow, but it helps in certain way, like through financial planning, you can take away your your worries about the futures, things like that,

 

Gwen Lazarito 

right. So yes, definitely. So what you’re really we’re struggling and is working to, to build your your clients relationship with you is to gain their trust, and then to manage their expectations, which is really true. So a lot of because I know that there’s there are a bit of, like misconceptions that are out there with regards to financial advice or to investments, right. So I’m glad that you mentioned that, that it’s very important. And yes, to add value. So that’s what we aim for in here, especially in in the podcast. I want to pick out the the the ways that advisors can add value by you know, asking you and other guests as well, and how you add value to your, to your clients. And I’ve, I believe that and just correct me if I’m wrong, but you use your social media. Yeah, in order to, like add value to your clients, right. Like, I’d like to think because I’ve actually checked out your your Instagram. And I’ve seen that you do have some advice with some quotes that you put in there with regards to financial, like investing and saving and all that stuff.

 

Eewen Keah 

Yeah, actually, I, I just recently got into updating my Instagram. So that’s why you can see my Instagram. So latest up this is, I think is last year or this year. So actually, I have managing a group of community of about 50 to 60,000 members, excluding those members, also including my insurance agents, unit trust agents, and also others financial intermediaries. So while managing these groups, I initially I actually I partnered with one of my friends, he is also a influencer or we saw call it youtuber also sharing about the financial planning. So I partnered with him. And then we can say, Hey, friends, why not become a community group that we share everything information in the community group, and then let’s have a chat, or have a topic to keep circulating in the community group. And then I’ll be start to invite our friends and families and friends of friends to join the group. So initially, I always like every day I post about one article or very short articles, because people don’t like long articles.

 

Gwen Lazarito 

their attention span. Yeah. So you

 

Eewen Keah 

have to design your articles. In a point from decade people can really true in two minutes or even three minutes. Yeah, that is enough. And then we have some pictures and of course those are useful in the form that you want to share up to, to the members. So this group I have managing since 2017. Until now. So you can find a lot of information in the community group and because of the group is growing too large, and then we will pick one of the we will pick them. I think it’s more quality to be my clients, sometimes our will personal personal message, that person, hey, I pledge that I am blessed that you’ll find this information interesting. Would you like to know more about that this method. So this is how I get my clients online, especially most young people are spending at times on the social media, especially the label the Instagrams. So the Instagram, the good thing is about is you can post a lot of good pictures, and the pictures, speak 1000 words, as I said, Yeah, and then start posting Instagram, and also posting my Instagram stories that leads to my Facebook story. And because of Facebook story, not people, not all your Facebook friends is able to, to, to view your Facebook story. So for those who always view your Facebook stories, right, so those are my potential clients. So I will keep track. Who is going to see my story this week. And who is who is seeing me seeing my stories everyday. So I will personally text them a I think you always see my story everyday. So how do you think that this we can we can have a sessions? okay to talk about your finance?

 

Gwen Lazarito 

Ah, that’s very interesting. Yeah. Yeah. So, so one of the way so is you get your potential or ideal clients through first on the Facebook community group that you have, and you personally send them a message. And then another way that you get potential clients is and I think that’s very interesting is that you use Facebook stories, and whoever is very, like keen to watch your stories every day. That’s who you think, like, hey, this can be a potential client, because he’s very interested in that’s really great. So that’s because you already know that they’re, they’re more likely to agree and get on board your surfaces, right? So did you get that strategy early? Did you just think about that? Or like, Did you read up on it? Or did you join like a social media class?

 

Eewen Keah 

No, I didn’t join any social media class. But I do read a few reference or articles about how to design your social media contents. So especially when you design your social media contents, or to attract people’s attention is that whenever it comes to March, or April, so in Malaysia, there is this, these two months is always a tax season. So everyone is nice to falling tax for this for the income tax. And so in this season, you can post the related content about how to file tax, or you can share the related topics. Maybe you can curate other people’s posts, and then you decide on your own.

 

Gwen Lazarito 

So, right, yeah. So so make sure that the the the your posts are very topical. Yes.

 

Eewen Keah 

Yeah. And then and then sometimes, in the end of the year, so you have to make a new year’s resolution, right? Yeah, yeah. So you see a lot of people making resolutions like, Oh, this year, I want to build my six packs. And then this year, I want to keep this year, I want to save more money. So you can this you can imagine that this kind of goes in okay. Cannot be measurable. Yeah, actually, the new year resolution is that I like for example, in this beginning of the year in January before the Chinese New Year, I posted a Facebook story. It says that year 2020 is better than your 2019. So how do I measure the, my goals and also my targets? Let’s see if that looks. So it’s actually setting a goal, I already set a goal in maybe in 2017. So I set to go, okay, every month I, in this three years, I am going to accumulate a pool of money, let’s say a 50,000 for my first house down payment. So, then I measure and I review and I monitor the progress along or three years. So is it 2019? Is it better than 201? And then is it the 2020 2020? Is Is it better than 2019? So, is my goal become Nero or not? Is my goal tracking is my progress is on the track or not? So this, we can call it how we make a new year result, which is not that every new year resolution

 

 

is the same.

 

Eewen Keah 

And I want you to look at that. And then make it measurable things to that you can see things you can really doing it you are really doing it is not that just piece of paper, and then you just read the newer resolution that is not going to work.

 

Gwen Lazarito 

And let Yes, I agree.

 

Eewen Keah 

Yeah. And that this post is actually attracts a few friends of mine lets me even How do you do? Do your news, new year resolution and those like financial plan? Because Because I do this because I follow my own financial plan. So and from that people feel curious about this a financial plan. So yeah, this is how I also attract my social medias friends to text me, my attacks them,

 

Gwen Lazarito 

alright? Well, that’s, that’s really cool. Because you actually model your own your own life, that is, your your own experiences and how you deal with your finances. This is how you follow through with your goals. And that’s how you actually advertise yourself, right? So that’s how you advertise yourself, like, Look, financial planning actually works. Because in 2017, I made this target. And now, a few years later, I’m here, I’m in this stage in my life, and it’s all because of good financial planning. And that’s how, like, it’s, it’s like, how do you call this? It’s like your own testimony that financial planning works and in building and designing the design that you have for financial planning works, and it will work for other people, because it has worked for you. So that’s really a good strategy to do. And I just wanted to so most of your your clients are from social media, right? Or do you have other sources of where you get your current clients? Actually,

 

Eewen Keah 

most of my clients from referrals, and those referrals come from friends and families. And then some of the, I think it’s about 20% of my client sauce is actually from a social media. Actually, I’m a strong ag. Actually, I’m good at making a good referrals. Because you see, every clients, you treat them as your you have to act the best interest for them. So when you view your own reputation, so your clients has know how to say, we’d like to introduce you to their friends, to their circles of friends. Yeah, because of the like,

 

Gwen Lazarito 

because of the service that you provide to them.

 

Eewen Keah 

Yes, because we have to be outstanding, outstanding ourself as a financial planner, not financial product sales people, because in America, you can see that our of our salespeople tries to marketing their product. No, this is promotions. Sign up this before this gets expires. And then you know, yeah, you know that if the things if the clients might this financial product products, it, it doesn’t help them in solving your financial problem. So what’s the point of my it is just wasting the clients time and also the money. So why not? We sit down And then we, we set goals, and then we see the overall financial situation first and then see whether any other financial product can fit into the client’s needs. So, in this kind of planning, it takes time, it takes a lot of time. In fact finding process, right? Yeah, yeah. Yeah. So this is how I do. And I also explain to my every clients, financial planning is like, You’re, you’re driving a car, or having a GPS. So you have to know where are you heading to? And then how long is the journey? What kind of drinks or food I need to prepare during the journey so that we wouldn’t know get hungry? And then

 

Gwen Lazarito 

yes, yeah, this is more get lost, or get lost.

 

Eewen Keah 

When you get lost, you have to, you have to make a U turn or make a turn or any somewhere. So that you can Yeah, right on your journey. So in this, so in this way, so you actually are wasting a lot of time? And maybe your money.

 

Gwen Lazarito 

Yeah, your sources. Yes, your gas.

 

Eewen Keah 

Yeah, so I think at least everyone should have a simple financial plans.

 

Gwen Lazarito 

That’s right. And I agree, and I love the analogy of, of financial planning, as like a GPS when you’re bound for a journey, because it’s really true. Like, if you don’t have a plan, there are a lot of things that can go wrong and will go wrong. And if you don’t have a plan, then you’re going to waste your time, your resources. And you may end up or, you know, you may end up where you’re going to go like you arrive at your destination, but it’s going to take a longer time. versus if you have a plan. So and you’re like any potential problem is accounted for. Because you can always pivot and change and adapt to any situation if you have a plan. So I really love that analogy, you and now because you said that, you know, financial planning in your relationship with your clients is a life time. is it’s like a lifetime commitment or a lifetime partnership, is that the reason why you are your ideal client is like the next generation or like the fresh graduates, young people? Or is that like a specific strategy that you’ve built for for your business? Or is that something that just happened organically because of your social media presence and the referrals that you’ve got,

 

Eewen Keah 

okay, the social media spreads and helps me a lot of insight branding, for personal branding. And then the organic way to source your clients is always from your friends, especially when I start introduce this Lister first. The first clients I ideal is my university friends. So I talked about this concept of financial planning to them share with them, hey, you can do it better, with this way, this this this this way. So why not you join me in this community or even join me and then to to build good financial planning habits. So I think it’s not about the products, I think is, I think the most every light of fresh graduates. They don’t have emergency saving for at least three months or six months. So actually, initially, I was I was organized a community. And we and I asked a few friends to die, hey, let’s say in this year in it in this half is maybe six, six months, I want to build a 10,000 emergency savings in my savings account before I start that into investments. Would you like to join me? And I Wow, yeah, because buddy is very important hero to doing everything. So you would like to get somebody on an end to, you know, do together, you will learn so as a financial advisors or financial planner, we are a body to our clients. Sometimes our clients may feel lost and they may feel like I want to, I don’t want to do this anymore. Maybe I’ll just change my goal. I think this is not the reason this is not Real Estate goes for me, blah, blah, blah. So, as a financial adviser, you have to analyze the whole situation, whether or not your client is able to do this. And without this plan, what is the plan? a? What is the plan B? So you can tell your clients a Hey, Mr. client, you actually can do this better in in this way? Why don’t you try this first?

 

Gwen Lazarito 

This actually works. All right. Yes, that’s, that’s actually really good to know. And I like the idea of, you know, setting up a community or a buddy system in order to save because you can actually transition those people to clients in the future as well, right? Because they get to see the value of planning for their future. And that’s really nice. And you have a lot of great ideas for social media. And that’s really cool. So, and I’m glad that you shared this with us even because I know that there are a lot of people, financial advisors out there that really want to do all these great things for their clients, but they don’t know, like what to do and how to get started. So what’s your advice for those people as well? Like, for example, a community like that for like a buddy system? Some people might be intimidated? Like, I don’t want to start that because I might not get any response. So what, what’s your advice for that? First, you

 

Eewen Keah 

have to find those people that is very close to you. And you will do their due to do this with you together. So first, you have the five close friends, whether it can be your your close associates, or close friends, or maybe your brothers or sisters to do it together. So when you can use it, the community always start from maybe one or two people, and then it growing, growing and become bigger so that other people can see this group is actually building a healthy and positive impact learning environment. It’s actually I started actually, a few years ago, I read a book call bought the money makeover is written by Dave Ramsey is a very famous. Yes. On the internet. Right. So I find your good is, is because it he also built a community groups that posting his clients testimony on how to get out of debt, and then follow the seven steps to do to a financial freedom phase. So I think it is a very good ideas for me to take a reference. So I build a community groups. Sometimes I do small groups, maybe you don’t want to mix a businessman with a fresh graduates in, in a community group,

 

 

because their interests are difference.

 

Gwen Lazarito 

Yeah, yeah. Well, you can attract different kind of people in the same community. And you realize that or at least they realize that they have things in common after all.

 

Eewen Keah 

I think that covering common interest is about the money, how to how to invest, how to grow your money, how to prepare your, your retirement funds in a safer way, things like that. So this, this are the commerce topics that they they want to know more about.

 

Gwen Lazarito 

And yeah, and I actually I think that’s one of like, it’s a great way to promote financial literacy as well to get a whole community on board in, you know, saving, because that’s what people usually want to do, right? Save for the things that they want. And then you can slowly ingest in the community things like emergency funds, or maybe like what you mentioned, if if you built a community centered around building an emergency fund, then they’ll start to you can start injecting things like saving long term for the retirement and then investing or sometimes what even goes first because I have I had this podcast guest and we were talking about some people want to invest first, before they even have an emergency fund, which like for financial advisors, that’s like like, no, let’s not do that. Right. That’s not a good plan. And you can in that community, you can actually inform people as well. That It’s the first step that you have to do is really secure the money that you currently have, or at least secure any holes in your finances before you start investing. So I’m really very interested in in building a community, because not only will he get prospective clients from there, he also get to get your message out there, promote financial literacy. And that’s why I’m actually very curious. He went with 50 to 60. And going to 80,000 members in your community group, like, how do you moderate these? These many people in our all of these people, Malaysians are there from from other countries as well? No,

 

Eewen Keah 

it’s only for Malaysia, especially Chinese community. Because in Malaysia, I think that that Chinese Chinese community has, how to say less exposure to financial literacy, because back then, oh, we are we used to teach to work, save, work, save money, work, save money, or Yes. Traditionally, this is how we do it. So it’s actually I think, we can see a good impact or a good influence on these Chinese community. So that’s why we the contents we built is Chinese. Rated in Chinese all can be found in English more than Chinese, actually.

 

Gwen Lazarito 

Yeah. So basically, you did it in your life, in your own dialect in your own language, so that it’s more accessible to more people. Yes, I agree, a grew because here even here in the Philippines, like one of the reasons so I actually started a YouTube channel as well. And initially, I had it Yeah, so I had it in my own dialect, too. Because I noticed that there are a lot of like, you know, videos and YouTubers that you that do financial advice, but they’re mostly in English. And there are some people who might understand and digest things better if it’s on their own language or their own dialect. And that’s why, because I don’t see like, I didn’t see anyone from my, from the island. So the Philippines is like a large archipelago, we have a lot of islands. And in my island in particular, I didn’t see any creators who did these financial advice videos in our own language here in our own island. So that’s why I started it. And it’s a really great idea because a lot of people say that, hey, I’m really glad that you’re creating this kind of content in in bisaya, which is our own dialect. Because I can show this to my father, I can show this to my grandpa, right, and there’s a lot more people that you can reach. And you actually have to start in your own community, right before you reach out to to other other people outside and or even, you know, outside of Malaysia, in Singapore, and other parts of Asia, but and that’s very, the, I think that’s one of the really good strategy to do as well as to start with your, the community because you also know, like, the, the, the mentality of of your community, right? The how they manage their money, how they approach finance, so that’s really good. And so, like it Are you the only one moderating that particular group or are there like two of you. Um,

 

Eewen Keah 

I sometimes I moderate the groups together with my few friends. Some of them actually in turn, which is hired by my friends are YouTubers and they will they will have to say they will filter the posts that is posted by other people. And then we will check on check on the comments that if the comment is not appropriate, and then we may want to go back to there and then delete the comments. Yeah. They are, for example, you know that in Malaysia, forex trading is illegal activity. So you can see that a lot of comments are, hey, this is earning money, we can produce like 10% per annum 10% per month, and then 20% per month. So, hey, contact me. So in this kind of comments, or posts, we will delete them, and then remove them from the community group so we can keep the healthy and a positive learning environment for for our members.

 

Gwen Lazarito 

Yeah, totally. I agree. And that’s very interesting to learn that. And you know that it’s it, you have to delete that. And I think it’s part of the guidelines for groups to remove any soliciting. Right, and but there are still people who who do it. So I’m glad to know, you’re not the only one for 60 going on, like, even with, I think less than 10,000. Members, it’s very hard to to moderate. So I’m glad that you have helped. Now, I am really, as you can see, or as you can hear by my questions It was really interested in in your group, because I think it’s something that a lot of financial advisors can really dive into, to create groups in their own communities and start spreading financial literacy through there. And they can actually use that as a means of acquiring clients or if not, you know, referrals as well, right from community members can refer you to their friends, if if they heard that someone is interested in, you know, financial advice, they can refer them to you, because they already know you and they already trust you. And then they’ve already seen that you really know what you’re doing. So, yeah, so that’s why that’s very interesting. And I can’t wait, maybe you’d want to plug in your group for those Malaysians that are listening to us. What’s the name of your group? And how can they join? Okay, the community,

 

Eewen Keah 

the name of the community group is called the Thai gelatin. So when you just click in and Jai and then you have to answer a few questions, and then we will review in

 

Gwen Lazarito 

All right, great. And also I, I haven’t even noticed the time until now. So we’re almost at the end of our podcast, it was such an interesting on conversation that I have with you. So before we end, I just want to, to let everyone know how can people reach you even if they want to get to know you more if they want to ask for your advice, or any of your services.

 

Eewen Keah 

Okay, it can reach me out in through my Facebook and or through my Instagrams or through my email. My name is Kr eva@va.com.ny. So if you’d like to send me an email,

 

Gwen Lazarito 

also can alright wonderful. So I’ll be sure to put all of those information in the description of this podcast. So thank you so much, you went for such a wonderful conversation. And I hope our listeners were able to get a lot of gold nuggets and ideas from you because you have such great strategy said how to acquire clients and how to earn their trust, manage their expectations and add value to everyone who is part of your community. So thank you so much and more power to you.

 

Eewen Keah 

Yeah, thank you grant for giving the chance for the sharing session. Found this. All right.

 

Gwen Lazarito 

Wonderful. You have a good one.

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