Thoughts from Top Advisors on Building a Physician Niche

Since most doctors are smart and wealthy, they are ideal candidates for a lifetime client-advisor relationship. Three prominent advisors told me how they built and grew a successful practice that catered to physicians.

On growing their practice

The physician niche is particularly difficult to market to because it is insular. Doctors spend long hours working with their colleagues and tend to socialize among themselves. In addition, the practice of medicine revolves around collaboration and providing referrals to doctors in other medical fields.

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So it’s no surprise that doctors rely upon referrals from other doctors when searching for a financial advisor. Since physician-niche practices are typically built around referrals from other physicians, the process of building one from scratch takes many years.

Mike Leonetti CFP® and CEO of Leonetti and Associates in Buffalo Grove, Illinois, built his practice around neurosurgeons. Leonetti told me that doctors rely upon their colleagues for financial advice because “physicians have very little time available and trust the judgment of respected peers.”

David Stokes CFP®, founding partner of Stokes & Hubbell Capital Management, Inc., in New Orleans, Louisiana, built his practice around a physician niche. (Full disclosure: I am also a member of Stokes & Hubbell Capital Management, Inc.) Stokes counts four core referral sources as the genus for the majority of his physician business. Stokes finds that anesthesiologists, in particular, have served as excellent referral sources because they work directly with and regularly converse with high-earning physicians (e.g.,surgeons).

In building his practice, Stokes sent every physician in the area a quarterly newsletter, The Stokes Report. In this newsletter, he wrote financial articles specifically tailored to physicians. Stokes attributed a significant portion of the success of The Stokes Report to guest articles written by physicians. According to Stokes, “Doctors rely upon their peer physicians for advice, and I found that I could capitalize upon this sentiment by having a doctor write a piece in The Stokes Report.”

Sam Ogrizovich CFP®, president of Ogrizovich Financial in Florham Park, Illinois, built his practice providing advice for smart, busy people of wealth, who know what they don’t know,”including doctors. Ogrizovich initially reached the physician niche by serving on a hospital board. This provided Ogrizovich with visibility among physicians in the community. Over time, the numbers of physicians that Ogrizovich was representing grew, and this set up networking and referral opportunities.

See full article on Thoughts from Top Advisors on Building a Physician Niche by Greg Stokes, Advisor Perspectives