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Portal Conductor, Columnist: Rebecca Hourihan

Rebecca Hourihan, AIF, PPC, is principal of 401(k) Marketing, which she founded to assist qualified experts operate a professional business with professional marketing materials and ongoing awareness campaigns. Previously she served as LPL Financial’s East Region Manager for four years, where she consulted large institutional retirement plan offices on business development, client acquisition and prudent plan governance. With more than 10 years’ experience, Rebecca has quickly become known as a recognized authority on marketing within the qualified plan industry.

Article Index

By Rebecca Hourihan 4/1/2021
Lately, do you feel like regulations are more like flipping a coin? Whether it’s salt in the wound caused by the Conflict of Interest Rule or the stop-and-go patterns of interim final rulings, the last few years Washington has our industry rubbernecking at woulda, coulda, shouldas. Each new... READ MORE
By Rebecca Hourihan 1/14/2021
Now that we’ve closed the books on 2020, we get to welcome a new beginning. To help you on your marketing journey, let’s do some business planning, so that your business is ready for success in 2021. Goal Casting When you look back at 2021, we want you to feel proud of your accomplishments. That... READ MORE
By Rebecca Hourihan 11/18/2020
Throughout our great nation, we have more than 30 million small businesses that employ over 34% of the American workforce. Those businesses equate to more than 44% of GDP—and as many campaigning politicians tout, they are the “backbone of America.”  If 93% of plans use an advisor—an all-time... READ MORE
By Rebecca Hourihan 10/21/2020
COVID-19 was either a period of intense business planning, strategy, focus and tenacity—or it was a Sleeping Beauty time warp. As the doors open once again and we emerge from this global pandemic, our industry is about to see the next generation of 401(k) leaders. For advisors, wholesalers, TPAs,... READ MORE
By Rebecca Hourihan 10/15/2020
When I first got to college, I couldn’t cook. I knew a little bit about boiling water and making a sandwich, but that’s about all. As the semesters went on, my stomach started to growl from food boredom and hunger. I knew I needed to switch up my meal plan. But, as a poor college kid, I didn’t have... READ MORE
By Rebecca Hourihan 10/8/2020
A feedback loop is a process in which the outputs of a system are circled back and used as inputs. It is a classic chicken-and-egg scenario. It doesn’t matter which came first, as they are on a continuous loop. Each action in the process sparks a reaction and then another; the process continues so... READ MORE
By Rebecca Hourihan 10/1/2020
The new work-from-home economy may have been spawned by the Coronavirus pandemic, but get used to it because WFH is not going away. Now more than ever, your online presence needs to reflect your professional reputation. By taking these five small steps, you can significantly enhance your digital... READ MORE
By Rebecca Hourihan 9/3/2020
Traditional schools of thought claim that the sales process begins when the prospect first gets introduced to a solution. Do you think that’s really true? In a highly referral-based business, one could argue that the sales process is ongoing and evergreen. Each interaction, whether a new plan... READ MORE
By Rebecca Hourihan 8/20/2020
This year has been quite the whirlwind. With each passing month, we continue to see new measures, challenges and enhancements that consistently push us farther into a new world. It is inspiring to see how resilient people and businesses are and how quickly we have learned to adapt.  We are... READ MORE
By Rebecca Hourihan 7/9/2020
  In the blink of an eye, we went from lighthearted face-to-face chats to six feet of separation, from boardroom meetings to strictly video-only conversations. For most of us, this is a new way of communicating. It can be awkward. There are delays, weird pauses, everyone talking at once, cats... READ MORE
By Rebecca Hourihan 6/18/2020
Remember the days when you would hail a taxi? Hoping desperately that their yellow light would be on and you would be their chosen passenger? Then once in the cab, you shared your address. With a nod, the driver would say, “Okay.” And off you’d go.  A captive in the back seat, you’d watch turn by... READ MORE
By Rebecca Hourihan 5/21/2020
If you’ve been waiting for a sign, this is it. Let’s trade social distancing for social media. Flatten the curve of employee education meetings to on-demand financial training. Use professional introductions to a Google search. Now is the time to strengthen your online reputation, digital presence... READ MORE
By Rebecca Hourihan 5/6/2020
In this unprecedented time, the world is in a panic. Every business is feeling the effects of COVID-19. From local coffee shops to international conglomerates, everyone is impacted. Now, it’s more important than ever to show leadership. When communicating with clients, you should reinforce that... READ MORE
By Rebecca Hourihan 4/16/2020
At some point every successful business has felt pain, whether it's not enough sales, internal team conflict, file disorganization, calendar overload or emotional fatigue—the list goes on and on. However, there are remedies you can use to alleviate the pain. One pain we hear often from advisors is... READ MORE
By Rebecca Hourihan 4/2/2020
Have you ever accidentally ignored your clients? As your retirement plan business grows, we may become guilty of focusing more attention on new client activities rather than current client needs. It happens. It’s not on purpose. Just like an ER doctor, we focus on urgency. The heart attack... READ MORE
By Rebecca Hourihan 3/26/2020
Unexpected, high-energy intrusions cause panic, fear and anxiety. They command attention and can bottleneck an entire company. The chaos is expensive and kills profit margins—because fire drills derail everyone’s day. The undue stress caused by fire drills clouds the mind, leading to suboptimal... READ MORE
By Rebecca Hourihan 3/12/2020
Fee compression continues to plague our industry. It has cheapened years of experience, thousands of research hours, and millions of face-to-face participant stories, making advisory services a retirement plan line item—at a price that’s constantly under the magnifying glass. Is there a better way... READ MORE
By Rebecca Hourihan 3/4/2020
Each year, over 625,000 new business open their doors, according to SBA estimates. From coffee shops to fintechs, it starts with a motivated entrepreneur and a big dream. In 2018, venture capital-backed financial technology companies raised a record $39.57 billion from investors, up 120% from the... READ MORE
By Rebecca Hourihan 2/25/2020
As a successful retirement plan advisor, you understand the business and how to service clients. However, from time to time there are opportunities to improve your win ratio. Here are seven ideas to help you earn more business.  1. Enhance your proposal response. As you know, most advisor RFP... READ MORE
By Rebecca Hourihan 2/13/2020
Whether your state has a mandated retirement savings program or not, don’t be fooled—they’re coming.  In California, Connecticut, Illinois, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Jersey, New York, Oregon, Vermont and Washington, employers are already subject to a state-facilitated retirement savings plan.... READ MORE