YOLO Financial Services' James Millard and Mas Pourgholami discuss the underlying meaning behind their business name, 'you only live once'
For James Millard, Mas Pourgholami and their business partner Andrew Black, the chance to set up their own business was an opportunity to create "something special".
During a time after they had all moved on from non-aligned licensee Anne Street Partners, Mr Millard explains that they were trying to figure out where they could add the most value as advisers.
"This is going back now just over 12 months – we started to talk, and we were all probably doing a bit of soul searching as to where can we add the most value, and what can we do to bring our skills together," Mr Millard recalls. "It might sound a bit corny, but we were born to help people and it just so happens that we are good with money."
The trio decided to "start from scratch" and establish YOLO Financial Services – with YOLO being an acronym for 'you only live once'.
Showing their value
Mr Millard says that when picking their business name, they wanted something that would communicate the value they wanted to bring to their clients and act as a message for what they stood for as advisers. Although, initially, Mr Pourgholami says they weren't entirely sure how people would interpret it.
"We thought, hang on a sec, how are people going to view this? Are they going to see it in a positive way or a negative way?
"But we definitely saw it in a positive way and it resonates with our mindset in the positive that you only live once, [so] why not live the way you want."
Mr Pourgholami adds that their drive to help clients overcome the "financial burdens" that prevent them from living the life they want also played a factor in deciding on the name.
"Basically, if they have no financial concerns then they can go enjoy what they want to do," he says.
"That is how we came about it, and when we thought of YOLO we thought it made sense. It is us and we want to get that message out as much as possible."
Making sure they had the branding right and that the message was communicated effectively was a key factor for using the business name, and Mr Millard says something they worked very hard on.
Taking to various social media platforms, he adds that they communicated their message of advice and the value it can have in helping clients live the way they want. Twelve months on from their launch, Mr Millard says their efforts have definitely paid off.
"Now we are at the point where we know that the message works," he explains. "We know that we are in business for the right reasons and certainly that is shining through in the positive reactions we get when we talk to people about it."
With such a strong focus on helping clients live the life they want, this has allowed them to appeal to a much wider client base, according to Mr Millard.
In fact, he adds that when setting up the business and looking for clients, the trio "saw the value of niching" but focusing on specific clients was not really for them.
A big opportunity
"The opportunity in Australia for a business like us is that 80 per cent of people don't seek advice," Mr Millard says. "These are going to be people that don't know where to turn, who to turn to or don't have anyone to trust – that is a significant issue."
However, Mr Millard adds that it is precisely this lack of knowing where to turn that presents a "massive opportunity" for them here in Australia.
"You are not going to be able to help those people if you don't see the value in it. We have lots of technical skills and experience, but that's not what clients want to talk about.
"Potential clients and the people that aren't out there seeking advice, they want to see why we are in business and what they believe in," he explains. "We want to show people that they can live the life they desire, free from financial concern."
With the business now entering its second year, the founders of YOLO Financial services have their eyes on the horizon and are looking for potential avenues to grow. But while growing the business is a goal they have set themselves, the trio doesn't want to lose focus of what it is they want to do for their clients.
Mr Millard explains that their clients are definitely a driving force behind where they see the business going into the future, but don't want to build "big CBD offices" for the sake of it.
As the business grows, Mr Millard and Mr Pourgholami both explain that they will be looking for like-minded people to join themselves and Mr Black.
"That is how it all started, and when we look to grow the business we will be looking for staff that are like-minded and have those skills and qualities that we can then plug into our model."
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