Seminars and Free Lunch

Similar to lead generation, free seminars and meals are essentially marketing tools that are intended to generate interest among prospective customers.

Marketing can prove valuable and informative.  Much depends on the quality of the financial advisor—a knowledgeable advisor can lead a productive session.

Try to get a sense for whether the seminar is genuinely focused on education.  For example, is the topic broad (variable annuities) or a more narrow and sales oriented (only discussing product Y from company Z).

Keep an open mind and see what you might be able to learn, but also be careful about sharing any personal information unless you already have a relationship with the advisor.