CRMs and Salesforce

In this episode of the podcast we talk about the good practices and not so good practices you may be using with your CRM, whether it is Salesforce, Wealthbox, RedTail or Junxure.

Oliver Sholder is a Salesforce consultant and founder of Everpeak Partners.  He joins the show to share a few unique stories and apps that will help your business run more efficiently. There are many ways to upgrade your CRM to fit your needs with the apps or integrations. Having a well set up CRM gives you the best reporting and puts you in a strong position to improve your business.

If that whole cohesive process isn’t in place, then the reporting won’t be there and that’s both being able to see the raw data in a report format, as well as getting into the Salesforce terminology would be in a dashboard view, which would be those pie charts, bar graphs, scatter plots, et cetera, those won’t line up.

Reporting can be hard to interpret. It’s easy to read the graphs wrong and then make the wrong improvement decisions.  Having your tracking setup incorrectly can lead to false conclusions and poor decisions.

If you’re wondering why you’re business isn’t growing fast enough reach out to us (or someone you trust) for a Digital Marketing Analysis or a Get-to-know-you call.

Making it so that all of a sudden you have some spike in graph that’s actually just an improper setup rather than actually something significant for you to look at.

Oliver has found a lot of his clients have unorganized data.

This is a huge issue when it comes to reporting. If your data is accurate then you’re more likely to improve the right things and keep what’s working in place. It’s a challenging task, especially if you know you could be more organized. It’s kind of like bookkeeping. You know you need to do it, but it can a painful experience you (or your clients) would rather avoid. That’s why companies like Everpeak and the 4FP Agency exist. We want you to be able to focus on what you do best (Providing fee-only fiduciary financial advice to your clients).

Each one of those things can have a little bit of consistency in the principles that we’re bringing to this conversation are [that] there [are benefits to] having your data be clean, making it so that you don’t double up on an automation of some sort.

Doubling up on automations can make a spike in the graph that catches your eye but is actually UN-useful information. Even if you’re a well-established company it’s important to periodically go through your automations and fine tune to suit your needs better. 2020 is an excellent example of needing to do this. Most companies are needing to adapt to these new and more digital times.

Are you in the habit of meeting with clients quarterly or at least annually? These days there are platforms like Touchstone Pathway to help you stay on the same page with your clients throughout the whole year without having to be in hour long meetings all day every day.

Salesforce can basically be a data warehouse and it has tons of functionality related to sales and marketing and client success on there, but it’s a pretty advanced database and it has what’s called an open API.

An open API lets you customize your data, but if you don’t know what you’re doing (but think you do) you can make a big unorganized mess. Make sure to consult someone you trust that knows about how to make your data clean and organized.

It really comes down to mapping your process.

We talk about balancing automation and personal touch strategies to keep your business running smoothly without compromising the human experience people want. There are apps like Handwrytten and Sendoutcards that let you send handwritten appreciative cards to your clients. There are also ways to add a notification email in your automations, so you know when to call someone. You want to get on the phone with your prospect if you want to close them as a client. Listen to their needs and recommend services briefly you think they could use.

There are certain, when you know, well, especially in our world, what sort of assets there are to be managed with the client, then maybe it’s like, okay, that needs to go this family, this group, we’re probably going to earn two and a half thousand dollars from this family.

Segmenting is a useful strategy to make sure you’re not sending emails to people who already bought a certain service from you or you know won’t be interested in your offer. It takes time and paying forward value to your audience to build these lists. Our suggestion is to build your main list and use both automation and an expert (or plenty of time) to research your contacts and their tags. This can be a full-time job of upkeep.

Tagging is a tool we’re most familiar with from the High Level platform. It allows you to put contacts through automations based on what they have said, what parts of your site they have visited, what they liked or what they’ve already done.  Insights from tagging help us identify where prospects are in a client’s customer journey and creates insight about what step they need next. For example, you can add the tag “indoctrinating” to a contact at the start of an automation and at the end of it add an action to add the tag “indoctrinated” so they don’t get the same email sequence again.  Your firm’s ability to segment is often limited by the email marketing platform you choose to use and they each provide different tools at different price points.

Many of these updates get pushed out automatically and then they don’t get configured right; or they just ignore it.

It’s important to stay up to date with platform updates in order to keep things running smoothly. If you are having a hard time finding time for it, delegate.

One last thing…

First I’d like to say folks that I think that if you’re trying to look for a carte blanche stamp of approval to make sure that you’re probably getting something that’s compliant, I like to use things they are HIPAA compliant because doctor compliance is more stringent than FINRA compliance, not by a ton, but a bit.

Make sure the CRM you use is compliant as a Financial Planner. It’s better to be able to keep your clients and prospects information safe at all times. Do your research and ask plenty of questions when deciding on which CRM or file sync and backup to use.

We talk about our project management methodology, which is called Agile, and one of the tenets of that methodology is that we’re collaborative with our clients and that we are constantly adapting and evolving as we test things and get feedback and get new requirements.

If you’re on the Salesforce platform and are struggling to organize your data reach out to Oliver (founder of Everpeak Partners) on LinkedIn.

Transcript of the Cast


Welcome to Digital Marketing for Financial Planners, the podcast where you learn which digital marketing strategies are working best for advisors. We interview financial planners who share what is working or not for their practice. Here is your host, Jake Wagner.

Jake Wagner:

Hello, and welcome to the Digital Marketing For FP podcast. This is your host, Jake Wagner, and on today’s show, we have Oliver Sholder. Oliver’s the founder and CEO of Everpeak Partners, an award winning Salesforce consulting firm based in Portland, Oregon. Over the last seven years, Oliver has helped more than 200 businesses to streamline their sales, marketing, and customer success processes on the cloud using the Salesforce CRM. This team’s projects often involve system development, process consulting, systems integration, and use training. Oliver, welcome to the show. How are you doing today?

Oliver Sholder:

I’m doing well.

Jake Wagner:

Yeah, really glad to have you. Think you’ve got some great stuff to share with our audience and just to jump right into it, I’d love for you to just start to tell us what inspired you to start this consulting practice?

Oliver Sholder:

Well, I’ve always kind of been an entrepreneur at heart. When I was a kid, I would take care of neighbor’s pets and that turned into a little side business. And then in high school and college, I ran a photography business, so I was shooting weddings and portraits and actually making decent money. I had a website, did marketing online, email marketing, social media, and ran that business for a few years until it sort of faded off when I got more into the CRM and Salesforce consulting world, which kind of leads to my career in the Salesforce consulting field, which I had worked at a couple of different firms and I saw one grow from just a couple employees to about 20 employees while I was there. And it was really inspiring to see what they did. And I worked for four different consulting firms, all doing Salesforce implementation and optimization and after having worked in the field for a number of years, I wanted to start my own firm and the timing just worked out. And so I started Everpeak Partners and it’s been really a joy and a lot of exciting things have gone on since starting the company and I really have no regrets about it.

Jake Wagner:

So how long has Everpeak Partners been around now?

Oliver Sholder:

You know, for me it feels like a long time, but we’ve been around for roughly, I think two years and nine or 10 months, so not even at the three year mark yet.

Jake Wagner:

And it also sounds like you’re starting to get into a solid seven figure business as well. And so congrats to you and you must be providing really great service to the folks who hire you.

Oliver Sholder:

Thank you. Well, we kind of threw out the rule book and we really just focus on how do we create value? And we feel like if we lead with that question and we help our clients, that the other things like generating revenue for the business will follow.

Jake Wagner:

So what actually happens in a Salesforce optimization? I’ve used the platform a little bit, enough to feel like I have some fluency with it, but it just kind of makes me wonder a little bit about just the nuance and what it is that you get in there and help people with.

Oliver Sholder:


So Salesforce, which is the most widely used CRM, there’s lots of other smaller names out there, but with Salesforce, a lot of companies get it, but the implementation is not really well thought through, or sometimes they have a good implementation, but over the years with people joining the company, people leaving and just all the things that go on as a business evolves, the platform does not keep up with the current business needs.

So they might have old automation that isn’t really aligned with their process. They might have users that are not using all the features or are using the system, not the way it’s intended. Data gets out of date quickly.

And sometimes you have people who are just going ahead and creating new fields, but there might have been a field that was already used to capture the same thing and so over time, it just can get unwieldy.

Jake Wagner:

And it’s probably really bad for reporting purposes for the C level team as well, right?

Oliver Sholder:

Yeah. Yeah. I mean, a lot of the system really is the precursor to the reporting, so your data quality, your field structure, sometimes automation that would auto fill fields as well. If that whole cohesive process isn’t in place, then the reporting won’t be there and that’s both being able to see the raw data in a report format, as well as getting into the Salesforce terminology would be in a dashboard view, which would be those pie charts, bar graphs, scatter plots, et cetera, those won’t line up. And so that’s the reporting is the end result of a good system.

Jake Wagner:

Well, and you can’t project into the future and make an effective plan if you don’t have accurate current data from which to actually be able to make some projections and some conclusions in some accurate assessments about next step. So it’s really mission critical.

There’s the Salesforce CRM for our audience. There’s Wealthbox, there’s Redtail, there’s Juncture, there’s a couple others and Salesforce is one of the big players in this space for sure. But also there’s definitely a lot of consistency in one part of why I wanted to have you come on the show is that it doesn’t matter whether it’s Salesforce, Wealthbox or I’ll set up the High Level platform as a marketing CRM for clients.

Each one of those things can have a little bit of consistency in the principles that we’re bringing to this conversation are there having your data be clean, making it so that you don’t double up on an automation of some sort.

Making it so that all of a sudden you have some spike in graph that’s actually just improper setup rather than actually something significant for you to look at.

And so just to talk about that, what are a couple of automations that you tend to set up for an RIA?

Oliver Sholder:

Gosh, there’s so much that we do, but one of the things that comes to mind that is a kind of a game changer from a time saving standpoint and this isn’t really, well, actually automation is a very broad term, so it very much falls into that category is being able to auto-generate documents.

And I was actually chatting with one of our consultants and for those who aren’t familiar with Everpeak, we’re a team of eight, so I do a lot of sales and management activities and I’m certified in Salesforce. I was a consultant for a long time and I still do a lot of technical scoping, but today I don’t run most of our projects, even though I’m involved.

So a little bit of context there, but I was talking to one of our consultants, Ryan, who has worked with several financial advisory RIA firms and I said, “Hey,” and this was sort of some prep work for this podcast. And I said, “Hey, what is one area where we can use automation to make a big difference?” And he brought up how one of the firms he works with, and this is sort of across the board with almost any wealth advisory firm is that they have quarterly meetings with clients, or sometimes it’s an annual meeting with clients.

And there’s a specific information that the advisors want to have prepared before they have that meeting. And there can be a lot of different things going on in Salesforce and they might want to just be able to print out a sheet of paper that has all the key information that they would need to be prepared for that meeting.

 And so one of the automations that we’ve done for a client is basically allowing them to click a button and it will suck all the data out from Salesforce, from the fields that house that data and basically pull it into a Microsoft Word document that they can either print out or make their own notes on and that has saved a lot of prep work of going and compiling and pulling the data from different sources. So that’s a big time saver.

Jake Wagner:

And Oliver, on that, are you pulling in information from their financial planning software like eMoney or MoneyGuidePro?

Oliver Sholder:


So Salesforce can basically be a data warehouse and it has tons of functionality related to sales and marketing and client success on there, but it’s a pretty advanced database and it has what’s called an open API.

And for those who are not in the super techie fields or software development, that basically means that as long as the other system has an open API, you can push and pull data between the two systems.

So Salesforce can get pushed data from these other systems and become your central repository and then that actually makes these automations with the document generation even more powerful because it’s basically a click of a button and you’ve got everything versus trying to log into multiple sites and pull that information from different sources and copy and paste.

It’s hugely inefficient with time and especially with something as common as meeting with your client, which is an ongoing and repeated activity, cutting down on that prep work makes a big difference.

Jake Wagner:

Absolutely. We’re all equally rich with 108 (actually 1008) minutes in every week and I want to sleep for some of that, so it’s how we find the right efficiency for it.

I used to say 168 hours every week, but I also really like when you multiply that out, it’s basically a thousand minutes per week and we have to figure out how to use that as efficiently as possible.

One of the things you really bring to the game and one of the things I really like about the automation work that our agency provides as well.

So my next question for you is how can business automation be combined with the sales process? How does that work?

Oliver Sholder:

Well, with Salesforce, and I’ve worked with a lot of different CRMs, so I don’t get any, like if one of our clients gets on Salesforce, we don’t get a dime.

We don’t get a referral commission or anything like that. So I don’t have skin in the game to say this CRM or that CRM. We exclusively work with Salesforce though. And what I’ll say is generally, applies regardless of what CRM, but I kind of come at it from the Salesforce angle, the sales and marketing automation, it really comes down to mapping your process.

And generally when you get a new lead, you would want to follow up with that lead and depending on where they are in the process, whether there’s basically an education process about who you are as a firm and what your value proposition is.

And as you work through that, if there’s ever a point where they say, “Hey, we want to put this on pause,” having a nurture campaign that you can put them on and having some clear stages, a lot of our clients will do for their leads, they’ll have something like new, working, nurturing, or qualified. And if they get put into that nurturing stage, then they get some automation.

Another one, because especially when you’re working with perspective clients that have a high value is not like you’re selling them a $20 toy.

Your services could be worth thousands or tens of thousands or more than that every year and so being able to trigger tasks for whoever is the relationship manager that is working with that person to have follow up, whether that’s emails, whether handwritten emails, I’m not talking about automating an email, or a reminder to do a call.

Another really cool sales tool that we use and this is an application for Salesforce is called Handwrytten and it literally allows you with the click of a button to send a physical card in the mail to your prospect and they actually have literally a pen that is on a robotic hand that hand writes the card and Jake and I are on video chat and I wish I could show this to the audience because I actually have examples of this in my [screen].

Jake Wagner:

How about this? We’ll include a couple, an example or two in the blog post we put up about this podcast. So folks, if you’re listening to this on Stitch or iTunes, go to, the number four and this will be listed under blogs and casts and we’ll try to have a link to all of this in the show notes for you as well.

Oliver Sholder:

Yeah. Anyway, I mentioned that because we try to be the neutral party and we have our own expertise about what solutions will benefit our clients. And I found out about this app probably six months ago and the clients I’ve recommended it to absolutely love it and it’s basically like a native Salesforce app and actually you don’t need Salesforce for it. But anyway, that’s another example of automation with the process, sales process.

Jake Wagner:

A comparable one that I’ve liked I learned about from the executive director from the Minnesota chapter of the FPA and is another service that’s comparable to that.

I don’t know what either of these services charge. Send Out Cards uses a subscription service, but there’s nothing quite like that personal touch.

And just to recap, make sure that I’m understanding what you’re sharing with us correctly, a part of what you’re talking about is a combination of within the Salesforce or really any automation marketing platform that we’re sending a combination of, it might be automated emails from that system.

We can also have it so that people who are employees and users of the system receive reminders, whether it’s on their calendar, as an email or whatever different systems do it in different ways, but to actually reach out to a contact.

And so with that, you can establish this sort of multitouch approach to reach out to a prospect where [to] send them, they come in and they download a lead magnet, something that we set up for you and goes into your High Level platform. They get some emails from that. And then a week after they’re done with that automation, then one of your [managers] gets a email saying, “Hey, call this person. Just check in with them and see how it’s going.” And so that way they’re getting it is sort of an automated experience, but we’re still including the human element and we’re really embracing the human element through the whole automation process. Does that sound about right?

Oliver Sholder:

Yeah. Yeah. I’ve seen clients get carried away where they get really excited about trying to automate away their whole job and there’s a balance.

Some companies do everything by hand. They don’t have any automation and there’s a lot of efficiency and kind of low hanging fruit that’s being left on the table, but you also don’t want to go too extreme on the other end and that’s why I mentioned, sure, you could trigger a canned email that could go out.

You could even merge in their company name and name and industry, whatever data points that are in the system and you can do some cool stuff with that. But identifying when it’s appropriate to not automate the activity to occur and actually there’s even automation these days where you can trigger a voicemail to be left as well. But really being like, “Hey, this is our high value touch area in our sales process,” or if it’s above a certain threshold and this is when we want to create a task for a person to do the work and that’s still automation too.

Jake Wagner:

Well, and what I just heard from you, it’s a little bit of a segmenting of your prospect situation as well, right?

There are certain, when you know, well, especially in our world, what sort of assets there are to be managed with the client, then maybe it’s like, okay, that needs to go this family, this group, we’re probably going to earn two and a half thousand dollars from this family.

And so they go into this one pipeline and then this other family or other individual, maybe they’re a five million dollar prospect, we’re like, oh, that could be $50,000 a year. And so at that point, we push them, you push your clients into a higher quote, a higher tech, higher touch automation sequence. So that that way, that higher quality prospect is receiving a different experience in that prospect process than someone who isn’t likely to bring in the same revenue and need the same support from the firm. Sound about right?

Oliver Sholder:


Jake Wagner:

Cool. Well, one thing I definitely want to know a little bit more from you and I’m guessing my audience wants to know too, is what are some of the most common mistakes that you see companies make when using automation in their CRMs and Salesforce specifically, obviously?

Oliver Sholder:

Definitely. I think just talking about common mistakes in general. So Salesforce had what they call a one in 20 year change, where they went on Salesforce Lightning, and a lot of companies have not adopted that. And they do three updates per year.

They’ve put out improvements. And a lot of these companies, some of these automatically get pushed on and then they don’t get configured right or they just ignore it. And whatever software tool you use, there’s a lot of updates that are coming out and so just being aware of that, tying into sort of common mistakes and automation, it comes down to data quality.

And literally, it’s about an hour and a half ago, I was on a call with a client and they’ve been on Salesforce for 12 years, which is a pretty long time. And they have enormous data issues. They have 340,000 records that are in their system and most of it is junk and so having a process for segmenting away and not having the records clutter up the data that you need when they are unqualified or not a fit.

And also, sometimes people will just import tons of big lists and I’ve seen this where individual account executive relationship manager type roles, folks in sales will just import their big lists into the system and there’s no process behind it about how that gets segmented. And then, it just muddles everything up. So if I had to say the number one issue I see with our clients, it’s messy data.

Jake Wagner:

Yeah. Well, and it’s sometimes that even I’m hearing one part where the software is improving on regular intervals.

This is a part of what we wouldn’t do with software, whether it’s making it more usable or fixing security issues, but sometimes when those new features come in, a firm won’t adequately implement them, might implementing incorrectly and then on sort of the flip side of it is that if folks go and bring in a whole bunch of data arbitrarily with no thought about how it is that they’re modeling their data, how they want it to work for them, that what they might functionally end up with is a whole bunch of junk, right?

I mean, that sounded like that was a hundred something thousand records of basically this just really isn’t usable for the firm, and so what it’s definitely doing is costing time and money as employees have to go and spend more time to look for the things that they’re actually trying to find. Does that sound right?

Oliver Sholder:

Yeah. Yeah. And I mean, it’s messy from a data standpoint and then also the fields, so you’ve got with any system, you basically have databases.

It’s a relational database, so you have the database then connections to other databases like companies and accounts and leads and then within those databases, you have records.

Within the records, you have fields and those fields are on a page. You can also have some real clutter with the fields that are on the page, so having buttons that don’t really do something that you need, having fields that maybe some fields that you commonly use are towards the bottom of the page.

And it’s just if you’ve been on a CRM for a while, where you can create custom fields, unless you have someone who’s been managing this system consistently and is very diligent, there’s a good chance that there’s some clutter and finding what you need takes longer. And that’s both on data level as well as on the organization within each record level.

Jake Wagner:

So tell me, what are some of the worst clients, some of the worst versions of all of this madness that you’ve seen so far?

Oliver Sholder:

I don’t think that when I think of a worst client, if they have a really messy system for us, that means more opportunity to improve their business.

So I don’t usually think of that as the worst, but I mean, the client that I was working with earlier today that’s been on Salesforce for 12 years, they’re actually phenomenal to work with, really savvy. They’re a SaaS company out of San Francisco, but their system is a mess and it’s just too many cooks in the kitchen, lots of different people who built things in the system and then they don’t connect. And there’s all kinds of things that were duplicated, not to mention duplicate records, duplicate fields that are really trying to do the same thing.

Jake Wagner:

Or even duplicate processes, it sounds like, is that right?

Oliver Sholder:

Yeah. Yeah. I mean, all kinds of things, but those are actually fun clients to work with because there’s a lot of low hanging fruit. When I think of the clients who aren’t invested in improving their business and don’t take these projects seriously, those are the ones that are hard to work with. And it’s a two way street.

Whenever we kick off a new project, we have a slide deck and there’s all kinds of logistics that we cover, but we talk about our project management methodology, which is called Agile, and one of the tenets of that methodology is that we’re collaborative with our clients and that we are constantly adapting and evolving as we test things and get feedback and get new requirements.

And so if you are looking to make improvements to your CRM, regardless of who you work with or what system you’re on, really giving your consultant good feedback, or if you hire someone internally as a CRM administrator as well, being very collaborative and making sure that you have some project management in place that you can track open tasks, sometimes putting deadlines for certain things as well, tracking who’s responsible and really being on top of it because sometimes clients think that they can hire us and we ask a bunch of questions, lock ourselves away for a couple of weeks, come back and the system’s fixed. That’s not how it works.

It’s a very in depth process that requires feedback basically at every step of the way. We don’t just build a whole bunch of things without getting feedback. So I think when it comes to challenging clients is not being on top of the feedback that we need both from initial requirements and concepts for the system, as well as feedback on what we build out.

Jake Wagner:

Yeah. Same over here. And in one of the things that really comes up for us as we’re working with clients on a similar level is especially working with each of you unique and wonderful RIAs out there and all of the wonderful, different ways that you share your opinions, that copywriting, whether it’s a webpage or an email, or even designing a lead magnet, there’s a lot that our team can take care of for a client, but at the end of the day, your voice is your voice. And so having you be invested and involved and we bring copywriters in for clients, stuff like that, but it needs to resonate with how you’re trying to put your heart out there.

And one of the major themes of this conversation is we can automate quite a bit and we can get some good patterns and strategies set up with that automation, but at the end of the day, it all really comes back to you and making sure that all of this stuff is just trying to show off you, your brand and your way of thinking and doing to your prospects, to your clients, to the social, to the digital world out there. And so it really is about the synergy in combination.

And we can go and do a lot of amazing work for folks, but it really helps to have a cooperative client so that we can get the job done the way that you want us to get it done. And, yeah. Thank you very much for all you folks who’ve done that with either my firm or Oliver’s.

Oliver, my next question for you is what is an RIA looking for when they hire Everpeak? I’ve been able to introduce a number of firms to you and you’ve worked with a number of other firms here locally in Portland and so what are some of the reasons why they are coming to you and writing you some checks?

Oliver Sholder:

Well, I’ve heard this variation of this term many times, which is it feels like it takes too many clicks to do something simple. And by the way, if that resonates with you and you’re on Salesforce, maybe we should chat. But there’s a lot of processes where people are bouncing between a couple of different pages and we can create a formula field to pull a field from a different area so that you don’t have to jump between and I’m not making this a technical conversation for developers and that’s kind of what we do behind the scenes is we try to be good listeners and then create the solutions and present them. But really streamlining their processes, saving them time. That’s a big focus for us.

A lot of the things that we do, we’ve kind of touched on. Data hygiene practices and not just fixing your data retroactively but creating a process that keeps your data clean in the long term.

So for example, if you get to a certain stage in the process or before you go from a qualified lead to a customer before that process is complete, maybe you have six fields that become required when you hit that stage, but they’re not required from the start. And so really creating that process that guides the users through what they need to do and makes it easy.

I would also say, and this is something that we didn’t really touch on is integrating with third party systems. And this could be a marketing automation system, this could be an accounting system like QuickBooks or Sage or NetSuite. I mean, there are so many third, it could be an HR system. There’s just literally thousands of systems that can be integrated with Salesforce and then getting that data in your system so that you’re not logging into another system to get that.

Jake Wagner:

And having it look right too, right? I mean, as in presentable data, usable data.

Oliver Sholder:

Yeah. I mean, it’s kind of an art and a science of getting that data in and formatting it the right way, but it’s something that can help create a bigger picture. And this is kind of a good segue into the next one with creating that bigger picture.

And we talked about it, but reporting, getting what are the KPIs for our business that can help us make decisions about hiring, about if we’re behind on our goal for new clients or revenue or number of leads, or maybe even different marketing activities or investments like going to a trade show or an event or a speaking engagement, and being able to track that lead source and saying, “Hey, we go to this one event. This is very fruitful. It gives us a lot of leads. We put even more money into this other event, and it’s not giving us as many leads or not the quality of leads that we got from the other.”

So getting the big picture of where the business is and how you can actually pivot and make decisions from that data, because it’s not about looking at a bunch of pretty charts. It’s about being able to take action based off of the data that you see.

And the great thing too about these systems is they’re always up to date. It’s not like back in the day where you got to wait for the system to update or push out, you get data that’s up to the second.

Jake Wagner:

Well, and we really see that with some of the financial planning software out there. I think Tamarac is a good example where they used to have a desktop version and they’ve been phasing it out for a while. I know a lot of folks out there still use it and have reasons why they love it, but you’re also seeing the SaaS version, the online version, be what they’re putting out there for folks more readily, because it’s so much easier for them as a company to manage it, make sure everything is up to date, make sure that there’s good backups of everything, just a whole lot of safety and security stuff starts to happen once you use these central repositories.

And on that, surprise question for you, how safe is Salesforce when it comes to protecting your data?

Oliver Sholder:

It’s got enterprise grade security.

So there are Fortune 500 banks, major hospitals, government that house some of the most sensitive data. It’s HIPAA compliant. There are all kinds of other standards for data compliance. In fact, I think it’s like They have a whole big thing about it.

I mean, most Fortune 500s use Salesforce in some way, as well as tons of small businesses, but they basically hit all the standards that really any business would need to house data going down to the level of where the physical server is and what country that server is in and that meets certain requirements.

Jake Wagner:


I mean, I know when it comes to Canadian financial planning and compliance, they literally can’t have a bit, a kilobyte of data hit US soil, that that’s actually a compliance issue for them.

So is Salesforce HIPAA compliant? Well, actually first I’d like to say folks that I think that if you’re trying to look for a carte blanche stamp of approval to make sure that you’re probably getting something that’s compliant, I like to use things they are HIPAA compliant because doctor compliance is more stringent than FINRA compliance, not by a ton, but a bit. And that you see that out there, that you can see that there’s a system like Salesforce, or even Google Drive, and I know with Google Drive, to be compliant within Google Drive, you need to be taking the extra step with Google and applying for HIPAA compliance.

Do you have to take steps like that within the Salesforce world too?

Oliver Sholder:

No. No. There’s some lower editions of Salesforce that most businesses are not on that aren’t compliant, but it just comes with the platform.

Jake Wagner:

Okay. So make sure you’re getting a good enough version is really what folks need to be keeping an eye out for.

And if they have any questions about that, please reach out to Oliver and on that folks, just so you know, Oliver and Everpeak Partners are an official partner with the Digital Marketing For FP agency.

And so what we’re going to do is on the blog post, there’s actually going to be a way for you to get in contact with Oliver directly, so that way you can get some help for your agency or so that you can get some help for your RIA if that’s what you need right now.

Jake Wagner:

And Oliver, what else would you like to make sure that folks know about Everpeak Partners, your firm, and Salesforce in sales, automation, and marketing processes?

Oliver Sholder:

We’re based here in Portland, Oregon. We’re a team of eight. Everyone is certified in Salesforce.

We, as I mentioned, a lot of us have worked with different CRMs, but we have made our niche for our business the Salesforce platform.

So helping companies both develop the platform, the technical side of that, as well as the strategy and business analysis. And a lot of companies don’t really know where to start or they say, “Hey, we have this system, but it feels overwhelming. We don’t want to spend a whole bunch of money with some consulting firm that’s going to do some unknown thing.” And really we start our engagements with just a conversation at first and then it would move into an audit, but we really help create that roadmap.

And we try to be easy to work with and really focus on helping companies maximize their investment in the platform. And the great thing about it is your license fees for Salesforce stay the same because you might be only using 40% of what the system can be doing, but they’re going to still charge you that same license fee. So if anyone wants to reach out to me, probably the easiest way would be …

Jake Wagner:

The form on the blog post is going to be the best way to get folks to you.

Oliver Sholder:


Jake Wagner:

For sure. And so Oliver, I just want to thank you so much for joining the show today. This has been a wonderful conversation.

I’ve learned a ton, learned some additional nuance about Salesforce as well as really some of the practices that I can bring to the CRMs that I work with my clients. And this has just been a pleasure. So I want to thank you so much for that.

Oliver Sholder:

Thanks, Jake. It’s been fun being on your podcast.

Jake Wagner:

Yeah, this has been absolutely great.

And with that folks, I want to thank you for taking the time to tune in to listen.

Again, reach out to us at, the number four, if you have any questions or go to our website, for to be able to reach out to us and on the website, you’ll be able to find some easy links to get over to Oliver and Everpeak Partners. And if you want to go and visit his firm directly, it’s

And with that, I want to thank you very much for your time. I hope you have a great day, stay safe, take care of yourselves and your family. And we’ll see on the next show of Digital Marketing For FP. Take care.



Jake is trained as a Certified Digital Marketing Professional.

He is called to connect true financial planning professionals with their clients and prospects through effective digital marketing.

He understands the needs and concerns of the financial planning profession and the wide range of regulatory compliance needs and concerns.

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