If I got $5 for every time an advisor or other plan provider told me they had an in with an association, I’d probably have enough to pay my mortgage. The problem. Having an in doesn’t mean that advisor or plan provider can offer a pooled employer plan (PEP) or other retirement plan solution that will actually get clients.
I had an in with a group of sole proprietors when. I first started my own practice and that. Went nowhere since such small business people didn’t exactly have enough to save for a qualified plan. Even if this group had bigger pockets, soliciting business from such a core group is a slow and tedious process.
The “I have this in with an association” line reminds me of the “I know a guy” from the first Ant-Man movie. It might mean something in soliciting business, but it might not either, From my experience, it usual;y doesn’t lead to much business.