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How Advisors Can Increase Client Satisfaction: Digital Communication and Content – TARC Training

30 May 2018

How Advisors Can Increase Client Satisfaction: Digital Communication and Content

Via Creative Advisor Marketing: How Advisors Can Increase Client Satisfaction: Digital Communication and Content

I’m rather fond of citing some powerful statistics that show why you need to:

A. consider inbound marketing for your firm, because it’s a powerful way to get past the lack of trust most people have around financial services as a whole, and

B. learn how to appeal to and better serve millennial clients, before it’s too late.

Some of my favorite data points include:

  • 50% of people under 40 don’t trust financial advisors. Specifically, about 23% of millennials (the oldest of which are about 38 right now) trust no one for financial advice. Another 33% will trust their parents, but not a financial professional.
  • 65% of investors feel “very” or “somewhat” mistrustful of the financial services industry.
  • 66% of the children of clients will fire their parents’ advisor when they inherit their parents’ assets. That means 2 out of the 3 advisors reading this right now is staring down some serious client attrition in the next decade.

What This Data Should Tell You

If you haven’t caught on yet, I’ll let you in on the secret: there are a lot of financial planning firms that are in big trouble right now because this data indicates a major problem.

There are 80 million millennials in the US. Quite a lot of them are looking at inheriting a total of $30 trillion dollars in assets. And of that group, most of them don’t trust you or like you.

And that means they’re not hiring you to help them with their finances or investments.

If that’s not alarming enough, consider this.

New data from J.D. Power’s 2018 U.S. Full Service Investor Satisfaction Study shows that millennials don’t just mistrust advisors. They’re also the “the least loyal group of full-service investors.”

Here are some of the highlights from J.D. Power’s findings:

The attrition risk from millennials is four times higher than other generations: Among investors who are the most highly satisfied, 29% of millennials say they’ll entertain the idea of leaving their current full-service advisory firm within the next year.

Only 4% of investors in older generations who are equally satisfied will consider the same move.

Clearly, providing great service are not enough to keep your next generation clients. So stop saying you’ll get clietns “because you’re better.” These clients don’t care about your “better.”

You must engage them and provide them with the tools and resources they need.

And no, in case you were jumping to the conclusion that tech is all you need to win millennials — that’s mandatory but not sufficient on its own. The study also found this:

Tech may draw in millennial investors but advisor relationships keep them: Technology alone will not keep next-generation clients on board with you. Think of the best technology as table stakes: it’s required for you to even play the game.

J.D. Power found millennials are most likely to indicate their intent to switch firms when advisor communication fails to meet their expectation. Advisors who deliver frequent, effective communication retain more millennial clients.

Y’all, I haven’t been harping on this whole “marketing is communication” thing for no reason. It works and may make the difference between keeping or losing clients.

In fact…

Emerging affluent millennials want more advisor contact: Of millennials with more than $100,000 in investable assets, 31% say they want more contact with their financial advisors.

These clients already get an average 4.5 advisor contacts per year — but they actually have a greater demand for interaction than that.

Hey, y’all, I wonder what helps with that? Oh, I dunno, maybe… Social media. Email newsletters. Blogs. Content!

Because here’s the final kicker:

Millennial investors respond positively to advisor communication via emerging channels, such as social media, texting and video. Those who receive communication through one or more of those channels are more satisfied with their investment firm. In fact, among millennial investors, their overall satisfaction is 58 points higher when their advisors use digital channels to communicate.

Can we just repeat that and get an amen?

Overall satisfaction is 58 points higher when their advisors use digital channels to communicate.

J.D. Power goes on to lay it out clear as day for you:

FIRMS AND ADVISORS SEEKING TO SUSTAIN OR INCREASE THEIR CONTACT FREQUENCY TO MEET INCREASING INVESTOR DEMANDS WILL NEED TO INCORPORATE DIGITAL CHANNELS INTO THE MIX, OBVIOUSLY IN A WAY THAT REFLECTS THE UNIQUE PREFERENCES OF INDIVIDUAL CLIENTS.

If you’re still sleeping on content marketing, it’s time to wake up.

Is Your Marketing Making Connections and Building Relationships?

You already know this is a relationship business. Clients must trust you before they’ll ask you to manage their money. And the right kind of marketing can help you build rapport, connections, and that all-important trust with the clients of the future.

If you’re not doing something about that right now, you firm is going to suffer in the near future.

That’s thanks to the obvious fact that real relationships built on trust take time to develop. The less obvious fact is that the kind of marketing that’s going to help you communicate and connect with future clients takes time to develop, too.

A strong content marketing strategy and machine is not something you build, run, and find success with in a day. You should plan to consistently create content for 6 months to a year before you see results.

The longer you wait, the harder it is to succeed, too. The advisors creating content right now are beating you on the SEO game, and the advantage of time works just the same way here as it does with compounding returns: the earlier the start, the stronger your position.

It’s not easy to outrank someone who’s been consistently creating well-optimized content for years. The longer you wait to begin, the harder you have to work to build up the clout you need with search engines to start getting ranked higher in results.

That idea doesn’t just apply to SEO. It’s everywhere in content marketing. The longer you wait, the harder it is to build social media followings on increasingly crowded platforms. The longer you wait, the more likely someone is to beat you to that niche or that great ebook idea.

So don’t wait. Communicate with prospects and current clients now, and do it in a way that they demand: online, digitally, through content that provides value and shares a message your audience needs to hear.