These days, every time I turn on the TV, I come across another commercial (such as this one) featuring young people and their parents talking with a financial advisor. Is it a sign of changing times or just a clever marketing trick to attract a younger generation longing for financial advice on their terms? I think it’s both actually.
Advances in technology have empowered all of us to make decisions with robust information (real time stock quotes, reams of economic data) that was previously difficult to access. With high-speed internet, smartphones, social networking, etc. we are a few clicks — or people — away from great information and advice. What impact has this had on the financial advisory industry? Quite a bit I think.
In my life I’ve unfortunately experienced firsthand the consequences of bad financial advice. The first time was when I was five years old and my mother got divorced. The second time was when my father-in-law passed away, and my mother-in-law realized the advice they had received was not appropriate for their situation. In both these situations it was extremely difficult to find an Advisor who cared more about clients than their money.
I’ve been in financial services for many years, but with three, fast-growing daughters, I recently needed advice on a number of complex issues. Finding the right Advisor, someone who really understood my family and our situation, was surprisingly difficult.
Perhaps when information was hard to come by, advice on “money” was necessary, but how to invest has largely been solved and there are plenty of low cost or free resources we can access to build good portfolios.
Planning for life, however, with a tailored approach to each client’s unique set of circumstances is not solved and perhaps never will be. This is the current transformation happening in financial services — from product to planning, from information to insights, from having all the answers to asking the right questions.
Clients today are looking for a catalyst, someone to jumpstart the conversation on how they get from here to tomorrow and achieve both their financial goals AND all the “non-money” things they worry about and desperately need help with.
To help you be that catalyst, we’ve just released a video that details a simple, life-based planning approach we call Design, Build, Protect that you can seamlessly integrate into your practice, so when people like my mother, mother-in-law, or even me are looking for personal “advice,” we know where to go.
With the investing part solved, Advisors now can — and should — focus on all the other issues and opportunities that can make a difference in clients’ lives.
Click here for the video
All investments involve risk, including the loss of principal.