RIA Central Digests for 08/20/2014

Practice Management

 

If you have a “scarcity” mindset, you believe in protecting your limited resources. If you have an “abundance” mindset, you want to maximize your potential and your resources. Michael Kitces describes how these two mindsets impact the behavior of clients as well as advisors. Advisors with an abundance mindset often are often the ones who volunteer, give back, and even network for referrals, Kitces writes. He suggests that those with a scarcity mindset take another look at how such a viewpoint can be “a self-limiting factor.” His post at Nerd’s Eye View has prompted quite a few comments. Also, motivating your team — and yourself — is an ongoing and critical process. Dan Richards outlines some of the research surrounding motivation and job satisfaction, including a formula that spells out the elements of a motivating job. His column is at Advisor Perspectives.

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Do We Still Need Rotary Clubs in the Digital Era?

Source: Wall Street Journal

These days so much of what we do is online. We use Facebook to connect with our friends living next door – or thousands of miles away. We share business referrals and make endorsements on Linked-In or by email. A recent Wall Street Journal study showed 43% of people never “unplug” from their technological gadgets – ever!

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RIA Central Digests for 08/19/2014

Sales & Marketing

 

If you’re not satisfied with the referrals you’re getting from centers of influence, it may be that you’re looking at COI relationships as a way to grow your business rather than what they should be: a way to provide a higher level of service to clients. JulieLittlechild explains how to assemble a COI network and how to get referrals by providing “active reassurance,” e.g., showing and reinforcingthe value you provide to them – as well as potential clients. Read the details in her blog post at JulieLittlechild.com.Also, creating videos to reach clients and prospects can be done with the help of a production company or through a do-it-yourself method. An article at InvestmentNews delves into both approaches. Monument Wealth Management, for example, used a production service to develop videos for the firm, which now has a YouTube channel with 20 different videos, the article notes. A link to the story follows.

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RIA Central Digests for 08/14/2014

Regulatory/Compliance

 

“Candy store” is the name for a hacker’s most lucrative targets, which include the high net worth, financial advisors and others who not only have large holdings, but connections and valuable information to go after. An article at ThinkAdvisor outlines the characteristics of a candy store, gleaned from a guide published by credit and identity-monitoring company Privide, and provides advice on how advisors can better protect themselves and clients. A link to the story follows. Also, in recent weeks several retail firms have disclosed disappointing earnings linked to regulatory and compliance issues. Is it a trend? Some industry executives say regulatory agencies have become increasingly aggressive. Read more in an article at InvestmentNews.

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RIA Central Digests for 08/13/2014

Practice Management

 

The longer an advisor waits to plot out an exit plan, the more difficult it becomes to create the foundation for a smooth transition, notes Pershing’s Mark Tibergien in a column at Investment Advisor. Advisors who are 60 to 70 years old, in particular, are grappling with how and when to exit the business. He cites six core reasons advisors fail in executing a plan: lack of vision, lack of time, lack of commitment, lack of context, lack of courage, and lack of consideration. Also, tech guru Joel Bruckenstein expresses his worries about the failings he sees in the use of technology by advisors and organizations. Some of the prevailing issues he identifies include complacency (underinvestment in technology), integration, account aggregation, lack of cooperation, robo advisors, and financial planning. His column is in Financial Advisor magazine.

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What an Annual Survey Can Reveal About Your Clients

Customer insights

Sure, a one-time client survey may yield important data for your practice. But surveying your clients annually can give you key insights and benchmarks for your business that you might otherwise miss and that may prove even more valuable than a one-off polling. Think of it as an annual doctor’s visit — a periodic checkup to help you keep a finger on the pulse of your practice.
 

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RIA Central Digests for 08/12/2014

Sales & Marketing

 

A survey on how investors find, screen, and select advisors has convinced even a skeptic of social media and Internet sites that there’s a lot of opportunity on the Web for independent advisors to garner referrals. For example, 25.3% of those surveyed by PaladinRegistry.com said they used the Internet to find a financial advisor. Bob Clark, a self-proclaimed social media skeptic, summarizes the survey findings in his column at ThinkAdvisor. Also, consultant Christine Gaze offers some insight into what kinds of issues executive women are coping with and how advisors can help. One of her suggestions: “Make her problems go away: Provide her with vetted outsourcing options.” Read more in her blog post at InvestmentNews.

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RIA Central Digests for 08/07/2014

Regulatory/Compliance

 

Fines assessed by FINRA in the first half of 2014 are almost double those imposed in first six months of 2013, according to a law firm’s recent analysis. Fines totaled $42.4 million in the first half of this year, according to an article atThinkAdvisor. The largest fine category was “books and records.” Also, a comprehensive due-diligence program requires a lot of sleuthing on the part of an advisor. The Internet can be a helpful source, but a story at InvestmentNews outlines many more ways for advisors to dig deeper into the people and firms involved in the investments they (advisors) recommend to clients.

 
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RIA Central Digests for 08/06/2014

Practice Management

 

Plenty of advisors don’t seem to be following the advice they dole out to clients. That is, they aren’t working with a planner to help them plot their financial future. Financial Planning interviews advisors who explain why hiring a peer for advice is a wise financial decision. Also, one of the benefits of a career’s worth of experience in the financial advisory space is having the know-how to design your own business model. Michael Fenison, who sold his firm with the plan of retiring, instead took up that challenge and created Pure Financial Advisors, Inc., which provides “full financial planning for the masses” using salaried planners. Read more about the firm in a story in Financial Advisor magazine.

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Advisor Profile: Karen Ramsey

A New Business Model for Quality Advice at a Low Price

Karen RamseyVeteran Seattle-based advisor Karen Ramsey formally launched RamseyInvesting.com earlier this year, with a simple premise: provide a much-needed service, at an affordable price (the initial fee for the opening account minimum is slightly less than $3 per day), through a cost-efficient delivery mechanism (the internet), for middle-market delegators.

 

Her idea, five years in the making, entailed analyzing every aspect of her business – how much time she spent with her existing clients, and how technology might help her serve new clients who couldn’t afford her usual $650,000 minimum. (She runs Ramsey and Associates, a separate RIA that manages $200 million for affluent clients, including some Microsoft executives.)

 

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