What if Mark Tibergien, CEO of Pershing Advisor Solutions, were an advisor? What would keep him up at night? “If I were running an advisor firm, there are a couple things that I’d be worried about, and it has to do with women clients and next generation clients,” he said, when he stopped by WealthManagement.com’s offices in New York recently.
Female Clients: Surveys prove that women feel they’re not respected by their advisors, their advisors don’t make them better investors, and advisors don’t communicate with them the way they want to be communicated with. In fact, within a year of death or divorce of the husband, women will fire their advisor 80 percent of the time, Tibergien said. “If you haven’t made that connection, that’s an issue.”
Next Generation, Millenials: Ninety percent of clients in this category say they won’t work with their parents’ advisors, and they’re the inheritors and accumulators of wealth, Tibergien pointed out.
“You may not care about that, but the truth is, that most advisors’ clients are their age or older, and they have built a business not to last.”
At a minimum, advisors have to think about how to change their communication method, because younger generations have different ways of communicating than the baby boomer generation. As boomers, the tendency is to build a relationship and then decide if they want to do business with you. “The studies are showing that next gen and millennials want you to prove your worthy, and then maybe will consider a relationship but that’s not so important.” You first have to demonstrate your competence and expertise to these generations. You also have to be proactive about the things that make a difference to them, such as how to deal with aging parents.
Mobile and social networking technologies become critical components.
“You have take a look at your website,” Tibergien said. “Is it dynamic or static? Is it something that they’re accustomed to seeing, or is it something that’s dull?”
Tibergien also believes advisor firms are doing a poor job of recruiting the peers of their next generation of clients.
“Otherwise what you have is a deflated oil well,” he said. “A bunch of old clients in withdrawal phase, that will die, one way or another, voluntarily or involuntarily, they’re going to leave. So the question is, is your business positioned to regenerate itself?”