In-person meetings will continue to the be the dominant way advisors communicate with their clients in 10 years, according to SEI's 2025 prediction survey, with 58 percent of advisors saying that will remain their top way to work with clients. Video conferencing came in a distant second at 32 percent.
Advisors are also not sold on social media, with just 16 percent of advisors believing it will be useful for generating new business. Fifty-eight percent expect referrals will still be the best tool, though they do see social media as useful for cultivating relationships with clients. Only 3 percent said social media won’t be useful at all by 2025.
When it comes to technology, advisors are more concerned with business efficiency, such as CRM systems and front office tools. More than half surveyed also predicted most advisors to include some form of robo advice in their practice over the next decade.
“Due to the changing needs of tech-savvy and time-constrained investors, financial advisors need to use technology to improve productivity and free up time to spend with clients,” Wayne Withrow, executive vice president of SEI and head of the SEI advisor network, said in a statement. “Becoming a techno-advisor will be critical to better servicing clients in the future.”
When asked how they intend to differentiate their firm in 2025, the overwhelming response (at 92 percent) was “planning approach and relationships.” Tax-managed investing, goals-based investing and index investing were all named as investment strategies that advisors believe will remain popular in the future. They also expect tactical or dynamic investing, ETFs and socially responsible investing to lose popularity.