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Sep 13, 2007 10:30 pm

Shadow, I don't think you have to charge a separate planning fee to be doing financial planning. Separate fees are just another way to charge for your services.

Being able to charge a separate fee helps brings assets under management. You can say, " look, let's so some planning, you pay me for three meetings, at the first meeting, I'll understand your goals and collect data and spin out some concepts related to the six areas of personal financial planning.

At the second, I'll show you some projections, clarify your questions and my questions, educate you about some concepts.

At the third, I'll have a set of specific recommendations on your action steps.

I do financial planning, and I do asset management. You pay a flat fee for my financial advice, and I don't make money on that fee but it covers our time together. If you want me to do your asset management, you'll pay for that separately.

We get to do some basic planning, and we get to develop a relationship. Best case, you would find a planner who you trust and can work with for many years. You are not obligated by doing the planning, though.

(What percentage of clients who do a plan end up investing 100% of their money with me?)

Do you really think that the AMP ads with Dennis Hopper actually drive business?  They're decent ads and catchy, but you feel that they bring people in the door?  I can see how they would increase brand recognition, but I don't know if it would translate into sales. 

Flat out, there is no question that Dennis Hopper, along with a direct mail campaign, is literally bringing people to the door. Like the guy who walked in my door yesterday and said, " I told my wife that there must be a local AMP office in this business complex, so I just walked over here and looked on the directory." The fellow is a retired high level manager who wants help with intergenerational wealth planning.

Fact: Ongoing financial planning clients have more than twice the assets of non planning clients.

(But it's not a good thing to get ALL the money and ALL the insurance, is it?)

Financial planning describes a process. I am beginning to think that many of the catty comments about Ameriprise are sour grapes. More CFPs, more financial plans, and oh yeah, a real pain in the butt training program that generates most of the negative perceptions, much of it from folks who flunk out.

Fact: 100% of the profit at AMP comes from local franchise owners. Some call it a McPlan, I call it paying for advice from an experience CFP business owner. Like McDonalds, when you do your research and modernize, your profits soar and you feed a lot of hungry people, not just burgers and fries, but salads and vegetables.

AMP is driving business in through the door, last I checked, that is the biggest problem most advisors face. Is it more professional to chase, or handle the inquiries.

If you are a fan of Dennis Hopper or a fan of marketing, check out this tie-in from national TV to the internet:

Do you think this marketing is generating any leads? At screen two, when a local types in my zip code, they see me. They have to contact me though, I'm not dialing out to them.

Dennis Hopper is cool and he is kicking butt. I'm the guy that is paying for the marketing, and I am ecstatic with the strategy and results - as in, hiring more staff ecstatic. Dang, more revenues, more costs, more profits, more responsibility.  

Who is a leading sponsor of the FPA and a leader in compliance policy development in our industry. If anyone calls these people stupid, it may be sour grapes.

Sep 15, 2007 12:01 am

I'm not sure why other people haven't posted, but AMP advisors seem to use Riversource almost exclusively. How is this good financial advice?

Also, if you quite paying the fee, you don't get any more service.

Tell me, Doc C, do you use mostly Riversource?

Sep 15, 2007 12:48 am

I don’t use any Riversource. Why should I? That may change, we’ll see how the industry and the competitive environment change.