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In a Virtual World, Being “Well-thy” Takes on a Whole New Meaning

Shifting the focus from "wealth" to "well-th."

It comes as no surprise that the events of the past year have caused many of us to reexamine what being wealthy truly means.

We asked a sample of high-net-worth clients and advisors how they now define wealth, and their replies were much different than only one year ago.

“Wealth to me, means being able to hug my grandchildren,” said one 82-year-old client. Hugs. How can you place a price tag on hugs? Will your asset allocation provide you with the greatest return of hugging your grandchildren?

Joe, a Hightower advisor, said that, for him, being wealthy is about staying healthy. Joe has an underlying medical condition that has made this pandemic all the more frightening for him and his family. While he may have enough money in the bank, he knows what he cannot buy is his health. 

Another advisor, Vanessa, told us she sees true wealth as having a sense of security. This holds especially true in today’s volatile economic and political climate.

As a result of this shift in cultural consciousness, many advisors have started to change the way they speak about wealth to incorporate the notions of wellness, health, mental and emotional security and family connections.

To more fully address what wealth means to investors, and how this meaning has changed over the course of the pandemic, advisors are putting a renewed focus on finding creative ways to communicate with clients in 2021. Ideas for connecting and reinforcing essential relationships can range from virtual check-ins, educational webinars and video messages, to launching new marketing initiatives to extend your message.

Here are a few examples that can help strengthen client relationships in 2021:

Scalable Virtual Client Webinars

Webinars are an excellent way to educate clients. Just as wealth goes beyond solely finance, webinars that explore areas such as mental wellness, anxiety in teens, college planning and emotional investing can have an enormous impact on building trust and fostering advisor/client relationships. Advisors who go the extra mile to engage their clients will build deeper connections with current clients and have greater success with prospecting new ones.

Digital Publishing

Advisors should consider the modes of communication they employ to connect with clients. Digital magazines, for example, are a great medium to share important and relevant content with clients. Whether it’s about making a social impact through investments or provide guidance on how to help a client achieve his or her philanthropic mission, topics can cover an array of areas to address client objectives. This content can be sent out to prospects as well. For example, Hightower’s Well-th Report is a quarterly digital magazine that focuses on all aspects of wellness that our community of advisors can assist their clients with.

Video Messaging

With less face-to-face interaction over the past year, incorporating video messages into your client outreach has never been more beneficial. Advisors who record quick, easy and personal video messages to send via email to their clients and prospects can create authentic touchpoints that may have been missing due to the pandemic. For example, one simple, un-edited video from Barbara, a Hightower advisor in St. Louis, resulted in over a dozen incoming phone calls tied directly to that simple outreach.

The ability to connect with clients and prospects on a deeper level is more important than ever. Ensuring there is a clear understanding of the priorities, managing the emotional rollercoaster we are all on together, and maintaining consistent, clear and audience-specific messaging has proven to increase our advisors’ engagement with their clients and help to fill their pipelines with new leads.

I know my own definition of wealth has changed quite a bit this year. Being wealthy to me now means giving my aging parents a hug. Seeing my teenage children surrounded by friends or playing sports. Watching my high school senior go to prom. To me, “Well-th Rebalanced” now reflects the simple things in life, which money cannot buy.

What does it mean to you?

Abby Salameh is the chief marketing officer at Hightower

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