Redtail Launches Text Messaging Solution for Advisors

More than 80% of Americans text regularly, yet it's estimated that less than 10% of advisory firms currently use texting to communicate with their clients.

To enable advisors to text with their clients safely and securely, Redtail Technology launched Redtail Speak, a compliance-approved communication platform that enables advisors to text with clients, directly in the Redtail CRM.

“There’s really no opportunities for advisors to be able to communicate to their clients via texting. There were no solutions available that were secure and compliant,” Redtail Technology CEO Brian McLaughlin told ThinkAdvisor in a phone interview. “That’s basically what we’re doing with Speak: providing a platform for real-time communication with advisors and clients.”

Advisors are able to send a message through Speak to a client’s mobile number, and when the client replies via text, the message appears on Speak. Speak also has customizable preferences for notifications, messages, invitations, out-of-office replies and the area code of the phone number that clients will be texting.

Speak is compliant with all federal rules and regulations, including the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority's new regulatory notice, which states that all text messaging conversations must be recorded.

Every conversation, message and document is searchable and automatically archived, recorded daily and shared with the advisor’s email surveillance provider, offering advisors a safe, compliance-approved way to communicate with their clients.

Another important component of the compliance features is client consent, McLaughlin told ThinkAdvisor.

“We’ve actually built it in a way that requires client consent to engage in the texting,” he explained. “When an advisor wants to set up a text channel or communication to a client, it will actually send a customized welcome message that requires client consent with a yes or no response to initiate … It also gives the client a lot of control to opt in or opt out of these communications.”

For advisors, according to McLaughlin, text-enabling a business is going to enable client engagement and the client experience to shift to real time and be proactive. Particularly because response rates on text messages are higher, and response times are faster.

“Emails are opened around 60% of the time. They’re really slow to get responses to; it could be hours or days before you respond to emails,” McLaughlin said. “Where a text message to somebody is opened 99% of the time. It’s almost always opened and texting somebody generally gets a response back within a few minutes.”

To avoid bottlenecks, Speak provides team members with access to the same communication thread.

Advisors and all dedicated team members will be notified when they receive a new message from their respective client or team members.

Speak is currently integrated with Orion Advisor Services and Riskalyze, and Redtail will continue to announce new integration partners quarterly.

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