Many advisors say they are enjoying greater success today than ever, yet a large number have a tough time communicating with clients effectively and frequently, according to Pershing.
In Pershing’s second annual survey, released Thursday at the group’s Insite 2014 conference, 38% of advisors said their business was doing “better than ever,” up from 31% a year ago.
By channel, RIAs feel strongest about their success: 41% view their practices as having robust momentum vs. 35% for wirehouse reps and 39% for other advisors.
In fact, among advisors with wirehouse and regional firms, the biggest number – 39% — say their practices are “regaining the momentum we once had,” which could reflect the impact that the financial crisis, related mergers and acquisitions and regulatory fallout had on certain firms in this industry channel.
“The number one driver of rising satisfaction among advisors is the impact they have on the lives of their clients,” said Kim Dellarocca, managing director at Pershing, in an interview. “This trumps financial gain.”
In the latest poll, 71% of advisors say that helping clients meet their financial goals is the most rewarding aspect of being an advisor, up from 66% a year ago.
(The study includes the views of 365 reps; about 100 are RIAs, 100 work for a wirehouse or regional firm; and the remainder serve as advisors for an insurance agency, independent broker-dealer or bank.)
While they may be upbeat, advisors also need to find ways to improve how and when they interact with clients.
A high number of advisors reach out to clients by phone when their investments go down, 68%, or the markets go down, 58%, while only 39% call when the markets go up.
Likewise, 33% of reps will schedule face-to-face meetings with clients when investments go down vs. 21% when these same investments go up.