In the din of the marketplace, the financial advisors who quietly go about the business of funding the American Dream can and should speak up.
And if they’re a little reluctant, their broker-dealer should be making some noise for them.
That is just some of the takeaway of a new recruitment drive AIG Advisor Group dubs “SpeakLoud,” the rallying cry of a multimedia campaign replete with advisor biopics, print and digital pop-up ads, as well as social media discussion through its #SpeakLoud hastag.
Another key theme of the campaign (disclosure: Investment Advisor magazine and ThinkAdvisor are among the venues for these ads) is that AIG Advisor Group’s four distinct broker-dealers give voice to advisors yearning to be heard and understood.
“If you feel you’re getting lost in a sea of numbers as your broker-dealer buys and sells you like a commodity,” starts one of campaign’s the videos,” it might be time to take a stand.”
That video, with a dizzying pinball machine background with flashing numbers and “loud” musical backdrop, introduces advisor Dean Harman who found that SagePoint Financial gave voice to desire for a small-firm touch and big-firm resources.
“They provide the resources of a large company while, through their individual broker-dealers, they provide a personal feel,” says the principal of The Woodlands, Texas-based Harman Wealth Management on the SpeakLoud website.
While the advantages of the independent business model and the resources to support are pretty standard fare for broker-dealer recruitment messages, a unique advantage the AIG Advisor Group is pushing hard is that bigness that underlies its more bite-sized constituent parts.
“Strong and stable, AIG Advisor Group offers you an environment where you can thrive without wondering if you’re about to be sold to the highest bidder,” goes one of its print ads, showing a commanding-looking advisor, Mike Silver of Royal Alliance, with a football firmly in hand.
The AIG campaign is particularly well timed, according to veteran Wall Street recruiter Mark Elzweig of Mark Elzweig Co.
“While of course, advisor recruiting is always a central focus of most IBDs…the weeks before April 15 are always especially hectic ones for most advisors. With tax season behind them, many advisors will now have the time to focus on exploring their options,” he tells ThinkAdvisor.
San Diego-based Jamison Advertising Group put together the campaign for AIG, whose recurring refrain is “Let’s talk. It’s time to speak loud.”
The loud talk is accompanied by brash images, such as FSC Securities’ Shelli Chase’s emergence from behind theatrical curtains with front-and-center ad copy declaring: “I take center stage,” followed by a smaller print pledge of support for advisors “who can handle being front and center.”
“The campaign is built on the assumption that financial advisors feel they’ve lost their voice,” Barnaby Riedel, whose Riedel Strategy also works with broker-dealers on recruitment campaigns, tells ThinkAdvisor. “If this is true, the million-dollar question is whether the promise of regaining it will motivate them to transition firms.”
Advisors exploring their post-tax season options can click on a “hamburger” icon with 20 menu options for information about AIG Advisor Group’s resources and opportunities, including details about its four “distinct voices,” i.e., its broker-dealer units.
The campaign site includes factoids on the 6,000-advisor network such as AIG’s aggregate 97% advisor retention rate and its advisors’ 9.7-year average tenure.
But for the real nitty-gritty, advisors will need to “speak loud” to an AIG recruiter, following one of many prompts like this one:
“Your time is valuable. That’s why we try to get right to the point. It means telling you upfront what our benefits are, the tools and resources we bring to the table, and the fees we charge. Straight talk that respects who you are and what you have accomplished.”
Advisors seeking these details will find no shortage of “ready to talk?” prompts, leading to an online form with the headline: “Feel free to express yourself.”
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