The Department of Labor’s Conflict of Interest rule (more commonly known as the fiduciary rule) shook the industry. According to Fidelity’s survey, “Expectations of Upcoming DOL Ruling,” 73% of advisors are concerned the rule will have an adverse effect on how they do business. As a result, many advisory firms are re-evaluating their service models, the products they offer, and how they conduct business.
Concerned advisors may not yet have evaluated how this affects their marketing. For one, this new rule coincides with what research reveals are investors’ greatest need in an advisor. According to a Hearts & Wallets study, many affluent investors would only hire an advisor with a fiduciary responsibility.
Regardless of their age or income, people need to trust their advisor. You can tap into this desire — a financial professional they can trust to serve in a fiduciary capacity and put their best interests first — through your marketing.
Be Present Online
Countless studies show there’s a high correlation between consumer trust and a business’s online presence. On average, 70% of people would not do business with a company if their website has an outdated or unappealing design, and two-thirds of business owners said that the design of their website was more critical to their business’ success than the physical location of their business. Another study reveals that 80% of people judge the credibility of a company by its website design.
Why? Because we all judge books by their covers and, in the internet age, we are constantly reminded of the countless scams that exist online. Consumers immediately distrust an outdated website (or lack thereof) and assume the business is either unsuccessful or a scam. Along with an updated and mobile-responsive website, you should also include links to your social media pages. You don’t have to be on every social media platform available, but if your broker-dealer allows it, you should at least have a LinkedIn profile and a Facebook business page, either for you as an advisor or your firm.
You want to make it as easy as possible for people to find you online. Remember, even if your business is primarily referral-based, nine out of 10 prospects referred to you by their family or friends will Google your firm’s name and check out your website before they decide whether to make an appointment. If they can’t find you online, there’s a good chance they won’t give you a call.
Be Transparent Online