Morgan Stanley is partnering with the tech firm Yext on a platform for advisors that lets them build and manage their websites and online activities, the firms said Tuesday. Advisors also can take advantage of Yext’s online search resources to improve their prospecting work.
“A sophisticated digital presence is an absolutely critical component of a potential clients’ shopping process,” according to Morgan Stanley Wealth Management Chief Digital Officer Naureen Hassan. “In fact, 62% of respondents to a recent survey said that online information is influential to who they hire as a financial advisor.”
Yext has an artificial-intelligence-ready data structure that the wirehouse plans to tap into and use for running 15,000-plus advisors’ websites, Morgan Stanley says.
This technology should help Morgan Stanley advisors by “maximizing their visibility in search, integrating with CRM, event management and other capabilities, and facilitating conversational … AI via voice assistants and chatbots … to provide direct, accurate answers about … advisors …,” the company explained in a statement.
As of Sept. 30, Morgan Stanley’s wealth group had 15,655 advisors, up 23 from the prior quarter but down 104 from the year-ago period. Total client assets were $2.5 trillion, with average assets per advisor at $159 million and average advisor 12-month trailing fees and commissions at $1.125 million.
“AI-powered services have transformed the way people search for financial services, making it vital for financial advisors to provide direct answers everywhere consumers are looking,” said Yext CEO Howard Lerman, in a statement. “We’re proud to put Morgan Stanley financial advisors in control of the facts about them[selves] online, so that they can easily help provide accurate answers to complex consumer questions and win more business.”
The wirehouse’s other fintech partnerships include BlackRock/Aladdin, Hearsay, Envestnet, Salesforce, Solium, Twilio and Yodlee.
As for Yext, it works with clients such with Ameriprise Financial, AutoZone, FedEx and SunTrust bank.