LPL Financial says it has hired Angela Xavier to serve as executive vice president of Independent Advisor Services Business Consulting.

Reporting to Andy Kalbaugh, managing director and divisional president of National Sales and Consulting, Xavier will focus on strategies to deepen relationships between the independent broker-dealer and its advisors.

She has had a 23-year career in the hospitality industry and recently led sales for InterContinental Hotels Group’s Americas division.

“Angela has proven experience building value-added B2B relationships, which is central to the work we do every day with our advisors, using our firm’s scale and expertise to help advisors grow their businesses,” according to Klbaugh. “She shares our focus on data-driven decision making in the hands of passionate people to deliver results.”

In other news, the Advisor Group of IBDs — FSC Securities Corp., Royal Alliance Associates, SagePoint Financial and Woodbury Financial — has named Lori Love to the newly created role of chief customer experience officer. She reports to Advisor Group President and CEO Jamie Price.

The appointment comes on the heels of the company’s rollout of its eQuipt technology platform.   

“We created the new position of chief customer experience officer because our advisors are our customers, and customers want more than just platforms and services — they want an amazing experience,” Price said in a statement. “We hired Lori Love for this role because she shares our vision for a customer experience-driven strategy.”

Earlier, Love worked for Internet Brands — including for clients like webMD, as well as for Disney Interactive, Evolve Media, Yahoo/Overture Services and Wells Fargo.

According to Love, “I believe there is a remarkable opportunity to replicate the best practices other industries have painstakingly developed over the years, while adapting and augmenting them for the independent wealth management space.”

Merrill, Dynasty

Carole Wentz has been appointed division executive for Merrill Lynch’s Texas Mountain South division. Wentz began her career as an advisor in Dallas and has been in leadership roles for Merrill Lynch Wealth Management for the past 24 years, most recently serving as market executive for Greater Orange County in Southern California.

She is now charged with leading growth in Arizona, Colorado, Montana, New Mexico, Oklahoma and Texas, which are home to more than 3,300 Merrill Lynch Wealth Management employees.

“Carole’s proven leadership and career success, as well as her track record for developing strong leaders and advisors across the firm make her an ideal candidate for this role,” said Andy Sieg, president of Merrill Lynch Wealth Management, in a statement. “I am confident she will bring her rich history of delivering strong results to Texas Mountain South.

Separately, Dynasty Financial Partners says Eric Castillo will be its chief technology officer, reporting to COO Ed Swenson and replacing former CTO Paul Metzger, who will serve as a consultant to Dynasty. Castillo will initially focus on Dynasty Desktop 2.0 and a new advisor client portal.

“Technology is vitally important to the RIA community and to Dynasty’s Network Partners. We are delighted to add Eric Castillo, a technology leader, to drive Dynasty’s premier integrated technology platform to a whole new level,” said Swenson, in a statement.

Castillo joins Dynasty from the RIA Stelac Advisory Services, where he was CTO and COO and spent 12 years. Earlier in his career, he worked as an advisor at Morgan Stanley and in institutional sales at Lehman Brothers.

“I am thrilled to join the Dynasty team. Dynasty is the industry’s premier provider of technology platforms for independent advisors. I look forward to working closely with our Network Partners to develop the next generation of Dynasty’s innovative platform,” according to Castillo.

New Marketing Capabilities

Securities America, one of the Ladenburg Thalmann-owned IBDs, says its affiliated advisors can now use Instagram for social media marketing via a compliant program. The news follows texting capabilities through Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter launched in January 2018.

Janine Wertheim, chief marketing officer and senior vice president of Securities America, said in a statement, “Instagram offers tremendous potential for advisors who want to build their business by reaching social media and tech-savvy audiences, in particular millennial and younger investors.

“Many next-gen advisors see it as a ‘must-have’ platform for both establishing new client relationships and engaging more deeply with the clients they already serve,” she explained.

About 64% of U.S. adults 18 to 29 use Instagram, according to the Pew Research Center, as do 40% from ages 30 to 49.

Meanwhile, Haven Tower Group — a public relations and marketing agency focused on the retail wealth management industry — said it is rolling out a new marketing data services platform. As part of this launch, Haven Tower named Craig Engelman as an associate principal; he will lead the platform and formerly worked for Blucora, the owners of HD Vest and 1st Global.

“The launch of Haven Tower’s marketing data services platform underscores our longstanding commitment to deliver an exceptionally high-touch service experience for our clients, while continuing to ladder everything we do up to our clients’ strategic business goals,” said Joseph Kuo, Haven Tower president and managing partner, in a statement.

The platform’s data services include:

  • Financial advisor and retail investor client segmentation
  • Lead generation, lead nurturing and lead scoring, as well as response modeling
  • One-time as well as recurring CRM and marketing audits
  • Support in developing customized CRM and marketing automation partnerships
  • One-time, monthly and quarterly data insights reporting
  • Subject-specific surveys that can be seamlessly utilized for media and marketing campaigns.