“Knowing is not enough; willing is not enough; we must do.” – Johann Wolfgang von Goethe
Here are two tips on how to improve advisor-client communications
One, write down your communication expectations for you and your staff. It’s one thing to say that you want to “over communicate” but it’s quite another to define a small number of tangible steps and measurements that will drive effective communications.
For example, what are your standards on the acceptable amount of time between an email inquiry from a client and a response from you or your team? One hour? One day? Responding within one hour sounds wonderful, but it’s likely not practical. Setting a written standard that all emails are at least acknowledged with a reply the day they are sent is perhaps more achievable. What is the acceptable amount of time between communications with clients? Can you go a week, a month or a quarter before some level of outreach is required? And what specifically, and again in writing, qualifies as communication on a regular basis? Is the sending of a research report or market commentary without personalization acceptable? Or does it require a personal email or phone call to check the box? It’s your call, but the key is to write it down so that you and your staff know that it’s serious.
Secondly, learn to brag humbly. Your services are valuable and worthy. Bragging about them is completely acceptable. But do so humbly. Humility is humanizing and in today’s world of mass email and anonymous noise, carving out a little human space by using humility will go a long way to improving your communication efforts with clients. For example, offer to interpret a complex economic analysis, in plain English for your clients. You have the expertise to comprehend the importance of complex financial topics…your clients likely do not. Offering to sit on their side of the table, with humility, will make them feel comfortable asking you additional questions. And when they feel comfortable asking you what they think to be basic questions…your communication efforts will pay off with increased client retention.
Here is a quick snapshot of the ETF marketplace according to FUSE Research
In less than 30 years, assets in U.S. ETFs have ballooned from nothing to over $5.4 trillion, accounting for 69% of global assets.
- ETFs got a big boost in 2008, when the SEC authorized the creation of fully transparent ETFs that use active management strategies.
- Unlike mutual funds, which can only be bought or sold after the close of each day’s market, ETFs, like stocks, can be bought and sold throughout the trading day.
- About 9% of U.S. households held ETFs in 2020. Of households that owned mutual funds, about 17% also owned ETFs.
- ETF-owning households tend to have incomes above the national median.
- People using ETFs have been willing to take substantial or above-average investment risk.
- Before 2015, a majority of advisors were still recommending mutual funds over ETFs. But by 2020, 85% of advisors said they use or recommend ETFs.
- Unlike mutual funds, which disclose their holdings quarterly, transparent ETFs report their holdings daily.
- Among their other attributes, ETFs have a well-deserved reputation for tax efficiency.
- Demand for bond ETFs, partly boosted by Baby Boomers looking for income, rose to a record $201 billion in 2020, from $146 billion in 2019.
Exchange-Traded Funds are sold by prospectus. Please consider the investment objectives, risk, charges, and expenses carefully before investing. The prospectus, which contains this and other informant, can be obtained by calling your financial advisor. Read it carefully before you invest. There are risks involved with investing which may include market fluctuation and possible loss of principal value. Particular investments may not be suitable for certain situations. Carefully consider the risks and possible consequences involved prior to making an investment decision. Berthel Fisher Companies is a marketing name owned by the parent company, Berthel Fisher & Company, an Iowa corporation. Berthel Fisher & Company Financial Services, Inc. and Securities Management & Research, Inc. are SEC registered broker dealers and members of FINRA/SIPC.
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