The New Year's resolution IFAs should be making in 2021

Ashley Hall
Posted by Ashley Hall
Posted on January 11, 2021 Leave a comment

Improving financial health is a resolution many will make at the start of the new year. This year, we predict that there will be a surge in committing to this promise as we move into a new lockdown.

Whether this is a regular yearly occurrence, or the events of last year have brought to light the need to focus on better financial habits, it’s looking likely that better cash management will be included in many people’s goals for 2021.

In 2020, cash trends changed across the UK. People started to save more, and hold onto their cash in the most traditional, 21st century way - by letting their savings sit idle in their bank account. Some even kept it on their person physically.

As we start to see the rise in ‘casual investors', advisors should expect to see new types of clients and understand how to best serve them. Many people don’t realise that they could make a return on their cash. Financial advisors should be looking at how they can access these new pockets of savers.

A recent survey showed that 58% of advisers found acquiring new clients ‘significantly harder’ during the pandemic and they had little confidence that anything would change suggesting that clients should not be the only ones setting resolutions for 2021. Financial advisors can use the start of the new year as a chance to renew their plan, and use the momentum normally felt at this time of year to put that plan to action. 

There will be some who will be looking at new places to find better returns on their cash, other clients will be looking for more education around wealth management and will need a guiding hand to help them navigate the market. Plus, we can’t forget the high net worth individuals (HNWI) and sophisticated investors who will need tailored, specialist advice on the economic climate ahead.

So what is the main resolution financial advisors should be looking at this year when it comes to setting goals for 2021?

Build up your community

As we have previously said on the Akoni Blog, the pool of new potential clients continues to grow in the UK. The client-base in the wealth industry tends to lean heavily towards high net worth individuals. Today the spectrum is much wider than what it once was. By upping your marketing efforts, and analysing the results, you can be much more effective at acquiring new clients. 

Ideas to consider include, but are not limited to:

  • Referrals from existing clients. Your existing clients’ testimonials are your best promotional tool. Plus by offering a cash reward for new referrals, it will help incentivise your clients and bring your offering to the front of their mind when making a recommendation.
  • Social media channels where you can educate on wealth management whilst promoting your services. There are many social media channels to consider, and finding out which one is best for you can be done through a series of mini-tests to see where you are most likely to engage with new communities. You may find just one is very effective, however, it is most likely that you’ll utilise multiple platforms depending on demographic, location and engagement with certain types of posts (photos, videos, short snippets of text, GIFs, infographics, etc). Remember, how you promote your services should stay in line with the Financial Conduct Authority’s guidelines for promoting financial services online.
  • Running seminars and events has become easier since the pandemic began. Although people are suffering from Zoom fatigue these days, that doesn’t mean that you won’t get engagement. As long as the event is tailored, and made with the client in mind, organising regular events with both your current clients and to attract new clients will yield increased engagement over time as you build up your reputation. 
  • Create a newsletter, and add a subscribe button on your website. This list can be used to send out weekly emails to your current and potential clients to remind them of impending deadlines related to tax returns and ISAs, and update them with new information on these topics.

We can’t predict what will happen over the next twelve months. Last year we saw habits change overnight, and force us to work in a different world than the one we were used to. Making a mixture of short-term and long-term goals to help you acquire new clients this year will ensure that no matter what is thrown at you in 2021, you are prepared and ready to build new relationships with clients who are seeing their cash habits change more regularly than previously seen before.

Find out more about Akoni: Akoni is an award-winning UK cash platform, which provides a marketplace to IFAs, financial advisors and wealth managers through a bespoke white-label offering, or off-the-shelf offering. Akoni uses innovative technology to personalise cash planning solutions for clients, and also provides a full API solution to banks and insurance clients.

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