Financial Advisor Marketing & Technology

Marketing & Technology For Independent Financial Advisors

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Archive for March, 2008

An Entirely New Software Category For Advisors

If you’ve been yearning for a way to use the Internet more effectively with clients, check out our new Personal Client Portal platform. It fills a gap between your firm’s existing software applications and your clients. This is a new type of application, and there is nothing else like it.

Your financial planning, performance reporting, and customer relationship management applications are disconnected from your clients right now. Our new portal system bridges the gap between your applications and your clients.

Say you’re working late one night on a financial plan for a client and realize that he has to re-title one of his accounts. You jot down a note to yourself to call the client. You may or may not ever follow through and call the client. Even if you use your CRM software to create a task reminding you to call the client, you may or may not remember to follow up with the client to make sure he did indeed re-title the asset.

The Personal Client Portal platform lets you give each client his own secure website, and one important feature of the platform is a “To-Do Manager” that lets you track client action items. If you assign a To Do to the client reminding him he must re-title an asset, it will appear on his personal portal. He’ll get an email notifying him that you’ve assigned him with this ”Action item” and suggesting he log into his portal. If the client wants to email you a question about a To Do, his email will be displayed on the portal, as will your answer. The To Do will remain displayed until you say the item is addressed by the client. And you can manage To Dos for all your clients in a simple dashboard.

The To Do Manager is being integrated with other advisor applications. For instance, Money Tree Software, a popular financial planning application, generates tasks that advisors must complete to produce a client’s plan. Those are actually client To Dos. We have begun talking with Money Tree about writing an XML feed that will pass its client To Dos to our personal client portals so they can be automatically displayed. Discussions with other CRM and planning applications are under way to allow you to easily remind your clients about items they owe you—such as a new account form, an IRA beneficiary form, an appointment for a portfolio review, etc.
The To-Do Manager in the Personal Client Portal platform gives you an easy way to systematically assign and track client action items. It supports a transparent relationship with clients and builds trust by showing clients all of the issues you’re working on with them. It lets you touch clients regularly with substantive communication aimed at improving their financial lives. The To-Do Manager promotes efficiency in managing client service and it supports a business trend toward utilizing Web 2.0 applications to engage clients.

The Personal Client Portal Platform is like no other product now offered to advisors. It serves a need that has long existed but that no one has ever before tried to address. I believe this is the most innovative product we’ve ever offered since I started Advisor Products 1996, and it will transform the way independent advisors use the Web to serve their clients.

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