How can Advisors keep Clients Satisfied?
Spectrem’s study Drivers of Client Satisfaction and Loyalty provides an in-depth examination of what creates satisfaction among the clients of financial advisors, and how advisors can create a sense of loyalty in the people with whom they do business.
More than 1,700 investors were asked questions about satisfaction with their financial advisor, and more than 2,000 were asked questions about loyalty toward their financial advisor. Three wealth segments were interviewed – Ultra High Net Worth (with a net worth between $5 million and $25 million), Millionaire (with a net worth between $1 million and $5 million) and Mass Affluent (with a net worth between $100,000 and $1 million).
According to the 2014 study, 80 percent of Ultra High Net Worth investors say they are satisfied with their financial advisor. Seventy-three percent of Millionaires and 72 percent of Mass Affluent investors claim to be satisfied.
In many cases, the percentages shown in the report give a clear indication of ways in which advisors can keep their clients satisfied.
Client satisfaction is highest among customers who have discussed a financial plan with their advisor. Although only 46 percent of investors say they have discussed a financial plan with their advisor, 84 percent of those say they are satisfied with their financial advisor.
Conversely, among investors who have not created a financial plan with their advisor, satisfaction ranges from 53 to 63 percent. While 10 percent of investors said they have received a financial plan from someone other than their primary advisor, their satisfaction with their advisor is only at 59 percent.
Similar numbers are reported for those clients who have received a retirement plan from their financial advisor. Forty-nine percent of investors have had that work done by their advisor, and again 84 percent of those are satisfied with their advisor’s work. The satisfaction range for those who have not had retirement plans created for them ranges from 47 percent (those who claim they will seek retirement plan information in the future) to 61 percent (those who claim they do not need retirement plan information).
Communication is a huge factor in client satisfaction, and one manner of communication that is deemed most important is a regular review of an investor’s financial plan. Eighty-nine percent of investors who received a financial plan from their advisor and have it reviewed by their advisor on a semi-annual basis claim they are satisfied with their advisor. If the review occurs annually, satisfaction drops to 81 percent and among those investors who have a financial plan but do not have it reviewed on a regular basis, satisfaction is only at 48 percent.
The satisfaction reported for frequent communication are staggering as well. Among investors who receive daily or weekly updates from their advisor in some form, satisfaction is at 84 percent, while among investors who report receiving contact annually, satisfaction is at 57 percent, and those who say they “never’’ get contacted by their advisor, satisfaction is only 30 percent.
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