Whether we like it or not, the pandemic has permanently changed the way we do business. It has forced us to become comfortable with zoom meetings and other video communication platforms to keep business running when meeting face-to-face was no longer an option. Within the financial world, this transformation wasn’t easy for everyone. However, it made customers feel safe. Many even prefer the effortless and accessible online way, where information is available at their fingertips.

Advisors no longer have the option to be afraid of technology. They should embrace this change and integrate new technology with their traditional financial planning methods for a hybrid model. The report, “On the Front Foot,” argues that the hybrid advice model is the way of the future. This report claims that rather than disappearing with the advent of robos, human advisors will remain an integral part of meeting client demands. “Advisors will likely need to offer differentiated services, such as goal-based financial planning, which could add value beyond simple asset management”.* If advisors moved online because of the pandemic, they can now use it to their advantage. It is no longer optional to embrace a digital strategy for their business — it is essential to stay in business.

The pandemic has also made people more anxious about their finances. They are asking for more help, resulting in more inquiries (and potentially a lot more business) for advisors. It is the perfect time for advisors to try a new approach like hybrid advice to grow their business. In a Natixis survey, 85% of global respondents said the most effective way to build their businesses was through referrals from current clients and contacts. “The more you try to talk technically to people, the more you turn them off. The more I can attach [financial concepts] to their hopes, dreams, and goals, the easier it is to get people to buy in.”** Advisors can use fast and accessible digital planning tools in combination with their traditional client approach. This will help advisors waste less time doing administrative tasks and paperwork so they can spend more time building stronger relationships with their clients and helping them meet their financial goals.

Sources:

*1. Accenture, “On the Front Foot”, 2018, https://www.accenture.com/t20180626T022548Z__w__/se-en/_acnmedia/PDF-81/Accenture-Wealth-Management-Transform-Front-Office-Through-Workforce-Innovation.pdf 

**2. Advisor’s Edge, “Building a Book Post-Pandemic”, 2020, https://www.advisor.ca/my-practice/technology/building-a-book-post-pandemic/

3. Cision, “New Study Finds: Money-Related Shock Moments Forcing Canadians to Find New Financial Footing”, 2021, https://www.newswire.ca/news-releases/new-study-finds-money-related-shock-moments-are-forcing-canadians-to-find-new-financial-footing-800039793.htm