There is a correlation between the number of services provided by a financial advisor and the satisfaction of the investor working with that advisor.
Surprisingly, not all advisors take advantage of that driver of client satisfaction.
Spectrem’s Millionaire Corner study How Financial Advisors Can Increase Client Satisfaction and Loyalty explains the correlation between services provided by an advisor and the satisfaction levels of the investors involved.
The study shows that the overall investor satisfaction with their advisors is 73 percent, but the wealthier investors, with a net worth between $5 million and $25 million, report an 80 percent satisfaction rate.
Age is another factor in terms of satisfaction. While investors under the age of 45 report only a 62 percent satisfaction rate, investors over the age of 64 is at 77 percent. Males are slightly more satisfied than females, and minority investors are much less satisfied than non-minority investors (60 percent to 75 percent).
Retired investors are more satisfied than those who are still working (77 percent to 68 percent).
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Given the opportunity to do so, most financial advisors are capable of tackling numerous planning or investment tasks for their high net worth investors. What follows are a list of possible services that an advisor could provide, and the level of satisfaction recorded among investors who get those services.
Planning for Retirement – This is a perfect example of a service most financial advisors can provide that is not given to investors. Only 49 percent of investors have received this advice from their advisor, but among those that have, 84 percent report satisfaction in their advisor. That means there is an 11 percent increase in satisfaction from all investors based on the fact they have received retirement planning information.
Twelve percent of investors say they intend to get retirement planning advice from their advisors in the future, but at the present, their advisor satisfaction is just at 47 percent. There seems to be a relation between advisor services and satisfaction.
Twenty-seven percent of investors say they don’t need the advice, and among those, advisor satisfaction is just at 61 percent. Those not seeking retirement advice are perhaps either young enough not to be thinking about it, or receive retirement planning from someone other than their primary financial advisor.
Setting up a Financial Plan – The statistics for setting up a financial plan are similar to the retirement numbers, but even fewer investors have received a financial plan from their advisor. Only 46 percent of investors have set up a financial plan with the aid of their advisor, but among those that have, 84 percent report satisfaction in their advisor.
Fourteen percent of investors say they will seek that advice from their advisor in the future, but in the present, their satisfaction rate is just at 53 percent. A full 30 percent of investors say they don’t need a financial plan from their advisor, and their advisor satisfaction is only at 63 percent.
Investment Planning or Asset Allocation Policy – More than half of all investors (53 percent) say they have gone through this exercise with their advisor with an eye toward increasing the size of their portfolio. Among them, 84 percent report being satisfied with their advisor. Thirteen percent are looking forward to having that conversation with their advisor, but without it, only 46 percent report advisor satisfaction.
Selecting Stocks, Bonds and Mutual Funds – Fifty-two percent of investors have played the market with their advisor, and among them, 84 percent report satisfaction. Ten percent plan to seek out such advice in the future, and only 44 percent of them are currently satisfied, one of the lowest advisor satisfaction ratings that appears in the study.
Tax-Advantaged Financial Strategies – Taxes can eat up investment profits, but they don’t have to. Only 44 percent of investors say they have had this conversation with their advisor, but among those that have, 87 percent report satisfaction in their advisor, one of the highest ratings reported. Eighteen percent of investors express the desire to get that advice from their advisor, but without it, only 49 percent report satisfaction.
Diversifying Assets Away from a Concentrated Position – This is a particular skill for advisors, who know that a diversified portfolio can help an investor survive a downturn in any one investment product. Fifty-four percent of investors have had conversations with their advisor about a diversified portfolio, and 84 percent of those are satisfied.
Frequency of Financial Plan Review – It’s one thing to have a financial plan, and it’s another to keep it current. Of the 46 percent of investors who have set up a financial plan with their advisors, those who get together with their advisor for a review of the plan at least semi-annually report an 89 percent satisfaction rate with their advisor. The satisfaction rate drops to 81 percent for annual reviews, and is just 48 percent among investors who have plans but review them less than annually, or never.
The equation seems simple. If advisors provide services, investors will be more satisfied with their advisors. It would make sense that investors would want to be satisfied with their advisors, so they should ask for the above services to be provided.
Kent McDill is a staff writer for Millionaire Corner. McDill spent 30 years as a sports writer, working for United Press International and the Daily Herald of Arlington Heights, Ill. From 1988-1999, he covered the Chicago Bulls for the Daily Herald, traveling with them every day through the nine-month season. He also covered the Bulls for UPI from 1985-88, and currently covers the team for www.nba.com. He has written two books on the Bulls, including the new title “100 Things Bulls Fans Should Know And Do Before They Die’, published by Triumph Books. In August 2013, his new book “100 Things Bears Fans Should Know And Do Before They Die” gets published.
In 2008, he resigned from the Herald and became a freelance writer. The Herald hired him to write business features and speeches for the Daily Herald Business Conferences and Awards presentations.
McDill also writes a monthly parenting column for the Herald’s Suburban Parent magazine.
McDill is the father of four children, and an active fan of soccer, Jimmy Buffett and all things Disney.