The eMoney Advisor Summit took Orlando, Florida by storm this year and was truly the best summit yet (this was the third year Twenty Over Ten attended). This year marked eMoney’s fifth advisor summit and welcomed over 1,000 financial service professionals from across the nation for non-stop training, practice management, and networking centered around the theme of: “Rise of the FlexGen.”
You might be wondering “what the heck is a FlexGen”? We were curious too. According to Ed O’Brien, CEO of eMoney,
FlexGen Advisors are forward thinking, embrace change, love learning, challenge conventions and believe in helping their clients achieve their life goals.
During Ed’s opening presentation, he explained the background behind the coining of this term. It all stemmed from eMoney and Fidelity (eMoney’s parent company) wanting to better understand the landscape in which today’s advisors are succeeding. Together, they surveyed 458 advisors, with the average age of a FlexGen advisor being 45, and the average number of years they’ve been in business being 14.7.
Key take-aways about FlexGen advisors:
- Out of the 55,000 financial professionals eMoney works with, FlexGen advisors experienced an extra 5% of client growth and an extra 10% of AUM growth.
- 65% of #FlexGen Advisors have a marketing plan, vs. 30% of other advisors (and that plan is built around their UVP (unique value proposition)).
- Flexgen advisors seek to serve traditionally underserved clients such as women, millennials, and people of color. 42% plan to do this vs. just 22% of their peers.
- These FlexGen advisors are nearly 2x as likely than their peers to offer a unique service model to differentiate their business with 81 percent of FlexGen Advisors citing this capability (vs. 44% of their peers).
- 60% of FlexGen Advisors are more actively adopting technology in their firms and more likely to be future-ready compared to 26 percent of peers.
The entire summit was centered around sessions that took these core principles of what it means to be a FlexGen advisor, and helped advisors put them into practice for their own businesses.
Adding to the great event were memorable keynote speakers like Alison Levine (the first American Women’s Everest Expedition Team Captain) and Daniel Pink, a best-selling author on the science of motivation and timing, plus a “power hour” where FlexGen advisors shared their own strategies for success. The Twenty Over Ten team was on hand to talk all things digital marketing, and we even co-presented a breakout session with TJ Hill, demand generation strategist at eMoney on SEO strategies for financial advisors.
85% of clients put either a high or medium level of importance on their advisor having a digital presence.
2018 eMoney Advisor Summit (#eMoneySummit2018): Key Takeaways
1. Modernize The User Experience
27 years after the introduction of the World Wide Web, the information age has officially ended and the “Experience Age” has begun. In the Experience Age, everything is about visual, instantaneous, authentic communication. Instead of a “status update” on Facebook, we now share “Live” Stories on Instagram. The content we share also now quickly “disappears” within 24 hours – creating an increasing focus on the present moment. How does this impact financial advisors? Advisors need to be laser focused on using visual communication strategies to engage with their clients and prospects. Online planning tools. Risk Assessment calculations. Video. Graphics. Interactive websites – anything you can do to drive home your message with a visual rather than just plain text or language will automatically resonate more. Remember the adage “Show, Don’t Tell.” Make technology a key part of your offering, but don’t forget that the human element is what drives connection and memory recall. FlexGen advisors use technology to enrich the experience they provide to their clients, which sets them apart.
2. Have a Strong and Consistent Message
Your brand (and business) will need to be agile in order to survive and thrive in this incredibly complex “Experience Age.” You’ll need to be prepared to pivot on the technology you use, the services you offer, and potentially even the groups you serve. The one thing you’ll want to stay the same no matter what? Having a strong and consistent message. As Ron Carson shared during his main-stage presentation, what differentiates financial advisors from robo offerings is the ability to make the complex simple. When you take something that is difficult for clients and distill it down so that it is meaningful and easy to understand, you provide tremendous value. Remain flexible, play to your strengths, and reinvent as necessary, but have a cohesive message and stay consistent to remain authentic and prove your value. 65% of FlexGen Advisors have a marketing plan, vs. 30% of other advisors.
3. Utilize a Platform that Makes it Easy
“It” being whatever the task at hand is. As discussed above, FlexGen advisors are more likely than their peers to not only adopt new technology, but to build out a custom tech stack that fits their own unique business, rather than implementing tools “off the shelf.” As one of the FlexGen advisors shared during the “Power Hour” on Day 2: “Advisors need to reexamine their business models with a focus on the three T’s: time, talent, and technology.” How can you adopt technology that integrates to create workflows and drastically reduce manual inputs? How can you make your technology a workhorse? The tech you choose should help you be more productive, not be a headache-inducing hinderance. 60% of FlexGen Advisors are more actively adopting technology in their firms and more likely to be future-ready compared to 26 percent of peers.
All told, it was an absolutely fantastic event, with eMoney’s team doing a great job to surprise and delight at every turn (we’re talking puppies brought in to play with, a doughnut wall, and a 70s-themed festival party complete with fireworks to close out the event). If you haven’t attended this conference yet, we highly suggest you look into the 2019 event!
Click to learn more on how Twenty Over Ten and eMoney work together to make it easy for advisors to incorporate client portals and lead generation tools into their websites. Or, view an example advisor website that incorporates eMoney.