What consumers are being told about financial planners

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As the New Year begins and everyone makes resolutions to get their finances in order, you can rest assured they will be scanning the internet for “top financial tips”.

While they may not be gold nuggets of advice, they will be followed by the masses, and at the bottom of most of these financial self-help lists is “seek professional advice”. Well that's a start.

Sites advising people “How to choose a financial planner”, “What questions to ask”, and the rest, break the process down into simple points. These can also be used by you however, to find out what people are looking for and how they will go about it.

Key points across different sites included:

Matching a planner to their needs

People are being told to find an adviser that specialises in what they need, so if you have an area of expertise, let it shine. You might not be what they are looking for, but then again, you might.

Vetting advisers on the internet

How is your website? Are you on social media? Do you have good SEO (Search Engine Optimisation)? Consumers will be scanning the internet for most, if not all, their information, so make sure your internet presence is up to date. Tips for consumers also include looking for third party mentions of the firm/planner.

Comparing

People following popular guidelines will no doubt be shopping around, so take a look at your firm and how it compares to others that have similar expertise.

Meeting in person

Advice from Forbes website tells consumers to control the interview, with an agenda of set questions to ask each adviser. They are being warned to watch out for your charm, so don’t overdo it.

References/Qualifications and Memberships

FPA membership is being pushed by most sites. They also recommend asking for a financial services guide and a list of products you can advise on, so make sure you have these handy.

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  • GAB on 7/01/2013 11:09:12 AM

    Quality clients come from referrals and word of mouth, not people surfing the net and shopping around for the best deal.

  • SS on 7/01/2013 12:55:02 PM

    GAB: I agree word of mouth is best, but many people will check you out online once a friend has referred them to you, so it's worth having a decent online profile explaining what you do and your process. Also, if someone has gone to the effort to do a lot of research and then choose to come see you, they are probably pretty engaged and I wouldn't discount their 'quality'.

WP forum is the place for positive industry interaction and welcomes your professional and informed opinion.

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