Lights, camera, action for advisers

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The creators of a new reality TV show featuring financial advisers hope the show will do for advisers what MasterChef did for chefs – boosting your profile even if you don't appear on the show. 

The show, Your Best Interests (YBI), goes into pre-production next month and is set to air early 2014.

Negotiations are currently being held with free-to-air channels, which the show’s creators – evolution media group (emg) – declined to name due to commercial sensitivity.

The series will pair Australians currently facing a life-defining moment with financial advisers who can help them. Creators say a broad audience will get to see what advisers do and the value of advice.

“The public traditionally have a poor understanding of what advisers do. Advisers are not understood. But advisers change lives, it’s very, very emotional stuff,” emg managing director Marcus Field told Wealth Professional

A recent survey by investment manager Blackrock found only 15% of Australians use a financial adviser.

The show, which imbeds advice into real consumer storylines, will have an “entertainment core”, said Field.

“Often the life events that prompt people to seek advice – such as marriage, buying a new home or being made redundant – are the events that bring the greatest emotion. This makes good TV.”

According to Field, the eight to 10 advisers featured will become celebrities with significant public profiles.

But advisers in general will gain a boost, much in the same way cooking shows have popularised the chef profession, said Field.

“Hopefully YBI will do for advisers what MasterChef did for chefs.”

The series is complemented by a web version of the show, featuring around 30 to 40 smaller storylines over the course of the year. The Association of Financial Advisers is collaborating, and AFA members will be represented on the show’s website.

AFA chief executive Brad Fox called the series a “game-changer” in making the public aware of what financial advisers really do.  

There has already been great interest in the series, with 93 applications from consumers wishing to appear on the show. Forty-six advisers – chosen from a recent AFA conference – have been through casting calls.


The game-changer for advice

  • Keith L. on 3/12/2013 12:55:37 PM

    The best management course I ever attended was run by an industrial psychologist previously employed by a management consultancy firm. Attendees were given problems to solve and after we had collectively come to a range of impractical and sometimes disastrous solutions, we were given the real solutions as implemented by the management consultancy team including an analysis of the results. Despite the rather ordinary and pedestrian nature of much of our business, if presented in a similar way, such a show could be of interest to the public. I agree that comments regarding fees and the mundane processes inflicted on our industry have some validity as do concerns that vested interests could be over represented. However, we have suffered and survived such bias in the past and anticipate we can continue to do so. I believe our profession will benefit from the exposure and look forward to assessing the outcomes.

  • Ben CFP on 2/12/2013 5:26:02 PM

    Gee Bruce you're not sucked in by reality TV are you. As said by GAB above, will we see the reality of FDS's, SoA's, FSG's, fees and charges, PDS explainations, disclosure, etc etc etc. Will the planner engage a debt recoverer when she doesn't pay her bill because she cannot see or feel a tangible benefit in what she is paying for? I hope we do but would that make for watchable TV that will hit the ratings big time? I think not. It would not be commercially viable for the TV station producing it (or are they doing this for the love of it?). Are these advisers going to be paid? If so how? Do they need to disclose this? Are they independant advisers or are they attached to a dealer? If attached to a dealer will we see product recommendations? What impact will that have on those dealers that are not included? Does that mean they are bad because they weren't on the TV? Are these advisers, who will become 'stars' that much better than the average adviser? Sounds like another Mark Bouris TV reality show in the making, just without the 'stars' and just without him wasting his money on it. As we all know, money talks, BS walks. It's a reality of life. I can see it now, clients coming in to get the advice they saw on TV and not expecting to pay for it because it was on TV so it is readily available so why should they pay. Well it certainly will be interesting. The disclosure at the end of the show will be longer than the show itself!

  • Innocent Observer on 2/12/2013 4:52:38 PM

    Anyone else get the feeling this could go terribly wrong? After all, good advice is often boring advice. I hate to think what might happen to "spice" the show up...

    But then again, one man's pleasure is another man's poison

  • Bill CFP on 2/12/2013 2:42:51 PM

    I applaud anything that helps the public understand what we do. How many times have you hard someone say "I don't need an adviser because I don't have any money". That's what they think we are all about. Or some "I have an adviser" and when you enquire what he does it turns out he is actually a mortgage broker.

  • Pat on 2/12/2013 2:33:04 PM

    I agree with Bruce.

    It will be interesting to see whether any of the advisers come from the RE side of the fence - you know the kind: the only solution is the geared SMSF property investment.

  • Ace on 2/12/2013 2:32:46 PM

    Just hope Industry funds don't decide to run their adviser bashing ads during this timeslot. I could see them trying to play this card - that's their style.

  • Bruce Gingell on 2/12/2013 1:28:07 PM

    Time to step out of the cupboard Ben. At last advisers will get real life media coverage of the good work they do in helping Australians financially. If I was running a TV network I would jump at this opportunity!

  • GAB on 2/12/2013 1:28:05 PM

    Will we also see our celebrity clients receiving their FDS letters and SOAs and ROAs and FSGs and fee for service invoices...or will it be gushy pro bono services only....."in next week's episode of YBI, Lucy gets a bill from her adviser and refuses to pay it"

  • Ben CFP on 2/12/2013 10:38:57 AM

    Are they serious? A TV show about financial planning? Good luck with that one. I can see the pillows and blankets coming out for that.

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