The new CRM2 reporting standards have drawn much criticism from advisors, many of whom believe that investors will just end up confused or questioning the value of professional advice. But a blog post by financial CRM software provider Maximizer suggests that advisors ought to embrace the spirit of the regulations.
Quoting Paul Strijckers, VP Business Solutions at Broadridge Financial Solutions, the piece recommends being proactive and getting the client involved before the reports hit their inboxes.
“Most reasonable people understand that they can’t expect someone to work for free,” Strijckers says. “Explain what you do for the client, the fees you earn, and the value you are creating — before reports are released.” This, according to him, requires a firm knowledge of your value proposition and your unique approach and services.
Having such a conversation ahead of time will lay the foundation for more nuanced and in-depth discussion later on. Strijckers explains that to prepare for these dialogues, advisors will have to develop scripts. “Anticipate your clients’ questions and objections and prepare standardized responses in advance of any meetings or conversations,” he says.
He emphasizes, however, that the developed scripts should not stop at standard responses. They will have to be fine-tuned with experience based on which points were most difficult for clients to understand, as well as any unanticipated questions.
The scripts should also be tailored for each conversation based on the particulars of each client’s portfolio so that the advisor can speak on their particular results. Issues that affect performance are particularly important, so advisors should discuss with their client what benchmark is appropriate for their account, how the account fared based on the benchmark, what events influenced returns, and any money inflows or outflows that affected the rate of return.
To help with the development of such scripts, Strijckers suggests that a well-developed CRM dashboard is needed. “A carefully structured client dashboard really helps by putting essential client account information at your fingertips at all times,” he says.
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