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2023 Affiliated Advisors Retreat

2023 Affiliated Advisors Retreat

July 18, 2023

Every year, Affiliated Advisors gathers together our top advisors for a multi-day event of best practice sharing, networking and timely industry content from some of the top speakers in the industry. The idea and design for the retreat is to foster the Affiliated Advisors community and culture, while providing new ideas to help advisors continue to grow, compete and succeed.

This year, the Retreat was held at the fabulous William Vale hotel in the trendy Williamsburg district of Brooklyn, NY.  The venue provided the right level of comfort and a cozy space to gather everyone, while at the same time providing access to one of the most vibrant and exciting neighborhoods in all of New York City.

Kicking of the Retreat was Rita Robbins, Affiliated Advisors President and one of the three managing directors. Robbins, known for her innovative takes on how to grow an advisory firm, provided a compelling message around growth and marketing. Particularly, now as the latest industry stats are showing the slowdown in growth for financial advisors after a long period of market expansion.

Robbins cited the latest industry statistics that are flashing alarm bells around the decline in growth. “According to recent studies[1], despite an increase in the number of advisors, overall assets have fallen by $14 trillion, the first decline since 2008. Additionally, the FPA and Janus conducted a recent survey[2] and their findings show the disconnect between intention and action. The study showed that despite 71% of all firms saying growth was a top priority, only 34% increased their client base by 10 or more new clients.”

In order to address these challenges, Robbins provided a few key strategies for advisors to consider, including to reignite traditional marketing activities, as relying solely on referrals can be limiting to growth. “The referral channel can be an inefficient way to grow; and in fact, the firms that are growing the fastest rely on referrals the least[3],” she said. “Rather, just by doing a few simple things such as investing to have a modern, fresh, appealing website that reflects who the advisor is and what they bring to their clients’ lives, along with increasing social media presence to illustrate how advisors interact with their clients, communities and families can go a long way to turbo-charging lead generation.”

Robbins also noted that growth can also come from within, simply by freeing up advisors’ time to focus on business development and a renewed focus on client satisfaction. Leveraging client segmentation to transfer legacy clients that are no longer a fit to a junior advisor, enables lead advisors to add capacity for marketing and growth activities.

“Another internal focus strategy advisors can lean into is to identify clients who have ‘quietly quit.’” Robbins noted. “While this group of clients don’t actually leave the firm, they are no longer providing you with additional assets or accounts for consolidation. They provide no referrals and have not made introductions or enabled you to develop relationships with their adult children.” Robbins advises that, “It is critical to pay attention to these behaviors of the quiet-quitters as it is all too easy to overlook them and miss out on their growth potential. A good next step is to recognize these behaviors, seek those clients out and have an honest dialogue about how you can improve the services you provide to them.”

The main agenda for the Retreat featured senior executives from leading partner firms providing keen insights on a number of investing and financial planning topics. These firms included Pacific Life, DBS, Transamerica, Allianz, AssetMark, Nationwide and Touchstone Investments, and all provided compelling ideas, strategies and the latest industry research to helping advisors run better businesses, while enhancing client service and the client experience.  We thank them for their continued partnership and support of the Affiliated Advisors Retreat!

Tom Rippberger and Trisha Qualy, both managing directors for Affiliated Advisors, led discussions during the many breaks and meals on key topics such as how to grow your business through mergers and acquisitions <DOWNLOAD HERE> as well as how to efficiently onboard and transition new advisors <DOWNLOAD HERE>.

Bringing the networking and community building aspects of the Retreat were the crack staff of Affiliated Advisors, led by conference organizer supreme, Kim Heines. Heines and her colleagues organized a number of networking receptions and dinners, taking advantage of the trendy, upscale properties in the Williamsburg neighborhood in Brooklyn, including a fabulous roof-top reception that provided jaw-dropping views of the Manhattan skyline.

To learn more about Affiliated Advisors and our unique approach to providing the platform, technology, practice management resources and our growing, vibrant community of nearly 100 advisory firms, log onto