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IFA Life partners with Foursquare to help consumers access tips about local IFAs

New geo-location social networking tool to help IFAs differentiate themselves locally.

IFA Life has launched its branded page on Foursquare, the leading location-based social networking site – giving IFAs and financial advisers a great new way to raise their profile on the Internet.

One of just a few hundred brands from around the world including Sony, Gucci, NASA, The Wall Street Journal, Harrods and others – IFA Life’s partnership with Foursquare enables consumers to locate information and tips about financial advisers on GPS-enabled mobile devices, such as iPhones, Android mobile phones, Symbian and BlackBerry smartphones.

In 2010, users checked in to Foursquare on 381,576,305 occasions, and it is believed that IFA Life is the first financial services brand in the world to have teamed up with Foursquare in this way.

With more people accessing the Internet via mobile devices than fixed desktop computers, IFAs and financial advisers need to focus their attention on ensuring their website is easily accessible from smartphones and tablet devices such as the iPad.

Founder of IFA Life Philip Calvert says:

“There are still many IFAs who do not even have a website, let alone have an online presence that has been optimised for mobile devices. And when people do search online for financial advisers, they need to find more than just directories of IFAs which list out services provided.”

“Lists and directories of IFAs are nearing the end of their sell-by date, as consumers will increasingly want new and more interactive ways to quickly see how one financial adviser differs from another locally.”

RDR will force many IFAs to clearly differentiate their service proposition, and social networking technology is helping to facilitate that through blogs, video, photographs, photos, reviews, question and answer services, forums, presentations, location-based services and Apps.

When a user checks in to Foursquare via their mobile device, they are able to view tips about locations and businesses. IFA Life members taking advantage of the service are now able to add tips about their service or business – including financial advisers around the world.

“Tips about businesses need to reveal a different side to your financial advice business; simply saying that you help with pensions is of limited value. People want to see what’s different about you and something of your personality.”

Tips should be:

Actionable (go here, do this, see this, ask about etc)

Relevant to a specific location/address

Valuable and useful, giving ‘insider information’

Interesting, short, clever, worthwhile, occasionally entertaining and as though from a trusted friend

Under 200 characters

Tips could also promote seminars, events, local sponsorship initiatives, networking opportunities, IFA job vacancies and niche markets catered for

New Twitter directory of IFAs and financial planners to help internet-savvy consumers

·        New directory of IFAs and financial planners who use Twitter

·        Starling growth in uptake of Twitter and social networking websites

·        Business case proven for financial advisers

As the Internet celebrates its 20th anniversary, financial services social networking website IFA Life is launching a Directory of IFAs, Financial Planners and Advisers who use Twitter. This will help the growing number of Internet-savvy consumers who are looking for financial advice to find advisers who use the simple but cutting-edge tool.

Twitter is an Internet-based micro-blogging website which enables users to post very short (140 characters maximum) comments, observations and business updates to prospects, existing clients and professional connections.

The growth in use of Twitter has been nothing short of startling – coinciding with the news from online intelligence company Nielsen that ‘member communities’ which include social networking websites and blogging have now overtaken email in popularity.

But Twitter’s core benefit, is that it is proving to be a powerful tool for business users, with one financial planner in the UK having already received a large SIPP enquiry as a result of his use of Twitter.

Philip Calvert, founder of IFA Life said today: “As the World Wide Web reaches its 20th anniversary, it’s exciting that financial planners and IFAs are adopting this powerful new tool to communicate and engage with clients and the wider business community.”

“One of the most interesting trends occurring right now is growing use by consumers to search and find IFAs and planners through social networking websites and tools like Twitter. Google is still the first choice to find financial advisers, but these new Internet tools are growing in popularity because they add a human touch to the search results as real people provide answers to people’s questions.”

Twitter is already an important source of traffic to many websites, meaning that IFAs who want greater exposure for their business online need to build social networking into their marketing strategy.

Whilst there are still many financial advisers who don’t believe that social networking websites can be of benefit to them, they can be heartened by the news that use of sites such as Facebook by those in the 50-64 year-old group is growing at twice the speed as those under 18.

Philip Calvert added:

“Given the extraordinary speed at which Twitter is growing, there’s no doubt that its search capabilities will become more and more important – that’s why we’ve created a directory of IFAs and Financial Planners who are using Twitter. Financial advisers who don’t use Twitter and who aren’t in the directory will miss out on business leads – it’s as simple as that.”

Available now! Social Media Strategy Template for IFAs and Financial Advisers

Good news for IFAs and Financial Advisers!

Since 2004 we’ve been working with IFAs and financial advisers to help them make better use of Social Media within their businesses.

After spending time with hundreds of advisers in person and at workshops, we’ve identified key issues which are holding them back from seeing greater return from their use of Social Media.

So good news! We’ve developed a downloadable Social Media Strategy Template for advisers and IFAs to use which will help them to:

Kickstart their Social Media strategy

Identify key goals within their financial advice business which can be supported by using Social Media

Identify the Social Media tools and techniques which are right for your business

Identify the right type of content to reach the right type of clients

Identify when and how often to post on Social Media

And much more

Designed for IFAs and Financial Advisers

Our forty eight page PDF workbook and template has been designed specifically to meet the needs of IFAs, Financial Planners and Advisers; and when you use it, you’ll identify key goals and activities that will benefit and support your business.

As a result of using this guide, IFAs and Financial Advisers can expect to see:

A significant and measurable increase in visits to their website

Clarity in how they should be using Social Media in their businesses

Complete understanding in how Social Media can support achievement of their business goals

Clear and measurable Social Media activities to support their client proposition

And much more.

If until now you have been following the crowd and not had any clear plan as to how best to use Social Media in your business, here’s your chance to plan, write and implement your strategy at the fraction of the cost of working with an in-house consultant.

Simply download your personal Social Media Strategy Template from LifeTalk, and then work through the notes, examples and exercises to create and identify your plan.

 

What leading financial advisers say

“In an increasingly digital world, every financial adviser needs a social media strategy. Many find it difficult to know where to start or what to consider.

This guide is packed full of practical and actionable steps that take a complex subject and break it down into the essentials. By answering the questions in this guide, financial advisers will quickly build their own social media strategy which can be put to work to get powerful results for their business.” Martin Bamford, Informed Choice

 

 

“Serenity Financial Planning has been working with Phil at LifeTalk for over a year and we’ve been amazed at how he’s grown our visibility online through Social Media – highly recommended for IFAs and financial planners everywhere.” Tina Weeks, Serenity Financial Planning

 

 

Important > This guide does not require you to have any special techncal skills – this is about looking at your business, its goals and identifying key ways to use Social Media to support your business and your client proposition. Simply work through the template and you’ll identify and write a Social Media plan which is bespoke to your financial advice business.

Your investment

To download your Social Media Strategy Template today as an editable PDF workbook, your investment is £147 – discounted to only £69 for LifeTalk members (plus VAT).

For a limited period FREE BONUS eGuide included when you purchase your Social Media Strategy Template: How to Use LinkedIn ~ 300 Tips for IFAs and Financial Advisers

Pay safely and securely using either PayPal, or your credit card when you click the PayPal button. You should download your Social Media Strategy guide here:

Leaderboard – IFAs and Industry Professionals

Check out our Social Media Leaderboard for IFAs, Financial Planners, Paraplanners and wider Financial Services Professionals.

See how you perform online against your peers on our fun leaderboard which ranks industry professionals according to their digital impact around the topic of Financial Advice and Financial Services. The scoring weighting is fully transparent – currently Klout scores contribute to the board which typically is influenced by your activity on Twitter, LinkedIn, Facebook etc. The board is open to any individual in Financial Services, including Providers/Suppliers – though this is restricted to an individual’s Twitter account – not a company/brand account.

To sponsor the board, please email admin@ifalife.com. Click Join below to feature in the next leaderboard release and track your progress each week.

Learn how to use Social Media to increase your score and impact online – download our unique Social Media Strategy Template for IFAs and Financial Advisers – click here.

 

Our next Social Media workshop for IFAs and Advisers is scheduled for 10th January 2017. Join us and we’ll create your Social Media plan on the day, and you’ll leave with a clear action plan which can be implemented immediatel

Social Media in Financial Services 2

  BUILD YOUR BRAND, FIND NEW CLIENTS, GROW YOUR BUSINESS AT
SOCIAL MEDIA IN FINANCIAL SERVICES 2

4th November 2010, Beaumont House, Old Windsor

Venue details and directions are 

“Just wanted to say that I enjoyed the 2 days very much. In fact not having to sit through another 7 hr presentation on why RDR will ruin our livelihoods has been truly refreshing.”

“Social networks and the technology that drive them are here to stay and represent the biggest opportunity the sector has had in a long while to rebuild trust and re-engage with potential clients in a way they value. Well done!” Jon Everill, Bluefin

NEW! PROFESSOR MORRIS PENTEL TO SPEAK AT SOCIAL MEDIA IN FINANCIAL SERVICES 2

We are delighted to announce an additional and very special speaker for this week’s Social Media in Financial Services event:

Understanding how social media changes operating models in financial services and for IFAs.

Professor Morris Pentel runs one of the most respected consulting businesses in the UK with a track record based on successful work for some of the largest financial institutions in the world.

He has been involved in the delivery of some of the most significant innovations in technology over the last 25 years winning a number of prizes. He has managed projects valued in hundreds of millions and been involved in a number of high profile service deliveries on a national scale. He has influenced technology design and best practice for the delivery of contact technologies for nearly a quarter of a century.

He has hosted and spoken at numerous events and had many articles published across the world. He is regarded as a leading thinker in business science pioneering both the cost modelling of customer experience and the use of social media.

Following the phenomenal success of Social Media in Financial Services in January 2010, we are delighted to announce a special one day conference Social Media in Financial Services 2 on Thursday 4th November 2010 at Beaumont House, Old Windsor.

Here’s what IFAs and Providers said after Social Media in Financial Services 1 this January:

“Head and shoulders above any conference I have ever attended.” Rebecca Christensen, Nucleus.

“I think #SocialMediaFS could run and run. If you have any sense at all, you must understand that the internet is changing the world and the financial advice profession. The best place to find out how to ride the wave is #SocialMediaFS – be there for the next one.” Pete Matthew, Jacksons Financial Services

“I really couldn’t agree more, it was superb! The speakers were excellent, and the content was both interesting and thought-provoking with relevance to financial advisers and providers alike.” Ed Evans, Paraplanning Online

“How refreshing to attend a conference where every talk was fresh, new and exciting. There was no doom and gloom about our industry, instead there was an almost tangible excitement bubbling away over the two days.” Tina Weeks, Serenity Financial Planning

“What an amazing event! I thought it was stunningly successful and could genuinely move the industry forward.” Martin Skinner, Inspired Asset Management


SOCIAL MEDIA IN FINANCIAL SERVICES 2

4th November 2010

Beaumont House, Windsor

08.00am – 09.00am

Registration and Networking

09.00am – 09.15am

Welcome

Philip Calvert, IFA Life

09.15am – 09.50am

The day that Social Networks became Trusted Financial Brands

Thomas Power, Chairman of Ecademy

09.50am – 10.30am

Why Financial Advisers and Financial Services Brands need to have a Digital Mindset

Penny Power, Founder of Ecademy

10.30am – 11.20am

Technology in Financial Services – the Future today and what will change your World

Mike Linskey, Director of Fincision Financial Services Business Consultancy

11.20am – 11.50am

Break

11.50am – 12.50pm

Is it too late for Financial Services brands to benefit from Social Media – or a golden opportunity for an industry that’s still on the back foot?

Christophe Langlois, Visible Banking

12.50pm – 13.50pm

Lunch and Networking

13.20pm – 13.50pm

Optional LinkedIn Masterclass.

Proven strategies for IFAs and Financial Brands to find new contacts and to win new business

Philip Calvert, IFA Life

13.50pm – 14.30pm

IFAs in the Digital Space – exciting new opportunities for IFAs online

Robert Pink, Google

14.30pm – 15.20pm

How IFAs and Financial Product Providers can use Social Media to provide outstanding Customer Service

Guy Stephens, Foviance

15.20pm – 15.40pm

Break

15.40pm – 16.30pm

Social Media in Financial Services Awards 2010 and Principles and Best Practice for IFAs’ and Providers use of Social Media in Financial Services

16.30pm – 17.15pm

Do you have a Logo or a Brand? Transitioning your Marketing to Online in a post RDR world

Jaime Steele, Fleming Steele

17.15pm – 17.30pm

Summary and Close

Philip Calvert, IFA Life

IFA Life reserves the right to change the programme at any time.

Social Media marketing is a powerful and exciting opportunity for IFAs and financial services brands. But most are “still thinking about it” and missing out on integrating it into their sales, marketing and communication mix.

If you’re not using social media, one thing’s for sure; you’re not hearing what your customers are saying, you’re not truly engaging with them and you’re moving further and further away from them. You’re going to be left way behind unless you build social media marketing strategies now.

Attending Social Media in Financial Services 2 will be a new and different experience for many in the industry. This is a serious business event with serious networking to be done – and where IFAs, Providers and Suppliers will meet to learn and share best practice.

You’ll get together with fellow industry professionals, with outstanding presentations designed to discuss new technologies, best tactics, quick wins, methods and strategies for embracing the Internet and to engage with your clients. As one delegate told us at our event in january:

“If you’re not here, you’re not learning and you’ll be left behind.”

Key Speakers

Key speakers for Social Media in Financial Services 2 are already confirmed from Google and IFA Life.

We’re also delighted to welcome back Mike Linskey from Fincision with the very latest online developments from the USA in financial services. Plus – Jaime Steele of Fleming Steele whose jaw-dropping presentation left IFAs spellbound at the January conference!

Revealing how to use Social Media in Customer Services will be the UK’s leading expert Guy Stephens from online customer services experts Foviance. Foviance help companies around the world to improve the customer experience they offer, including Nokia, the BBC, Littlewoods, William Hill, Dunhill, Sky and many others. Customer Services is one of, if not the biggest issue for financial brands to get right, so don’t miss Guy’s amazing insights.

We are also really excited to confirm that Christophe Langlois, a globally renowned expert on social media in banking is also confirmed to speak.

If you were lucky enough to attend Social Media in Financial Services 1 this year, we can promise more startling insights into how the Internet is impacting the world of financial services and financial advice. You”ll benefit from a high content-packed day which we guarantee will move your business forward.

Attendees will include:

·        IFAs

·        Financial Planners

·        Paraplanners

·        Life, pension and investment providers

·        Banks and mortgage lenders

·        IFA support companies

·        Financial services recruiters

·        Financial services PR, digital and media professionals

·        And anyone in the financial services industry who believes that the Internet will have a part to play in their business.

If you missed the last conference, then here’s your second chance to be part of what has been described as “a groundbreaking industry event”.

IFA Life Enhanced Directory Listings

During tougher economic times, many IFAs, Financial Planners and Mortgage Brokers are telling us that they’re looking for greater exposure for their businesses.

Because more and more people now use the Internet and online social networking sites like IFA Life to find IFAs, you can take advantage of our Enhanced Directory Listings service to further build your profile. Our listings not only highlight your business details but automatically include your website details, logo and email links.

Plus, the Directory Listings page is specially optimised to be attractive to Google and other search engines. Your listing will include your logo (or banner advertisement if you have one), website address, telephone/email/contact details and a paragraph of information and your business keywords. We will automatically hyperlink your keywords to your company website which can help to boost your rankings in search engine results. If you have more than one website or Blog, we will include links to these sites at no extra cost.


IFA Life Google Map

You’ll also receive a free entry on our new IFA Life Google Map – a special service which helps people to find financial advisers like you at the click of a mouse. See our 

Your investment in the IFA Life Enhanced Directory Listing is just £197 (includes vat) for 12 months. Buy now to guarantee this price in 2009. Full page ‘micro-sites’ on IFA Life are also available at £587 (includes vat). Please contact us for details.


To book your IFA Life Directory listing and Google Map entry now
, please pay securely with PayPal using your credit or debit card. You do not need to have a PayPal account to use the button below. Payments may also be made by cheque payable to Ciris Business Development Ltd and sent to IFA Life, 1 Beaver Cottages Smithwood Common, Cranleigh, Surrey, GU6 8QX, UK.

 

Financial Planning Cartoons

Enjoy! If you have a great cartoon which you would like to include here, please send an email to us.

“The only thing worse than being talked about is not being talked about.”

Today, Oscar Wilde’s comments are more relevant than ever to financial services brands in the fast-moving Internet world.

 When customers are talking about you online – are you listening? And if they’re not talking about you, what are you doing to engage and kick-start the conversation?

 Social media marketing is a powerful and exciting opportunity for financial services brands. But most are “still thinking about it” and missing out on integrating it into their sales, marketing and communication mix.

 If you’re not using social media, one thing’s for sure; you’re not hearing what your customers are saying, you’re not truly engaging with them and you’re moving further and further away from them. You’re going to be left way behind unless you build social media marketing strategies now.

Not sure where to start?

 If you’re serious about using social media to get closer to your customers, January 2010 sees one of the most exciting and eagerly anticipated eMarketing conferences in years – one that’s specifically focused on helping financial services marketers to network, share best practice and debate key issues on how to use social networking technology to get closer to customers.

IFA Life, the award-winning social networking website for financial advice professionals is proud to present Social Media in Financial Services at the Guoman Tower Hotel, Tower Bridge, London on 13th and 14th January 2010.

See the full programme here >>>

You’ll discover new ideas to interact and engage with target customers and intermediaries online, and to increase your web traffic and conversion rates. With keynote presentations confirmed from Google, LinkedIn, the BBC, BT Tradespace, Ecademy, Informed Choice, The Gate and acclaimed Internet experts, this is one event which financial services marketing and communication professionals and IFA/financial planning firms won’t want to miss!

Check back for details of top speakers as they are announced. Cutting edge content included includes:

The evolution of social media and why it’s relevant to your financial services brand

How to use social media to drive more traffic to yours or your clients’ websites and achieve high conversion rates

Reputation is everything – how to use social media to cement trust and credibility

Social media psychology – what financial brands need to know about how people behave online

How to build Community round your financial services brand – proven tips, tools and tactics

How to get client and colleague buy-in to social media marketing projects

The truth about how to make your brand, organisation or clients more visible through social media

How to get closer to customers with social media – starting from scratch

How to keep control of your brand message in online communities

How to successfully engage with financial intermediaries online

Tried, tested and proven techniques to engage with your customers through social media

How financial PR professionals can use social networks to reach the press and media

How to identify PR opportunities and threats from social media and user generated content

The role of mobile technologies in financial services marketing

How to complement your search marketing initiatives with social media

Best practice in social media from other industries – pearls, pitfalls, myths and legends

How to tweet to woo customers – the inside secrets to using Twitter

Faster ways to analyse customer information that will optimise your online performance

Build your own social network – or work in partnership with existing sites?

Startling quick wins with LinkedIn, Facebook, Ecademy, IFA Life and others

And much more

Attending Social Media in Financial Services will be a new and different experience for many in the industry. This is a serious business event with serious networking to be done – and where sales, marketing and communication experts from life/pensions and investment providers, insurers, creative agencies, media buyers, banks, building societies, mortgage lenders, national IFAs and networks/support companies can meet to learn and share best practice.

You’ll get together with fellow industry professionals, with outstanding presentations designed to discuss new technologies, best tactics, methods and strategies for digital marketers and owners of online strategies.

IFAs are signing up now at VIP prices – click here >>>

Providers and Suppliers are signing up – click here >>>

Highlights from Social Media in Financial Services will also be posted live on Twitter and via Cover it Live here. The conference hashtag is #SocialMediaFS . Feel free to use it now in your tweets and follow updates on Twitter at www.twitter.com/IFALife.

And, join our Social Media in Financial Services LinkedIn Group.

Outstanding venue

The venue for Social Media in Financial Services is the Guoman Tower Hotel, set next to two of the most famous landmarks in the world – Tower Bridge and the Tower of London. Take time too to explore the beautiful St Katharine’s Dock – a vibrant waterside environment boasting many restaurants specialising in Indian food, seafood, plus bars, cafes and good traditional food and drink.

Contact us about special accommodation rates at the Tower Hotel.

See the full programme here >>>

Professionals like you who are attending:

Senior Head of Financial Services, Google UK

Head of Marketing Technology, the BBC

Chairman of Ecademy (watch video)

Head of BT Tradespace

Digital Director of The Gate Worldwide

Director Europe, Corporate Solutions at LinkedIn

Chief Executive of Informed Choice IFA

Heads of eCommerce

Heads of Sales and Marketing

Public Relations professionals

Communications professionals

Financial services marketing professionals

Financial services digital marketing professionals

Media Planners

Media Buyers

E-commerce professionals

Financial journalists

Financial planners and IFAs

IFA support companies and suppliers

Partners and Sponsors

A limited number of premium sponsorship packages are available – please contact us on +44 (0)1483 548 666 or email to philip@ifalife.com for details. Please try again later if lines are busy.

Opportunities include:

Gold sponsor

Silver sponsor

Lunch workshop sponsor

Delegate badge sponsor

Afternoon workshop (x2)

Networking reception

Programme advertising

Media partners

Please contact us for details.

Exhibition

Do you provide products and services to the financial services industry?

Exhibit and network with delegates and significantly raise your profile over the two days of the conference. The full exhibition package is £5,250 plus vat, but when you book immediately, your investment is just £3,887 plus vat for the two days. Includes access to the conference for two people, advertisement profile on IFA Life, feature in IFA Life’s Twitter stream, lunch and refreshment on both days and Special Report Quick Wins with Social Media in Financial Services (worth £595).

Contact us for other sponsorship packages: page@pagemedia.co.uk

Programme advertising

If you provide products and services to the financial services industry, you’re guaranteed visibility in our conference programme which will be received by all delegates. We have a range of packages available – please contact Nick Page at page@pagemedia.co.uk for further information.

Conference Passes

Providers and Suppliers both days: £1,575 plus vat. Book immediately and your investment is locked in at only £897 plus vat. Click here >>>

One day: £850 plus vat. Book immediately: £497 plus vat

Please enquire about multiple discounts

IFAs, Financial Planners – click here for VIP prices and to sign up now

 

IFA Life ELITE members: Free

My Sources for Marketing Information

As a marketing professional specializing in the financial services industry, I would like to think I know everything there is to know about marketing in this field. But like any profession, there is always more to learn. I make an effort to read everything I can about financial services marketing. I read, purchase and download any information I can find from industry thought leaders for my own professional development. There are hundreds of wonderful resources available, but I thought I would share with you a few of the resources I’ve used for my own professional development so far this year. I hope you find them as valuable as I do.

Books/Programs I’ve Purchased:

•             Secrets of Successful Client Events, Horsesmouth

•             Surprise & Delight Mini-Guide, Oechsli Institute

•             Intimate Client Events, Oechsli Institute

•             Social Media Prospecting Mini-Guide, Oechsli Institute

  White Papers I’ve Downloaded:

•             The Future of the Financial Advisory Business, Inside Information by Bob Veres

•             A Guide to Twitter Social Networking Compliance, Socialware

•             A Guide to Facebook Social Networking Compliance, Socialware

•             A Guide to LinkedIn Social Networking Compliance, Socialware

Videos I’ve Watched:

•             Niche Marketing for Financial Planners, Next 10 Clients

 Blogs/Newsletters/Articles I’ve Read:

•             Plain Speak eNewsletter, Wendy J. Cook Communications

• Investment Writing Blog, Susan B. Weiner Investment Writing

•             E-Marketing Blog, Wired Advisor

•             Make it a Great Day Blog, MIAGD

 

•             The 100 Best Marketing Ideas, Senior Market Advisor

Why should consumers pay IFAs for advice when information is free?

The expression ‘knowledge is power’ is well known and until recently was all too often seen in the sales process. Just think about how you would have bought a car 10 years ago. You would first go around a few car showrooms to see the models available, then have a chat with your friends to gather their views, and finally buy a copy of ‘What Car’ in the hope that it could provide a review. Ultimately though, the person that you had to rely on most for information was the salesman. Of course they had the knowledge about price, performance, reliability, competition etc, and the power to decide how much of this to share. This knowledge gave them the power.

Fast forward to the present day and things have changed a lot. Now if you want to buy a car you first go online to research the different models and read the reviews of existing users. Next you search for the best deal for a particular model, along with information about the garages who sell the car. Armed with this knowledge, you can march to your local dealer, tell them about the best deal you know about and ask them to better it. Access to information has moved the power from the salesman to the consumer.

What has this got to do with financial services? Well 77% of consumers now see the internet as the best method of researching financial services products, 43% think financial discussion boards are a valuable source of information, and 39% think the web is a good place to get a second opinion post the receipt of advice.

So against this background, how can IFAs, who effectively exist by selling knowledge, continue to thrive when the consumer expectation is that information is for free?

The answer lies in understanding where an adviser can add value to freely available information, and there are a number of opportunities to do this, including:

·        Personlisation: Converting generalised data into relevant, meaningful information which is specifically pertinent to an individual client.

·        Insight: Using knowledge and experience to interpret information so as to communicate the implications of that information. In the context of websites this means not just pumping out news but commenting on it.

·        Currency: Ensuring that the knowledge imparted reflects the current situation rather than the huge legacy of outdated information that circulates online. Again with in the context of the web site this means ensuirng appropriate, regularly updated content is provided.

·        Authenticity: This comes from the ongoing provision of useful information to your clients at all times, not just when there is a sale in the offing.

·        Convenience: Yes, your client can find all the information they need online, so make sure they think that finding it out from you is easier.

·        Authority: I could probably fix my car’s brakes using information online, but I want the reassurance of an expert when it comes to the safety of myself and my family. The same should be true of financial advice, so communicate your expertise.

Achieving this differentiation requires thinking about the whole of your proposition and how you communicate it. But it is only through understanding and demonstrating the value add that an IFA brings to the relationship they have with their client that they will be able to thrive if the world of free and unlimited information.

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