Due to ongoing industry consolidation, occasional market turmoil, or personal drive to increase earning power, top-producing financial advisors occasionally change Broker/Dealers (B/Ds). Some go to work for another competing Wirehouse or Regional B/D in the quest for a better overall platform, research, and support team, as well as a lucrative signing bonus. Other breakaway brokers leave to start their own RIA or seek higher payouts and more freedom with an independent B/D. The departure of any veteran advisor with a large book of business can be a crushing blow to the revenue and clients of the firm and particularly to the branch location.
The switching of firms by high-caliber advisors or advisor teams also poses a challenge for the internal and external wholesalers of mutual fund companies. Essentially, such a firm change by the high-end advisor increases the risk of fund wholesalers losing contact with their main advocates, distributors, and top sellers of their products to retail investors and retirement plans. Though the advisor may have actively promoted and written large-dollar tickets in the past, he may decide to explore other fund offerings and start fresh. If the fund’s wholesaling team is unable to stay in touch with the advisor and aid his transition, his product sales of that fund family will probably decline and eventually dry up. For instance, rival wholesalers already in good standing at the advisor’s new branch will more than likely strategically reach out, offer assistance, and try to become one of the advisor’s three preferred fund families, thereby immediately stealing market share.
Related to needing improved tracking of broker movement is the desire of fund wholesalers to have better updates on licensed reps exiting and entering the industry. First, it is crucial to be able to quickly identify registered reps that leave not only a firm, but the industry overall so that time is not wasted on trying to reach people who can no longer even recommend and sell mutual funds. Additionally, fund wholesalers need insights, flags, and alerts on new brokers joining firms in their region. That way, fund wholesalers can introduce themselves before the competition does, get acquainted, and help the rookie advisor ramp up and grow his practice.
Besides being able to effectively monitor broker transitions, departures, and start-ups, fund wholesalers need flexible, integrated technology tools that display advisors' key contact info, demographics, detailed market segmentation, production results, and sales rankings. To better manage their territory, fund wholesalers definitely need intuitive activity tracking and call list planning functionality as seen in the sample below.
After all, they may only have a 3 minute phone call, a 15 minute office visit, or a 30 minute lunch-and-learn session to make the right pitch to the broker. With so much riding on each brief interaction with the broker, internal and external wholesaler partners need to efficiently collaborate, plan, and prepare for upcoming sales calls and appointments.
So where should mutual fund companies turn when they want to equip their retail and retirement plan fund wholesalers with maximum 360-degree visibility into all of the broker interactions, production figures, and opportunities for growth in their sales region? The answer is Microsoft Dynamics CRM 2011.
As the two-time defending Microsoft Dynamics CRM East Region Partner of the Year, Customer Effective has enhanced CRM 2011 with asset management specific functionality to help leading money managers achieve lower implementation costs and higher user adoption rates. The system is designed to help fund wholesalers and national account sales execs develop a deeper understanding of broker relationships and achieve preferred fund family status and product placement on more strategic B/D recommendation lists. The flexibility and open architecture of the platform allows for integration with core back-office financial systems and market/fund distribution data providers. As a result, the efficiencies and synergies gained with the Customer Effective: Asset Management CRM solution will empower internal and external fund wholesalers to consistently reach more top-producers and boost sales and fund inflows at 1) the broker or advisor level, 2) the branch or office level, and 3) the dealer or firm level.
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Post by: Kevin Wessels, Customer Effective,