As a financial advisor, you probably have one recurring problem with advising clients on how to manage and invest their money: they do not share your technical sophistication when it comes to using financial software. The solution is to use software that they can understand, too.
The Technical Language Barrier
Before we discuss software that is useful for financial planners and also intelligible to clients, let’s talk about why it’s important to be able to improve communication. Imagine a client walks into your office seeking your advice on how to set up their retirement nest egg and you start spouting terms like:
· Thrift Savings (TSP)
· Roth retirement plans
Unless, they have financial literacy, you will be speaking way above their heads. If they can’t understand what you’re saying, if it sounds like Latin or Greek to them, how can they follow your advice?
Even Affluent Clients Can Be Financially Illiterate
Financial literacy does not often have to be associated with poverty. Even affluent clients may have no clue about how much money they have. Their affluence may be a result of accident rather than intention. They may be recipients of money, rather than the creators of their own good fortune–perhaps, a widow of a prosperous businessman, a trust-fund kid, an accident award recipient, or a lucky relative.
Educating Clients about Retirement
If you wish to offer client’s relevant, meaningful advice, you have to be able help them get a clear picture of how they can systematically improve their personal finances. However, it is difficult to provide them with accurate and relevant information if they can’t follow along. Fortunately, some financial software companies have pondered this problem and have actually found a way to close the gap between the ultra-sophisticated advisor and the utterly naïve client. The Retirement Analysis Kit (TRAK) is an example of software that is used by financial advisors for getting their clients up to speed on the complex language of retirement financial instruments. This software for financial advisors is also something that clients can grasp as they are shown reports, graphs, and charts that don’t require a comprehensive education in finance. When clients can quickly and easily understand what their financial advisors are recommending, it’s a win-win situation.
A Nice Side Effect
Interestingly enough, the idea of sharing software that is friendly to both financial advisors and people unaccustomed to financial terms can be considered an indirect way for you to grow your clientele. Financial advisors who can serve their customers better will get more clients. Since this strategy will transform your financially clueless client into a financially-literate consumer, it will help you do a better job. When you do a better job, it will actually grow your business–because clients will tell family and friends about your wonderful financial advice and your list of clients will grow automatically.
The following article is from one of our external contributors.
It does not represent the opinion of Benzinga and has not been edited.