Market Overview

Despite Digital Advances and an Increase in Client Communications, Advisors Still Prefer In-Person Meetings: Hartford Funds Survey

Share:

Advisors seek meaningful connection through value-add informational
sessions and seminars

Advisors strongly prefer face-to-face meetings with their clients,
despite more frequent – and still increasing – client communication,
according to new data from Hartford Funds. As digital communication
methods grow in popularity, forward-thinking advisors will need to
adjust their approach in kind to maintain fruitful relationships with
their clients.

Face-to-Face Meetings Remain Top Choice for Advisors

Nearly three-quarters of advisors (73 percent) cited face-to-face
meetings as their favored method of communication with clients and
prospects. By comparison, only 12 percent of advisors found video
options like Skype and FaceTime most useful for these conversations.

Further, when asked which digital platforms advisors use most often for
client and prospect communication, LinkedIn was a clear winner. In fact,
74 percent of respondents ranked it in their top three most-used
platforms. Twitter and Skype were nearly tied as the next most-used
choices with 45 and 43 percent of advisors using them, respectively.

Communication is Skyrocketing

Although they prefer in-person meetings, nearly two-thirds of advisors
(64 percent) report interacting with their clients on at least a weekly
basis to discuss investment strategy, or simply touch-base. Advisors
virtually unanimously (96 percent) anticipate that this frequency of
communication should continue in the next five-to-ten years, with almost
38 percent expecting it to increase by more than 50 percent.

"Effective, consistent communication is the bedrock of the
advisor-client relationship and a strategic imperative in human-centric
advising," said Julie Genjac, Managing Director, Strategic Markets at
Hartford Funds. "As advisors thread the needle and both communicate more
frequently and meet in-person, it's essential that they embrace
firm-approved digital alternatives (like video chat) that allow for more
regular, face-to-face interactions."

Group Informational Sessions an Important Value-Add

As they communicate more frequently with their clients, advisors are
also seeking ways to provide critical value-add outside of their regular
discussions. Over half of advisors (53 percent) reported hosting group
informational sessions (regarding trending investment topics, market
updates, technology, and other subjects) at least quarterly, and
three-quarters (75 percent) do so annually.

"Value-add content is a critical way for advisors to guide their clients
on issues related and unrelated to their finances," said John Diehl,
Senior Vice President of Strategic Markets at Hartford Funds.
"Considering their widespread preference for face-to-face interaction,
advisors must leverage workshops and group informational sessions to
provide valuable insight in-person on important issues, and thereby
ensure that their client relationships are more fruitful and rewarding."

The survey of 116 financial advisors was administered in-person in
June 2018.

About Hartford Funds

Founded in 1996, Hartford Funds is a leading asset manager, which
provides mutual funds, ETFs, and 529 college savings plans. Using its
human-centric investing approach, Hartford Funds creates strategies and
tools designed to address the needs and wants of investors. Leveraging
partnerships with leading experts, Hartford Funds delivers insight into
the latest demographic trends and investor behavior.

The firm's line-up includes more than 55 mutual funds in a variety of
styles and asset classes, as well as a variety of multifactor and active
ETFs. Its mutual funds (with the exception of certain fund of funds) are
sub-advised by Wellington Management or Schroder Investment Management
North America Inc. The strategic beta ETFs offered by Hartford Funds are
designed to help address investors' evolving needs by leveraging a
unique risk-optimized approach, which identifies risks within each asset
class and then deliberately and systematically re-allocates capital
toward risks more likely to enhance return potential. Excluding
affiliated funds of funds, as of March 31, 2018, Hartford Funds
Management Company, LLC and its wholly owned subsidiary, Lattice
Strategies LLC, had approximately $115.4 billion in discretionary and
non-discretionary assets under management. For more information about
our investment family, visit www.hartfordfunds.com.

HIG-W

Some of the statements in this release may be considered forward-looking
statements as defined in the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of
1995. We caution investors that these forward-looking statements are not
guarantees of future performance, and actual results may differ
materially. Investors should consider the important risks and
uncertainties that may cause actual results to differ. These important
risks and uncertainties include those discussed in The Hartford's
Quarterly Reports on Form 10-Q, our 2017 Annual Report on Form 10-K and
the other filings The Hartford makes with the Securities and Exchange
Commission. We assume no obligation to update this release, which speaks
as of the date issued.

From time to time, The Hartford may use its website to disseminate
material company information. Financial and other important information
regarding The Hartford is routinely accessible through and posted on our
website at http://ir.thehartford.com.
In addition, you may automatically receive email alerts and other
information about The Hartford when you enroll your email address by
visiting the "Email Alerts" section at http://ir.thehartford.com.

Investing involves risk, including the possible loss of principal.

Investors should carefully consider a fund's investment objectives,
risks, charges and expenses. This and other important information is
contained in a fund's full prospectus and summary prospectus, which can
be obtained by visiting hartfordfunds.com.
Please read it
carefully before investing.

Mutual funds are distributed by Hartford Funds Distributors, LLC (HFD),
Member FINRA. Exchange-traded products are distributed by ALPS
Distributors, Inc. (ALPS). Advisory services are provided by Hartford
Funds Management Company, LLC (HFMC) and its wholly owned subsidiary,
Lattice Strategies, LLC (Lattice). Certain funds are sub-advised by
Wellington Management Company LLP or Schroder Investment Management
North America Inc. Schroder Investment Management North America Ltd.
serves as a secondary sub-adviser to certain funds. Hartford Funds
refers to HFD, HFMC, and Lattice, which are not affiliated with any
sub-adviser or ALPS.

207734

View Comments and Join the Discussion!