I just read a summary of a J.D. Power Wealth Management report on how advisors are handling COVID-19. While the pandemic has forced a command performance of crisis communications and remote portfolio reviews to which we’ve all had to adapt, the report points to some untapped opportunities:

  • 31% of advisor clients did not hear from their advisor at all during COVID-19, based on advisor surveys taken from May 27 – June 5.
  • 28% of clients heard from their advisor only one time (23% received two communications and 18% received three or more).
  • Investors who heard from their advisor were two times more likely to rebalance their portfolios.
  • Only 12% of advisor clients have engaged with advisors on a video conference during COVID-19, even though 73% say they use online platforms.

Our own anecdotal experience at AssetMark is similar. My gut, this survey, and thousands of conversations with advisors by our team members tell me that about 35% of you are hunkered down and waiting for this pandemic to end, while 50% of you are focused on protecting your business so you are (rationally) focusing on existing clients. This leaves maybe 15% who are focused on both protecting your existing business and finding ways to grow. Together, we can do more.

At AssetMark, once we got our employees remote and productive in mid-March, we doubled down on our growth strategy by investing in our platform preparing for the post-pandemic world.

That investment is all about helping you grow your businesses. We have met with 99% of you by Zoom, phone, webinar, and email, sharing intellectual content on the markets, practice management advice, and client-facing materials. We believe that now is the time for all of us to invest in growth strategies.

Growth is life. Growth during the COVID-19 reality is hard, but it is possible. We see it in some of your practices. Money is in motion and winners are winning new clients and new assets. We hope we are doing all we can to help you with content and capabilities so you can grow now, and when the pandemic ends.

Olympic athletes have had to adjust years-long training programs and find ways to improve their performance without access to sophisticated facilities, so they can compete at an elite level in 2021. How will you show up next year? Let’s go make something happen together!

Stay healthy out there!

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Charles Goldman

Charles Goldman is President and CEO of AssetMark, Inc., a leading independent provider of innovative investment and consulting solutions serving financial advisors. Prior to joining AssetMark, he was a senior advisor to Bain & Company and several private equity firms focused on the financial services space. He has been featured in The Wall Street Journal, Barron's, Bloomberg, InvestmentNews, RIABiz, Financial Advisor magazine, Financial Advisor IQ, and WealthManagement.com.


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