Ahead of speaking at Money Marketing Interactive in May, founder and director of The Yardstick Agency Phil Bray gives tips on how advisers can improve their public image and why the FCA should rethink their plans for the register
On a scale of 1 to 10, how optimistic are you about the advice market for 2018?
9.5 (and on a good day I might find that all-important additional 0.5). Everyday I see advisers and planners doing great things for their clients and I truly believe that financial planning can change lives. Sure, our profession faces challenges and there’s still examples of poor practice. However, there’s so much to be positive about; younger planners entering the profession, higher standards than ever, a focus on planning not selling products, to name three.
How can advisers best improve their image with the public?
In three ways. Firstly, building a more effective online presence to better explain what it is they do, and who for. Secondly, highlight poor practice where they see it. Finally, pay it forward; help before you’re asked, be useful and valuable without necessarily expecting anything back in response.
If you could scrap one piece of regulation, what would it be?
I hope the FCA take another look at their plans for the FCA Register. It should be a place the public can trust and easily find basic information about an adviser’s status. Currently, it’s a mess, hard to use and full of unfathomable jargon. In an age of investment scams and fraud surely this is an area in which the regulator should be investing, not cutting back?
Who would be your perfect client, and who would be a nightmare one?
Perfect client: a financial planning firm, or one transitioning to that business model, who is happy to engage with expert help and work in a true partnership.
Nightmare: anyone who treats our team with anything other than respect and courtesy, life is too short!
Bray is speaking at the session on winning the next generation of clients at 4.10pm. To register your interest for Money Marketing Interactive, click here.