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PFS: Advisers need to boost online presence

Advisers, rather than the Money Advice Service, have a key role to play in reaching out to unadvised consumers, says the Personal Finance Society.

In its latest research report on consumers and the RDR last week, the PFS says it has changed its view on how best to educate unadvised consumers.

It says: “In our 2011 and 2012 surveys, we took the view the MAS has an important role to play in the process of educating unadvised consumers.

“This year we have slightly altered our view, and now believe advisers have a key role in reaching out to this market.

“This is because of the high proportion of ‘self-advisers’ [DIY investors] who rely on internet-based resources. It suggests if advisers were to increase their online presence, and invest in creating resources online that can provide consumers with information to help with their research, with the promise of more if they booked a face-to-face session, this might help.”

The survey of 2,000 consumers found that among unadvised consumers who were aware of the RDR, 37 per cent had heard about it through the media, while just 5 per cent cited the FCA website and 4 per cent cited the MAS.

The PFS says: “The MAS and the FCA website have ranked very low, suggesting actual or potential customers of financial advice do not really use these sources.”

Page Russell director Tim Page says: “I am fed up with various people with vested interests telling me how I should run my business. It is up to advisers to decide whether they want to engage with certain market segments.”

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