View more on these topics

Shelton: Target markets – clarity is essential


Marketing experts base much of their communications and service design on well-defined target markets. The same principles apply to advice businesses. To test where you stand answer the following:

  • Could everyone in the business describe your main target markets?
  • Do the advisers target the same groups of clients?
  • Do you lose out collectively because you do not share the same target clients: or are you genuinely so different in what you offer that you have to accept this?
  • When was the last time you reviewed exactly what your target clients require?
  • Do you make a loss on some client types?
  • Do you have a minimum client value that everyone sticks to?
  • How close is your desired target market to your existing client profile?
  • How good is your understanding of your existing client base?
  • Is your target market viable and expanding?
  • Will your target market be the same in five years’ time?

No business will have 100 per cent right answers and in some cases it is justifiable for advisers to target differently. However, the greater the consistency the easier it will be to find new clients and retain the ones you wish to keep. If this list raises concerns use it with your key advisers to review your approach to target clients.

David Shelton is the author of The Business of Advice book and website


Paper mountain 010514.jpg

The Pensions Regulator: Fears of mass auto-enrol non-compliance unfounded

As we approach the 4 million milestone for automatic enrolment, I am delighted that 99 per cent of employers have successfully enrolled their workers without the need for us to use our powers. There is real evidence that employers understand the “we’re all in” message and want to do the best for their staff. We […]

Spotlight on charges 700x450.jpg

Law Commission warns on charge cap transaction costs exemption

A Government-backed report warns exempting transaction costs from the pension charge cap risks encouraging trading over long-term investing. The Law Commission, an independent body that sits within the Ministry of Justice, warns that by leaving transaction costs out of the charge cap for auto-enrolment default schemes the Government may have created “inappropriate incentives to trade”. […]


Stephen Womack: Reflecting on my first year as an IFA

This month marks the first anniversary of starting the rest of my working life. It is a year now since I agreed to join David Williams IFA, the Northampton-based chartered financial planners, and to formally leave behind my career as a financial journalist. So it feels a good time to reflect on my first impressions […]


FPC: Stress test rules could push borrowers to longer fixes

The Financial Policy Committee believes new stress testing requirements will push more borrowers towards longer-term fixed rates. Last week, the FPC – the Bank of England committee tasked with safeguarding financial stability – recommended lenders stress test borrowers’ affordability as if base rate was at least 3 percentage points higher at any time over the […]

A guide to automatic re-enrolment

Since the introduction of auto-enrolment in 2012, it has been a popular topic in the press. Recent media focus has been geared towards small and micro employers; however attention is set to return to the UK’s largest businesses as they prepare for re-enrolment. Johnson Fleming has produced a useful guide that provides essential information to help you […]


News and expert analysis straight to your inbox

Sign up


    Leave a comment


    Why register with Money Marketing ?

    Providing trusted insight for professional advisers.  Since 1985 Money Marketing has helped promote and analyse the financial adviser community in the UK and continues to be the trusted industry brand for independent insight and advice.

    News & analysis delivered directly to your inbox
    Register today to receive our range of news alerts including daily and weekly briefings

    Money Marketing Events
    Be the first to hear about our industry leading conferences, awards, roundtables and more.

    Research and insight
    Take part in and see the results of Money Marketing's flagship investigations into industry trends.

    Have your say
    Only registered users can post comments. As the voice of the adviser community, our content generates robust debate. Sign up today and make your voice heard.

    Register now

    Having problems?

    Contact us on +44 (0)20 7292 3712

    Lines are open Monday to Friday 9:00am -5.00pm