IQ Financial Advisor – Print Edition


Three years ago, Caroline Wetzel started publishing a monthly newsletter with the aim of making financial matters more digestible. The newsletter attracted prospects and female customers and ultimately led to informal “Coffee with Caroline” meetings.

“In these intimate settings, like some women’s kitchens, patios and living rooms, we talked about the questions they had about personal finances,” said Wetzel, private wealth advisor at Shelton, Connecticut. Procyon Partners.

Wetzel’s experience is similar to that of other counselors targeting clients – they try to meet the needs of prospects and clients and provide financial advice in a way that interests them.

When the pandemic struck, the Wetzel rallies went virtual. In June of last year, she launched “Third Thursdays with Caroline,” hosting webinars on the third Thursday of each month with content from the Coffee with Caroline conversations. One webinar topic was “Five Tips for Women in their 50s,” for example.

Client engagement and communication are “essential” for counselors to “build and strengthen strong relationships” with clients, according to a report released this month by Cerulli partners, in collaboration with Schwab Asset Management.

“To build trust with female investors, advisors need to foster a sense of collaboration, apply active listening skills, and involve both spouses equally.” Marina Shtyrkov, associate director of Cerulli, said in a statement on the report’s findings. “This includes non-verbal communication, the use of inclusive language and proactive outreach. “

Before the pandemic, in May 2019, Wetzel also launched the Women Owning their Wealth Collaborative with her colleague Amber Kendrick, pension plan consultant at Procyon. WOW, as the initiative is called, provides networking opportunities and a safe space for professional and high net worth women to learn more about finance and investing, according to the company’s website.

Wetzel says WOW has both in-person and virtual events and is designed to bring women together and provide them with information, tools and resources “to help them make thoughtful decisions for the future.” WOW hosted a “Women in Negotiation” webinar this month that explored negotiation skills, for example.

“All of these were born in response to meeting people where they are. It wasn’t “We see the demographics moving in a certain direction,” Wetzel said.

Focus on financial education (while educating the client as well)

In New York City Source Financial Advisors, chief Executive Officer Michelle smith focuses on counseling divorced and divorcing women.

The transition women go through during or after divorce “might be the best time” they spend in financial education because it could save them costly mistakes, she said.

Education must come first, Smith said. “Investments are the last part of it all. It’s a real learning curve for these women – they’re so quick to turn to an investment specialist or financial planner and it’s premature, ”she said.

To this end, Source Financial offers a Wife2CFO program that provides divorced or divorced women with financial education, mentoring and coaching, as well as networking opportunities with other “empowered women,” according to the company’s website. .

“It’s really educating them to understand what they need,” Smith said.

A “money management house” won’t have what this specific set of clients needs, according to Smith. As a financial advisor who is also a divorce mediator and holds the Certified Divorce Financial Analyst designation, Smith says advisers should develop “the knowledge base of any subset and demographic that you go to. to serve”.

Cerulli shares the sentiment in his report: “[W]Men within a specific demographic are more likely to share interests, needs, and preferences. After identifying a segment based on common attributes (i.e. profession, passions, stage of life, etc.), through which counselors can connect, counselors can develop an approach tailor-made and a set of resources that directly meet the needs of these women investors.

“You can’t just hang a shingle and say, ‘I specialize in women. Just like men, not all women are the same, ”said Smith of Source Financial.

Adrianna stasiuk, Managing Director and Investment Advisor in Chicago Aaron Wealth Advisors, says a portfolio review or even a standard meeting can become an opportunity to educate clients.

“These meetings are really opportunities to make sure the client really understands what she’s invested in and why,” Stasiuk said, adding that it’s important not to use industry jargon, but rather to “ make sure the language you are using is the language the customer is using.

The “soft touches” also go a long way, according to Stasiuk, who sent small spa cases to clients she knew were going through tough times, for example. “Women especially look for someone they trust and have a good relationship with,” she said.

Do you have a topical tip that you would like to share with FA-IQ? Write to us at [email protected].

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