This seems to me to be one of the first and more honest surveys of its type on the impact of robo-advice in the UK. Albeit a smallish sample, it reflects a growing undercurrent of concern among financial advisers.
As ever, Pete Matthew is right on the money. He is one of a very small number of financial advisers in the UK who really understands how to market financial expertise. And note that I say 'expertise' rather than 'advice'.
Pete has been pioneering when it comes to using financial education as a differentiator and has left the majority of advisers in the dust. In fact he's so far ahead of everyone else, it's difficult to see how others will catch up.
That said, Pete's approach of regular and high quality content marketing through the use of video and podcasting should be inspiring others to move in a similar direction, but sadly they're not.
It simply isn't an option to sit around waiting for the FCA to give guidance. Every financial advice firm in the UK should now seriously consider appointing a Digital Non Executive Director(DNED) or seek out a digital companion who can act as an experienced resource to advise on strategy, offer regular context setting updates and make connections on their journey to transform and build their business in the new social digital economy.
And that doesn't necessarily mean that every financial advice firm should offer an online or so-called robo service. There is still, and always will be a place for a very high quality face-to-face service - but every firm should now include digital technology as part of their personal and business development learning programme, so that at the very least you can make business decisions from a position of expertise.
Pete Matthew, managing director for Jacksons Wealth Management, said marketing could prove the biggest hurdle for firms looking to adopt robo-advice. “An online service can provide a way of perhaps serving ‘lower value’ clients in the short-term so that they engage with the adviser’s brand, which may well lead to higher-ticket business in the future,” he stated. “But while the technology behind robo-advice actually appears to be straightforward enough, the real issue is that most advisers are clueless when it comes to marketing. “The social aspect should not be underestimated - increasingly people buy based on the recommendations of social media circles and unless advisers are influencing within these channels, no-one will show up to their fancy robo-advice websites.”