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Top FAs Innovate, Target New Clients and Plan Ahead

By Alex Padalka September 18, 2017

Advisors at the top of their game exhibit a number of traits that set them apart from the crowd, according to a recent report from Jefferson National.

The report notes that “successful advisors” – those with annual incomes of over $500,000 or managing $250 million or more — may differ in their priorities but all plan ahead, innovate and set industry trends.

Innovation is something all top-producing advisors share, according to a survey of 521 RIAs and 258 broker-dealers that meet the benchmarks and 817 individual investors, conducted by Jefferson National this spring. Successful advisors tend to adopt new technology faster, both for the front end and for their operations, according to the report.

They’re also innovative when it comes to marketing to new clients because they understand the importance of new assets for the continued growth of their practices.

But while tech may help in those efforts, top advisors still emphasize face-to-face interactions, Jefferson National says. They therefore put clients first and focus on communication, according to the report.

To ensure their success, successful advisors also look ahead. That means ensuring they benefit from the coming $30 trillion wealth transfer from baby boomers to the next generation via strategies to bring on their existing clients’ heirs, according to the report. And top advisors also focus on building teams with a view to succession, Jefferson National says.

They also keep a close eye on trends in mergers and acquisitions and view consolidation in the industry as an opportunity, be it through selling their practice or buying other firms, according to the firm. But primarily, the best advisors think like CEOs, according to the report. They have a strategic vision for their practice and align all the various aspects of their business toward that end, Jefferson National says.