What Do The Least Loyal Clients Look Like? New Evidence That Investors Are On The Move


Northstar Research Partners and the Sullivan communications group made waves last month by revealing that a full 1/3 of all the Americans out there with more than $100,000 to invest are open to switching advisors. 


This time around, they surveyed a different group of wealthy people and got the exact same headline figure: 36% of the people polled are willing to move.


Some key takeaway points on why those clients -- potentially your prospects -- are restless:


* Uncertainty. A full 84% have no clear idea where their portfolios or financial lives are headed. If these people's advisors have created financial plans for them, they evidently weren't convincing.


* Communication. Surprisingly, it only takes one meeting a year to make 63% of all the clients out there "very satisfied" with their advisory relationships. Naturally, anything more than that will help boost retention.


* "Affluents" on the move. The danger zone seems to be investors with $250,000 to $500,000 looking for -- as mentioned in the earlier survey -- better investment performance. This makes sense for a lot of reasons: they're a bit more sophisticated and demanding at this level, but still not rich enough to live comfortably on 4% a year.


* Risk tolerance is still low. Even the youngest group in the survey have 42% of their portfolios in cash. An overly "aggressive" or realistic allocation may frighten them unless it's backed up with compelling demonstrations of why long-term growth is crucial.


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