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Pilot scheme launched to help advisers digitally connect with clients

A free pilot seminar has been launched to demonstrate how advisers can use websites and social media channels positively.

Launched by financial website provider Adviser Portals and regulatory consultancy provider Paradigm Consulting, the event aims to support advisers with all aspects of digital and social activity for their business.

The scheme comes after a survey – conducted by both companies – revealed that a quarter of firms don’t place value in having a website and one in 20 saying they don’t need a website at all.

The initial event, being held in Cheshire on November 5 and supported by communications agency Bugler Smith, is expected to be the first of a series that will take place throughout the UK.

David Ryder, head of proposition at Paradigm Consulting, says: “Digital and social media channels play a vital role in all our lives, both business and personal, so when the survey results came in, we were shocked.”

“Websites and social channels can often be seen as simply a sales tool, but they’re so much more important than that, particularly with the ongoing issues around intergenerational planning.”

He adds: “We’ve been working with Adviser Portals to help IFAs understand how they can utilise websites, while ensuring they’re fully compliant with FCA regulation, and also with Bugler Smith to understand how social and PR can play a big part in showcasing firms and the great work they do with clients.”

Each event will consist of short talks by the three organisations; creating a presence through a website, promoting brands through social media, and financial regulation and compliance on digital channels.

Mark Barry, managing director of Adviser Portals, says: “Having a digital presence is particularly important because many people now carry out online research before even thinking about face-to-face communication.

“Websites play such an important role in our lives, and they are vital to IFAs, so to see so many not valuing an online presence was concerning.”

He says as the next generation of people seeking financial advice are engaging with content and searching for information in different ways, there’s a big focus on website searches and social media.

The research revealed that just 31% of financial advisers admitted social media was important or critical to their business, demonstrating that the relationship between IFAs and social media is still an emerging one.

Barry says that while social media channels can be daunting, they are a ‘great place to showcase an IFA’s web content’, while first making sure it’s compliant and professional.

The seminar, titled ‘Advisers in the Digital Age’, is being held at the Innovation Centre in Daresbury, WA4 4FS and will take place on Tuesday 5 November from 1-3:30pm. For more information, and to book a ticket, please click here.

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