As an adviser-first company, our purpose is to ‘drive the positive evolution of financial advice’. To achieve this, we launched a standalone platform for advisers to share and learn from one another in January 2020. Since launch we now proudly boast one in four Australian financial advisers as verified members.
Financial advice is also intrinsically linked to an ecosystem of products and services. The companies that make up this infrastructure also have a lot to contribute. They have technical expertise, and have spent millions of dollars in R&D on how best to serve financial planners. The only issue has been, the communication of this information has traditionally come from a sales perspective. Re-aligning the delivery of this content to be more education based rather than sales based is where we specialise. The companies who work with us to create an education-first approach to match our adviser-first environment, make up our Corporate Community.
The first thing you’ll notice about our corporate community is we strictly limit numbers based ratios. As we are currently at 6,000 members (2/3 advisers, 1/3 relevant stakeholders), we have a cap of only 30 companies. We have found a ratio of 200 advice members to every corporate member is the right balance. Not every adviser will click with every post on the platform. Nor will they click with each piece of education. But a schedule of around two modules of education on average per Corporate Member over the course of 12 months appears to be the sweet spot.
What is a module?
A module is the culmination of a lot of work resulting in new education for financial advisers. The type of medium for us is not as important as the message. As long as we are providing value to the adviser community, we have achieved our purpose. Here are some examples of modules:
- 10 articles (or 5 with videos) designed to rapidly increase capability.
- A piece of written thought leadership designed to challenge existing advice processes.
- A four-part thematic podcast series to deep dive into specific topics and pull-out expert opinion.
- 10 regular podcasts to share a quick message at the beginning of the podcast.
- A Documentary (2x modules due to the months of work required to pull together).
With a growing membership base, we cater to a wide range of topics to reflect a wide range of needs. One of the standards we gave to ourselves, is content had to stand on it’s own. The value it reflected had to be high enough to warrant adviser attention. It’s no secret that a lot of education has been consumed simply because it provided CPD points. But we wanted to build the value to a level it was worth consuming without CPD. Now we have achieved this, our next step is to begin allocating relevant CPD points to our material moving forward. More to come on this shortly.
The high standard outcomes
With the nature of the internet taking up a bigger slice of our lives, it’s no surprise advisers want to find information on their own terms, on a channel of their preference. Rather force messages on advisers, we facilitate an environment where they are in control. They get to opt in or opt out depending on how busy they are, or whether something is relevant to them or not. It’s understanding this process which allows us to use data to identify and diagnose problems that require input from our Corporate Members.
For example, if self employed advisers with over ten years of experience are engaging in a conversation around staffing and the issues of talent acquisition – we are confident this is an area of interest for this avatar. When one of our Corporate Members wish to create content to better speak to this avatar, we then deep dive into this conversation and pull out the biggest problems that need solving. In many cases interviewing advisers to ensure we are accurate on their pain points, and build education from there as a starting point. Understanding advisers and their unmet needs is the foundation of everything we do.
From here we do the heavy lifting and create the education. As our Content Specialists are usually former financial advisers, we have the ability to ensure the education is positioned from a ‘what’s in it for me’ perspective. Using the adviser generated problem and the corporate member solution as a guide to produce the final material. All the while ensuring we stay firmly on the side of ‘editorial’ rather than ‘advertorial’.
We then work with our Corporate Member to finalise or tweak the content, complete the designs, and schedule for release. Once the marketing campaign has been completed, we’re then able to view what type of adviser engaged with the content. Was it similar to our expectations or did it resonate with a different type of avatar? The reporting is not designed to create leads, but rather provide insights on avatars. There are of course opportunities for advisers to reach out. We provide easy to follow CTAs off our environment and on to your environment for you to engage with how you see fit.
From here we look to the next piece we are set to release, and take the learnings from the previous work into our next steps moving forward. As an additional bonus for being a member of our Corporate Community, you will have the ability to submit an application to speak at our half yearly ALPD days. We can’t cater for each Corporate Member, but we will be looking to solve 10 major problems every six months. We will be releasing these a few months ahead of the event date, and if there are internal capabilities to help on your end, we welcome your submission on a first in best dressed process. To get started as a Corporate Member today, please feel free to get in contact with us here.