Adapted from our new report, Technology Landscape: 3 Approaches to Advisor-Client Texting Solutions for Financial Services
Financial services firms text their customers for a number of different reasons, and many already have corporate-driven texting programs in place. These programs might include sending automated security-related notifications like password resets and two-factor authentication, account and policy alerts, and for texting-based marketing and promotional campaigns led by the firm’s corporate marketing team.
Advisor-driven texting initiatives, while less common, are becoming increasingly critical for any firm that hopes to remain relevant and meet the ultra-personalized expectations of today’s digital-first consumer. A firm stands to lose a substantial amount of business – as well as advisor productivity – if advisors can’t easily and quickly reach clients, and vice versa. The ability to promptly notify a client about a payment or policy change, confirm a meeting, or send a birthday or anniversary message all can be accomplished with a simple text.
Texting Solution Types
A firm looking to implement texting technology for advisors usually takes one of three approaches:
- In-house solutions that are custom-developed by their own IT teams, often used to fulfill objectives from multiple functional areas within the firm.
- Compliance-first solutions that aim to enforce policies that govern the conduct of employees and to abide by industry regulations (for example, an ability to archive all text exchanges).
- Advisor-client engagement solutions that focus on the firm’s business needs, particularly client loyalty and satisfaction at the advisor level.
Which is best for your firm, both in the immediate and long-term future? We’ve established seven key criteria to help you determine which solution type makes the most sense. In numerous requirements conversations, these criteria continue to emerge from owners of the texting program and their business needs, as well as from IT stakeholders and their technology needs.
The 7 Evaluation Criteria for Advisor-Client Texting
- Platform Stability Value: How does the platform perform against factors like uptime and adherence to service level agreements (SLAs)? Does it have the ability to provide national mobile coverage that is carrier-agnostic?
- Time to Market: How much time is needed to implement the solution? Can it integrate with existing systems, and how long will that take?
- Ongoing Costs: What are the costs associated with this solution, including maintenance and operations?
- Change Management: Can this technology be managed within an existing mobile policy for advisors? How much change management support will be needed for advisors use the platform?
- Legal/Compliance Value and Cybersecurity Risk: Does the technology contain the features needed to meet specific regulatory requirements? Can it evolve with regulatory changes? Will the addition of new technologies, vendors and/or use cases increase or decrease the firm’s security position?
- Extensibility: How extensible is the solution? Can it plug into emerging channels, such as WeChat, WhatsApp, etc., in the future?
- Breadth of Feature Set: Does this solution solve for as many IT feature requests across as many use cases and internal departments as possible?
To find out how the three types of solutions stack against these seven criteria, download our free Technology Landscape: 3 Approaches to Advisor-Client Texting Solutions for Financial Services report.