top of page

Why your tech stack could be disengaging your clients

Human beings are fascinating creatures. We often have the motivation to take steps towards action. Yet, we often fall down when it comes to implementation. This is no different in the world of financial planning and something I’ve seen repeatedly in my years as a financial planner.

For many advisors, the first meeting(s) with a new client are some of the best. We are in a unique position where we quickly get to deeply understand the people we’re working with, more so than any other profession. Our clients open up and tell us what they want to achieve in life, their aspirations, and how they want to support and protect the people they love.

Then what do we do? We turn these fantastic conversations with clients into risk profiles, performance reports, and various other financial documents that have little meaning to clients.

Why? Because the current tech stack doesn’t support the advice process or a client-centric experience. Instead, it supports product recommendations, compliance, or financial performance and dresses them up as client outputs. Outputs that require some level of financial understanding and interest from the client to engage with it.

Speaking from experience as an advisor, only one person typically reviews these outputs, and that’s the financial spouse. Everyone else is disengaged from the experience as they can’t relate it back to the amazing conversations you had in the first instance about their lives.

For me, this is a red flag. One that restricts your referral, retention, and revenue potential, with advisors reliant on the financial spouse becoming your advocate. And even then, who wants to talk about the ins and outs of tax harvesting at the family barbeque?

Even more worryingly, this process that places financial expertise at the heart of the experience stifles implementation. We don’t buy a car to understand combustion engines or how spark plugs work. We buy a car to get from A to B. It’s the same with financial planning. Yes, you need some understanding of how you're going to get to B and how it all works. But the advisor should be there to support you in mastering it - they are your sat nav, your driving assistant, cameras, etc.

Different people. Different motivators.

Most if not all of your clients have hired or are looking to hire you to outsource their finances. They want to work with someone they can trust, that understands them, and can be trusted to design a plan that will help them to lead the life they want - their best life.

Unless they have a keen interest in finances, they aren’t motivated by the minutiae of portfolio performance, market environment, macroeconomic conditions, and complex cash flow modeling. They just want to know they will be OK now and into retirement.

So, how do we motivate them to implement and action their plans?

We’re all uniquely different and motivated by different things - whether it’s social, emotional, intellectual, spiritual, occupational, physical, financial, or environmental pursuits.

According to research, these eight dimensions in our lives contribute to our overall wellbeing. This doesn’t mean we’re one over another - it’s not a binary definition. Think of these dimensions as sliding scales, where we each have our own definition of each dimension’s importance to us.

The trick is to understand what clients find important and value in life, then translate their financial plans into the outcomes derived from understanding what your clients want from life.

What your clients will truly value in your advice experience is who you help them become and the life you enable them to lead.

The advice engagement tech gap

If you took a step back and looked at your tech stack, what tools do you have at your disposal to engage your clients around their lives, values, and the advice needed to support them?

CRM? No - that’s been designed for you to better manage your interactions, information, and workflows with clients.

Complex financial modeling tools? Not really - they are only helpful once you know what your clients what to achieve. Even then, you don’t really need to know the why behind the goals, which limits the success of implementation.

Fact-finding tools? No - this isn’t client-facing. It enables you to make your processes more efficient by collecting the required data to put into your financial models or for analysis.

The list goes on. And each of these different tools offers a client portal designed to increase engagement with their specific functionality - not to increase engagement on their plan towards living their best life.

Where is the tool that captures what your clients value in life? That helps to guide clients on the goals they need to achieve and keeps them accountable. That allows them to see the different trade-offs they can make and how this could impact their plan. That provides the guidance and support they need when life throws them a curve ball.

That tool is you, leaving you with the challenging task of putting a square peg in a round hole. Creating a disjointed experience for the client where your amazing conversations are butchered into spreadsheets, compliance documents, and financial reports.

Motivate your clients by placing them at the heart of your experience

In all my years as an advisor, I was just like you. For every client that walked in the door, I ran their lives through my tech stack and spat out boring document after boring document and couldn’t understand why my clients weren’t acting on it. After all, I got into the business to help people lead better lives, and my advice was sound. If they followed it, they would live the lives they’d always dreamt about. But they didn’t, for all the reasons above - my client experience was anchored in my financial expertise, not their lives.

We need to bring to life the non-financial aspects of planning; the outcomes they want to achieve if they are empowered to achieve it through sound financial management. And we need this at the heart of our experience as life goals and aspirations will resonate with all clients, not just those interested in finances.

Life first, finances second.

That’s why I built Lumiant. We wanted to create a platform designed to support a process that your clients want - a values-led experience. That enables you to capture and transform your extraordinary, qualitative, and unstructured conversations with clients into tangible, quantifiable, and trackable metrics around their lives. That keeps clients motivated and accountable to implement their plan because they understand the why behind it.

In doing so, we have seen non-financial clients better engage in meetings, refer their advisor, and achieve life goals they and their families had only dreamed about.

So, let’s start with life and a client’s values. Let’s hear about everything they want to achieve, both financially and non-financially before we jump into the money conversation. And, let’s make sure we give EVERY client the space to voice their opinions, aspirations and concerns. Build your experience around this and ensure you translate and connect your financial strategies into life outcomes that anyone can understand, talk about and share.

Related Posts

See All


Rated 0 out of 5 stars.
No ratings yet

Add a rating
bottom of page