June 2018 – Building Business for Registered Advisors: A Review of RIA Resources

As more financial advisors go independent to gain more business autonomy and client flexibility, the Registered Investment Advisor (RIA) model is capturing more assets. In 2013, RIAs managed a combined $55 trillion in client assets, growing to $71 trillion today. In response, more asset management firms have built an RIA presence online. Firms provide dedicated webpages, resources and, most impressively, full sites to educate advisors on available products, tools and thought leadership. Full sites stand out by frequently providing content tailored to RIAs, such as targeted commentary and customized featured funds, as well as by removing from view products that do not align with RIA business. While not as impressive as full sites, the dedicated RIA pages similarly centralize resources and go a step beyond many AMM-A firms, which do not provide any centralized means of accessing RIA resources. This Asset Management Monitor – Advisor Report examines asset managers’ online content targeting RIAs.

Slightly more than half of the 20 Asset Management Monitor – Advisor coverage group firms (55%) offer RIA-focused content. Of those, more than half of the firms (55%) boast full sites dedicated to RIAs. Alternatively, roughly a third of firms (27%) employ dedicated pages within the financial advisor sites for RIAs. Content on both RIA sites and pages largely mirror the financial advisor site content, which deters from its overall effectiveness as firms frequently repurpose commentaries and market news that relate to RIA but do not explicitly discuss RIAs. Only American Funds and OppenheimerFunds offer unique, RIA-focused resources, highlighting investment strategies, industry challenges, robo-advisors and client communications.

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