Photo by Lance Grandahl on Unsplash

Dan Solin PhotoAdvisor Perspectives welcomes guest contributions. The views presented here do not necessarily represent those of Advisor Perspectives

“How are you different?”

Advisors tell me that is the most challenging questions prospects ask.

I know why.

You’re probably not different.

Efforts to differentiate

Many advisory firms have an obligatory menu on their web site entitled, Why We’re Different. Here’s how the “difference” is often described:

We provide individuals, families, retirement plan sponsors, trusts and endowments with sophisticated advice and personalized service. We cultivate client relationships with long-term strategies in all types of markets.

There are many variations on that theme.

Here’s the problem. These descriptions are no different than your competitors.

It gets worse when you provide more details.

If you’re an evidence-based or passively-oriented advisor, your investment philosophy (with nuanced exceptions) is very similar to other advisors espousing the same approach.

The fact that you “place clients first” makes you the same as every other registered investment advisor.