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How to have more effective and productive client relationships

In a video interview, Michael Gerber of 360F discusses how institutions and relationship managers (RMs) can move from pushing products towards giving advice, by using various tools and client information in a more relevant way.

One of the big challenges in Asian wealth management today stems from the fact that RMs and advisers tend to have too many customers – perhaps up to 250 to 300 in the affluent segment.

Any more than 100, however, makes it impossible to keep track of the needs and service demands of an individual customer, says Michael Gerber, chief executive officer of 360F.

To better understand a customer’s needs, therefore, firms need to equip their RMs with more technology, data and other information that is quickly retrievable.

With that in place, the service offering can be more customised, he explains.

Using tools in the right way

Institutions need to also be careful about the tools they use to enable RMs to have ‘stickier’ relationships with their clients.

From a customer’s perspective, they need to feel like they are getting something back from the time and effort they spend in feeding information into a system.

They need to view data as a ‘currency’, says Gerber, with which they want to have an exchange with the institution.

For example, clients want insights, notifications about market developments and their own portfolio, plus anything that can offer education and knowledge that is valuable.

This will further create ‘stickiness’ between the RM and client, he adds.

Added value

To adopt this new approach, he doesn’t think institutions need to change existing approaches to client profiling or communication.

Instead, says Gerber, they need to add information that can be retrieved from the client, for example when there is a market development. This then enables them to provide a new level of service.

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