With the ongoing rise of advisor FinTech, one of the “hot” new categories starting to emerge are “Advisor Matching” services – websites where consumers can enter some personal information, and get suggested “matches” of potential advisors who can help them with their financial issues. Ideally, consumers get a potential advisor who can solve their problems, and advisors save time by being matched to prospective clients who are a good fit for their services.
However, thus far the ideal rarely matches the reality. The fundamental problem with building a “Match.com for Advisors” service is that it’s almost impossible to effectively screen and filter a list of potential advisors when most advisors are generalists who work with a far-too-wide swatch of consumers in the first place. If advisors don’t differentiate themselves, an advisor matching service can’t differentiate amongst them, either! And ironically, the advisors who do differentiate themselves with a niche or specialization will likely have better sources of clients than a generalist advisor matching service anyway!
Compounding the challenge of creating a viable advisor matching service is the simple reality that it’s expensive to market and build the trusted brand – whether as an advisor, or a “trusted” website to find one – necessary to generate a sufficient volume of highly qualified prospective clients. Which means in the end, even though advisors will pay astonishingly well for new clients – which means a “Match.com for Advisors” solution will be highly lucrative, if the puzzle can be solved – the low trust in financial services and incredibly high costs of client acquisition may be just as destructive for advisor matching services as they are for the advisors being helped.