My guest on today’s podcast is Josh Itzoe. Josh is a co-founder of Greenspring Wealth, an independent RIA based in Towson, Maryland, that advises on more than $2.2 billion in 401(k) plan assets.
What’s unique about Josh’s business, though, is not just the success that he’s had in the 401(k) plan niche, but how he built his business: by making himself an expert by sitting down and reading the entire ERISA code himself, and then self-publishing a book to share his newfound expertise with prospective clients… which quickly established him as an authority brought him nearly $80,000 of new revenue within the first 6 months of publishing the book.
In this episode, Josh talks not only about what he went through to self-publish his book to jumpstart his 401(k) consulting business, but also discusses at length the business of being a financial advisor to 401(k) plans itself, how it differs from the traditional model of serving individual financial planning clients, the intensive RFP process it takes to win the business of mid-to-large-sized 401(k) plans, how the pricing model for advising on 401(k) plans is shifting from the AUM model to a flat-fee structure based on the size and complexity of the plan, and how including the stability of 401(k) plan consulting fees was able to smooth out the revenue volatility of the AUM fees in the other half of his advisory firm, which manages more than $400 million in AUM for individual wealth management clients.
We also talk more generally about trends in the 401(k) advisory space, why the real value to most employer retirement plans is not about helping them understand – or scaring them about – their fiduciary duties as plan trustees, but simply helping them avoid the administrative and operational mistakes that really get most plan sponsors in trouble, and why in today’s environment it’s difficult to break into the 401(k) plan space as a financial advisor… unless you’re ready to dedicate your full time to it.
And be certain to listen to the end, where Josh talks about why he thinks the future of serving 401(k) plans better is all about leveraging new technology solutions, and offers up some great resources for those who want to get more active in this space (which you can find in our Show Notes for this episode).
So whether you’ve been thinking about getting into the 401(k) business as a financial advisor, or are simply curious to hear how writing and self-publishing (with a little outsourcing support) your own book can accelerate your marketing efforts and establish you as an expert in your niche, I hope you enjoy this latest episode of the Financial Advisor Success podcast!