Industry Insights: Industry Players by Advisor Headcount
When first starting out in the industry, you may be curious about which firms are the dominant players. Sure, you are probably familiar with the big names like Merrill Lynch and Wells Fargo, but quantifying their role – and impact – in the market is a bit different.
There are a variety of ways to measure market position, of course. Today we look at how firms stack up by advisor headcount.
Total advisor estimates vary rather widely. Cerulli Associates estimates there are around 300,000 financial advisors in the United States. Michael Kitces recently explained why this figure is likely overstated with a more meaningful figure around 80,000.
Regardless, below are a handful of the better-known firms and their respective advisor headcounts to provide a general lay of the land:
17,355 – Merrill Lynch.
16,109 – LPL Financial.
16,000 – Edward Jones.
15,712 – Morgan Stanley.
14,400 – Wells Fargo.
9,931 – Ameriprise.
9,000 – Mass Mutual.
7,800 – Raymond James.
7,500 – Charles Schwab.
6,822 – UBS.
5,507 – J.P. Morgan.
2,244 – Stifel.
1,800 – Waddell & Reed.
1,800 – RBC Wealth Management.
1,237 – Fisher Investments.
1,048 – Cetera Advisors.
922 – Vanguard Personal Advisor Services.
900 – XYPN Network.
592 – Edelman Financial Engines.
“Weekend Content for New Financial Planners” is a collection of articles, podcasts, videos, etc. that I’ve been consuming regarding breaking into financial planning, industry trends, career development, and more. WealthVoice founder Emily Binder on [Video or Podcast]: leveraging emerging technology to develop deeper client relationships and prospective client engagement while becoming more efficientthe distinctions between branding versus sales and features versus benefitsthe importance of social media marketing and how to get started How To Better Connect With Clients Through Emerging Technology [Dasarte Yarnway, The Human Advisor] A framework for resetting client expectations (using delegating email as an example) [Podcast]: “And so as with email and everything else, we need to be proactive in establishing expectations. When will I respond to emails? When should you email me versus calling me? All of these things are expectations that you can set and great news you can reset. So if you’re currently in the habit of your email dings and you immediately shoot back a reply, you’re going to need to reset that expectation. Great news, it can be done. And just like you can reset an expectation, if you used to meet with clients five or six days a week and you had to reset that expectation down, it’s the same way. If you worked outside of traditional office hours, you’re working 7:00, 8:00 at night, and now you’re going to reset those expectations down. All of these things can be done successfully while delivering massive value.” How To Delegate Email [Matt Jarvis & Micah Shilanski, The Perfect RIA] The principles behind a persuasive response to prospect questions like “What’s going on in the markets?” [Article]: “What continues to amaze us is how straightforward and fundamental critical sales abilities are, and how rarely they are properly taught and coached. The majority of these talents are common interpersonal skills like asking questions and listening.” So, What’s Going On In The Markets? [Matt Oechsli, WealthManagement.com] ICYMI: Michael Kitces’ thread on proper ROI expectations with media PR activities [Twitter thread]: New Planner Recruiting’s Caleb Brown and Jesse Lineberry discuss compensation and benefits trends broken down by region [Podcast]: “Where it’s vague, I think, is that 18-month to 3-years of experience candidate because we see from $60,000 to $85,000 for that candidate. So, I think there it is much more vague. It’s going to depend a great deal more on the actual experience you have. Do you have experience working with the financial planning softwares? Have you built a plan from start to finish? Are you in client meetings? If you are, are you participating in those meetings and presenting meaningful recommendations? I think that person might be on the upper end. I think if the experience is more the call center environment, more of the cold calling environment, it’s still going to be toward the lower side of that.” Compensation Data Points For New Planners With Caleb Brown And Jesse Lineberry [Caleb Brown, New Planner Recruiting] How to handle clients who are focused on beating the market [Article]: “Clients are going to expect you to focus on performance. Portfolio reviews are similar to report cards in school. Ideally, you can position a fair method of performance measurement so you aren’t competing against an almost impossible standard.” How You Measure Performance Is Crticial [Bryce Sanders, FA-Mag.com] Which piece of content did you like? Comment below! Follow me on social media for the latest updates:
“Weekend Content for New Financial Planners” is a collection of articles, podcasts, videos, etc. that I’ve been consuming regarding breaking into financial planning, industry trends, career development, and more. If you’re an overachiever looking for a way to boost your productivity or, alternatively, on the edge of burnout, 2X New York Times bestselling author Greg McKeown covers how to make your work feel “Effortless” [Podcast]: “What gradual pace can I sustain? So, once you’ve begun, you need to have not only lower bounds, for example, ‘every day I’m going to open my Google Doc that has my book manuscript in it.’ That’s the lower bound. But you also have to have an upper bound. What I found is that it needed to be something like no more than 3 hours of working on the book. If you work on it for 5, 6, 7 hours you end up getting diminishing returns, or even negative returns. Or you become very intermittent in your action because it’s just too much. And then your brain gets sore and you put it off for a week or two. And so what you want is sustainable, so that you can do it day in and day out.” Greg McKeown | How to Make What Matters Effortless [Jordan Harbinger, The Jordan Harbinger Show] Shake Shack founder and famed restaurateur Danny Meyer on why everyone is in the hospitality business and how to deliver it to your clients [Podcast]: “Hospitality exists when you believe that the person on the other side of the transaction is on your side, when you trust that they’re on your side. It really starts with the people you work with.” Danny Meyer: Hospitality and Humanity [Shane Parrish, The Knowledge Project] XPRIZE’s Peter Diamandis and Dan Sullivan discuss today’s biotech and longevity breakthroughs now adding years to the human healthspan and touch on some potential implications for financial planning [Podcast]: “I think another implication of thirty years of additional life is going to be incredibly valuable to governments. Because, if all of a sudden, you’re not retiring at 60 or 65, if you’re a productive member of the economy, and paying taxes and earning revenues and increasing your income, that would transform the entire global economy.” Episode 105: Living Past 100 Years [Peter Diamandis, Exponential Wisdom] Ways to boost your engagement on social media, ultimately boosting your content’s performance [Article]: “Social media is a facet of your digital presence. It provides advisors with a variety of business and brand-building benefits. For example, 78% of sales associates that use social media outperform peers that don’t. Not to mention, social media is one of the first places customers look to interact with their chosen brand. Unfortunately, many advisors miss out on these advantages with a passive approach to social media. Social media is not another location to check the box for your content to be shared. Improved performance requires engagement — successful users are social. This is why social media platforms track engagement as an indicator of your success. So, what exactly is measured, and how do you improve engagement?” 12 Ways To Skyrocket Engagement Using Social Media Comments [Stuart Farst, LeadPilot.io] If you’re talking, you’re losing [Article]: “I asked this question: “How would you like to proceed?” They said they’d like a proposal. I then said: “I have two forms of proposals. One is a long form that explains in detail what we do. The other is a short form, done using Quickbooks Online. It just lists the services we provide and our fee. Which would you prefer?” They wanted the short form. I provided it within an hour of ending the call. They signed it the same day. Here are the lessons learned from this story.” Abandon Your Agenda [Dan Solin, Advisor Perspectives] Tactics for artfully asking for referrals [Article]: “You are right to review the 90% who are not making introductions. But first reframe your view on this to the fact that you want to help those they care about. You want to make others aware of the excellent work you do, and you want to provide support to people in their universe who need it.” The Art Of Obtaining Introductions From Clients [Beverly Flaxington, Advisor Perspectives] Which piece of content did you like? Comment below! Follow me on social media for the latest updates:
“Weekend Content for New Financial Planners” is a collection of articles, podcasts, videos, etc. that I’ve been consuming regarding breaking into financial planning, industry trends, career development, and more. Luis Rosa came from humble beginnings and overcame cultural obstacles to build a firm that gives back to his peers [Podcast]: “Financial planning was not even offered as a major. I had no idea that being a financial planner existed. I didn’t know what it was. It wasn’t a conversation that was had in my house. We never talked about anything to do with money other than work hard and try to save some.” Luis Rosa – How This Young Immigrant Chased His American Dream [Dasarte Yarnway, The Human Advisor] Career changer Veronica Taylor shares her story of how she broke into the industry at a financial wellness startup [Podcast]: “Celebrate every win. My husband would joke that I would celebrate because it’s Tuesday. You do have to focus on the positive. That’s what keeps you going. There are long hours of studying. There are a lot of people to meet. But life is short and the days can be long so just look for any reason to celebrate and keep moving.” Joining A Financial Wellness Firm As An Employee Benefit Financial Planner with Veronica Taylor [Caleb Brown, New Planner Recruiting] Matt Fizell shares the reflection and guidance that ultimately led him to launch his own RIA this month [Podcast]: “I think the most important thing when you’re making a change, whether job to job or job to business owner is really understanding where that desire for that change is coming from. So, I would suggest, the first thing, and the first thing I did, too, was just go to the people know me really well. So, that was kind of my first step – sharing what I was still enjoying at my job at the time, what was frustrating me, why those things were frustrating me, and just getting counsel from people around me.” The Pursuit–Introducing Harmony Wealth With Matt Fizell [Justin Castelli, The Pursuit] Effective websites both attract and repel prospective clients [Video]: “How To Create A Website So Visitors Can Self-Qualify As Leads” [Samantha Russell, Twenty Over Ten] Advisor podcast coach Patrice Sikora with tips on how to overcome fears of starting a podcast [Podcast]: “There’s nothing special. There’s nothing hidden. It is not a mystery: be yourself. It’s just a microphone. Of course, it’s taking what you say and saving it for posterity, but that’s beside the point – just be yourself. That’s all.” How To Shake Off The Fear Dust And Be 100% You While Podcasting With Patrice Sikora [Matt Halloran, Top Advisor Marketing Podcast] Building a niche practice only works when you learn how to say ‘no’ [Article]: “Sometimes an inbound inquiry from a near-fit but lucrative potential client flags a transition point for your business — an opportunity to expand to a parallel niche. Other times, it represents a very real trap. When you expand into adjacent niches before really owning the initial niche you planned to develop, you dilute your value proposition and push yourself back toward the generalist practice.” To Build A Thriving Niche Practice, Learn When To Say No [Joe Elsasser, ThinkAdvisor] Which piece of content did you like? Comment below! Follow me on social media for the latest updates: