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. Herbers and Company founder Angie Herbers shares the two biggest communication skills to set yourself apart from others, what firms are looking for in new hires, and more [Podcast]: “First, a lot of hiring firms will take them seriously even though they don’t have a lot of experience. From Herbers and Company’s perspective, there are lots of opportunities out there for new advisors who have no experience. To gain that experience, though, you’ve got to get boots on the ground. You’ve just got to get into a job, and I don’t mean to make a sacrifice on a job you don’t want or you’re not excited about. But you’ve got to get into a job and be willing to learn.” Setting Yourself Apart With Angie Herbers [Caleb Brown, New Planner Recruiting] FMG’s Samantha Russell on emerging marketing trends, why TikTok matters even for advisors targeting Gen X and/or Baby Boomers, and “Zero-Click Content” [Podcast]: “‘Why should anyone care – Gen Z isn’t a lot of financial advisors’ target audience?’ It really matters because we know that this is just the tip of the iceberg. The youngest generations are often just a couple of years ahead of everybody else. If we look back to Facebook, nobody was on Facebook except for college kids, and then within a few years billions of people across the planet were on Facebook and it became the number one place for ad spend. So, this is a very big shift that we need to be paying attention to.” How Advisers Can Take Their Social Media Game To The Next Level [Jeff Benjamin & Bruce Kelly, InvestmentNews] ICYMI: Michael Kitces shares his content creation process and Carl Richards with how to create your own “Intellectual Property Flywheel” [Podcast or Video]: “There’s a label for that phenomenon and it’s called ‘The Expert’s Curse.’ The pheonomenon that we’re so familiar with an idea, a topic, a thing we do that we just sort of unwittingly lose all perspective of how much more we know than pretty much anybody else that we talk to about the thing that we’re talking about. Because it’s so familiar to you through the reptition that you’re really one of the only people out there that knows it. Even just like your CFP knowledge. I get it, there’s like 100,000 other CFPs out there right now. There’s like 300 million people in the country, so, if you know what like merely the average CFP knows, you know more about finances than like 99% of people. When all you do is that all day and all you hang out with is other financial advisors who do that as well, we can utterly and completely lose perspective on how much knowledge and wisdom we actually have bouncing around in our head.” Building Your Advisor Marketing Content By Packaging Your Client Wisdom [Michael Kitces, Kitces.com] Learning how to learn: the importance of combining “Focused” and Diffuse” modes of learning [Article]: “The focused mode is what we traditionally associate with learning. Read, dive deep, absorb. Eliminate distractions and get into the material. Oakley says ‘the focused mode involves a direct approach to solving problems using rational, sequential, analytical approaches. … Turn your attention to something and bam – the focused mode is on, like the tight, penetrating beam of a flashlight.’ But the focused mode is not the only one required for learning…” Let Go Of The Learning Baggage [Shane Parrish, Farnam Street] The case for getting comfortable with “good enough” [Article]: “The researchers who originally designed the IGT got what they wanted. They created a simple tool that they could use to understand decision-making and when it was impaired. Yet, despite its simplicity, the Iowa gambling task taught me far more about life than I could have initially imagined.” Why You Shouldn’t Optimize Your Life [Nick Maggiulli, Of Dollars And Data] Which was your favorite takeaway? 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. Treyton DeVore shares the content repurposing routine that led to AllStreet Wealth’s extraordinary growth, the efficiencies he’s experienced from iterating niches, and more [Podcast]: “You still have to be conscious of quality, but you can’t let perfection stop you from putting out content either. You’re going to get better over time. You just have to balance between ‘Am I getting better and is this working?’ and ‘Do I actually need to pivot and do something else?’ … That stuff is super, not easy to do, but it’s marketing. You have a business, you need to grow it and get people aware of what you do. So, if you’re not going to in-person conferences and you’re not making 100 to 150 dials a day you need to get your name in front of people and the easiest way to do that is content.” Mastering The Art Of Repurposing Content – Treyton DeVore [Broc Buckles and Peter Ciravolo, Only Fee-Only Podcast] The importance of anticipating clients’ emotional needs [Article]: “Consider the client who just sold their business. It’s easy to assume congratulations are in order with that sort of liquidity event, but how is the client actually feeling? Maybe they don’t want to let go of the business they’ve built for 30 years. Maybe they feel like they’re losing part of their identity. What about the client who is sending their child off to college? How are they feeling being an empty nester for the ﬁrst time? Did the move-in go smoothly? Is their child doing well or feeling a bit homesick?“ Anticipating Your Clients’ Emotional Needs [Kevin Nichols, WealthManagement.com] Current compensation trends for paraplanners, associate planners, and lead advisors [Video]: 2022 Compensation Data And Trends For New Planners [Caleb Brown, New Planner Recruiting] Three keys to a great mailing list landing page [Article]: “One way to increase your readership is to have a great landing page. A landing page is essentially a one-page (above the fold) website where the only goal is to get people to subscribe to your email newsletter. … The most important part of a landing page though isn’t necessarily the look of the page, but the copy that’s on the page.” Grow Your Mailing List With A Good Landing Page (Plus Two Sample Ideas) [Ashby Daniels, Money Visuals] If you ever feel impostor syndrome or hampered by limiting beliefs, Stephanie Bogan with some science-backed tips [Video]: How To Combat A Limiting Belief [Candice Carlton and Meg Carpenter, The New Skool] Which was your favorite takeaway? 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. A pioneer in integrating psychology and personal finance, Rick Kahler on a number of behavioral topics including [Podcast]: When not to ask questions in order to avoid interrupting the conversational flow Why some client financial behaviors may initially look illogical, but make sense after a few follow-up questions The importance of active listening and using pauses in conversation And more… “That’s the hardest thing to give up: ‘I know the answer to this, I know the answer to that. I know what they should do and what they ought to be doing.’ To ‘zip it’ and let the client discover that. Let the client talk. Because change comes from within…” Tools For Discovering And Changing A Client’s Money Mindset With Rick Kahler [Brendan Frazier, The Human Side Of Money] Stephanie Bogan with the implications of – and how to leverage – a number of trends including specialization and digitalization. Also, Bogan’s thoughts on service inflation and efficiencies from building “Trust Equity” [Podcast]: “The demand for advice has never been higher. So, if you can sit at the intersection of some really important trends, you can really accelerate your growth, deliver deeper value, and actually do great work while enjoying it. Because we have tech now to do a lot of the heavy lifting.” The Next Frontier In Advisor Marketing And Client Service [Robert Huebscher, Gaining Perspective] Tips for compelling social media content and an introduction to Canva and Unsplash (and an inside look at FMG’s platform) [Video]: How To Create A Captivating Social Post [Elise Lambert, Twenty Over Ten] The Oechsli Institute’s Stephen Boswell summarizes Oechsli’s recent survey on the benefits of developing deeper personal relationships with clients [Article]: “The type of client friendship we’re suggesting benefits everyone involved. You benefit from the increased loyalty and advocacy. They benefit from having more trust in the person managing their investments. You both benefit from a more positive and fun working relationship.” You Need More Client Friendships [Stephen Boswell, WealthManagement.com] Some highlights from last week’s Future Proof conference including advisor self-care, outsourcing to spend more time with clients, and more [Article]: “‘We’re in a golden age of financial advice, particularly fiduciary-based advice that’s aligned around the client’s interest,’ Welling said. ‘The role of the advisor, as it evolves, just becomes more human. They become more connected with the client and I think not less technical, but maybe relying on other technical people or applications or technology behind the scenes to do work that typically has been in the hands of the advisors.’” From Journaling To Exercise, Here’s How Advisor Self-Care Is Good For Business [Tobias Salinger, Financial Planning] Which piece of content did you like? Comment below! Follow me on social media for the latest updates: