A gap is growing between investment providers focused on ‘high net worth’ or ‘not worth it’ customers.
You don’t have to be rich to need help managing your money for the long term. Investment services are right for all types of credit union members, America’s Credit Union Conference attendees learned Monday.
Misperceptions about wealth management, along with a shift to serve high net-worth clients, are attributing to a growing gap in investment services, says Michael Johnson, CUNA Mutual Group’s vice president of Wealth Management.
A gap is growing between investment providers focused on “high net worth or not worth it” customers and credit union members who are concerned about their long-term financial security and may have limited options for advisory services, he adds.
He says solving this issue should be relevant and familiar to credit unions with their long-standing tradition of meeting the needs of underserved populations.
“Our mission is to help people achieve financial security. Living comfortably in retirement is the great end-game,” Johnson says. “Members’ investment needs can’t be an afterthought when credit unions consider their holistic member experience and service offerings.”
Johnson offers key insights into why many consumers are hesitant to move forward with retirement and financial planning:
• Complexity. It’s difficult to understand all of the options available in the marketplace.
• Fear. Consumers understandably are afraid of losing their hard-earned money in the market.
• Accessibility. Members wonder who can provide them with the time and expertise to help them meet their unique financial needs.
By applying traditional credit union values to wealth management, credit unions can break barriers, differentiate themselves in the future marketplace, drive loyalty with current members, and attract new members.
A combination of human-based advisory services and technology could stand out among a growing market of online and “robo-advisor” solutions.
“Credit unions have an advantage in offering wealth management services because they’ve already done a tremendous job of building trust with members,” Johnson says. “It’s now up to our industry to demonstrate that our member-centric approach to business also translates seamlessly to retirement and financial planning solutions.”