There’s a handful of concerns that are common to the entirety of humanity, and two are chief among them: health and money. If you lack these things, you crave them. If you have them, you desperately fear losing them. And in the context of business, it’s financial status that rules.
Remember that these are tough times for professionals of all stripes. Market conditions shift quickly, and what seems like a sure thing can easily lead to disappointment. One thing is clear: whether you’re a business owner or a freewheeling entrepreneur, you need to invest in financial planning. If you don’t control your money, your money will control you.
Smart planning will answer key questions. What will you do with the resources currently available to you? You could keep them in reserve, put them towards infrastructure improvement, or invest them in the hope of profiting later. And how will you handle your day-to-day financial tasks? Everything from issuing invoices to handling payment orders can take up your time and cause extensive confusion.
Ideally, then, every entrepreneur with serious ambition would set money aside for working with a financial planner. Traditionally, though, many financial planning services have targeted large accounts, with priority going towards those with large sums to invest. So what can you do if you want some financial guidance but don’t fit that generic profile?
As it happens, there’s another way to qualify and pay for financial planning: you can opt for a subscription-based service that’s available to everyone. And in this post, we’re going to set out five core reasons why using this approach is so effective. Let’s get started.
It covers many areas of finance
The typical approach to financial advice involves clearly-defined areas, with a given provider offering a fixed-term consultation on a narrow topic (usually concerning investment). The general focus is on growing a provided amount of money, or legal matters, or the specifics of accounting. This can make things terribly fragmented and difficult to track. Dealing with multiple planners at the same time can also produce conflicting information, adding confusion.
Using a subscription-based financial planning service, though, allows for much more flexibility. An all-purpose planner can accommodate varying queries, or numerous financial professionals can form a business to provide a one-stop shop. If you can find the right subscription (with people you can trust), you can proceed with confidence that you don’t need to be speaking to anyone else, freeing you up to focus on other things.
It can accommodate any budget
The traditional model of operating on commission has always limited the pool of viable clients. Look at it from the perspective of the financial professional: why spend a day working with a small client if you’re taking a percentage-based commission fee that won’t amount to much? If you’re getting 2% of a client-specific sum, you need that sum to be as big as possible. This is why top planners have always steered clear of working with low-end companies.
By offering subscriptions, though, financial planners can be much closer to client-agnostic in their operation. They won’t be charging completely-flat fees, admittedly, as they need ways to bump up their rates, but this is perfectly doable through the kind of subscription management software that allowed businesses to experiment with pricing models in the first place. The easiest way to do this is to offer differing tiers of service that focus on things like urgency and frequency. How quickly will they respond? How much time will they commit each month?
Even at the lowest end, though, a financial planner using this model can offer basic support with an initial plan and occasional consultations. This does away with the obsessive focus on giant corporations and allows everyone to get access to accurate financial information.
It lessens perceived pressure
It’s easy to see why some people would shy away from pursuing conventional financial planning. It’s a huge step, seemingly. One moment you’re taking your time, trying to figure out what your business is going to be, and the next you’re setting out specific targets to hit by specific times. That’s adding a lot of pressure to succeed. It can ultimately seem easier to delay the whole thing — and that delay can become indefinite.
What’s better about getting a subscription to a financial-planning service is that it provides less pressure. There’s an initial planning session, of course (with an initial planning fee), but the planning in general is open-ended and with no fixed objectives that you don’t want to set. The cost will also be spread in a convenient way. It may even be possible to reach an arrangement whereby the cost is reduced in a month or quarter when no consultations are needed.
It offers clients significant agency
Financial planners can be fairly authoritative, laying down the law (either literally or figuratively) in telling their clients what they should be doing. This can lead to a my-way-or-the-highway scenario in which a planner recommends an investment and won’t budge on that suggestion. They may well have an excellent reason for doing so, but it’s still highly awkward: their goal will be sheer profit to fuel their commission, while their client may have broader goals.
Using the subscription model allows clients to steer the service (or services) they receive. Instead of having fixed meetings on a rigidly-defined schedule, they can simply reach out to their planners when they want advice, whether that advice needs to be specific or broad. They may just want to ask some simple questions about what some financial terms mean.
It holds providers accountable
When a financial planner is called upon to offer investment advice using a commission model, they can be inspired to take risks. After all, doesn’t that make sense? Suppose you’re told that you can take 1% of the profit made on a certain sum of money. You’re obviously incentivised to shoot for the moon, so to speak — particularly since you won’t be paying for 1% of every loss. You won’t make money if an investment doesn’t work out, but you won’t lose it either.
This might sound disastrous for brand reputations, but consider that it often works out. If a planner gets a negative review from someone whose investment failed, but a positive review from someone whose investment hit it big, it won’t necessarily seem like a reason to be concerned. This can allow financial planners to essentially gamble using coin flips and still get work.
Swapping to operating through subscriptions adds an element of accountability by spreading out the profit made by a planner. Because they can no longer hit it big with risky investments, the onus is on them to help their clients grow steadily with demonstrable ROI, knowing that they’ll keep paying for financial advice if that advice keeps proving relevant and useful.
On the whole, then, paying a subscription fee to receive financial advice makes a lot of sense. If you’re not currently getting any such advice, and you’re thinking about how you could transform your finances, this is surely the way to go.