Brittney Castro on how millennials will change the nature of financial services

Steve Sanduski: Advisors with a specialized niche will always be in demand regardless of what happens with robo technology.

Steve Sanduski: Flat-fee models advocated by many millennial advisors are great for consumers but disruptive to advisor profit margins.

MILLENNIALS GET A LOT OF PRESS AND THERE’S GOOD REASON FOR THAT. They’re over 80 million strong, they’re digitally savvy, and they tend to think and act much differently than earlier generations.

In this new series of podcasts, I interview several leading millennial advisors and explore their business models, their thinking, and how their cohort may reshape the financial industry over the next 15 years.

Although there’s no definitive start and end date for this generation, it’s fair to say they range in age from about 35 to as young as 15. You may think they’re too young and too few in the business to have an impact on our industry. In the short-term, that’s true. But long-term, they’ll cause a titanic shift in how financial advice is conducted.

As I spoke to these millennials, it’s clear—they’re smart, articulate, and definitely not your “traditional” RIA.

They have different business models. They price their services differently. They market differently. And they’re not afraid to call out what they see as “problems” with the way financial services is structured today.

I thoroughly enjoyed talking to these advisors and I know you’ll enjoy listening to their stories. Keep an open mind because they are the future of our business.

(Download the transcript here)
Brittney Castro: Just be clear about who you're trying to serve. The more you can niche, the more successful you'll be.

Brittney Castro: Just be clear about who you’re trying to serve. The more you can niche, the more successful you’ll be.

First up is Brittney Castro, a talented and innovative RIA from Los Angeles.

Brittney is a CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™, entrepreneur, personal finance expert for women and Founder & CEO of Financially Wise Women. She specializes in working with busy, established professional and entrepreneurial women who are passionate about life and want to finally understand money—how to manage it, save it, invest it, and protect it—in a fun and simple way.

Okay, I have to start with how she markets her business. She’s all over social media. In particular, she has dozens of videos on Youtube. And this is the one I want you to watch first.

Let’s put her down in history as the first CFP® to star in and produce a rap video to promote their business!

Here are several other comments from Brittney in today’s episode.

  1. My main bread and butter is financial planning for a fee. It is very hard to do long term so the way that I designed it is to have additional revenue sources. I take on consulting clients, do speaking for a fee, writing for a fee, and I also have an online product. These additional revenue sources are things I can scale a bit more than the financial planning.
  2. For financial planning, I charge $2,500 for an individual client, $3,500 for couples, and 5,000 on up for business owner clients or just more complex situations. After 6 months, they go into a 12-month contract and those fees start at a minimum of $150 a month. With that, I do a quarterly meeting and they have access to me for questions via a call or email. Right now, about 50% of clients convert to the monthly retainer after the initial 6-month deal.
  3. I think the more educated consumers get, they’re going to start to dive a little bit deeper and dig and look at those fees and think, “I’ve been paying all these fees over time and I didn’t even know that? I’d rather pay someone like Brittney who’s actually very transparent and clear upfront and have it come out directly because I see the value connected to that if I’m paying for it every month.”
  4. People come to me and they always say, “Oh my gosh, it’s so refreshing to see what you’re doing and your model because I didn’t know where to go. I didn’t want to go to the traditional guy, the older guy or the firm that was so stuffy and corporate and I don’t feel like they understand what I need and I don’t feel like I’m learning anything.” That’s one of the biggest things people tell me is that the advisors that they’ve met or have worked with just don’t communicate with them in a way that’s empowering and uplifting.
  5. The way that I’ve designed my marketing strategy right now is to leverage Facebook, Instagram and YouTube. Those channels drive traffic back to my website, visitors subscribe to get on my email list, and then I nurture the email list every week, and it’s worked. Website leads fill out a form and I do discovery sessions which are free 30-minute phone consultations. We get these forms that say they want to meet filled out and they come into our inbox every week, I have leads to call, I don’t do any cold calling. My calendar’s always full with consultations to have and that’s how I get clients.

Be sure to listen to the podcast and read the transcript. We’ve just highlighted a few comments from the show.


To listen to all the podcast interviews in your car, on your phone, or at the gym, go to iTunes or your podcast app and subscribe to the Between Now and Success podcast. It’s super easy and pretty soon you’ll be ditching radio and just listening to podcasts!

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Got a question? Email it to me and I’ll give you my take on it. 

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Steve Sanduski, CFP® is a FinTech entrepreneur, New York Times bestselling author, podcast host, and international speaker.
By | 2016-04-07T21:11:23+00:00 August 10th, 2015|

One Comment

  1. David Leo August 22, 2015 at 1:41 pm - Reply

    I like the way Brittney is approaching her business. The thought however that there are not a lot of millennial financial advisors does not appear true as far as I can tell. Certainly some wirehouses are hiring new FAs. In one article dated October 2014 it said Merrill has over 3,000 trainees at various levels of development. My guess is most are millennials. Other companies may not be as aggressive as Merrill and it is probably true that most millennials don’t focus on independent fee based financial planning.

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