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Here at Seismic, we spend lots of time with senior executives from institutional financial services firms. Most of our interactions are with leaders of marketing, distribution, and compliance teams at asset management and wealth advisory firms.

From those conversations, and from information culled from the trade and business publications and portals we scour daily, we’ve identified five key financial technology (FinTech) trends that bear watching in 2016.

Following are brief descriptions of the five FinTech topics we keep hearing about in our travels, and how we see them playing out across the asset and wealth management segments in the year ahead.

  • More measurement comes to marketing – Firms are digitizing more content and delivering it using all kinds of platforms, channels, and devices. New tools are introducing more effective measurement capabilities into the process, including real-time views of how prospects and clients are interacting with the content provided. With instant and granular views of what’s working in the field and what’s not, marketing teams can make quicker adjustments to improve performance.
  • Robo advisors start leveraging content automation – Whether they build or buy them, more asset and wealth management firms will offer automated advice tools in 2016. The knock on robos, of course, is their lack of a human touch. Smart firms will counter this objection and give their robos at least some personalization by integrating the ability to deliver relevant and targeted content to specific investors. Improving client communication in this way will give firms a leg up in the highly competitive space.
  • Firms boost tech investments to reach millennials – A significant portion of technology spending will continue to be driven by firms investing in mobile- and social-based platforms. The emphasis will be on driving greater staff adoption of these tools so advisors, relationship managers and others will be able to engage with younger investors in ways they prefer and expect.
  • Automation becomes part of the compliance conversation – Innovative automation technologies will help firms deal with the growing scope and complexity of their regulatory requirements. More asset and wealth management shops will embrace tools that make it easier for them to handle tasks such as selection and placement of the right compliance notices and disclosure statements in marketing materials. New efficiencies and competitive advantages will go to the firms that are first to automate these manual and error-prone processes.
  • Platform convergence and integration – As more new platforms are introduced to address various aspects of the marketing, distribution, and client management processes, multi-platform and integrated technologies will be increasingly important. The close integration of CRM and content automation – which in turn leads to a more personalized customer experience – is one example.

As is always the case with predictions, some of ours might be spot on, while others may miss the mark. But two consistent and connected themes seem to weave through nearly every conversation we have with marketing and distribution executives. Despite tough business conditions, they need to find effective ways to scale their teams’ efforts, and they’re looking to innovative FinTech solutions to help them meet those goals.

It’s a great time to be a FinTech innovator, and all of us at Seismic can’t wait for 2016 to unfold.

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