Wealth Management Tech Stack: Livian & Co.

We’re proud to share the next in PEVCtech’s periodic series on the tech stack of investment management firms: Livian & Co., a wealth management boutique catering to the needs of US and international business owners and professionals since 2010.  Michael Livian, CEO & Founder of Livian & Co., is a member of Versatile VC’s Innovation Council.  He was previously an Executive Director and Head of Asset Management at Safdie Investment Services Corp. (subsidiary of the Swiss private bank, Banque Safdie); Managing Director at Speed Ventures (a primary pan-European private equity/VC fund); and an Associate Director for Bear Stearns & Co. in New York (my alma mater) and in Italy with a special focus on fixed income and credit derivatives.

Q: Michael, please give us an overview of your firm. What’s your specialty? How do you differ from competitors?

We are an SEC Registered Investment Adviser founded in 2010 and based in New York City. We cater to US and international High Net Worth clients. Our typical clients are business owners and professionals. We generally cater to multi-generational families but we also have a large representation of women in transition (widows, divorcees, women with changes in career) among our clients.

We provide: 1) comprehensive wealth management solutions; 2) transition planning and value acceleration services for business owners; and 3) customized asset management. 

Q: Can you share your major tech needs (e.g., CRM, marketing tech, back office); the tech providers you’re currently using; and their strengths and weaknesses?

We classify our tech stack into 5 main categories:

Client Experience

At the heart of our client experience is our portfolio accounting system. We recently upgraded to Orion Advisor Connect from Advent Axys. The main reasons why we upgraded were that the Axys platform was not flexible and did not offer client engagement features. Advent also offers Black Diamond, a direct competitor to Orion. Orion is a modular portfolio accounting/reporting system that is  evolving into a multi-application platform (reporting, client portal, client mobile app, trade and order management system, compliance reporting). Orion recently also acquired a financial planning tool (Advyzr), our financial advisor specialized CRM platform (Redtail CRM),  and a risk management application (Hidden Levers). Orion has been integrating all the different apps.

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For financial planning, we have been using eMoney (owned by Fidelity). eMoney is a financial planning and account aggregation tool. eMoney is fully integrated with Orion.

We recently also started offering our clients tax optimization and private business valuations, using Holistiplan and BizEquity respectively.

Productivity and time-management

  • Monday.com
  • Microsoft OneDrive (secure cloud storage)
  • Microsoft Office Suite
  • Docusign

Research and Investment Platforms

  • Bloomberg Professional Services Terminal
  • iCapital
  • CAIS
  • Allocations.com

Marketing and Communication

  • Wix.com (website and blogging)
  • Constant Contact  (e-mail marketing, in the process of replacing with mailchimp because of its integration with Monday.com)
  • Catchlight.ai

Compliance

  • NRS Compliance Guardian
  • Rackspace Archive (e-mail archiving)

Q: How do you acquire new clients? (I wrote about this in Why Isn’t Sales As Efficient As Online Dating)

Acquiring new clients is a vital aspect of our business, and we employ several methods to expand our client base. Let me walk you through the four primary ways in which we acquire new clients.

Leveraging Existing Clients: by far the most successful method to win new clients revolves around the power of referrals from our existing clients. We prioritize delivering an exceptional client experience, which encourages our clients to share their positive experiences with others. Through regular communication and emphasizing the value we provide, we cultivate a strong referral network. By consistently reminding our clients of our target client personas — such as small to medium-sized business owners in the US coastal regions, women in transition (widows/divorcees/change in jobs), or young professionals with high income—we facilitate referrals from people who can relate to these personas.

Building Relationships with Centers of Influence: Developing strong connections with centers of influence plays a significant role in our client acquisition strategy. We actively engage with professionals such as lawyers, CPAs, and consultants who closely collaborate with individuals seeking our services. By fostering partnerships and demonstrating our expertise, we establish trust and credibility within these networks. As centers of influence refer potential clients to us, we leverage these relationships to expand our clientele.

Media Exposure: Another avenue through which we acquire clients is by gaining media exposure. We are frequently featured on national and international media sharing our insights and industry expertise. Being quoted in media outlets not only enhances our brand visibility but also generates unsolicited inquiries from individuals who resonate with our perspectives. This exposure acts as a powerful catalyst for attracting new clients to our firm.

Educational and Topical Events: We recognize the value of hosting educational seminars and topical events, both in-person and virtual. By hosting these gatherings, we position ourselves as thought-leaders and engage with individuals who have a keen interest in financial matters. These events provide us with opportunities to showcase our knowledge, network with potential clients, and establish ourselves as trusted advisors in the industry.

By combining these four methods, we have successfully expanded our client base and fostered lasting relationships. Acquiring new clients is not just about marketing efforts but also about delivering exceptional service and maintaining a strong reputation within our target audience.

Q: What technologies/databases have you found helpful in winning clients? 

While we have explored various technologies and databases for client acquisition, we’ve learned that trust is paramount in the wealth management industry. Traditional approaches, such as push communication through databases, have yielded minimal success because the trust relationship may not exist yet. Instead, we focus on building trust through meaningful connections and demonstrating our knowledge and expertise.

To support our client acquisition efforts, we utilize lead generation campaigns coupled with targeted landing pages created with tools like eMoney and Constant Contact (see for instance our landing page: Create an investment plan to achieve your goals). These campaigns allow us to showcase our expertise and establish credibility with potential clients.

Additionally, we have found value in lead qualification technologies like catchlight.ai. By leveraging artificial intelligence, these tools help us analyze and assess leads more effectively. This streamlines our lead qualification process, allowing us to focus our efforts on the most promising prospects.

As technology continues to advance, we keep a close eye on upcoming AI tools that show promise for enhancing our client acquisition strategies. By staying at the forefront of technological developments, we aim to leverage emerging tools to further facilitate connections and build trust with prospects.

It’s important to note that while technology plays a supporting role, trust is ultimately built through personal connections and demonstrated expertise. The technologies we utilize serve as enablers, aiding us in initiating meaningful interactions and showcasing the value we bring to prospective clients.

Q: What are your unmet technology needs?  Places in your firm where you’re seeking a solution and haven’t found an appropriate one? These may indicate room for Versatile VC to build or invest in a startup addressing that need.

While we continuously explore technology solutions, there are specific areas within our firm where we have yet to find suitable options. Two notable unmet technology needs stand out:

Integrated Assistant (perhaps AI based): Currently, we are in search of a digital virtual assistant that seamlessly integrates with our CRM system. Our goal is to streamline the scheduling process for review/follow-up calls with both clients and prospects. A comprehensive system that incorporates these features would greatly assist us in managing our schedule more efficiently and maintaining organized workflows.

Flexible Risk Management Tool: Another technology gap we aim to address is the availability of a flexible risk management tool that integrates with our portfolio accounting and management systems. We recognize the importance of monitoring various risk metrics for our clients’ customized investment portfolios. While there are existing solutions for risk management, we have found that the available tools lack the desired flexibility. We are actively seeking a technology that offers robust risk assessment capabilities while allowing us to tailor and adapt them to our clients’ customized portfolios and specific needs.

Finding solutions to these unmet technology needs is essential for enhancing our operational efficiency, improving client service, and strengthening our risk management practices. We remain committed to exploring innovative options and staying informed about advancements in the industry to address these specific gaps.

 Our aim is to leverage technology effectively in order to optimize our operations and deliver exceptional value to our clients.

Q: What processes are you focused on improving?

Currently, our primary focus is on enhancing our marketing processes. We recognize the importance of effective communication and are working towards incorporating more regular interactions through email and social media channels. By leveraging these platforms, we aim to strengthen our brand presence and engage with our audience on a consistent basis.

In addition to communication, we are dedicated to refining our follow-up processes with prospects. We understand the significance of structured and timely follow-ups to nurture relationships and convert potential clients into satisfied ones. By implementing more streamlined and strategic follow-up procedures, we aim to enhance our conversion rates and overall client acquisition success.

Furthermore, we are actively seeking opportunities to expand and optimize our lead generation, lead capture, and lead qualification technologies. We understand that these tools play a crucial role in identifying and engaging with potential clients. By leveraging advanced technologies in these areas, we can further streamline our prospecting efforts and ensure that we are targeting the most promising leads.

Our commitment to improving these processes stems from our dedication to delivering exceptional value and experiences to our clients. We believe that by enhancing our marketing strategies and optimizing our lead management processes, we can effectively connect with our target audience, build strong relationships, and ultimately drive sustainable growth for our business.

If you have any suggestions or insights regarding innovative marketing strategies or tools that can enhance our lead generation and follow-up processes, we would greatly appreciate your input. Our goal is to continuously refine our processes and leverage technology to better serve our clients and achieve our business objectives.

Q: Thanks so much for your valuable time! And thank you to Jaden Livian (Michael’s son) for working with Michael to research this.

LIVIAN & CO. DISCLAIMER

Livian & Co. leverages various technology solutions and third-party service providers to optimize operational efficiency, enhance client service, and strengthen portfolio management practices. Livian & Co. is committed to maintaining the confidentiality and security of its clients’ information. However, it does not control third-party vendors and cannot guarantee that disruptions or security breaches will not occur. Livian & Co. monitors its third-party service providers to ensure they maintain the highest standard of data security. Clients are encouraged to review the privacy policies of any third-party providers they interact with directly.

Michael Livian, CEO & Founder of Livian & Co., is a member of Versatile VC’s Innovation Council. He is not directly or indirectly compensated by the Innovation Council. However, this connection may create potential conflicts of interest in certain situations. Livian & Co. maintains a robust conflict of interest policy to manage such potential conflicts. While Livian & Co. strives to act in the best interests of its clients at all times, there may be situations where the firm’s interests or other relationships conflict with a client’s interests. Livian & Co. takes its duty to disclose any potential conflicts of interest seriously and is committed to transparency in all aspects of its operations. Clients are encouraged to ask questions and request further information about any potential conflicts.

 

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