Redefining Financial Marketing: Then & Now | WealthWave
Back to Blogs

Redefining Financial Marketing: Then & Now

March 13, 2024

Embarking on a transformative journey from the tangible clinks of typewriters to the ethereal taps on touchscreens, financial marketing has undergone a metamorphosis since the 1980s.

Propelled by relentless technological advancements and an ever-changing marketplace, our compass has been recalibrated, and our maps are redrawn. Together, let's voyage through the contrasting epochs, extracting wisdom from yesteryears and aligning with today's promises.

I've been steering our team for four decades, navigating these changing tides. When I began, Ronald Reagan was freshly inaugurated, the IBM PC made its debut and a phone was tethered to a place, not synonymous with a person. Having client meetings meant traversing actual roads with tangible maps in hand.

Now, the world as we knew it has transformed beyond recognition: from paperless offices, high-speed internet connectivity, and immediate transactions to the profound shifts post-COVID, changing client-educator dynamics, and evolving leadership expectations. Through it all, the perpetual constant has been evolution.

And yet, the nostalgia lingers. It’s hard to believe that the anthems of the 1980s now resonate as timeless classics. The beat of "Billie Jean" still echoes vividly, from Michael Jackson's iconic moonwalk to the rush of procuring the vinyl. Today, the entire musical universe is accessible in our pockets. Take a look at what has happened within our industry:


Then: A world of ink and paper, where ledgers and checks demanded manual oversight, often susceptible to human error.

Now: A symphony of real-time digital updates, cloud-based storages and AI-driven solutions, epitomizing accuracy and efficiency.


Then: A realm dominated by television spots, radio ads, and newspapers. My own odyssey began through an ad in the Cincinnati Enquirer.

Now: A digital ballet of targeted outreach, where AI-driven strategies zero in on specific audiences, delivering unmatched precision.


Then: Monumental mainframe computers governed the stage, with constrained capabilities.

Now: The dance of blockchain, mobile technology, and boundless Internet is revolutionizing our services.


Then: A waltz of phone calls, faxes, and direct encounters.

Now: A whirlwind of instant global connectivity, is making distances obsolete.


Then: Detailed financial prognoses demanded rigorous manual presentations and computations.

Now: Advanced CRM systems and automated platforms choreograph client and team interactions and insights with finesse.


Then: A limited repertoire of basic financial services.

Now: A flourishing array of options, from insurance to diverse investment avenues.


Then: Knowledge was an exclusive privilege of select circles.

Now: A democratized stage where information empowers all, nurturing a discerning clientele advocating for transparency and teams needing to be led.

Visualizing a firm anchored in the 1980s navigating today's waters presents a stark image: inefficiencies would overwhelm, outreach would wane, and clients would grapple with opaque, sluggish operations.

Similarly, leaders entrenched in the past might inhibit progress, miss contemporary opportunities, and remain oblivious to modern-day consumer desires. Such inertia jeopardizes trust, positions against the tide of competition, and risks monetary setbacks.

The comparison of financial marketing's past and present illuminates the imperative of agility. While the bedrock principles of trust, integrity, and service remain unaltered, the ways to manifest them have transformed. By embracing this evolution, we fortify our commitment to remain adept, influential, and indispensable in a dynamic world. That’s WealthWave.