Schwab Takes “RIA Stands for You” Campaign to the Next Level With New Advertising, an Expanded Website, and Plans for an Advisor Directory

Campaign to educate affluent investors about the RIA difference evolves to include voice of the investor and video from iconic Chairman Charles Schwab

CHICAGO--()--In his keynote address at Schwab’s IMPACT 2012® Conference, one of the nation’s largest and longest-running annual gatherings of independent investment advisors, executive vice president of Charles Schwab & Co., Inc. and head of Schwab Advisor Services, Bernie Clark unveiled enhancements to “RIA Stands for You” – the company’s multi-media campaign aimed at educating affluent investors about the benefits of working with an independent registered investment advisor (RIA). Propelled by a strong first year of results, the campaign now includes new national advertising, additional resources to help advisors leverage the campaign in their local markets, an expanded consumer-facing website, investor videos, and a supporting message from Schwab founder Charles (Chuck) Schwab on the campaign website. Among the priorities for 2013, Schwab is developing an Advisor Directory so investors can locate RIAs in their communities, directly from the “RIA Stands for You” website.

“We developed 'RIA Stands for You' because of our strong belief in the RIA model and what advisors do every day to serve their clients,” said Bernie Clark. “Following the early success of this campaign, it is time to take 'RIA Stands for You' to the next level. Together with advisors, we are building this brand – Schwab at the national level and advisors at the local level, at no cost to the advisor. This campaign is a great example of the kind of advocacy we aim to cultivate by raising awareness and putting the full support of Schwab’s trusted, established brand behind the independent registered investment advisor model.”

Schwab Advisor Services, a leading provider of custodial, operational and trading support for nearly 7,000 RIA firms, designed the “RIA Stands for You” campaign to be used by and shared among its advisor clients. The campaign launched in September 2011, and to date has garnered millions of impressions and received high interaction rates for its national digital advertising. At the local level, hundreds of advisors are using the campaign, incorporating materials and messages into many marketing touch-points. For example, some advisors are using the campaign as a “referral starter kit” while others are incorporating the brand and related materials into their digital marketing and social media strategies - from their websites to newsletters, in prospecting efforts and as content for Facebook and LinkedIn.

Among the updates to the campaign that Clark announced today:

  • New national advertising New digital advertising will feature videos of actual RIA clients sharing their experiences working with an RIA. This is an extension of the first flight of advertising, which was in the voice of the advisor. Investor videos not only underscore the RIA value proposition, but also aim to help investors with similar needs see themselves in this model. The new ads will run daily on high-traffic, high-influence sites such as wsj.com, nytimes.com, atlantic.com, thenewyorker.com, NPR.com, theeconomist.com, Kiplinger.com and Conde Nast’s traveler.com, to name a few. Investors can view – and share – the website and videos by clicking right on the banner of each ad. The ads will also be launching via tablet on a number of sites including abcnews.com, newyorker.com and cnbc.com.
  • An expanded consumer-facing website (www.riastandsforyou.com) – In addition to the new video vignettes featured in the national ads, and helpful educational materials for investors such as questions to ask when choosing an advisor, the campaign’s consumer-facing website will now also include a video message from Schwab’s iconic founder, Charles “Chuck” Schwab. In it, he underscores why RIAs are a natural fit for affluent investors, and draws parallels between the RIA model and his vision for Schwab. “The registered independent investment advisor model is built on a set of principles that are consistent with the way I built my business—transparency, relationships and a client-first approach,” says Schwab. “Deciding who you want to work with to get financial advice can be a very difficult decision, especially if you have significant assets or a complicated portfolio. You really need to evaluate all of your options. RIAstandsforyou.com is a great place to start.”
  • More resources advisors can use to leverage the campaign – Schwab has created an Advisor Marketing Hub, a one-stop-shop where advisors on the Schwab platform can download campaign resources and get tips and ideas about how to leverage the campaign locally. Additionally, new education materials, campaign tools and a pitchbook presentation about the RIA model have also been developed for download. The complete toolkit is available on Schwab Advisor Center, and will be supported by an advisor webcast on December 5th.

For the first time, the SchwabCenter at IMPACT will include a booth dedicated to showcasing Schwab’s RIA channel advocacy efforts, including “RIA Stands for You”.

“We see the 'RIA Stands for You' campaign as one of the critical ways we can help advisors build their businesses, so we will continue to invest in the campaign,” said Clark. “We’re excited about how it’s been used so far, and at the prospect that these enhancements will extend the campaign further. We also have an eye on the future, and are putting plans in place now for another update next year.”

In addition to “RIA Stands for You”, Schwab engages in a wide range of efforts to support and advance the independent advisory industry. Activities include donations to non-profit organizations and universities, as well as providing a voice in Washington, D.C. on regulatory and public affairs issues impacting RIAs. Schwab Advisor Services also established the IMPACT Awards in 2006 to honor advisors and firms that have advanced the industry through their visionary leadership, operational excellence and technology innovation.

About Charles Schwab

The Charles Schwab Corporation (NYSE:SCHW) is a leading provider of financial services, with more than 300 offices and 8.7 million active brokerage accounts, 1.6 million corporate retirement plan participants, 851,000 banking accounts, and $1.9 trillion in client assets. The company was ranked ‘Highest in Investor Satisfaction With Self-Directed Services’ in the 2012 US Self-Directed Investor Satisfaction StudySM from J.D. Power and Associates. Through its operating subsidiaries, the company provides a full range of securities brokerage, banking, money management and financial advisory services to individual investors and independent investment advisors. Its broker-dealer subsidiary, Charles Schwab & Co., Inc. (member SIPC, www.sipc.org), and affiliates offer a complete range of investment services and products including an extensive selection of mutual funds; financial planning and investment advice; retirement plan and equity compensation plan services; compliance and trade monitoring solutions; referrals to independent fee-based investment advisors; and custodial, operational and trading support for independent, fee-based investment advisors through its Advisor Services division. Its banking subsidiary, Charles Schwab Bank (member FDIC and an Equal Housing Lender), provides trust and custody services, banking and mortgage services and products. Investment products offered by Charles Schwab & Co., Inc. are not insured by the FDIC, are not deposits or obligations of Charles Schwab Bank, and are subject to investment risk, including the possible loss of principal invested. More information is available at www.schwab.com and www.aboutschwab.com. (1112-7320)

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Contacts

Charles Schwab
Anita Fox, 415-667-1308
Anita.Fox@schwab.com
or
The Neibart Group
Sarah Gormley, 718-875-2122
sas@neibartgroup.com

Advisors learn more about the RIA Stands For You campaign at the opening night of IMPACT 2012 in Chicago, IL. (Photo: Business Wire)

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Contacts

Charles Schwab
Anita Fox, 415-667-1308
Anita.Fox@schwab.com
or
The Neibart Group
Sarah Gormley, 718-875-2122
sas@neibartgroup.com