Good Day Reader,
Portfolio Strategies (or as our hip advisers call us Port Strat) is joining the blogosphere this month. We have been working with professionals over the past few months to assist us in tailoring our social platform, as it is becoming an overwhelming influencer in today’s economy. Many of our personal opinions and financial strategies had been shaped by our local newspaper and/or evening news, but today we are shaped by the comments of our friends, followers, and those we follow on social platforms ranging from Facebook to Snap Chat. We are more apt to listen to our peers than we are to listen to the talking heads on the television and radio. What had taken months to spread, takes only moments to be heard by millions around the world. Social cues and norms are processed in seconds instead of days, opinions shared to hundreds instead of tens.
Companies either adapt to the new norms of social communication or find themselves left behind, with no message to share. Portfolio Strategies wanted to make sure its message was heard, but to tailor our messages to be more proactive, positive, and informative. We found much of the information shared through social media could so easily be turned against companies and we wanted to weigh the pros and cons of becoming part of the social experience. After much research and thought, we believe we have developed a campaign which will benefit our team of successful advisers and clients to better themselves as well as add some occasional fun into the mix.
The social world has inspired innovation in every sector and industry. When pain is felt and shared through social media, entrepreneurs look to turn pain into capital through engineering and technology. We watch as ideas suddenly appear as out of the ethereal and become multi-billion dollar companies. Finding capital to promote or build an idea can be done through social platforms which allow individuals to take part in the fund raising process; the Pebble Watch is a great example of social engineering and funding. The innovative spirit is not only relegated to products but is breaching into the world of services as well. Each passing day provides new opportunities for individuals to invest money and funds into creative services such as Acorn.
Portfolio Strategies loves innovation. It shapes and changes the world we live in and more importantly has the ability to educate and shape people’s behaviors and patterns. Take Acorn for instance, an idea which now encompasses well over 250,000 users. Acorn allows an individual to invest in funds, but it does so in a very unobtrusive way. Acorn rounds up to the nearest dollar every time a user spends money from his/her checking or credit card account. Once the roundup reaches $5.00, Acorn transfers the funds from the user’s checking account and invests the $5.00 into funds without the user having to be involved. The user chooses the risk he/she is willing to take—Acorn does the rest.
Think about the implications this has for the future of our economy. Acorn is training its users to become investors, to become savers, to begin looking towards their financial future without the need to think about it each month. Before the user knows it, he/she has $1000, then $4,000, then $10,000 saved. This is an extremely powerful statement and feeling of accomplishment for the Acorn user.
One would think Portfolio Strategies would see these emerging technologies as a challenge and a competitive force in the market. Actually, we feel exactly the opposite. Portfolio Strategies wants people to save for their futures, to secure their retirements so they can enjoy their golden years. We understand applications such as Acorn are great to start people on the journey to saving, but over time, as people amass a larger holding in funds, stocks, and other investments, it becomes necessary for them to branch out and seek the advice and assistance of advisers who are professionally trained and aware of the fluctuations in the market. They need to personally connect with their advisers when the market is in a full swing, up or down, to receive a greater analysis of their risk as they get older. The greater the amount of investment, and the older we become, the more importance is placed on the security of our retirement nest egg. Constant evaluation of the market, economy, and heartbeat of the investment community becomes key. A personal relationship trumps a relationship shared by thousands.
Portfolio Strategies salutes innovation in the financial field. It serves to educate on the importance of saving, even if saving is simply rounding up a Starbuck’s purchase. We realize every penny counts and every penny saved is one penny less needed to retire.