There is an old adage about market research that says before Henry Ford launched the motor car he said if he had asked people what they wanted they would have said faster horses.
In fact it is an anomaly recognised by almost all marketeers that while most market research is hugely reliable there are sometimes things that buck the trend. For example, TMA recently conducted some research with Mortgage Solutions about what advisers really want from a mortgage club as part of our constant striving to deliver excellence. Some of the questions in the survey regarded the provision of compliance services. In the research this was not something that featured as a priority at all, in fact only 4% of respondents said that they placed business with a mortgage club because of compliance support, while only 3% of advisers said that compliance support was an important attribute for a mortgage club to offer.
However, the conundrum is that of all of the regular email information that TMA sends to its advisers, anything that mentions compliance has the highest open rate. This completely flies in the face of what advisers say that they actually want.
Interestingly, the survey showed that only just over half of directly authorised advisers actually paid for compliance support, but of those that did 53% found it useful, raising the question of how else mortgage advisers receive compliance information. If they are trying to do it all in house it would explain the high open rate of compliance related emails.
The other hypothesis is that it is seen as a fundamental to everyone’s business, not a nice to have, so when asked about what they want from a mortgage club a compliance service is seen as a bedrock, not something aspirational.
Ultimately actions speak louder than words and whatever the fundamental reason for the difference, TMA will continue to provide advisers with the compliance information that is so crucial for the successful running of an FCA regulated advisory business.