The financial technology market has shifted substantially in the past six months. While RIA’s and TAMP’s remain the leaders in innovating with new technology, IMO’s are now entering the fintech space, and doing so in a big way.
Some IMO’s have evolved drastically recently, coming all the way from pen-and-paper solutions to innovative, best-in-class technology for their agents and advisors.
These organizations are looking far beyond the unsettled fate of the DOL rule. They’re trying to cement their spot as a top IMO in the industry.
Some have predicted that the IMO space could begin shrinking due to regulations, but the leaders in the space are taking that challenge and turning it into an opportunity by upgrading their technology suite. At Nitrogen, we’ve been successful with IMO’s because we recognize what they’re doing, listen to their needs and help them build a world-class system. IMO’s are taking risks and innovating like never before in fintech. I think we’ll see the 20 firms that have applied to become financial institutions become the real leaders in the space going forward.
We asked Nathan Hightower, President of Amerilife, about IMO strategies in light of the trends we see in the regulatory landscape. Here’s what he said:
“If a firm is willing to sit back and wait, they are taking a huge gamble. Secondly, their fallback plan would have to be to roll under another IMO who is out there making the decision. It’s not the best tactic to take. There is nothing wrong if you’re an IMO and you don’t have the infrastructure. You just have to understand what your business strategy is. If it is to associate with a financial institution, that could cost you even more money.”
Stephen Odom, President of Impact Partners talks about the importance of picking the right partner:
“It is extremely important to be prepared and especially committed, but there is a balance with so much left be clarified. Measure twice but cut once is wise whenever possible.”
Brad Johnson, VP of Advisors Excel adds,
“IMO’s need a systematized process that takes advantage of today’s technology to:
- Automate taking a real world retiree’s needs and inputting them (i.e. Taking data from client fact finder) into a best-of-class annuity software defined by client needs.
- Crunch the numbers, analyzing the current product options based on current rates, riders, ratings, etc.
- Deliver the top grouping of product options for that advisor to present to that retiree as options.
- Document all of this and store electronically.”
We believe the best days are ahead for IMO’s. We’ve been impressed at their recent trajectory toward becoming fintech leaders, and at Nitrogen, we’re here to help. Curious how IMO’s leverage the Risk Number® to drive next-level client-agent alignment? Follow the link below.
Written by Alex at Nitrogen