The makeup of the nation's wealthy offers financial advisors broad opportunities for focusing in on a target market, according to a new study.
   The study by Tiburon Strategic Advisors, a market research and consulting firm, found that the wealthy client market is a diversified "niche" that can be approached in varying ways by professionals.
   Whether clients be categorized by age, occupation, asset level or source of wealth, the market offers ripe opportunities for advisors to focus their strategies, the study's authors say.
   One of the most visible target markets, they note, is the baby boomer generation of those born between 1946 and 1964.
   "The first key step is to realize the importance of baby boomers," the report states. "It is the baby boomers... who will look to liquefy their retirement plans, small- and medium-size businesses and homes as they reach retirement in the coming years."
   Noting that the World War II and Generation X markets are limited, Tiburon says baby boomers currently dominate the client lists of many independent advisors.
   Another market segment cited by the study is the occupational group, composed of corporate executives, small- and medium-sized business owners, and professionals such as doctors and lawyers. The report notes that this group constitutes the base of the nation's high-net worth households-80% of which represents first-generation wealth.
   "Nearly all of the affluent U.S. households... can be segmented into these (occupational) categories," the report's authors state.
   The key to serving this market, they say, is timing, as most of these clients operate on rigid schedules.
   "For example, contacting doctors during patient hours can be nearly impossible," they write in the report. "Being responsive to these individuals' needs in a timely fashion and working with their schedules tends to be the most effective way of doing business."
   A client's source of wealth is also a significant area when segmenting markets, the report states, noting that retirement plan rollovers and other sources of new money account for about two-thirds of all fee-only financial advisors' managed assets.
   Other client segments, according to the report, can be categorized according to geography, marital status, educational level, gender and ethnicity.