Michael Kim, the EVP and chief client officer at AssetMark, thinks the rise of socially responsible investing gives financial advisors an opportunity to grow their business. And advisors will need to integrate such offerings for clients if they hope to keep up with industry evolutions. 

Kim recently led a closed webinar for approximately 160 advisors on why and how socially responsible investing can benefit their businesses. According to Kim, responsible investing is a sound business strategy to connect with the next generation, and “it’s an effective way to grow business and initiate a strong client-advisor partnership.”

According to a 2016 U.S. Trust Survey, about 93 percent of millennials, 68 percent of Gen Xers and 78 percent of women value this type of investing.

“Advisors have the ability to connect with clients on pertinent issues that impact them socially as well as financially,” said Kim. “It brings sound investment strategies to your clients, fulfilling a social goal and personal goals beyond ROI.”

Kim described an advisor who volunteered at her local animal shelter and focused on investments that supported animal care and animal causes. Many of her clients were her fellow volunteers and staff at the shelter.

Another advisor in the Pacific Northwest he mentioned works with high-tech companies, designing green portfolios for high-tech executives seeking to invest in green initiatives.

Kim suggested that advisors guide clients to make an impact by actively investing in companies that support social policies and procedures as a business model, targeting S&P 500 companies, for instance, and choosing those portfolio options supporting ESG investments.