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I have been using ChatGPT since the very first day it was released to the public: November 30, 2022.

At the time, I said that financial advisors who use artificial intelligence will run laps around financial advisors who don’t. And yet… more than a year later, most financial advisors didn’t listen and still aren’t using ChatGPT.


Well, most financial advisors suffer from what Charlie Munger called “mental bias.” This disease is so strong in the financial advisor industry that a financial advisor still in college but who isn’t afraid of AI can run laps around you as soon as they graduate.

After using AI for more than 12 months, I’ve also discovered what it’s best—and worst—at.

In this episode, you’ll discover how to use AI to transform your financial advising business. And you’ll get a much-needed reminder that it’s time to start using AI.

Listen now.

Show highlights include:

  • A cool way to use AI that has absolutely nothing to do with financial advising or marketing but will improve the quality of your life (1:43)
  • Why trying to do too many marketing tactics scares away your best clients (5:50)
  • The insidious “mental bias” most financial advisors have that keeps you stuck in mediocrity (6:46)
  • How to quickly save at least $20,000 per year by simply using AI (8:39)
  • Why simply paying more attention to your money can drown you in spoils (9:24)
  • How using ChatGPT to edit your copy makes it less persuasive than the original (even if you’re not a copywriter) (11:51)
  • A simple little ChatGPT trick to improve your writing without sacrificing your time or persuasion (12:40)
  • The wrong way to prompt ChatGPT to do your bidding… and the best way to prompt ChatGPT to do your bidding (16:15)

I even wrote a little PDF called how financial advisors can get clients with artificial intelligence. If you want to download that you can grab it at the advisor coach.com/ai.

83% of financial advisors make plans for their clients, but don’t make a plan for their own business. Isn’t that wild? If you’re one of the 83% without a marketing plan, I created one for you. Get it here: https://TheAdvisorCoach.com/marketing-plan

Go to https://TheAdvisorCoach.com/Coaching and pick up your free 90 minute download called “5 Keys to Success for Financial Advisors” when you join The James Pollard Inner Circle.

Read Full Transcript

You're listening to “Financial Advisor Marketing”—the best show on the planet for financial advisors who want to get more clients, without all the stress. You're about to get the real scoop on everything from lead generation to closing the deal.

James is the founder of TheAdvisorCoach.com, where you can find an entire suite of products designed to help financial advisors grow their businesses more rapidly than ever before. Now, here is your host, James Pollard.

James: About a year ago, I started talking a lot about artificial intelligence in my marketing, in my emails, in my ads. A.I. was really a hot topic and a lot of financial advisors asked me questions about my thoughts, and I'm honored that they asked me what I think because I'm definitely not an expert on everything. I’m, for sure, not an expert in artificial intelligence, but I probably know more than most financial advisors. I am just a financial advisor marketing guy, after all, but I definitely saw some ways that artificial intelligence could be used in marketing and could help people. [01:02.4]

I don't really have much of a plan or structure for this episode. I guess what I'll do is rehash what I said last year and give you some updates on what I think now. I guess I'll also share a few things that I am doing when it comes to artificial intelligence and how it is impacting my life. I'll give you a few specific examples.
There are so many artificial-intelligence tools out there right now, but the big one is still ChatGPT. I have the Plus plan for $20 per month and I love it. It's obviously not the answer to all of life's questions. It can't do everything for you, but it is a handy little tool. It's easily worth the 20 bucks a month, and I'll be honest, I will pay $1,000 a month for ChatGPT. It is that valuable to me.
There are even little things that you can do with it. For example, did you know that you could take a picture, let's just say, of your fridge or the food in your fridge and say, “Create a meal plan with the food that you see”? You can take a picture of your pantry and say, “Create a meal plan for every day of the week using the food that you see,” and it will create a meal plan. Isn't that nuts? [01:58.8]

You could take a picture of your home gym and you could say, “Create a workout plan designed to build legs, shoulders and chest with the equipment that you see,” and it will do that. So, a lot of the photo stuff has evolved a lot in the past year. That didn't even exist when I started talking about artificial intelligence.
One of the things that I did recently that's top of mind for me, there are these little screws and they go in the vents in my house. I don't really know how to describe them. They’re hex screws and some of them are different from all the others, and I couldn't figure out what the name of the screw was, right? I took the screw out of the vent and I took a picture of it, and I uploaded it to ChatGPT and I said, “Help me identify the name of the screw.”
It didn't get it right the first time. It said something like “ABC screw” or whatever, and I Googled it and I looked at the images and that was not the right screw. But I took different pictures from different angles and in better lighting, and eventually, it got it right, and by eventually, I mean within three tries, so that is really, really, really cool. It was able to identify this specific type of screw and the whole reason why I took the picture was because it was not in the right place and I was like, This should not be in the vent. This is not a vent screw. This is not something that is used for events or dryers. This is not in the right place, so what is this? But I know I'm going off on a tangent here. [03:16.6]

I have been using ChatGPT since the very first day it was released to the public, and that was November 30, 2022. It feels really cool for me to say that I have been using it literally since day one. I even wrote a little PDF called “How Financial Advisors Can Get Clients with Artificial Intelligence.” If you want to download that, you can grab it at TheAdvisorCoach.com/AI. Once again, you can download that PDF for free at TheAdvisorCoach.com/AI.
Keep in mind, it is a year old at this point, but it still has some pointers for ChatGPT. It can help you get it to do the things that you want it to do and you can see how A.I. has evolved over time. If nothing else, you could just see something from a year ago that I put together when A.I. was the hot buzzword at the time. [03:59.6]

Artificial intelligence was such a requested topic that the March 2023 Inner Circle Newsletter issue was pretty much all about that. I rarely do theme issues because I don't want to give subscribers the impression that the newsletter is about one topic or even one topic per month, because that's not the case at all.
I've said many times that I write the newsletter in a buffet style, and what that means is you have a lot of different things all together, just like at a buffet where you might have steak, chicken, potatoes, mac and cheese, pasta and a salad. The newsletter might have a little bit of social media strategy, a little bit of referral marketing strategy, a little bit of info about improving your systems, and so on. I do it that way for many reasons. I have really refined the newsletter over the years to be of maximum value to financial advisors, so let me give you just a few reasons here.
The very first reason is because I want every subscriber to get something from each newsletter issue. Sometimes advisors at certain companies like Ameriprise, Raymond James, Edward Jones or Wells Fargo, they will email me and ask, “James, does the Inner Circle Newsletter apply to me?” and the honest answer is, yes, but not 100% of the content will apply to you. But you don't want the whole newsletter to apply to you, because that would be overwhelming and it would be bad for you. [05:15.6]

I don't want each newsletter issue to be 100% applicable to every subscriber, because that means I have not done my job effectively, because my job is not just writing a good newsletter. Right? My job is not just creating good content for you. My job is to create good content and deliver it to you in such a way where you are most likely to implement it, because the implementation is what gives you the results.
Would you want to eat every little item at a buffet? Absolutely not. You would wreck your insides if you tried to eat everything. The same is true with the newsletter, which brings me to another reason. The second reason why I write it in that buffet style intentionally is because I want advisors to take one thing, one thing from each issue, and implement it. That's it. [06:00.7]

So, if you see five or six paragraphs about a topic and that's all you need, that's fine, go from there. The newsletters are meant to be referenced and read multiple times. You might read an issue when it comes to you in the mail and then read it again in a few months. The next time you read it, you are likely to implement something else, just like you might try different foods the second time you go back to a buffet. You do not try to stuff everything down your pie hole in one sitting. That's counterproductive. You have your plate. You eat it, maybe you go back for seconds. That's cool. But then you leave the buffet. Then you come back to the buffet next month. You try some different foods. Maybe it's a theme night. Maybe it's seafood night or pasta night, and you try something different, right? That is how it's designed to go.
Anyway, here are some of the things I said in my newsletter promo emails a year ago, building up to that issue. One of the things I talked about was something Charlie Munger, may he rest in peace, talks about at the Daily Journal shareholders’ meeting. He did a question and answer session and it was a pleasure to watch, and this was my favorite question by far. Here it goes. [07:01.1]

“Mr. Munger, you've spoken about the importance of avoiding mental biases in decision making. In your experience, what is the most challenging bias to overcome, and how do you personally guard against him?”
Charlie responded, “Well, if I had to name one factor that dominates doing bad decisions, it would be what I call denial. If the truth is unpleasant enough, people kind of, their mind plays tricks on them, and they can, it isn’t really happening. And, of course, that causes enormous destruction of business where people go out throwing money into the way they used to do things that ultimately isn't going to work well at all the way the world is now having changed.”
I then talked about how I saw financial advisors being victims of this mental bias, where they're just denying that things are happening. They are in denial because they were denying that artificial intelligence would have a profound impact on them, their businesses and their entire lives, and I'm still seeing that a year later. [07:55.0]

That actually reminds me of something else. Four or five years ago, I posted this poll on LinkedIn and I asked financial advisors what they thought of Bitcoin. I ran that same exact poll a year later and then a year after that, too, and the results were pretty much the same, meaning, years had gone by and the financial advisor population hadn't really changed its mind on Bitcoin.
Now, this podcast is not about Bitcoin. I, honestly, don't care how you feel about it. But the fact that the advisors were so stagnant over the years and that their thinking was pretty much the exact same isn't a good sign, especially because right now we have spot ETFs and things have changed and it's more acceptable, and wallets are easier to use, and so on and so forth. I'm just afraid that this denial and this stuck mentality will apply here, too.
Last year, I shared an example of how ChatGPT helped me replace 10 hours of work per week that I would have paid a virtual assistant to do, so let's do some math. If I paid a VA $40 per hour, then that means $400 per week or $20,000 per year would go back into my pocket. That's money I can use to spend, save, invest or do whatever I want with. I can take that money and reinvest it back into my business so I can grow even faster. [09:05.7]

I'll give you a very specific example of one way that ChatGPT has improved my life. I do my own bookkeeping. I know, I know, that might shock a lot of you because you think that entrepreneurs don't do their own bookkeeping and that you're a big boss and everything, and that you hire someone to manage your books. But I've discovered that money likes it when you pay attention to it.
A lot of you listening don't have money because you don't pay attention to your money. Besides, I have my processes dialed in to where my bookkeeping takes me 15 minutes per month, maybe 20 if I'm pushing it. It is worth it to me to take those 15 or 20 minutes per month to put my finger on my business' pulse and see how things are going. I run a tight ship. I want to see this stuff. I want to see the books. I want to see every transaction, right?
Now, let's say that I'm reconciling between QuickBooks and PayPal. PayPal can be an absolute nightmare, but I still use PayPal because some people like to pay through them and I'll gladly take the money, right? I make enough money through PayPal that I will put up with it, right? If I only made a couple hundred bucks or a couple thousand dollars a month, I absolutely under no circumstances would use PayPal. [10:09.8]

Hey, financial advisors. If you'd like even more help building your business, I invite you to subscribe to James' monthly paper-and-ink newsletter, “The James Pollard Inner Circle”. When you join today, you'll get more than $1,000 worth of bonuses, including exclusive interviews that aren't available anywhere else. Head on over to TheAdvisorCoach.com/coaching to learn more.

But let's say I've never had an issue with my bank. I've never had an issue with American Express or any of the credit cards that I use in my personal life. Yet, for some reason, PayPal likes to crap the bed pretty much every month. There will be all sorts of transactions missing and it's not fun to reconcile, but here's what I do. I will copy and paste all my transactions from QuickBooks and from my PayPal statement and then I will ask ChatGPT, “Hey, tell me what's missing.” In two seconds, it will tell me exactly what is in my PayPal statement that is not in QuickBooks and I can easily reconcile. [11:06.7]

Yes, I know there are other ways to do this. I know you can do this in Excel and Google Sheets and everything, but I’ve found that it's just faster and easier for me to pull up ChatGPT, copy-paste, copy-paste, done, and it will have the transactions in a few seconds. I can ask follow-up questions. I can say, “What about the transaction on February 8, that blah, blah, blah? Can you find anything for $97? Can you find anything that adds up to $113? Can you find anything that adds up to 1,492?” I can ask follow-up questions and it will have the data there.
If I keep using a chat, I can ask it to go back to a year ago. I can say, “Hey, remember that copy-paste I gave you four months ago or a year ago? Can you please give me the transaction that cost the most money?” Whatever, right? Let your mind run wild. That is what I do. [11:52.1]

I also have ChatGPT do some light editing and proofreading for me, and I actually do less editing and proofreading through ChatGPT than I imagine other people should do, because it can be finicky and I've discovered that if you really train it, it can do well. But a lot of times, it fights against what I call the copywriter way of writing, because if you're a copywriter, then you're going to break grammar rules all the time.
So, when I'm writing, I make up words. I structure my sentences in ways that would make English professors cringe, but I do it because the conversions are higher when I write that way. ChatGPT doesn't like that. ChatGPT is like, Please write like an English professor would want you to write. But every now and then I will throw a page or two in there and I'll say, “Change all of my passive sentences to active,” and then I'll go back and I'll check its work.
I also use ChatGPT to vary my words in my writing. This is a very specific example, but I just want to give you an idea of what's possible and what I actually do. When I'm writing the Inner Circle Newsletter and the emails and stuff like that, I use the phrase, for example, “a lot.” I also use the phrase “for instance” a lot, because I give a lot of examples. [13:00.6]

When I tell financial advisors about referral marketing strategies, for example, I give them tons of examples. I say you could do this, you could do this, you could do this. If I talk about social media, I say you could do this and this, and this and that, and this and that, and the other. I can give ChatGPT a section of my writing and say, “Rewrite this with different ways to say, for example, ‘and for instance.’” That's a nice little way to improve my work without much effort on my part. But enough about those examples.
Another thing I said a year ago is that financial advisors who use artificial intelligence are going to run circles around those who don't. That is absolutely 100% still true. I still feel that way. Even with the little virtual assistant example I gave you earlier, that means I have an additional $20,000 per year to expand my business and that is from one example. That's one thing. It's actually much more than that. For me, I have so many other things that I do. [13:53.0]

I also talked about how according to Moore's law, computing power doubles every 18 to 24 months. Now, of course, there are some arguments to be made that computing power might be slowing down or that the growth occurs in spurts. That is neither here nor there. You can google it yourself and you can do your own research.
But over the long term, Moore's Law has held up pretty well. That means the computing power in March 2025 will look a lot different than in March 2023 when I wrote that artificial intelligence newsletter and I started talking about it in my marketing, and ChatGPT has improved since it came out. Right now, it even allows you to create custom GPTs based on specific purposes. Some of these are absolutely amazing, while others aren't that good. Honestly, it all comes back to how well it's been trained.
There's a GPT called Grammar Checker, but it is geared toward academic writing, so if you are a student in college and you want to proofread and edit your document, you can upload that and you can say, “I want it in MLA format” or “I want it in APA format,” and it will do that for you. It is absolutely, absolutely amazing for that purpose, but it is not amazing for me, because, again, I write like a copywriter, and seriously, it does come back to how well it's been trained. If you put garbage in, then you will get garbage out. [15:08.8]

I actually created my own custom GPT with all of my podcast transcripts and all of my blog articles and newsletter issues, and just everything I could mind, right? And I called it Pollard GPT and it's pretty cool. I wanted to release it to financial advisors, but the reason I didn't and the reason I don't think I will, at least not right now, is because I can tell it's not really me and it's not even inspired by me.
What I mean is, for example—again, that's me, “for example”—I might ask it a question about educational content in marketing. If you're a longtime listener of this podcast, you know that I think educational content and marketing is a dumb strategy. I don't think you should do it. However, Pollard GPT will answer you and will tell you, “Oh, educational content is great. Here are four ways that you can use educational content to build credibility and improve your relationships with your clients,” and that is not what I would say. There are lots of little examples like that where it sounds good and it's written in my style, but the content itself is not something that I would say. So, until it can be truly like me, I have no plans on releasing Pollard GPT to the public. [16:14.5]

Last year, I also talked about how financial advisors were using ChatGPT the wrong way, because they would ask very generic questions and then get upset when they got generic answers. I saw a lot of posts from financial advisors and I got a lot of emails from advisors saying, “Oh, it just gave me this super vague advice.” It was like, What question did you ask? How well did you train it?”
Here's an example. The wrong way to prompt ChatGPT is like this. “Write a social media post about getting out of debt.” What you want to do is something like this. “Pretend you are a social media ghostwriter for a financial planner in Miami, Florida. The financial planner has 10 years of experience, specializes in working with nurses, and is currently accepting new clients. The goal of your LinkedIn posts or social media posts or whatever is to attract nurses who engage with the post. Your posts should always be written in a casual, engaging tone. I want you to write a social media post about getting out of debt and gear it to nurses.” See the difference? [17:13.2]

That's just the tip of the iceberg, too, because in order to really ramp up your results with ChatGPT, you need to know how to train it to get the results you want. If you're not getting the results you want with ChatGPT, it's because you have not trained it well enough.
Now, let's get down to the title of this episode. Do I think artificial intelligence will replace financial advisors? No, I don't. There will likely always be a place for financial advisors to help people with their money, because money is emotional. It's not just about numbers on a spreadsheet. It's about dreams, goals, fears and family. That's something A.I. can't fully replicate. It can provide data, calculations and even predictions, but it cannot understand the human aspect of finance and that is where a financial advisor is still valuable. [17:57.3]

Now, who knows, we might be bowing down to our robot overlords in the future, but for right now, ChatGPT kind of sucks at giving financial advice. Now don't get me wrong, it is fantastic at specific problems, if you train it well enough. It can give you amazing answers, if given the training.
But therein lies the problem. The type of person who needs to hire a financial advisor or wants to hire a financial advisor is likely not the type of person who can train ChatGPT effectively enough to get good results in the first place. If you try to use ChatGPT for financial advice without training it well, then it might give you an answer that seems really good, but it has one or two specific errors that can derail the entire thing, so human eyes are still needed to spot these blunders.
But with all that said, I really do think it's naive to believe that people won't try to use ChatGPT for financial advice. A company called Finder conducted a survey of UK adults and found that 19% of them surveyed said they would entertain the notion of getting financial basement ChatGPT and 8% of them confessed that they already have, and that survey was done a year ago. I imagine the results are higher now, and if you don't think those numbers will rise in the future, then you, my friend, are delusional. [19:15.5]

One of the greatest opportunities staring you in the face right now is educating people about the dangers of seeking advice from ChatGPT, and don't just wag your finger and say, “Don't do that.” That's as effective as a parent saying, “Oh, because I told you so.” Lay it out for them. Give them the evidence. Give them case studies. Give them snapshots. Give them reasons. Use your marketing skills. You're listening to the Financial Advisor Marketing podcast. Use your skills. Explicitly highlight why following ChatGPT’s advice is like walking the plank. You can point out all the errors that it makes.
Now, I hope this episode has been helpful. It'd be very interesting to see what artificial intelligence looks like in another year. But let's not forget, A.I. is a tool. It is not a replacement. It's there to enhance our abilities. It's like a farm upgrading from a plow to a tractor. The tractor makes the farmer more efficient and society benefits because the farmer can produce more. [20:07.2]

If advisors treat artificial intelligence like that, upgrading from a plow to a tractor, then they can use the extra time, the extra money, and the extra resources that they get. They can invest all of that back into their businesses. They could do whatever they want. In the future, I predict that the most successful financial advisors will be the ones who find the perfect balance between leveraging A.I. and maintaining their personal touch. They will use A.I. to enhance their services, not replace the core of what they do, which is understanding and empathizing with their clients.
That is it for now. Thank you so much for tuning in, and I will catch you next week. [20:46.0]

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