Financial Advisor Hierarchy of Income | Earning Pyramid


Picture a pyramid. The widest part is at the bottom.hierarchy of income

Level 1: Along the bottom you have the Financial Advisor Generalist who works with anyone and everyone, or as I like to say “a generalist who works with anyone really works with no one” in the eyes of clients.

Level 2: the next level up is the Financial Advisor Specialist who declares a Target Market.

Level 3: Financial Advisor Certified Specialist. This might be an advisor with a credential that relates to their Target Market. So an advisor who works with women who also has the CDFA (Certified Divorce Financial Analyst). Or an advisor who focuses on Retirees and has a CRPC (Chartered Retirement Planning Counselor).

Level 4:  Financial Advisor Certified Specialist who is also an Expert Authority. This might be a FA who’s Target Market is women, has a CDFA, and blogs or writes white papers about women and finance on a custom, branded website.

Level 5: FA celebrity like Suze Orman or Ric Edelman

The higher up the pyramid, the more income you make and the more an advisor will be paid for WHO they are to their target market, than they are paid for what they do or what they sell.