SOURCE: Wealth2k

November 01, 2007 10:00 ET

Wealth2k® to Offer Compliant Indexed Annuity Educational Presentation and Personalized Advisor Microsites at No Cost

Technology Offering Designed to Help Annuity Producers Address Critical Consumer Education Challenges

HINGHAM, MA--(Marketwire - November 1, 2007) - Driven by the urgent need to educate consumers on the risks and rewards of owning equity-indexed annuities, Wealth2k announced that beginning today it will offer free compliant* indexed annuity educational presentations and advisor-personalized microsites to all broker-dealers and licensed annuity agents in the U.S.

The present chaotic state of the indexed annuity-marketing environment is driving Wealth2k's actions, according to Wealth2k CEO, David Macchia. "Indexed annuity producers are facing a crucial consumer education challenge as more and more of their traditional sales practices draw criticism from state and federal regulators. There is simply too much risk in continuing to use certain prospecting and educational strategies that may not meet today's rigorous compliance standards," said Macchia.

"Sellers and purchasers of indexed annuities will benefit by having access to an attractive educational presentation that, in a balanced fashion, presents both the advantages and disadvantages of these products. An objective presentation that positions indexed annuities in an appropriate manner isn't a luxury, it's a necessity," he continued.

"Broker-dealers will derive significant value from these educational tools now that they have been charged with supervising the sales of indexed annuities by their registered representatives. Approximately 60% of indexed annuity agents are also registered representatives."

The multimedia educational presentation titled, "The Equity-Indexed Annuity: A Long-Term Vehicle for Savings" is compelling and informative. "I believe annuity producers will be very happy with the presentation," said Macchia. "It's instructive yet it retains sales appeal."

According to Macchia, prospects for indexed annuities will be able to visit their agents' and advisors' microsites to view the presentation in their web browsers. "This technology simultaneously creates a new prospecting strategy for producers that both extends their reach and lowers their costs. It also eliminates sales pressure and empowers the consumer. Annuity sellers will be quite happy when their prospects click on the 'Contact Me' button after viewing the presentation. They will have created a new qualified lead."

Using technology to enhance consumer education is needed, according to Macchia, because in today's rough annuity marketing climate indexed annuity producers have to reach more prospects in order to remain economically viable. "Actions by aggressive regulators combined with continuing criticism of indexed annuities in the press will inevitably force more stringent suitability standards not to mention a clamp-down on traditional sales practices. Moreover, the demand for greater levels of liquidity in indexed annuity products will increase downward pressure on annuity commissions. Producers will have to sell more to stay even. That's where technology comes in. I'm convinced that if producers don't embrace consumer-facing educational technology they will face business decline," he explained.

Macchia makes no bones about the fact that Wealth2k is in business to build profits despite the fact that there is no cost to producers or broker-dealers to access the new technology. "Wealth2k's goal is to do well by doing good. We're not charging for the educational tools, but we will sell advertising and sponsorships to indexed annuity product providers and wholesalers that may wish to reach these producers with information about their new or existing products."

NO PRODUCT TIE-IN

Indexed annuity producers wishing to have the microsite and multimedia presentation will not be required to agree to any product tie-in, according to Macchia. "The producers win in this equation by being able to use an advanced tool to deliver quality education. They can use it as a prospecting device, or even with existing customers. What's important is that they use it."

FREE COMPLIANT BROCHURE

"Although the technology is sexy and enables agents to reach unlimited numbers of prospects, we are also providing a compliant educational brochure at no cost," said Jason Karle, Director of Sales at Wealth2k. "We recognize that some people just feel comfortable with brochures so we have an excellent one that can be downloaded and printed locally. In addition, the multimedia presentation may be downloaded to the advisor's notebook computer."

Agents wishing to sign up for the microsite, multimedia presentation and brochure may visit www.fiatoday.com. The signup process takes only minutes.

*The Wealth2k multimedia presentation and brochure have been reviewed by FINRA. Comment letters are available for review.

About Wealth2k®

Wealth2k, Inc. (www.wealth2k.com) is a provider of consumer-facing communications technology and multimedia presentations exclusively for the financial services industry. It is creating the next generation of compliant frameworks that allow financial advisors to create vital context for product sales in key markets including Boomer retirement.

©Copyright 2007 Wealth2k, Inc. All rights reserved.

Contact Information