The 9 ‘Best’ Financial Advisor Conferences (For Scaling Up) In 2023

The 9 ‘Best’ Financial Advisor Conferences (For Scaling Up) In 2023

After more than 2 years of ongoing disruptions, from the original COVID-19 outbreak, to wave after wave of variants as the pandemic rolled on, 2022 proved to be the year that advisor conferences were “back”, as events ceased canceling or rescheduling in response to new variants and powered forward… often with virtual options for those who still felt uncomfortable traveling, but with most events actually reaching or even exceeding their pre-pandemic highs as advisors showed that they, too, are hungry to re-connect and re-engage.

However, not all advisor conferences have recovered, and, instead, the pandemic seems to have operated as a catalyst that took ongoing shifts in the conference landscape and accelerated them. As while conferences in the past were primarily a combination of ‘trade shows’ (where advisors could see the latest products and services from the vendors who exhibited) and educational content for CE, the conferences that have been the fastest to rebound are either built around their communities that also offer education and networking (as advisors still have a desire to ‘go home’ to their communities, from RIA custodians to broker-dealers, to advisor networks and associations they’re connected with) or those that are built around practice management.

In fact, with the astonishing success of advisory firms through the pandemic – as nearly all firms held onto and still managed to grow their client count despite the disruption, and saw revenue reach new highs as AUM was largely buoyed by market growth (recent market volatility notwithstanding) – in the new conference landscape, the challenges that advisors face when trying to “scale up” through the growth have become a major focus. Leading to an expansion in various ‘niche’ conferences that specialize in particular challenges that advisors face as they follow the growth journey. Which, in turn, is spawning even more hunger for specialized practice management conferences in 2023.

As someone who has been speaking at 50-70 conferences a year for 18 years myself, I’ve seen the good and bad of our wide range of industry events, which are spread across membership associations, broker-dealers, insurance companies, RIA custodians, product manufacturers, media companies, private events, and more. And as a result, I am often asked for my own suggestions of what, really, are the industry’s ‘best’ conferences to attend.

Accordingly, back in 2012, I started to craft my own annual list of ’best-in-class’ top conferences for financial advisors, allocated across a range of different categories (as what’s best for solo advisors isn’t the same as what’s best for larger advisor enterprises, what’s best for fee-for-service advisors isn’t the same as what’s best for AUM firms, more technically-oriented advisors will prefer different conferences than those seeking practice management or marketing ideas, etc.).

Having updated our annual conference list every year since, I’m excited now to present my newest list of “Top Financial Advisor Conferences” for the upcoming 2023 year, with a particular focus on the best conferences for advisors facing various “scaling up” challenges – from solo advisors who have gotten ‘stuck’, advisors looking to transition to become a multi-advisor boutique, navigating the unique human capital and growth challenges that founders face when scaling up an enterprise, as well as the best conferences for scaling up advisor marketing, advisor technology, and the advice delivery process itself. Along with a few other notable conferences for those looking for a good overall educational experience (for those who don’t yet want to get their CE online!), those who need a ‘recharge’, and those who are just looking for something new and different (who may want to check out Future Proof’s new ‘un-conference’ wealth festival!).

In addition, we’ve also updated our popular “Master Conference List” of all financial advisor conferences in 2023, for both advisors looking for a wider range of events to attend (if you want to delve deeper into a particular topical area), and for vendors looking for more conferences to exhibit at!

So I hope you find this year’s 2023 top conferences list (and our new Master Conference List) to be helpful as a guide in planning your own conference budget and schedule for next year, and be certain to take advantage of the special discount codes that several conferences have offered to all of you as Nerd’s Eye View readers!

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