Advisers embrace media, old and new

From apps to amplitude, getting your word out can pay off

Dec 19, 2011 @ 1:06 pm

By Lavonne Kuykendall

Long before there was social media, advisers took to the airwaves to get their messages out.

Stanley H. Molotsky started the “Molotsky Money Hour” on radio stations near the Southern New Jersey headquarters of his advisory firm, The SHM Financial Group, well over 20 years ago. Today, the hour-long show is broadcast live each Monday morning on two area stations. Mr. Molotsky gives market updates, answers listener questions and brings in guests to cover tax and legal topics. Over the years, the show has attracted many investors to his business, he said.

“It was immediately successful to the point that we opened an office in [the station's coverage] area three months after the show started,” he said.

It isn't just the Internet that rewards advisers who have the gift of gab. Advisers who have a message can get it out there in a variety of ways. Mr. Molotsky's show follows the popular question-and-answer format many financial advisers use. Some advisers make stock recommendations or promote an investment philosophy.

Bill Gunderson, president of Gunderson Capital Management Inc. in Oceanside, Calif., picks stocks every weekday morning on his irreverent one-hour radio show, “Positively Wall Street.” On a recent show, he poked fun at investment sage Warren E. Buffett for investing in solar energy. “I believe the better days are way behind him,” Mr. Gunderson said. “He's not the guru he once was.”

Mr. Gunderson looks for unnoticed values in the stock market. Among his latest picks are publicly traded pawn shops, which he says have performed better than blue-chips over the past few years. A frequent topic for Mr. Gunderson is the poor performance of so-called safe stocks, compared with lesser-known names.

“I've been telling my clients to dump their bank stocks and invest in pawn shop stocks,” he said in an interview.

Mr. Gunderson uses a variety of social media to spread his investment recommendations. Besides his radio show and articles he writes for financial sites, Mr. Gunderson is a regular guest on cable financial programs and is active on Twitter. He developed his own Apple app that tracks returns for individual stocks over one-, three- and five-year intervals, the same way mutual fund returns are tracked. An Android app is in the works.

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