Conquer The


My ‘Carribean Fantasy’ Plan
With A CFP® Professional
Financial Confidence is Possible “With A CFP® Professional”

When consumers think of financial planners, we want them to think of the difference that the CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER certification makes: it incorporates all aspects of finance into a unique, flexible, and comprehensive roadmap. The letters C-F-P make any plan not only possible, but also personal.


There are more than 184 financial certifications and designations, according to FINRA - and the number grows every month. There is rarely regulation over the types of titles that financial professionals use. So, how does the public know whom to turn to and trust when it comes to their personal finances?

The answer is simple - the CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNERTM certification. To help raise awareness about the CFP® certification, CFP Board - a professional body for personal financial planners in the U.S. that sets standards for financial planning - is starting a new Public Awareness Campaign on September 4th.

This campaign is developed from market research conducted by CFP Board on consumer sentiment toward the financial planning profession, and the benefits working with a CFP® professional brings to one's life. In our research, we found that consumers who work with a CFP® professional feel more confident, optimistic, secure and at ease. This is in stark contrast to the worry and stress highlighted by people who did not have a financial plan in place or one developed by another advisor.

Our research affirms that people benefit from help with financial planning, and they exhibit specific emotional benefits from doing so with a CFP® professional. The peace of mind that comes from having a plan in place is powerful-and no two plans look the same.

Throughout this campaign, we're aiming to share personal stories that illustrate how working with a CFP® professional can help all Americans achieve their financial goals and create peace of mind.

We hope you'll join us in telling these stories.

Kevin R. Keller, CAE
Chief Executive Officer
CFP Board

Financial Confidence is Possible “With A CFP® Professional”

National Public Awareness Campaign Focuses on the Value and Benefits of Financial Planning

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Washington, D.C., August 28, 2018 – Certified Financial Planner Board of Standards today announced a refreshed Public Awareness Campaign that communicates the benefits and value of working with a CFP® professional.

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Dan Drummond
CFP Board, Director of Communications



Awareness is Part of CFP Board's Mission

The mission of Certified Financial Planner Board of Standards, Inc. - a 501(C)(3) non‐profit - is to benefit the public by fostering professional standards in personal financial planning through its setting and enforcement of the education, examination, experience, ethics and other requirements of CFP® certification and upholding it as the recognized standard of excellence for personal financial planning.

This is the second refresh of our large-scale public awareness campaign and serves as an extension of our mission as we seek to increase awareness of, preference for and use of CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™ professionals.

We anticipate the message of "With A CFP® Professional" will prompt consumers to think more about financial planning and lead them to seek the CFP® mark when choosing a financial planner.

What's in the Campaign?

Mix of advertising in national print publications, online and television ads on national cable television.

  • Publications include Golf Digest, New York Times T Magazine, Travel + Leisure, Conde Nast Traveler and Bon Appetit, among others
  • Online advertising on various sites frequented by target audience
  • Television will be featured on channels such as CNN, Fox Business, Fox News Channels, Bloomberg, CNBC and MSNBC as well as lifestyle and sports channels.

Interactive microsite - - is a destination where consumers can learn more about financial planning and conduct a search for a CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™ professional based on their zip code, along with additional criteria.

The campaign also includes earned media, an influencer marketing campaign, social media activities and a webinar to unveil the new materials that will support the campaign's message of "With a CFP® Professional."

CFP Board will provide CFP® professionals with information about the campaign on a regular basis.

All CFP® professionals will be provided access to a "tool kit" they can use for work in their communities. CFP® professionals can also help extend the message with communication materials available on

WHITE64 is the advertising agency of record and will support creative and media buying; Bliss Integrated Communication is supporting public relations; Heart + Mind Strategies, LLC is the research-led consulting firm behind the findings.

Who Will See It?

The target audience is Mass Affluent Initiators: individuals who are the primary decision-makers in managing their personal finances, ages 35 to 64 with investible assets of $100,000 to $1 million and a minimum household income of $100,000 are our primary audience.

Mass Affluent Initiators describe themselves as individuals who value learning new things, are optimistic, responsible, self-confident and have a practical outlook on life, to name a few. They are also more likely to be willing to trust expert advice.

The Mass Affluent Initiator target is comprised of six percent of the US adult population.

The campaign also extends to those with more than $1 million in assets.

Why We're Speaking to Consumers

Through our Public Awareness Campaign, CFP Board seeks to differentiate itself among the hundreds of financial services designations and certifications in the marketplace as well as raise awareness about the benefits of working with a CFP® professional.

Many consumers do not always understand the benefits of a holistic financial plan and have reservations about bringing in an expert to help. As part of our Public Awareness Campaign, we want consumers to know that having a partner will reduce the stress of the financial decision-making process and help them feel hopeful that they will resolve any tensions created by their financial situation. (Consumers not working with a CFP® professional are more likely to feel negative emotions, like stress, worry, anxiety, over-whelmed and frustrated, when thinking of their financial situation.)

We want Americans to understand how a CFP® professional is uniquely qualified to help them develop a holistic financial plan with their best interests in mind to give them confidence today and a more secure tomorrow.

We want consumers to know that CFP® professionals are competent and ethical. They are trusted counselors that work in the best interest of their clients. CFP® professionals meet the highest standards in education, experience and ethics. In addition to a rigorous exam, robust continuing education program and the need for experience and a background check, CFP® professionals are subject to an enforcement process where there are strict consequences for those who do not abide by the Code of Ethics and Standards of Conduct.

Nearly 4-in-10 consumers (36 percent) are not confident in how they manage their finances, however, more than 8-in-10 (84 percent) consumers who work with a CFP® professional are satisfied with their financial plan. (source: Heart + Mind Strategies Research, 2017)

We've Done the Research

CFP® professionals see their knowledge and expertise as the most important quality to their clients. Sixty-four percent of CFP® professionals say their clients are more prepared for major life events compared to the 34 percent of non-CFP® financial planners. (source: Heart + Mind Strategies Research, 2017)

Most financial planners believe consumers are unaware of the value of working with a CFP® professional, however eighty-three percent of consumers not working with a financial planner would want a CFP® professional if they were to choose a financial professional. (source: Heart + Mind Strategies Research, 2017)

Based on their knowledge of a CFP® professional, seventy-one percent of consumers say they would feel more confidence when thinking about their financial situation if they worked with a CFP® professional. Fifty-seven percent would feel more confident in their financial situation if they worked with a CFP® professional. (source: Heart + Mind Strategies Research, 2017)

Prospective clients would want their financial planner to have the CFP® certification: 48 percent would "probably want a CFP®" and 38 percent "would definitely want a CFP®" when asked to choose a financial professional. (source: Heart + Mind Strategies Research, 2017)

After learning of the key messages of a CFP® professionals, consumers preference for working with a CFP® professional increased by eight percent. (source: Heart + Mind Strategies Research, 2017)

How We're Paying for the Campaign

To increase the recognition of the value of the CFP® designation, the PAC is fully funded by CFP® professionals and no funds come out of CFP Board's operating reserves.

The total budget of the campaign amounts to $145 per CFP® professional, which in 2018 totals approximately $11.7 million.