Long-standing tools used to conduct legitimate primary research, the expert call and network model’s reputation is not an untarnished one. It is this blemished history that sustains the mythos surrounding expert networks today. Here we debunk several of the top misconceptions.
Whether investors are looking for industry-specific views, exploring current trends or evaluating new and compelling ideas, many turn to expert calls and networks in pursuit of conviction. Long-standing tools used to conduct legitimate primary research, the expert call and network model’s reputation is not an untarnished one. It is this blemished history that sustains the mythos surrounding expert networks today. Here we debunk several of the top misconceptions:
Expert networks connect interested parties with experts to conduct one-on-one calls that rely on very narrow areas of expertise. Through interviews, experts give their opinions based on their own practical, real-world experience with the topic/sector at hand. Often experts are former executives, advisors, analysts or customers from within a specialized industry and thus can offer a coveted niche perspective.
In contrast, consultants are individuals who augment existing processes like performing research and analysis, in addition to holding horizontal knowledge. To further illustrate the difference, consider an expert as a sounding board against which to test surmised investment logic that relies on granular knowledge while consultants err more on the side of generalist training and in the applications of upleveling workflows.
Traditional expert networks price calls around an average of $1,200 per call. Newer network offerings span the gamut of pricing models including pay-as-you-go, credit systems, standard vs. expert tiers in addition to charging fees for recording, transcribing, interpreting and conducting post-call engagements that can contribute to raised prices beyond the initial base.
At Tegus, we’ve upended tradition. We charge investors a subscription fee in exchange for access to expert calls at cost – a price set by each expert, usually in the $150-$500 range. In addition, investors also access a growing archive of 50K+ expert transcripts, over 4,000 financial models as well as other historical financial statements that streamline the research process.
When evaluating expert networks, there are three vectors to look at: the depth of information, the breadth of topics/industries and recency, as in the relevancy of materials available. These three critical measures of quality separate the wheat from the chaff. With competition in the expert network space, all networks are not created equally.
Tegus sources high-quality experts that are pre-qualified to fit each customer’s unique project needs. One thing we hear again and again from our customers is that they are delighted by our world-class call quality. In fact, we guarantee the quality of our services and if value isn’t derived, we’ll refund any costs incurred. Investor-led and user-generated, our expert transcript library is an additional value-add as it allows investors to leverage historical expert call data to map their current investment thesis against.
One of the most persistent shadows for expert networks is that they lack compliance. Due to the fraught history of expert networks in insider trading schemes – serving as an avenue in which material nonpublic information (MNPI) has been shared – the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) recently expressed that it’s not the use of expert networks that are to blame, it’s the illegality of collecting and trading on MNPI – regardless of how it was collected.
While it has yet to be mandated that all calls are recorded to showcase compliance, Tegus’ call services are underpinned by multi-layered industry-leading compliance policies and procedures that exceed regulatory obligations and consider pre-, during and post-call activities. We offer fully customizable processes including a compliance portal, a dedicated in-platform tool to better serve firm-specific and granular compliance protocols, to allay MNPI fears and provide the easy button for compliance.
Expert networks continue to serve an integral role supporting thorough investment research. Modern expert networks like Tegus surface hard-to-get-at qualitative insights and will continue to play a pivotal role in providing perspectives that truly matter.