The following is a guest post by Dan Sondhelm, CEO of Sondhelm Partners. This post originally appeared on the Sondhelm Partners Blog.
The economic pressure that has weighed down asset managers over the last couple of years will continue to mount in 2019, especially as the tide of market-induced asset growth subsides. The established industry trends – rising passive inflows, fee compression, increased regulation, continuing platform rationalization – are inescapable, threatening profit margins of the least prepared asset managers. In response, firms are intensifying their efforts to streamline distribution costs and improve their offerings, but many still fall short of differentiating themselves among financial advisors, which could be the ultimate key to sustainable profits in this shifting landscape.
When developed and used properly, buyer personas can help marketers and salespeople win more business. By talking to clients, leads, and prospects, your team can implement highly effective communications that drive new and retained assets. When a company develops effective communications, it leaves buyers thinking, “This firm really gets me.” Read More
In 2018, we conducted a Mutual Fund Fact Sheet Production Study, where we analyzed 235 factsheets from 47 asset management firms of all shapes and sizes. A few factors observed included publish date, modification date and how the file was produced (manually or with automation). To find the firm’s production method, we turned to the metadata to show us what applications, software, or tools they were using to create the PDFs. After digging deeper into the metadata, we identified some key reasons why firms have longer production durations or later release dates. We were also able to make some observations about what drives efficiency, and the findings were pretty shocking. Read on to get the scoop!
Every January, I call up my friend, Andrew Corn, to get his predictions on marketing trends for the year ahead. I’m always interested in what he has to say, as he has an impressive background in many areas of financial services and marketing. His career has spanned across consulting, marketing, advertising, Chief Investment Officer – Equities, index designer, multi-factor model creation and agency head. He is an expert at uncovering and enhancing asset gathering campaigns and designing and implementing marketing funnel optimization for both consumer and B2B audiences.
According to Mr. Corn, there are a couple of major trends going on in the industry right now, and they’re really a continuation from the past couple of years. Specifically, the move from active to passive investing and fee compression are persistent issues that have now become acute. According to Corn, 2019 is going to be the tipping point for asset managers.
“This move from active to passive is happening so much faster than anyone was able to predict. The upside is that many companies have been able to launch products and gather quite a bit of assets into them. The downside is fee compression. In fact, there is a race to zero, where Fidelity has actually introduced products with no management fee. Now, there are other ways for them to make money, but certainly this fee compression is creating enormous pressure on firms to differentiate,” he said.
If 2019 is the tipping point for managers, what should marketing be doing to help their firms survive in this very competitive market? Read on to hear insights and advice from Andrew Corn in our latest interview.