Challenge: An established, boutique alternative investment firm launches a family of liquid alternative mutual funds in the nascent stage of this industry. Firm needs to build brand awareness and credibility within the major intermediary distribution firms including wirehouses, as well as independent advisors and broker/dealers.

Actions: Create a new company brand with a consistent message and value proposition. Rebrand firm with new website, collateral, actionable thought leadership. Differentiate through the development and launch of an educational program in the form of an Academy for advisors on alternatives. Microsite features interactive tools, an education video series, and whitepapers.

Support with an integrated communications platform that includes a robust public relations campaign, targeted advertising and an aggressive advisor series of educational programs (strategic investment conferences, manager webinars, and outbound email campaigns.)

Animated educational series strengthens the overall brand and positions the firm as a leader in education and innovation in alternative product solutions. Series won numerous awards and helped firm educate its prospects and clients about the use of alternatives in an overall portfolio allocation.

Results: Firm garnered over $2 billion with first alt fund launched; experienced a 60% jump in market awareness; and built significant credibility as one of the industry’s leading experts within key stakeholder groups.

Challenge: A global financial services firm faces a problem common to many financial services companies-independent business silos control their own sub-brands, sales teams, distribution networks and marketing efforts resulting in uncoordinated, inconsistent marketing messages, a lack of synergy between the sales efforts, and a confusing client experience. This firm sends a message that they offer products, not complete financial solutions.

Actions: Conduct an extensive discovery (over 70 interviews with both global line executives as well as stakeholders) that provides a clear picture of the firm’s culture, differential advantage, sales approach, marketing drivers, and market perception.

Understand company’s overall business objectives and prioritize accordingly. Audit all communications to set the foundation for a centralized, streamlined, flexible digital content management system. New strategy drives new editorial and visual brand identity, and architecture that provides a brand hierarchy system for sub-brands. Develop a training program to integrate their new messaging into each prospect and client experience.

Results: Within one-year of rebranding and the introduction of the new communications platform, the firm had the tools it needed to present a single, more unified brand message to their stakeholders. This positioning highlighted the spectrum of integrated services that provided a comprehensive financial solution to clients. The Investment Advisory Group in conjunction with the Wealth and Asset Management Groups were able to work more seamlessly with the Investment Banking Group which resulted in a 25% increase in cross-selling opportunities resulting from the conversion of clients who experienced liquidity events into long-term wealth management client relationships. 

Challenge: Major investment management firm is acquiring an asset management group of a large multi-national bank creating duplicate resources as well as the need to integrate multiple legacy systems used for production, and big data analysis. In addition, the acquirer is under severe time and resource constraints to merge all documents and fund products to align with legal requirements including filings, fees, marketing, sales and board structures.

Actions: Analysis includes the review and assessment of the existing marketing organization (budget, functions, etc.) to eliminate redundant resources to improve marketing and communication efficiency.  Prioritization roadmap creates key strategic initiatives and addresses funds by filing dates. Conduct study on overlapping funds by investment objective and make recommendations for fund mergers based on performance and assets. Execute a deep dive study of existing legacy systems and general services to determine how to eliminate unnecessary and outdated systems and processes.

Results: Reduced overall output of communication materials by 40% which resulted in a 30% savings in human and financial capital. Merged funds that had similar objectives based on asset size and performance.  Board of directors centralized based on asset category and investment objectives. Developed both a comprehensive short-range (low hanging fruit) and long-term plan to merge legacy systems into acquired firm which enhanced overall quality and efficiency.

Challenge:  Small, profitable asset management distribution firm is in a mature stage of its business lifecycle and needs to reassess its organizational structure, product mix, and marketing in order to achieve their business objectives.

Actions: Conduct a strategic review, marketing assessment and positioning analysis. Deliver a differentiated and compelling brand message and value proposition. Conduct a cost-to-benefit study to determine where resources should be best allocated to be more competitive in the current investment environment.

Results: Message and marketing efforts aligned with firm’s current mission, culture, product suite and competitive strengths across all channels and market opportunities. Firm refocused human and financial capital on new, more relevant and differentiated funds and committed to a professional development program for all line professionals that interface with intermediary stakeholders and gatekeepers. Firm introduced new brand messaging and positioning that reinvigorated its reputation and sales growth. Firm streamlined its management structure and distribution reach which led to a 20% cost savings redeployed on more profitable business opportunities.

Challenge: A leading, blue-chip retirement company faces a major inflection point in their business due to its conservative product line, limited distribution reach and changing industry. Company needs to determine what the optimal product line extension should be, and where their products would best resonate based on market segmentation analysis.

Actions: Conduct a comprehensive demand assessment, distribution channel analysis, target segmentation analysis and recommendations, as well as strategic and tactical marketing/product development review. This includes planning, design, and implementation to further penetrate the current base of 403{b} retirement customers with potential cross-sell of other packaged investment solutions including ETF’s, annuities and separately managed accounts.

Identify the optimal core investment offerings on a corporate and divisional basis and leverage those offerings by packaging them for retail and institutional clients. For example, company successfully invested, for their own pension plan, in a variety of successful hard assets including infrastructure, timber, and commercial real estate. Recommend company expand share class offerings.

Results:  Company introduced a number of new funds to leverage their core competencies and expanded their share class offerings to better reflect the needs of wealthy retirees, endowments/foundations and independent RIA’s.

Repositioned firm to be more dynamic in their sales and marketing approach. The company experienced a 36% increase in overall fund sales accompanied by a similar uptick in market share and penetration.

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Sample Projects

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Typical projects include companies at various stages of their business life cycle from ideation-to launch-to growth-to maturity. As such, we revitalize existing businesses; develop and launch new businesses, products and services; facilitate intermediary distribution relationships, identify and lift out new advisory teams, mergers and acquisitions; and devise new thought leadership programs through integrated communication platforms.