Most hedge fund and asset management marketing teams will claim that they are using digital marketing analytics. The problem is that the digital marketing that they are engaged in has very little to do with the core drivers of the business, which is raising and preserving assets under management. Instead, most focus on brand awareness, clicks to the website and number of page impressions which whilst important, has very little to do with the process of raising assets and looking for investment.
Working with asset managers and fund managers’ marketing teams over the last 15 years, we recognise that some have now progressed to collecting engagement activity of potential investors in the fund and the products being sold. However, this information is held within systems that are excruciatingly difficult to extract data from and then distribute internally to the business development and/or relationship management teams. This has been seen to be a major source of frustration within marketing teams, with the process being hampered by the complexity of the reporting and the amount of data that has to be analysed. As a result, 85% of people that we have spoken to have not adopted digital marketing primarily because it is impossible to have the data readily available.
An additional challenge is that even though the data is available, it is very hard to work out where the buying and even the redemption patterns exist. By that I mean who are the people most likely to invest and who are the people that are least likely to continue with a particular product? The reason for this is because most reporting products only extract readership and engagement data and are unable to do anything more sophisticated with that data. It is not a simple case of lead scoring that is available in lots of vertically designed products, but rather a deeper analysis of individual behaviour over multiple funds, over multiple periods of time. We have estimated this group of marketing teams to be in the 10% minority but they are enlightened enough to actually work out how important digital marketing is in raising and preserving assets. Unfortunately, without having the right tools, their best laid efforts are probably wasted.
However, we have found a minority of marketing teams who are able to produce targets of the right people in the right companies using digital marketing and the analytics extracted from it. This is because they have been using tools that provide deep analytics and meaningful insights into the digital footprint and digital behaviour of people who are engaging with digital assets, whether that be email, website or social media. The sales teams working with these marketing teams are gaining significant investments because they have built processes around the analytics that the digital marketing teams are providing them with – and this is the only route to success. By creating processes that allow sales teams to target asset raising opportunities, they will have a far more likely positive outcome to a conversation, rather than simply calling a list in some form of random fashion. These are definitely the 5% minority but obviously gaining triple digit return on investment with their marketing activities.