5 Lessons on Brand Transformation From Nuveen’s Marty Willis

Posted by Scott Wentworth on Nov 20, 2018 9:11:31 AM

There’s a lot of new at Nuveen these days. After TIAA acquired Nuveen in 2014, TIAA decided to adopt the Nuveen name for the company’s now $900 billion investment management unit. This sparked a massive rebranding effort, which involved not only bringing all of the various investment teams together under one visual identity, but also telling a cohesive story about the things that truly differentiate the company in an increasingly crowded marketplace.

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Topics: Financial Writing Tips, Asset Management Marketing

Making it Work: 8 Questions to Ask Yourself When Hiring a Ghostwriter

Posted by Scott Wentworth on Nov 12, 2018 6:51:38 PM

So you’ve decided it’s time for your firm to hire a financial ghostwriter to work on your white papers, blog, newsletters, or other thought-leadership efforts. Now what?

Finding a writer who understands the technical aspects of your industry and is a good fit for your firm’s voice obviously is a huge part of the process. And to help with that, we created a checklist of questions to ask when interviewing potential writers.

But there also are some important questions that you need to ask yourself before committing to working with a ghostwriter. Whether you’re an asset management, investment banking, private equity, accounting, or other type of financial services firm, here are questions you should ask to make sure the project goes smoothly.

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Topics: Ghostwriting

3 Things to Know About Marketing Financial Technology in 2018—and How Content Plays a Vital Role

Posted by Frank Kalman on Nov 7, 2018 4:23:55 PM

Marketers for financial technology, or fintech, companies don’t have it easy these days. The commoditization of technology, competition for top tech talent, and proliferation of data are among the host of factors making it difficult for fintech firms to differentiate themselves among clients and customers.

Not helping matters is a nearly 10-year bull market that has driven a shift toward passive investing—a trend that makes differentiation in the asset management industry more broadly harder to achieve.   

On October 24, The Chicago Chapter of the Financial Communications Society held a luncheon panel discussion on the topic of how fintech companies are addressing some of these core challenges when it comes to marketing in an increasingly crowded space. The panel, moderated by Tom Sosnoff, founder and co-CEO of tastytrade, featured: 

Here are three things that stood out from the discussion.

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Topics: Asset Management Marketing

The Secret to Great Writing: Decompressing and Going Deep

Posted by Frank Kalman on Nov 7, 2018 1:09:51 PM

People who work in the financial services industry work a lot—and I mean A LOT.

There are arduous hours spent researching and modeling company valuations, long meetings with colleagues and other stakeholders, tight pressure to get deals done by ever-shorter deadlines, not to mention meeting with current and prospective clients after hours to generate new business.

So it’s easy to understand why few in financial services can find the time to create their own thought-leadership content—even if many are passionate about expressing their views on the issues influencing the world of business, finance, and economics.

In fact, the need for people to outsource writing because they are too busy to do it themselves is one of the core reasons why Wentworth Financial Communications exists.

But if you’re one of the few who still want to creatively express your opinions and views on what’s happening in equity markets or the economy, and you want to do this through writing, I have some advice for you: work deeper and give yourself time to decompress.

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Topics: Financial Advisor Marketing, White Papers

What WFC is Reading: November 2018

Posted by Frank Kalman on Nov 1, 2018 10:01:05 AM

Here's a running list of the best and most interesting stories from the worlds of business, finance and marketing that we're reading this month.

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Topics: What we're reading

6 Things to Remember When Creating a Comprehensive Media Relations Strategy

Posted by Lauren Timen on Oct 16, 2018 3:15:55 PM

Creating thought-leadership content has grown to become a major part of financial services firms’ marketing efforts—and for good reason.

But beyond creating content and embarking on basic efforts to promote and distribute it, marketing leaders in the industry should also be thinking about how the content they are creating fits within a larger, comprehensive media and communications strategy.

As a veteran public relations and financial communications professional, I’ve seen firsthand the power an effective media and communications strategy can have on a company’s bottom line.

Effectively articulating a company’s story against the competition in the media can not only drive deeper awareness of a product or brand but can boost the value of its stock or other valuation metrics.

Still, I’ve also seen how poor planning and strategy on the front-end of a company’s public relations and communications efforts can result in a complete waste of time and money.

Thankfully, Scott and Frank from Wentworth Financial Communications have asked me to write this blog post to provide readers with greater insight into what a focused and effective media relations strategy looks like.

Here are six things financial marketers should do to elevate their media outreach efforts to the next level.

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Topics: Financial Advisor Marketing, White Papers, distribution, E-mail Marketing, Financial Writing Tips

Why More Content Doesn’t Always Mean More Audience Engagement

Posted by Frank Kalman on Oct 3, 2018 12:34:44 PM

Raise your hand if you as a financial marketer plan to create more thought-leadership and other content marketing in 2019 than you did in 2018.

I obviously can’t see you, but I’m willing to bet that most of you raised your hand. I don’t blame you.

As marketers in the asset management, investment banking, and other financial services industries, we’re always thinking about ways that we can do more next year than we did this year. And when it comes to creating content, our thinking is no different. We assume that to enhance our thought-leadership efforts, to engage our target audiences more deeply, and to improve on all our marketing key performance indicators, we need to do more.

Blog more. Film more videos. Create more infographics, white papers, social media posts, slide decks, and pitch books.

Now, humor me for a moment and think about your habits as a consumer of content in 2018, particularly when it comes to digital content.

How many of you hope to receive more emails, see more content in your Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn feeds, and have more content from vendors, businesses, publications, etc., next year? Again, I can’t see you, but I doubt many of you feel like “not enough marketing content” is a major problem in your life.

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Topics: Financial Advisor Marketing, White Papers

What WFC is Reading: October 2018

Posted by Frank Kalman on Oct 1, 2018 11:08:03 AM

Here's a running list of the best and most interesting stories from the worlds of business, finance and marketing that we're reading this month.

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Topics: What we're reading

6 Ways to Gain More Traction Out of Your Media Outreach Efforts

Posted by Frank Kalman on Sep 17, 2018 6:28:33 AM

So, you’ve written a white paper or other piece of thought-leadership content. You’ve posted it on your website. You’ve distributed it and optimized it for promotion on multiple social media channels. You’ve included it in your email newsletter to your target audience.

Still, like any astute financial marketer, you know that distributing your written thought leadership over these “owned” channels isn’t enough. You want to amplify your reach by getting the white paper in front of reporters, editors, and other media influencers.

You want the ideas in your firm’s white paper to be written about in the most influential industry trade publications, talked about on social media, or featured in some of the most-listened-to podcasts.

So, you set out to craft the perfect email talking about the main ideas of your white paper and why they’re relevant and important. You use words like “groundbreaking” to describe the research or “highly sought after” to describe the paper’s author.

Or you use cheeky humor or what you think is an eye-catching lead or hook to capture the reporter’s attention. YOU WRITE IN ALL CAPS IN THE SUBJECT LINE.  

You then assemble a massive email list of reporters, editors, and other influencers whom you want to target—curated from some professional public relations database—and you send this email to hundreds of them, all at once.

Then, you sit back and wait for the urgent requests for media interviews or byline opportunities to roll in.

And then … crickets. You get very little response, and you’re sitting around wondering where your strategy went wrong.

As a former reporter and trade magazine editor, I’m very familiar with this approach to media outreach and PR—because I received hundreds of emails a day for more than six years following this same, scripted, unoriginal approach, from PR and marketing professionals looking to get my publication to write about their pitch.

Most of these emails were deleted as soon as they arrived—or completely ignored. My personal favorite was when a PR email would arrive in my inbox addressed to “Hi [Insert name here].” This, unfortunately, was a common occurrence.

This isn’t to say that I never connected with or covered a topic pitched to me via email by a PR representative. In fact, I made countless relationships with PR folks representing many sources who found their way into our magazines and other publications and events.

How did they do it? Here are six strategies the most successful PR professionals followed in their interactions with me. And they’re strategies that we use at Wentworth Financial Communications to help our clients gain more visibility for their thought-leadership efforts.

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Topics: Financial Advisor Marketing, White Papers

What WFC is Reading: September 2018

Posted by Frank Kalman on Sep 4, 2018 10:33:49 AM

Here's a running list of the best and most interesting stories from the worlds of business, finance and marketing that we're reading this month.

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Topics: What we're reading