Inflation: a marketing opportunity or obstacle for asset managers?

by Ext. Marketing - February 8, 2022

Inflation is rising and the current surge may not abate anytime soon, which is something we haven’t seen much of since the 1970s. Asset managers have an opportunity to recalibrate their marketing strategies to this shifting economic landscape to help their firms not just survive, but thrive.

According to a recent Morgan Stanley survey, wealthy investors are starting to worry about their stock market holdings and finances at a level not seen since the second quarter of 2020, right after the COVID-19-related shutdown of the economy. This reduced optimism, paired with heightened price sensitivity among your clients, makes having a standout marketing strategy more important than ever. What does that look like today?

Foster trust through education

There’s a real opportunity in the asset management space to be up front about inflation in your messaging. Lead with education and put it into a context that makes sense for your clients. As you coach them on the impact of inflation, highlight the importance of putting cash to work to protect against savings erosion. Reiterate the power of diversification and the role of stocks and other asset classes as an inflation hedge. Also, educate and be transparent about the fees and costs associated with your products and services. Honesty and authenticity can go a long way in winning and retaining market share.

Amp up your brand

Periods of uncertainty are the perfect time to focus on brand building. Maintain the strength of your firm’s position by nurturing the emotional and rational story of your brand. Stay actively visible in your key markets and remember that your audience goes beyond your end clients. Consider how marketing connects with partners, suppliers, employees, colleagues and other engaged parties. Keep in mind that no previous period of prolonged inflation has had a digital ecosystem as widely accessible or advanced. You have countless opportunities to connect with your audiences and reinforce your value proposition.

Revisit your client segments

Given the psychology of inflation, your clients may feel different about their economic well-being. Even higher-income earners can be anxious that their health or employment circumstances will take a turn for the worse. Re-evaluating your existing client segments and conducting market research more regularly can help you identify new segments and their pain points. Having a keen understanding of your audiences and their motivations and preferences will help you develop products, fee structures and marketing strategies that effectively respond to their changing needs. Communicating to overcome client fears about inflation can be a way to combat their pessimism and compel them to keep investing. A/B testing (comparing two versions to determine which performs best) can be your friend in getting a closer read on what messages resonate best with them.

Spend smarter

While containing costs is always good practice, avoid making indiscriminate cuts from your marketing budget. Fine-tune your spending, focusing on creating efficiencies and accelerating activities that can generate future sales or build your brand. Digital tools can also help you defend against inflation by helping you manage costs, logistics and other overhead expenses associated with your marketing efforts. Arming your salesforce with clear scripts that address client concerns and are consistent with your revised marketing strategy can help them feel supported and motivated.

Seizing this time as an opportunity to win your clients’ appreciation will have a positive impact that can last long after inflation has receded.

Looking to ramp up your inflation marketing strategy? Ext. has the expertise you need. Contact us today at 1.844.243.1830 or info@ext-marketing.com.