SalesStation Client Conference 2018 – Day 2 Highlights

by Matt Franey

Greetings!  Continuing where we left off on Part 1, we are sharing highlights from Day 2 of our first SalesStation Client Conference.

We continue to be inspired by the leadership and insight displayed by both our clients and partners, who work diligently every day to make meaningful contributions to our ever evolving, and highly competitive, industry.  It is our honor to present some of the critical assertions from our discussions.

Please stay tuned to this blog for continued dialogue on these important topics.

PR 101

In an increasingly noisy marketplace being disrupted by social media and other technologies, public relations are undoubtedly a component of a sound marketing and communications plan for any asset manager.  However, PR is one in an ever-growing set of tools available to asset managers to get their story in the hands of investors:

“A managers’ image is a mosaic:  it’s not just one thing that defines who you are,  but you have to build the mosaic/picture of who you are and who you’re trying to reach through multiple efforts:  it’s media, it’s your website, it’s social media, it’s repackaging them in different ways and making the most of your communications dollars to reach those (targeted) audiences. ”

“Having timely content that relates to current news is really important.  Getting into major publications sometimes means being in the right place at the right time, having the relationships in place, and investing in the content so when news happens, you can connect your firm to the news in a way that’s salient and meaningful, and you can be a useful resource.” 

Jody Lowe, The Lowe Group

“The goal of public relations is to strengthen your public profile.  Gaining visibility, establishing your brand positively, and making yourself look credible is very hard to do through (just) advertising.”

“These days, the line between marketing and PR has been blurred.  The form of the content and the total number of views is not as important as which people in your target audience are consuming your content over time.  Just because somebody watches something one time doesn’t mean they are a serious lead for you.  But if somebody watches every (piece of content you produce), and you can track that, and one of your sales people can call on that person, that is real lead generation, because that person is actively engaged.”

Dan Sondhelm, Sondhelm Partners

“Our model is that we needed to work on education, and we needed to do it in small groups to give advisors the tools they need to understand our products.”

“Regarding the types of content that advisers enjoy, our educational pieces got so many hits that now we are trying to raise the bar in terms of the depth of analysis.  And that was just a little trial and error.”

Craig Churman, Saturna Capital

Cybersecurity Trends and Best Practices

Asset managers and other fiduciaries have highly specialized concerns concerning cybersecurity.  We have been working diligently with our partners at Baker Tilly Virchow Krause to both protect our clients and move our industry forward from a security standpoint:

“Cybersecurity is not just about the latest antivirus software on your computer, it’s all about layers. No one control will make you bulletproof, it’s all about a combination of each individual layer working together that will help you mitigate your risk as an organization.”

Chris Tait, Baker Tilly

“Governance and technical controls are the bear minimum (for an organization’s cybersecurity efforts).  There’s an expectation that those things are in place.  An effective security program has to be actively managed (beyond static controls), so as you step up your own program, it’s things like the monitoring, the training and awareness of all employees, conducting tabletop exercises, going through audits, doing internal assessments, and having buy-in from upper management that make the program really work.”

Jeff Dart, Celera Systems

SalesStation CRM Roadmap

Customer relationship management systems, known as CRMs, are increasingly becoming the operating system upon which sales, marketing, customer service, and other client-focused business units are running their organizations.  As with cybersecurity, asset managers have specialized needs when it pertains to CRM.  We explore this topic as we review our CRM solution roadmap:

“The reasons we care about CRM come down to three basic items:  focused execution, where you can manage all your information about people and the things that you need to engage with them on; relevant interactions, which are made possible through the accumulation of that data, guiding the end user to the next action with a given subject; and delivering a consistent customer experience through every phase of their lifecycle.”

John Salvatierra, Celera Systems