Diversification and focus on business, values of communication specialized in asset management

According to Inverco figures, the market for Collective Investment Institutions (CIIs) in Spain has doubled in size in the last five years. Between 31 December 2013 and 30 June 2018, the total volume of Collective Investment Institutions (CIIs) (investment funds, pension funds, Sicav, real estate CIIs and foreign CIIs) increased from 344 Bn € to 591 Bn €, an increase of 58%.

According to the CNMV, in Spain there are almost 120 Collective Investment Institution Management Companies (SGIIC) registered. In addition, there are 36 international managers associated with Inverco that market foreign CIIs to national clients, both retail and institutional. These managers provide a volume figure of 164 Bn € at the end of June 2018, whereas at 31 December 2013 there were 25 managers providing a total figure of 55 Bn €.

The Spanish market is, therefore, a business opportunity for companies dedicated to asset management, both national and international. Advances in technology, open architecture, low interest rates and economic growth are among the factors that have driven investment in these financial instruments.

Its advantages, and its ability to optimize investment, are key to volume growth because the funds provide diversification that reduces risk, access through experts to markets, assets and geographical areas, a wide universe of products available, and favorable taxation.

Brand Qualities

Communication specialists ask ourselves: How can we help the business of management companies?  Getting distributors to choose funds from our management clients, as recipients of investment decisions for their clients.

The first step is to position the brand of the manager with the qualities that define it

  • What type of manager I am: national, international with a more or less extensive presence in the market, independent, belonging to a financial group, author’s manager, wealth manager…
  • How do I add value: What are my competitive advantages in terms of volumes, the markets I work in, the quality of my managers, the profitability of my products, the management styles I use, the quality/risk ratios of my products, whether I rely on active or passive management, costs, the breadth of my range, whether I co-invest with my participants, whether I am flexible in decision making…
  • What are the ways for me to grow: whether I target private clients, or institutional clients, and which segments (private banking, personal banking, retail, business); how and through what channels I want to distribute my products in the market.
  • How do I adapt my business model to a new regulatory environment that reduces retrocessions for the sale of funds to the distributor.

Communication actions

The second step is to choose the recipients and the communication actions to be carried out, in order to consolidate the perception of the brand that the manager wants to transmit.

To this end, actions should be diversified, depending on the audience and the content that achieves the greatest impact:

  • Mediators: Professionals such as bankers, financial agents, fund selectors, analysts, advisors, or managers working in EAFIs, private banks, commercial banks, securities agencies and companies, family offices, insurance companies, etc. The most efficient way is to hold events on market/asset/geographical vision and on products, which provides positioning and personal contact with the mediators.
  • Users of online distribution platforms: Actions to strengthen brand presence that highlights the competitive advantages of the manager in online media, SEO and SEM positioning in social networks, or specialized forums and blogs.
  • Final Investors: Actions to generate a more massive brand presence, highlighting the competitive advantages, and those of their products through marketing. Actions that can materialize in general and specialized online and offline media, social networks , blogs, forums, sponsorships, advertising, other marketing actions, etc.

In conclusion, a communication strategy specialized in content, diversified in actions and focused on the client’s business objectives, is the best response to the needs of those managers who want to take advantage of the strength of the Spanish fund market.

Javier Ferrer

Specialized financial services communication consultant at Proa Comunicación

Ten SEO positioning tricks

When companies decide to improve their digital reputation, there is widespread ignorance of the type of positioning and the options that exist. Although it may seem very basic, the most important thing is to know the difference between SEM positioning and SEO positioning:

  • SEM (Search Engine Marketing) or paid traffic. It consists of hiring advertising campaigns through ads on search engines, social networks, YouTube ads, etc..
  • SEO (Search Engine Optimization) or organic traffic. It is the traffic obtained by performing searches in different engines.

An increase in traffic can be achieved through a set of optimization actions on the website and the creation of quality content with the right keywords to drive positioning.

The big question is: Which is better? SEO positioning or SEM? The answer is not simple. Both are important, and the ideal is to complement them, but it is advised to work during the first phase on the SEO and then undertake SEM actions.

The problem with SEM is that it tends to be VERY direct (payment = better results), so it can represent a dependence on the investment. With this positioning, we obtain good results in the short term. In the case of being the first to enter the market it will be easy to win the position, but in a market as saturated as the current one it can become a double-edged sword. If many companies invest in the same campaigns, it is difficult to differentiate from the competition in order to sell the product, creating a direct relationship between investment and results. In this way, a problem can be generated and, no matter how much the investment is increased, the expected results are not achieved. This can be caused by the bidding of a competing company that invests more than we do or because the achievement of a sale ends up not being profitable.

On the other hand, SEO traffic achieves long-term results, but it has greater value due to its permanence, since it is like always having an asset if it is maintained correctly. It is based on quality content, when the user understands that you answer their questions and address their needs or provide valuable content. Without a doubt, it will stay in a better place for a longer period of time, which will achieve an increase in traffic, better positioning, and consequently will indirectly raise conversion and sales figures.

At PROA Comunicación we believe that SEM positioning can always be carried out, since at any time you can pay and receive it. But we believe that the real challenge is to establish a good SEO positioning and, for this, we have developed the ten tricks of SEO positioning

  1. Activate the SEO positioning. It seems logical, but we usually find that 30% of businesses have a website and have it closed for indexing in search engines. To solve this problem, you should deactivate the tab “Dissuade search engines to find my website” in WordPress and, in other CMS, check that the robots file or each page created has “Index”.
  2. Have a blog integrated with your website, with the aim of creating entries or posts on a daily basis. Pages are usually created at the beginning and therefore their creation date is outdated, losing weight in search engines. We must create up to date entries and win the position again.
  3. Optimize each entry for a keyword. The word we want to give focus to should be present in: title, URL, first paragraph of the entry, image name and description, target word and meta description.
  4. Friendly URLs. It is important that the name of the URL is legible and has to do with the keyword. It should be made up of words related to the title ignoring articles, prepositions and conjunctions, and separating them by hyphens. Example for this entry: /10-tricks-positioning-seo.
  5. Internal links are links between different entries so that the user can find everything he or she is looking for. Staying as long as possible on the website, looking for a conversion through the call to action.
  6. Link building, is about linking the page from other external sites such as forums, comments, blogs … The more external links, the higher the reputation of your entry, increasing its weight and score for positioning.
  7. Optimization of images. The less time it takes to load the page, the better the position and conversion. This is achieved by reducing the quality as much as possible without losing a good visualization of the images. Photoshop helps you to save the images in a reduced jpg or quality at least always 2 or 3 levels and adapting the size of the image for the web.
  8. Titles h1, h2, h3. In the contents of the entries mark the titles and their titles with the corresponding html tags. The page will be more readable for search engines, scoring in a very positive way.
  9. Length of your entries. Each entry or page should try to have at least 300 words. This will help to better index your content.
  10. Do not copy content. Search engines directly penalize duplicate content. It is better to publish less content, as long as it is your own.



Juan Gutiérrez
Specialist SEO and Digital Marketing Consultant

Communication, a lever for growth in private banking

One of the greatest challenges that we, financial communication professionals, face is how to help reach the business objectives of private banking entities. A challenge that, after more than 20 years managing the reputation of private banking entities, managers, brokers, and insurance companies, has proved possible to achieve.

Dual Advantage

Communication is used by companies to channel the information generated by their habitual activity for the benefit of their business. In private banking, this translates into a double objective:

  • Assist in attracting new high net worth clients
  • Create an image of stability and quality that generates pride of belonging among clients and attracts the best talent in Private Banking to join our institution

The best example of a successful communication and marketing policy is the case of Ferrari. Ferrari is a brand that has staunch supporters and customers, with a maximum level of pride in belonging, and legions of potential customers who one day aspire to join this select club. So much so that Ferrari doesn’t even need to spend money on advertising new products because orders are placed years in advance and are always out of stock. Its product line is very exclusive, and is only accessible to people with a lot of money, who consider Ferrari an essential part of their culture and personality.

Aspirational and tangible contents 

Generating the illusion of joining an exclusive club by becoming a client of our entity is therefore key to our communication strategy. For this, we will need to build a story of the firm with aspirational and tangible messages, which we will export to channels and environments where our audiences of interest (clients and bankers) operate and are informed.

In practice, we will not only communicate our competitive advantages in profitability, business, size, and solvency, but also the values that motivate a client´s purchase.

The main facet of these values is trust, the mortar that supports the personal relationship between the banker and his client. So, if we can identify what convinces customers to join our club, we will have powerful messages to help solidify a long-term relationship with our entity. Additionally, we will have “prescribers” who will speak well of our organization to their family, friends, and professional social circles.

Coordination with marketing and other areas

It is key to work in coordination with the marketing team, which manages the specific positioning of the brand at all times. The marketing department will guide us in the selection of the calendar, the contents, and the areas where we will exercise the communication plan.

Because we must know how to choose when and where to launch press releases, participate as experts in events, collaborate in sector reports, publish posts on our blog and our profiles in RRSS and carry out other types of actions that impact the brand image. We will only achieve this if we know how to assemble communication and marketing strategies, aligning them with the company’s business strategy.

Moving messages, externally and internally, requires full alignment with senior management´s guidelines regarding how the company should be managed.  For this reason, senior management must approve the strategy as a whole and the actions to be carried out, as it must insure that everything is executed according to schedule and with the intended purpose.

The potential of managing the information produced by the company provides advantages for the rest of the business areas. Communicating improvements, news, launches, strategies, business figures, appointments, etc., will make it easier to improve the perception of our products, prices, managers, advisors, and any other company asset. In short, it is the best way for the communication as a tool to support the objectives of the company as a whole.

Impulse to growth

In conclusion, a specialized communication strategy is an essential element for boosting business in private banking entities. It provides benefits in the short, medium and long term, strengthens the organization´s differential positioning and highlights the strengths of its business model and value chain. Furthermore, a well-developed communication strategy helps to achieve greater satisfaction among its customer base, generate a high pride of belonging among its customers and professionals and craft a better corporate reputation between the sector and the media.