Relationships pay dividends


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Marketers in this industry also often face the challenge of a lack of data on prospects and customers. “There's no list that you can go out and buy for wealth management [executives],” said Vicki Morris, VP-marketing at NorthStar Systems International, a provider of software solutions to financial services institutions (see case study, page 17). “So we've had to take a very relationship-oriented approach to finding our potential buyers.” Even if marketers do have data on customers and prospects, this information can become quickly outdated because of the industry's significant merger-and-acquisition activity and high executive churn. NorthStar meets this challenge by keeping tabs on wealth management executives who change jobs and inviting them to receive its newsletter. “It's a way for us to constantly grow our list and make sure we're finding new people,” Morris said. The churn and change common in the industry makes a consistent message tremendously important to a marketer's success, Rankin said. She also tells clients to focus that messaging on solving clients' and prospects' business problems. Martopia client Fidelity National Information Services, which markets technology solutions to banks, did this by making thought leadership efforts a significant part of its integrated marketing strategy. Company executives write articles for industry publications, speak at events and record podcasts about relevant topics. Doing so builds credibility and trust with the target audience, Rankin said. “This industry is risk averse, and it's very important to [buyers] to be working with a company that they perceive to be a leader who has domain expertise and understands the banking business,” she said. M
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