Today, leading asset management companies are taking up the challenge to meet the demands of clients who engage with social media and have come to expect the same mode of communication from their financial advisors and asset management companies. As the world’s primary means of information dissemination changes, asset management firms are obliged to modify their client services accordingly. Based on our analysis, industry players can be categorised into four different groups according to their use of social media. • Those who still do not engage in social media at all (are not present or have an account but are not active); • Those who are active by posting news, information and videos; • Those who are truly interactive and pursue a dialogue with their clients and prospects; • Those who have integrated social media into the DNA of their company, as seen in the section dedicated to disruptive models based on social media. I. The use of social media

commentaries that enable them to provide up-to-date information to retail investors and, thus, do their job more efficiently. “We need to go where our clients are”, said Wells Fargo, “the importance of social media within the marketing mix is growing fast”. Vanguard created two types of channels: one targeting advisers (a twitter handle and blog for instance) and another that focuses on retail and 401(k) investors that is geared toward providing information that help thembecome successful investors (a blog, Facebook page, Twitter handle and Google+ account). According to Vanguard, social media is a two-way dialogue. “Our audience can let us know what is on their minds and we can help them,”they said.“And we need to communicate in a way that people want to hear.” Schroders, the best European asset management company within our ranking, has even created aTwitter account to target institutional investors and, more particularly, pension funds. Currently, one of the major reasons for asset management groups to maintain a social media presence is to promote and protect their brand reputation. Here, social media plays a supporting role to other traditional forms of promotion, such as print media advertisements, company websites, banner adverts, etc. Social media sites are relevant to brand or image promotions as the company’s target customer segment is present and interactive on these platforms. Our interviewwith Schroders revealed that using social media is a cheap way to enhance brand - this company successfully utilised multiple social media platforms as part of a long-term marketing strategy. They were able to follow clients with a targeted approach, maintaining as many accounts as necessary in order to demonstrate accessibility to those who required support. Increasing brand awareness

Our interviews with selected firms revealed threemain reasons for using social media:

targeting various types of customers

Contrary to the intuitive assumption that social media would only be used to reach out to end consumers, our interviews with leading asset management groups revealed that the target customers are not only retail investors, but also intermediary financial advisors and distributors of asset management products. For example, the primary goal of Wells Fargo when setting up its social media strategy was to offer their financial advisors relevant financial information and market


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