Investment Marketing Newsletter – 3Q09

The Investment Marketing Business

Marketing experts maintain constant debate over the value of social media marketing in the financial and investment services. While it’s tough to argue its effectiveness in consumer branding, financial services generally tests the lowest of any industry group, with only 14% of consumers willing to engage in social context interaction with a brand (Razorfish 2009). While a successful industry expert blogging strategy can drive traffic to your company’s site and boost search engine results, it will also require constant update and deep interaction with your target audience, as well as additional legal review. As more and more companies expand their efforts to include social media marketing, it is important to explore your own goals to determine if this avenue is right for your firm. MBC Strategic can help you build and manage social networking properties that uphold your firm’s carefully crafted brand identity and messaging and help you to communicate that message across marketing channels.

Watch List

Nearly ten years after their initial brand development, MBC revisited a commercial loan advisory and real estate investment banking firm to embark upon a comprehensive rebrand, updating their logo design, website, and corporate identity materials to better convey the growth and success they had experienced. The package included more modern and sophisticated web design, updated content, new logo and branded imagery, and streamlined core messaging. Acknowledging the importance of revisiting a company’s brand and adjusting the marketing strategy to better pinpoint changes in company values and growth, we emphasized the powerful reputation and experience that the firm has developed in the past ten years in the industry, as well as their widely expanded offerings and client base. The successfully articulated rebrand and new website launched during the third quarter.

Marketing Consultant’s Corner

This quarter JPMorgan Chase completed their nationwide rebrand of recently acquired Washington Mutual, including remodeling nearly 200 locations. The undertaking represented a dramatic clash between the hip, unconventional banking style of WaMu and Chase’s conservative, tried-and-true image. Washington Mutual based their distinct, well-established brand identity on differentiating from more traditional banking competitors with branding strategies including bright primary posters, lively colors, sardonic ads, and casual branches modeled with their patented Occasio, retail-style design. As with any rebrand, Chase was challenged to retain customers with strong loyalty to the original brand, while leading the firm in a new direction. However, as victims of the largest banking failure in U.S. history, it is now more important than ever for WaMu customers to feel secure and protected, themes central to Chase’s longstanding reputation for dependability. The coming quarters will determine the true success of the merger rebrand as customers respond and business continues.

The Ticker

In the second and third quarters, the team at MBC Strategic worked with an East Coast Real Estate Investment Trust to rebrand their company and help position their offerings. The efforts, which included comprehensive web design and development, corporate identity brochure design, and overall messaging and content restructuring, focused on updating the look and structural flow of the firm’s website to better communicate their investment process and depth of both the team and their product offerings. MBC also developed a custom content management system (CMS) and multi-leveled password protected site for the firm’s investors, partners, and financial advisors. This allows the company to fully manage and instantly update any section of the site with new materials and content, as well as position the FINRA reviewed and approved site for use with the public, investors, and advisors. Working closely with the client, MBC sought to heighten brand credibility with benefits-based messaging, streamlined navigation, increased site usability, and sophisticated aesthetics. The site launched during the third quarter of 2009.