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Respecting Market Volatility: RED LIGHT FOR MARKETING

The markets have been volatile as of late. What does this mean for ongoing marketing efforts? Institutional research professionals, particularly those closer to client contact, often indicate that managers and marketers alike needed to exhibit greater sensitivity to what their day to day struggles are. What are the Institutional research professionals you are marketing to faced with? What deadlines and priorities do they have? In addition to the basic ebb and flow events that occur throughout the calendar year, such as quarter-end reporting, board presentations, fiscal year-ends, etc., one broader criterion to consider is what is occurring in the markets right now and how does this impact the likelihood of a positive response to marketing efforts? We certainly have been experiencing volatile markets and some major shifts throughout the quarter. Marketers in particular, eager to please their Investment Manager clients, are most susceptible to standing in harms way at these times. Focused, active marketing doesn’t get a ‘holiday’, but it should carefully factor in time frames where certain types of investors have other critical priorities. Marketing for investment management certainly has some clear ‘green light’ windows–for example the middle month of each quarter is generally highlighted as the ‘most approachable’ time by institutional research professionals, however as you move down market it is also the most likely time for client acquisition activities among advisory firms. There are also some ‘yellow light’ windows, like the last month of the quarter, and some quintessential ‘red light’ windows, typically the first month after quarter-end and of course major holidays when we all prefer to be left alone. Market movements, however, don’t always ‘play along’ with our general calendar and they must be considered to avoid overtaxing our networks. Managers and marketers should actively discuss and determine what content, if any, is value-added in certain market environments. Market wisely for the long term.

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