Fundamental Media Insights


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Fewer ESG advertisers during first quarter: anomaly or start of a trend?

Advertisers focused less of their total ad volume on ESG

Key points:

  • The number of active ESG advertisers in Europe has lowered from 40 in Q4 2020 to 36 in Q1 2021
  • As a percentage of total ad volume, ESG advertising dropped, but as a percentage of ad volume amongst active ESG advertisers the ESG volume was stable
  • The majority of ESG campaigns focused on brand advertising, followed by fund promotions and insights


Asset managers advertising in Europe have focused less on ESG during Q1 2021 compared to Q4 2020, with fewer ESG advertisers active in market and a lower percentage of total ad volume focused on ESG, data from Fundamental Monitor has found.

The number of active ESG advertisers in Europe has decreased slightly from 40 in the last quarter of 2020 to 36 in Q1 2021. The ESG volume has dropped from 13.6 million impressions to 4.6 million impressions during the same period. This seems to be due to lower activity levels from the most active ESG promoters. Of the 2020 top 5 ESG promoters, only Lyxor Asset Management has remained very active with their ESG promotion. Amundi, UBS Asset Management, Robeco and Invesco have been less active than the year before.

ESG advertisers Europe Q1 2021

As a percentage of total ad volume, ESG advertising dropped from 17% down to 10%, but as a percentage of ad volume amongst active ESG advertisers, the ESG volume was stable at 24%. This indicates that these asset managers are quite consistent in their commitment to ESG.

All countries monitored by Fundamental Monitor saw at least a small volume of ESG advertising. The UK saw the highest number of ESG advertisers (15), followed by the Netherlands (14), Italy (11), Spain (10), France and Germany (9), and Switzerland (8). This is in line with previous research conducted by Fundamental Media where we saw consistent commitment from asset managers for these markets.

Brand advertising accounted for 59% of ESG volume during the first quarter of 2021 (up from 48% in Q4 2020), followed by fund promotions at 26% (up from 18%) and insights at 13% (down from 32%). So the trend that we’ve seen at the end of last year where asset managers are increasingly making ESG part of their brand messages seems to be continuing.

Like you, we are very curious to see how the year will unfold with regard to the commitment of asset managers to ESG promotion. Will this slight drop in ESG promotion prove to be an anomaly or is it the start of a new trend?

All data comes from Fundamental Monitor, an innovative technology tool developed by Fundamental Media providing real-time insights into the advertising campaigns by asset managers across the globe


Insights Competitor alerts Fewer ESG advertisers during first quarter: anomaly or start of a trend?