Fundamental Media Insights

Research insights
5 February 2024

US financial intermediaries prefer more client-centric asset management content

Most intermediaries are satisfied with the content provided by asset managers, according to research by Fundamental Media

Key findings:

  • US financial intermediaries feel asset managers do not deliver the right content for less financially savvy clients (42%) and for them as time-poor professionals (24%).
  • Many respondents would like more content from asset managers that is brief, concise, client-friendly and personalised, with examples and case studies, but with less jargon sales pitches.
  • 40% of intermediaries find asset managers’ marketing materials useful for client retention.

Most financial intermediaries in the USA believe asset managers provide the right content for them and their less financially savvy clients, but they would like to see more content that is brief, concise, client-friendly and personalised, research by Fundamental Media found.  

Fundamental Media conducted a short survey among 72 US financial intermediaries in August 2023 to determine their views on the evolution of marketing, the content and support provided by asset managers, and asset managers’ support during times of uncertainty.

More than three quarters of respondents have worked in financial services for over 20 years. During that time the industry has changed significantly. Respondents mentioned the increase in compliance and regulation, a greater dependency on technology, better customer service, and the move to a fee-based model as some of the key changes.

Content gaps and preferences

When asked whether asset managers deliver the right content for their clients who may not be as financially savvy and for them as a time-poor professional, 42% and 24% of intermediaries, respectively, said no. They gave a long list of areas that need improvement, but also highlighted the many types of valuable content they already receive from managers.

We also surveyed intermediaries about which communication channels, topics and types they find the most valuable, both in direct communication with them and via third parties. Many mentioned they would like more content that is brief and concise, client-friendly and personalised with examples and case studies, and less jargon and sales pitches.

Asset managers’ marketing materials are useful for financial intermediaries, with 40% saying the materials have assisted them in client retention. Many also gave specific examples of how asset management marketing activities have influenced the perception of a product or strategy for themselves or their client(s).

Respondents indicated they would like to see asset managers being proactive in providing a variety of content that demonstrates performance and is easy to understand.

Support during times of uncertainty

When asked how they deal with periods of uncertainty, extreme volatility and economic downturn, many respondents indicated that they proactively increase their communication with their clients, while some also undertook a portfolio review or made allocation adjustments. Information shared during uncertain times is more educational, using past performance and historic trends to illustrate the benefits of long-term investing and to show that uncertainty can also create opportunities.

The financial intermediaries gave a plethora of examples of asset manager support during turbulent times and indicated that they like managers to be accessible and available as well as open to answer questions during such periods. Honest, consistent, proactive and frequent communication is also appreciated in challenging times.

For access to the full report, contact [email protected]

Insights Research insights US financial intermediaries prefer more client-centric asset management content