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Allianz Global Investors – A Global Brand Built on Unique Propositions
HAVING established a strong foothold in the global asset management industry, Allianz Global Investors (AllianzGI) is committed to its focus on “consultative local delivery’’. Not only does this local focus help the firm penetrate Asia, but it has also earned it the “Brand of the Year’’ title in Singapore. Jennifer Chen, Chief Marketing Officer, Asia-Pacific, reveals the key to successfully conveying AllianzGI’s unique brand voice in an overcrowded market.
BENCHMARK (BM): Singapore’s mutual fund market enjoyed healthy capital inflows in 2017. As asset managers compete for a bigger share of the expanding market, how do you leverage your branding efforts to deepen your presence in the Lion City?
Jennifer Chen (JC): AllianzGI Singapore allocates a significant amount of resources to promote itself in a market where the competition is intense. Aware that above-the-line marketing can effectively boost a brand’s visibility, we launched a 360-degree above-the-line marketing campaign in 2016 that covered a range of channels, from taxi wraps and print ads to MRT “zone domination”, together with an always-on product promotion to build brand awareness. The strategy has proven successful, keeping our brand awareness ranking within the top 10 in Singapore’s asset management industry.
BM: How do you take your brand image to the next level? Can you share with us your most recent campaign and strategies?
JC: Certainly. With the good results that we have had, we are continually looking for ways to improve and to connect with our customers on a deeper level. With more people recognising AllianzGI as an established asset management brand, we decided that it was time to refine our strategy so that our target audience would know us better.
In 2017, we implemented an offline-to-online strategy, diverting our target audience’s attention from out-of-home advertising campaigns to the digital realm. The strategy was a holistic, multilayered approach using the vast online space to display our tailored contents, communicate the characteristics of AllianzGI as a brand, and reach out to retail and institutional investors.
Diverse and inspiring, the strategy was shaped for the more investment-savvy PMETs (Professionals, Managers, Executives and Technicians). The first part took the form of a 37-meter-long lenticular display along the underground walkway. Pedestrians would be attracted to the display, and the message would be revealed to them as they walked along the display. At the midpoint was a panel that carried essential information on AllianzGI’s online content site and quizzes offering attractive prizes. The idea aimed to deliver not only the “wow” factor but also a unique combination of suspense and surprise to attract viewers to the content site.
BM: How effective is the offline- to-online approach in driving engagement?
JC: Indeed, the offline-to-online strategy was proven effective by statistics. Across the various places where the campaigns were implemented, the content sites reported a total of over 900,000 visits. All the contents of the campaigns generated a total of over 216 million media impressions. In addition, the engagement index of the campaigns was 1.12 per cent, which was 72 per cent higher than the industry benchmark.
We believe that these positive results were attributable in part to the eye-catching, succinct headlines of our contents. Also helping maximize the positive impact on brand awareness and purchase intention was our tactic of reaching out to specific targets. Through an interest-targeting strategy, we ensured that our contents were fed to a maximum number of people who were interested in news and personal finance.
BM: Being empathetic to one’s target audience is critical. How do you relate your brand with institutional investors?
JC: In terms of targeting institutional investors, we partnered with leading asset management and financial portals, including Bloomberg and Reuters, with whom we had private placement deals, to highlight our strengths in investment in an online campaign that covered Singapore, Hong Kong, Thailand, and Malaysia. We also offer a range of thought leadership pieces as part of our client engagement efforts.
To maximize the effectiveness of the campaign, we shifted away from the conventional approach of running static online ads in favor of a storytelling approach to convey our messages in a sequential manner. In the process, we also applied big data analytics in our re-targeting efforts to ensure that our messages reached our target audience, as well as to improve the customers’ overall experience.