Brand Power in the Investment Community

Halifax is the cream of the UK investment crop 2005. Halifax has been rated the UK’s most powerful investment brand in the inaugural Citigate Investment Brand Power League Table…

Halifax has been rated the UK’s most powerful investment brand in the inaugural Citigate Investment Brand Power League Table. The high street giant was the surprise winner ahead of more traditional investment big guns such as Jupiter and Fidelity. Second and third place went to Norwich Union and Prudential respectively. The Citigate league table is the culmination of a research project carried out by Incepta Marketing Intelligence (now Illuminas) in conjunction with Citigate Albert Frank and Citigate Dewe Rogerson, part of the Incepta Group. The brands of the UK’s 24 largest asset management firms, based on assets under management, were rated on factors including messaging, channel presence, marketing pressure, media opinion and their ability to activate ‘consumer commitment’ measured in an original research study amongst more than 500 core target investors. Halifax in large part owed its top position to a combination of the breadth of its brand reputation – readily extending from ‘banking’ to the investment product space – the ease of accessibility evidenced by its online presence and the sheer weight of its collective marketing activity. While media opinion was also contributing it was less of a factor behind Halifax’s success than for example Fidelity’s, another ‘top 5’ brand. The top 10 firms in the league table are listed below.

Simon Cole of Incepta Marketing Intelligence (now Illuminas), who ran the research project, said: “What’s very clear is that brands are not powered by marketing spend alone. Media opinion, accessibility and recommendation play a huge part in defining the power of a brand’s reputation in the market.” Phillip Hawkins, Managing Director of Citigate Albert Frank said, “We have been banging the brand drum for some time now – this study confirms that investing in your brand generates business. The top brands in our study – Halifax, Prudential, Norwich Union and Scottish Widows – are not pure investment providers, but they are household names. Only one asset management specialist brand, Fidelity, made the top five. With the FSA advertising regulations now in force, investment companies should seriously consider investing more in building their brands.” The study showed that not only are brands critical to success in the sector – accounting for between 35% and 45% of demand – but also, that investment firms in the UK have some way to go if they’re to achieve the levels of brand productivity possible and often demonstrated in other markets. See Full Paper