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Cerulli: Distribution needs key factor driving changes among asset managers

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Most asset managers cite the need to support distribution efforts more effective as the main reason for making organizational changes, according to a new report.

Cerulli Associates, Boston, arrives at this conclusion in a new report, U.S. Retail Product Marketing and Sales Organizations 2012: Maximizing Distribution Success with an Effective Sales and Marketing Strategy. The report focuses on retail marketing and sales organizations, including structure, staffing, budgets, branding, advertising, websites, social media, wholesaling trends and requests for proposals.

The report finds that more than 8 in 10 (82 percent) of asset manages peg the need to support distribution strategies more effectively as the main reason for making organizational changes. This is up from the 73 percent of survey respondents who pointed to distribution needs in Cerulli’s 2011 survey.

Significant majorities also cite as the main driver to their organizational changes:

the need to be more strategic (76 percent);

expansion of digital marketing efforts (65 percent); and

an increasingly competitive environment (53 percent; up from 40 percent in 2011).

“Fierce competition, demanding clients, volatile and changing markets, complex products and pervasive technology are influencing the types of roles and the organization approach that marketing groups need to support distribution effective,” says Cerulli Associates Senior Analyst Pamela DeBolt in a prepared statement. “Marketing groups are working hard to address the challenges they face.”

When asked how they plan to measure the return on investment of marketing efforts, half of the respondents said they are in the early stages of implementing a plan to measure marketing ROI. Other respondents responded as follows:

We have made meaningful progress in measuring ROI, but still have a significant amount of work to do this in area (36 percent);

We are far along in implementing our plan to measure marketing ROI, but will continue to make improvements (7 percent); and

We do not measure marketing ROI (7 percent).


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