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Cogent Reports: Vanguard, Fidelity and PIMCO Attracting RIA Interest
[August 07, 2018]

Cogent Reports: Vanguard, Fidelity and PIMCO Attracting RIA Interest

Vanguard, Fidelity and PIMCO earn the strongest purchase consideration from RIAs, one of the only advisor segments that's growing, again this year. Managing larger books of business compared to their peers, RIAs now control more than half of advisor-managed mutual fund dollars, making them an attractive target for asset managers. However, despite a heightened industry focus on targeting this elite group, Charles Schwab Investment Management is the only firm to achieve a significant increase in purchase consideration. These and other findings are from Advisor Brandscape®, a Cogent Reports™ study released by Market Strategies International-Morpace.

Vanguard continues to earn the strongest consideration in the RIA channel, followed by Fidelity, PIMCO, DFA and T. Rowe Price. The top 10 providers remain the same compared with 2016, with a few notable changes in rank: DFA overtakes T. Rowe Price and American Funds, while Charles Schwab Investment Management advances past BlackRock and DoubleLine.


Top 10 Mutual Fund Companies in Purchase Consideration* among RIAs

2018 2016
1 1 Vanguard
2 2 Fidelity Investments/Fidelity Advisor Solutions
3 3 PIMCO Funds
4 6 DFA (Dimensional Fund Advisors)
5 4 T. Rowe Price
6 5 American Funds
7 9 Charles Schwab Investment Management?'16
8 7 BlackRock Funds
9 8 DoubleLine
10 10 Dodge & Cox (News - Alert) Funds

* Purchase Consideration measures respondents' investing intentions by combining mentions from unaided consideration and top
3-box responses on aided consideration (non-users are asked about likelihood to start investing; users are asked about likelihood to make additional investments)
?= Significant increase in rating from stated year
Source (News - Alert): Market Strategies International. Cogent Reports™. Advisor Brandscape®. June 2018.

"Firms should seek to strengthen engagement with RIAs through more effective segmentation, enhancing CRM systems to better understand and serve individual advisor needs," said Meredith Lloyd Rice, vice president at Market Strategies-Morpace and author of the report. "Custodian service providers such as Schwab and Fidelity may already have a leg up here, posing a competitive threat to challenger brands."

In marketing to RIAs, firms should note that RIAs over-index in their use of business and financial news websites when compared with their peers in other channels. Additionally, business and financial news websites reach more RIAs than the leading TV networks-a finding that does not hold true for advisors in other channels. This means that to reach the expanding group of RIAs, it is critical for asset managers to focus media strategies on industry websites.

"This can be both good and bad news for firms looking to target RIAs," said David Keen, a senior director at Market Strategies-Morpace and head of the company's media measurement practice. "While RIAs visit a wider array of websites compared with their peers and are, therefore, theoretically easier to reach, their broad preference for website browsing may mean a larger media spend or a greater need for targeted messaging that speaks directly to their needs."

About Advisor Brandscape®

Cogent Reports conducted an online survey with 1,504 financial advisors from January to March of 2018. In order to qualify, respondents were required to have an active book of business of at least $5 million and offer investment advice or planning services to individual investors on a fee or transactional basis. Cogent Reports sets quota targets and weighted the data to be representative of the overall advisor universe using the Discovery Data Financial Services Industry database as a sample source. Market Strategies will supply the exact wording of any survey question upon request.

About Market Strategies International-Morpace

Leading market research firms Market Strategies International and Morpace bring clients closer to their customers through exceptional insights, which includes deep expertise in financial services, specifically among wealth, banking, payments and insurance organizations. The firms specialize in brand, customer experience, product development and segmentation research, and are known for blending primary research with data from syndicated, benchmarking and self-funded studies to help clients succeed. The syndicated products, known as Cogent Reports, help clients understand the market environment, explore industry trends and monitor their brand within the competitive landscape. Market Strategies and Morpace have earned the trust of many of the world's top brands across the automotive, consumer & retail, energy, financial services, health, technology and telecommunications industries. They are combining into one firm, as part of an acquisition of both firms by STG, and will be rebranded under a new name to be announced later in 2018. With more than 450 research professionals, the collective firm is now the 15th largest market research firm in the US and top 25 globally.

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