Building a Powerful Investment Brand: Essential Features

Crea Branding Lab
5 min readOct 16, 2023

Branding is a pivotal factor in the growth of investment sector companies, yet its significance is often overlooked. However, in turbulent times like the present, it can be a game changer, especially for first-time investment fund managers.

According to Fortune, this year has been the most challenging for emerging manager fundraising in over a decade, with compelling statistics to support this claim. Preqin reports a 53% decline in the number of alternative funds raised since the beginning of the year compared to the same timeframe in 2022. PitchBook reveals that Emerging US VC managers have only secured $2.3 billion so far this year, putting them on track to close less than $20 billion in annual commitments for the first time since 2016.

https://fortune.com/2023/08/10/worst-year-for-emerging-manager-fundraising/

Many experts believe that the preference now leans towards larger, more established players. Thus, it’s unsurprising that fewer emerging managers are venturing into this challenging market.

Since we began developing a brand for the new hedge fund Kronstadt Asset Management, the company has relocated its headquarters to MENA, which has also influenced the key strategic partners and target audience profiles. The role of branding has become crucial in establishing trust and forging a name for a company in new territories. Many believe that when consumers rationalise their choices, they’re often just explaining their initial gut reactions. So, even if you’ve got a solid case for investing in a particular fund, just showing off graphs and numbers won’t spark trust or admiration. If you can’t guarantee your fund will always come out on top, be watched like a hawk, and be built like a fortress, it’s going to be tough to keep investors around without the genuine instinctive trust a strong brand brings.

Drawing from our expertise, we have identified several vital attributes for effectively establishing a brand in the capital management industry:

A Compelling and Clear Value Proposition

Investors who entrust their capital to fund managers are driven by rationality — or so we’ve been told. Hedge funds often emphasize tangible strengths such as performance, strategic approach and investment process, risk management, and infrastructure to distinguish themselves. Addressing these aspects can be challenging, as many funds tend to differentiate based on what appears to be essential prerequisites for an investment firm. Thoughtful branding helps pinpoint unique selling points and leverage your strengths. When implemented carefully, it allows your sales team to thrive, enhancing the rate of successfully closed deals.

Consistency in messaging

Consistency in messaging is key for effective communication. It goes beyond surface-level branding and extends to all aspects of the company, from the website and marketing materials to interactions with investors and employees. The core message should align with the brand’s strategic constants, ensuring a cohesive visual and verbal image. By maintaining this alignment, the company can convey its essence and foster strong connections with customers and stakeholders.

Thought Leadership

New financial firms, especially those still growing their managed assets, need to stand out in a crowded investment market. Starting a strong content marketing plan that highlights what makes the company special and builds its reputation can be a smart move. By consistently producing expert materials like newsletters, market reviews, research reports, and news publications in reputable media, we inspire confidence and trust in investors. The emotional nudge to invest, alongside the clear-cut rational brand benefits you present? Consider it sold, ladies and gentlemen.

Fund Transparency Policy

Commitment to transparency is essential. In the context of hedge funds, it refers to the investor’s ability to cast an eye over the investment portfolio to ensure it’s compliance with the fund’s initial strategy. When fund managers are open to discussions and scrutiny, it reassures investors and fosters long-lasting trust.

Identify and Prioritise Audiences

It acts as a company’s anchor, directing all communication, actions, and positioning. For alternative investment funds, this becomes indispensable because the financial sector is brimming with competition, making a unique stance both challenging and vital. A robust organising idea offers clarity, ensuring the fund’s message remains consistent wherever it appears, from investor interactions to broader publicity efforts. The brand’s core idea lays the foundation for the communications strategy to flourish, paving the way for memorable slogans, engaging storylines, and standout marketing campaigns.

Brand’s Core Idea

It acts as a company’s anchor, directing all communication, actions, and positioning. For alternative investment funds, this becomes indispensable because the financial sector is brimming with competition, making a unique stance both challenging and vital. A robust organising idea offers clarity, ensuring the fund’s message remains consistent wherever it appears, from investor interactions to broader publicity efforts. The brand’s core idea lays the foundation for the communications strategy to flourish, paving the way for memorable slogans, engaging storylines, and standout marketing campaigns.

Building a strong investment brand is all about focusing on the details and maintaining a consistent vision. Starting with a clear brand concept not only boosts your visibility but also enhances sales. Additionally, it ensures that more of your marketing efforts hit the mark, setting the stage for sustained success and a respected reputation.

You can read the full project case study here:

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Crea Branding Lab
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We are a cross-disciplinary, modular team, offering strategic branding solutions based on deep expertise. Strategic support for proposed design solutions.