Brands matter, even for asset managers

Yes, even in wealth advisory, it pays to have a well-defined brand.

That’s the conclusion of Five Keys to Consistent Success in Wealth Management, a study based on data from over 200 global wealth advisory firms by The Boston Consulting Group. “A Differentiated Advisory Offering” was one of just five attributes separating winners from also-rans.

As the study’s co-author Bruce Holley said in a follow-up interview with Financial Planning, “”It is increasingly more difficult [for clients] to differentiate between a trust, a bank and a brokerage firm… You want them to make a decision [to work with you], to enjoy the experience of working with you and then to recommend you to others. That’s the economic power of a brand.”

Instead, BCG finds that most wealth advisories are focused on brand awareness–not on creating a differentiated brand, and then living up to that brand promise.

How much money is at stake? BCG found that wealth managers with differentiated brands–its top performers–enjoy nearly 50% market share of all advisory assets under management.