October 20, 2014

MME: Asset Managers Eye Patenting Index Strategies

SunStar's Dan Sondhelm also shared some thoughts on how a patent can help differentiate your story.

Do you plan on having a patent?

October 15, 2014

Morningstar: Bond fund beneficiaries?

Morningstar reported September 2014 flows this week and, unsurprisingly, Bill Gross’ exit from PIMCO was a factor in investment trends. The taxable-bond Morningstar Category saw outflows of $18.7 billion, its largest single-month loss since June, 2013. However, the PIMCO Total Return Fund alone accounted for $17.9 billion of outflows, making the state of the taxable-bond category look not so bad after all. Which bond funds are benefitting? Meanwhile, active U.S. equity saw its seventh month of outflows while passive U.S. equity experienced its eighth month of inflows, most notably in U.S. and international equity.

For more details and analysis, please see the full report here.

Cohen: Develop a tailored approach for distribution

Imagine you have a good story to tell, but investors don’t take your funds as seriously as you would like. What should you do?

That was the premise for a panel at the Cohen Fund Services client conferences entitled "Sales, marketing and distribution best practices."

SunStar’s Dan Sondhelm was one of the panelists, along with Russ Parker, rpmAUM and Dave Swanson, SwanDog Marketing. The panel was moderated by Cohen’s Chris Bellamy.

October 14, 2014

To speak or not to speak

Mental Breakdown : Stock IllustrationAn industry consultant and friend just called me with a problem.

He said he often gets asked by trade press for interviews and conference producers to be a panelist or keynote speaker.

I am playing the violin just for him.

Seriously, though, he says it takes significant time to prepare and to be out of the office not working with clients. He also wonders if he is cheapening his brand because if he is giving it away for free why would people pay. Finally, he says he can't remember ever getting a client directly from a speaking opportunity.

October 13, 2014

Huntington: Growth is daunting but not impossible

Some firms do it well. And some don't. So this year's Huntington Asset Services client conference wanted to make sure it's clients had the right information on distribution, sales and marketing to better compete.

Huntington's Paula Jurcenko who moderated the session said, "With over 800 financial firms in the industry managing over 9,000 mutual funds, it’s daunting - but not impossible - for a small to medium sized investment advisor to gain traction and grow assets."
Jurcenko continued, "It takes a thorough distribution plan, mixed in with a lot of patience, to get noticed. The important thing is to spend your limited distribution budget wisely. Don’t try to penetrate all channels at once. Target a firm or channel and focus there. A disciplined wholesaling strategy coupled with targeted marketing and media messaging will get advisors to take notice."

Panelists for the distribution sessions included SunStar's Dan Sondhelm, Morningstar's Dan Lefkovitz, Schwab's Wayne Chai, Kerric Kynard and Meritage Capital's Diarmuid Boran.