Shouldn't your marketing strategy be as sophisticated as your investment strategy?

Change is Here

Too few asset managers seem to recognize the enormous potential impact of the new JOBS Act in terms of sourcing capital.

Kyle Dunn on Sourcing Capital

“Any group that is to be taken seriously in this industry has a solid track record, good pedigree, and great deal flow, so stop talking about it and say something interesting.”

- Kyle Dunn

Sourcing New LPs

See exactly what Meyler Capital does to help you source new investors.

How We Think

You can’t create an authentic relationship by always asking for money.

Sonar Marketing

Sonar Marketing can tell you in real time if a prospective investor is interested in what you are doing.

PDF Image

RAISING INSTITUTIONAL CAPITAL: FIGHT SMARTER

There are things happening in our industry that contradict generally accepted 'truths' about marketing.

Download your copy of the book here

"Your book, Fight Smarter, is well written, insightful, thought provoking and entertaining. Well done!"

Jeff Rawson: President | Merrick Capital Corporation

Hedge Fund Manager Videos at the Global Fund Forum

At last month’s Global Fund Forum, we teamed up with Hedge Connection to produce videos for their manager profil...

Read more

Are Humans Becoming Redundant?

Will crowdfunding, online LP/GP platforms, and digital marketplaces displace human beings in the marketing of alternativ...

Read more

A Sale is Made on Every Call

“…hey look, man, tell me you don’t like my firm, tell me you don’t like my idea, tell me you don’t...

Read more

Viral Marketing: What Potato Salad Can Teach You About Capital Ra...

What does potato salad going viral have to do with institutional capital raising? More than you’d think. So, when...

Read more

Interview with a seeder: “All I need to know before considering...

Had an opportunity to sit down with one of the industry’s most respected seed and acceleration capital providers.   ...

Read more

10 Twitter Accounts Worth Following

Okay, so you’ve got a Twitter account and set up a slick profile. You’ve synched up your account to a social...

Read more

What They Don’t Teach You in “Pitch Book” School

Force rank your experience to the following statement​…  When in meetings with investors, my marketing deck:  Rare...

Read more

16 Things You Can do to Raise Capital Today

Raising money is always challenging. If you’re trying to raise capital, these 16 things will make the process a l...

Read more

Need Capital?  Best Monitor Email Analytics.

When is the last time you blocked off two hours of your day to monitor the analytics of an email campaign the moment you...

Read more

Why Good Culture Makes for Great Marketing

Satori Investment Partners believes its culture is integral to its success.  As a matter of fact, the partners feel so ...

Read more

Hedge Fund Manager Videos at the Global Fund Forum

hedge-fund-videos-hedge-connection-logoAt last month's Global Fund Forum, we teamed up with Hedge Connection to produce videos for their manager profiles. Many managers took advantage of the opportunity to create a video interview, so investors will now be able to put a face to a portfolio manager's name and hear them speak passionately about their work.

All videos are hosted by Hedge Connection and only members who meet the legal investor qualifications can access and view the videos.

To preview the videos without having to log in, check out Hedge Connection's Vimeo profile here.

 

Hedge Connection: Your Hedge Fund Resource

Hedge Connection has grown to become the most widely recognized and innovative marketing solution for the hedge fund industry. Their online fund database is powered by Morningstar and provides investors with access to over 7,000 hedge funds, fund of funds and CTAs.

The Boardroom, their industry-leading online community, is woven into the fabric of their fund database and facilitates relationship building, networking, and free flow of information. Hedge Connection’s online ecosystem is complemented by their premier one-on-one networking events. Since 2005, over 5,000 investors have participated in Hedge Connection related events, resulting in thousands of direct meetings for hedge fund managers.

Are Humans Becoming Redundant?

robotWill crowdfunding, online LP/GP platforms, and digital marketplaces displace human beings in the marketing of alternative investments?

We don’t think so.

Have shopping malls shut down, do car dealerships still exist, do people still use realtors? Rhetorical, obviously; however, it makes the point. Technically these industries shouldn’t exist, yet people, seemingly, still like to interact with humans. Those within these industries have had to adapt to new technologies and new ways to do business, but the industries themselves still exist and people within these industries still play a critical role.

Can the alternative investment community become more efficient? Absolutely. Are there redundant and outdated systems in place? Without a doubt. However, we still think human beings are important. If you were to ask someone on the street what the most important component of the capital raise process is, 9 times out of 10 they would say relationships – today, right now.

It is also important to recognize that we are in the midst of the greatest technology shift that has ever occurred on earth. The 1000s of drones out there staring at their smart phones is evidence of that. The interesting point, many are starting to see this as a problem. Things have swung so far in one direction that a wave is starting to form pushing things in the other direction.

The more information that exists, the less valuable it becomes. The more mature the alternative investment industry becomes, the greater number of similarities there will be across managers. This is already occurring. Good performance is seemingly a homogenous product offered by 1000s of managers.

Our point, most institutional investors are so overwhelmed by the volume of information available to them and the similarities of that information that they are searching out real live conversations with human beings. Yeah, that could stop happening one day, however, if it does, there will be 17 jobs left on earth and we are all screwed.

Go shake hands with someone.

 

By Kyle Dunn

A Sale is Made on Every Call

“…hey look, man, tell me you don't like my firm, tell me you don't like my idea, tell me you don't like my neck tie, but don't tell me you can't put together 2,500 bucks….A sell is made on every call you make. Either you sell the client some stock, or he sells you on a reason he can't. Either way, a sell is made. The only question is: who's gonna’ close? You or him?

- Ben Affleck, “Boiler Room”

 

A sell is made on every call 

 

One of the biggest challenges about raising assets is that most institutional investors start at “No”.

As most managers know, there an entire multi-point checklist that you need to satisfy, along with a bunch of other pre-conceived notions that require explanation in order to be even considered for investment. 

 The process necessitates that you punch through a load of “No’s” prior to even being considered for a “Yes”.

 

It’s almost like talking to a compliance officer…
Approach most compliance officer with something non-textbook and count how long it takes for the word “no” to escape their lips. I have not come across many open-minded folks in that role. Part of it is the position, I get it, – not much upside for them to think out of the box…but part of it is just plain habit.

We ran into this situation recently with a compliance consultant who expressed “serious concerns” about some marketing materials we sent over for review.

Holy crap – “serious concerns??” Guess we need to make some changes - glad we asked for her opinion.

Turns out the “concern” mostly came down to how we applied one word. After some discussion, we proposed just removing the word from the materials (but leaving the rest). She shrugged it off with a simple, “that will be fine.”

So – naturally the question is…why didn’t she just suggest that in the first place? Sure, there is a cynical response about lawyers and hourly rates but the reality is, that is just not how she is trained to think.

Investors are not much different - they have a ridiculous amount of investment choices. It makes sense for them to rely on their process. And an important part of that process is their checklist.

 

But there is stuff you can do….

Chances are you do have something that they want. Make your one or two differentiators very discernible (‘cause you don’t really have seven). Keep them simple and uncluttered and you have a much higher chance of staying on their radar as you mature. Bury that differentiator in an overwhelming mound of text and it is unlikely they will ever find it - because just like your compliance officer, there is little chance they will go searching.

 

Ensure that they have everything they need to make a decision when you become “investable”
The investment cycle is a long process.  If they have a six step process to making an investment – be sure that they are near step six when you finally fulfill their last few requirements. It doesn’t mean they will give you money, but they won’t give you thoughtless excuses either.

The only way to do this is through simple consistency. If you ignore them for two years and then come back to say you met an AUM minimum, you will definitely have to pass “GO” a couple of times ‘til they are ready to pay attention again.

 

Stop selling and start adding value.
Don’t have a reason to stay in front of them? Provide some content. There is something in your investing universe that is of interest to people. Share it.

 

And to finish off Ben Affleck’s monologue…”Now be relentless.”

 

JD David

Viral Marketing: What Potato Salad Can Teach You About Capital Raising

potato-salad

What does potato salad going viral have to do with institutional capital raising? More than you'd think.

So, when a guy with a self-proclaimed love of potato salad was looking to raise a few bucks to make his very own, he turned to Kickstarter. A week or so later, he had shattered his $60 “stretch goal” by over $60,000.

Fools and their money? Nah…Just another example of the power of clever marketing.

Seriously.

See, most in our industry still cling to the notion that investors are all about performance. Sure, that has to be there. But you wouldn’t be in this business if you didn’t perform. And…as our colleague, Kyle Dunn likes to say, there is almost no marketing value in performance. Just like there is almost no marketing value in trying to sell fuzzy blankets. However, there is a ridiculous amounts of marketing value in selling blankets with built-in sleeves and a cute name like, “Snuggie”. So, what’s the attraction with potato salad? Absolutely nothing! It’s not actually that good and often gives you gas. So why has this guy gone viral and more importantly, why should you care?

1. A pleasant surprise. When someone goes on to Kickstarter, they have become accustomed to expecting a hyped-up product description and another emotionally charged “story”. Maybe compelling - but probably much the same as the last four stories that they have read. Potato salad is completely unexpected and exactly the opposite of what everyone else is selling. What would happen if the next time you call a prospective investor, you give them anything but what they are used to receiving from every other salesperson looking for their money. If nothing else…they’ll at least take notice.

2. The no sales pitch sales…entertainment style. Hard to get worked up about potato salad. Particularly coming from a guy with such a relaxed tone and good sense of humor. The takeaway – we take ourselves way too seriously. Worse – we rarely make calls unless we are trying to make a sale. “Always be closing” for used car sales and low ticket items. This is a long-term business that does not close in one meeting. Even when you don’t think they can tell that you are trying hard to sell them something…they can tell.

3. Interesting content always finds a market. We all know that momentum just sparks more momentum. But…being “first to be second” is sickeningly common in our industry. So, how do you get off the ground? Content is a great start. If you provide folks something of value – a good blog post or an interesting email that starts with, “I saw this and thought of you….”

If you don’t have the time, the desire or the inclination to write your own stuff – get on to Google Alerts and have it ping you when something potentially interesting about your client, his strategy, the market, or whatever hits the tape. Since you can only provide so many monthly updates…this is an easy way to stay relevant.

And – if you are really want to keep people’s attention, look for the stuff that is either truly useful or truly off the wall – like a guy raising money to make potato salad.

 

By JD David

 

 

Interview with a seeder: “All I need to know before considering an introductory meeting”

Had an opportunity to sit down with one of the industry’s most respected seed and acceleration capital providers.   His message was amazingly simple….

 

 Seed Capital

 

Investors are inherently lazy and we are overwhelmed.   

“There is no need to overcomplicate the message and definitely no need to send over piles of information.  Long emails actually scare me.”

  

Dispelling the myth of the cold, emotionless seeder….

He and his team meet with about a quarter of all of the emerging managers that come through their pipe.  When you include second and third meetings, this ends up being an enormous number of conversations.

 

They obviously care to get it right and despite generally held beliefs, do want to hear what managers have to say.

 

His take was that it does not require all that much for a manager to distinguish himself.  It comes down to just being smart in terms of how they deliver their message.

 

The four questions

So, what are the first things he wants to know prior to considering a meeting?

 

1). Who are you? 

A great pedigree almost always “earns” a conversation

 

2). What do you do?

Give me your edge in clear and concise language – again, no need to get fancy

 

3). What exactly is the opportunity?

Demonstrate there is something unique here – and that it can scale

 

4). Why now?

Why should I make this a priority? 

 

 Finally…demonstrate commitment

Far too many people “do it backwards”.  They first ask for the money and then build their company. 

 

Demonstrating that you are at least in process of forming your company, have office space and have taken the time to build a professional looking website and a well-presented, thoughtful marketing deck all adds to your credibility.

 

“If you don’t see the value in investing in yourself, why would I?  It makes the entire opportunity less compelling.”  

 

 JD David

 

10 Twitter Accounts Worth Following

twitterOkay, so you've got a Twitter account and set up a slick profile. You've synched up your account to a social media monitoring service like Hootsuite (we heart Hootsuite).  Now....who to follow? Here are our top 10 most followable accounts, from both the tech and financial spaces.

Twitter accounts to follow right now: 

1. Dan Primack - @danprimack. His daily column / email, Term Sheet is informative and worth subscribing to as well.

2. Hootsuite - @hootsuite. Have we mentioned we love Hootsuite? Their main Twitter account is a great source of helpful marketing and social media tips. Contact @Hootsuite_Help for tech and product support.

3. Pensions & Investments Magazine - @pensionsnews

4. Felix Salmon - @felixsalmon. Formerly of Reuters, now senior editor of Fusion and blogger at Medium.

5. Institutional Investor Magazine - @iimag

6. Business Insider - @businessinsider. Often the first to break stories in the finance space.

7. Fast Company - @FastCompany. Profile reads "Inspiring readers to think beyond traditional boundaries & create the future of business." About sums it up.

8. Forbes - @forbes. 'Nuff said.

9. GS Elevator Gossip - @GSElevator. Satire account initially thought to be actual elevator gossip from Goldman Sachs, since debunked. Inappropriate and hilarious.

10. Axial - @AxialCo. "A platform that connects business owners and their advisors with capital to grow, finance, and sell their companies." 

  

By Krysten Ouwehand

What They Don’t Teach You in “Pitch Book” School

Force rank your experience to the following statement​…

 Pitch BookWhen in meetings with investors, my marketing deck: 

  1. Rarely gets opened
  2. Gets used extensively as I explain every page as if I am doing a presentation in front of an audience
  3. Often has been ​read cover-​to-​cover in advance of our discussion by the person with whom I am meeting 
  4. Is​ typically​ thumbed through for the very first time by the investor as I am talking to her ​- irrespective ​of whether or not it was sent to her in advance of the meeting​

 

For me, (and practically every experienced manager that I have met), number four almost always ranks first and number three almost always ranks last.  

 

​Sure, they may have skimmed the deck in advance of the meeting -​ but if you ask me to bet on the over/under of whether they spent more or less than three minutes ​analyzing what you have written, I would take the "under"...​every time.

 

​So, if it is truly the case that your pitch book will only get a minute or two of attention (or partial attention, since the reader is multi-tasking at the time) - why not accept it and prepare your deck acknowledging the reality of the sales process.  

 

As my colleague, Kyle Dunn, likes to say, "there is a reason there are not paragraphs on highways signs.  People are simply moving too fast to read every word."

 

Figure out your true message and then articulate it in small, bite-sized phrases that will actually get digested.

 

And while I recognize that what you have to say is important and of course, that your deck appears professional and institutional in every way, it is equally important that your message actually gets conveyed.  

 

JD David

16 Things You Can do to Raise Capital Today

Raise Capital - 16 TipsRaising money is always challenging.

If you're trying to raise capital, these 16 things will make the process a little easier:

1.) Be humble. (Investors get approached a lot.)

2.) Pick up the phone and talk to investors as frequently as possible.

3.) Create your own, high quality content and email it to people, making sure you have the back end systems in place to understand who is absorbing what information.

4.) Don’t say the same thing as everyone else in your marketing deck. (And if you only talk about performance, deal flow, and experience you aren’t saying anything original.)

5.) Build marketing materials that look and feel more sophisticated than the competition. (If you are building a marketing deck in power point this is literally impossible.)

6.) Don’t start the marketing process when you need capital. (We all know it takes 18 months to secure a commitment from a large allocator. Why start that process when you need the money?)

7.) Produce a high quality video that explains why someone should invest with you. (Your greatest marketing tool is your passion, not the numbers.)

8.) Layer the distribution of information. (When have you ever seen a paragraph on a freeway sign?)

9.) Build a micro-website and / or digital marketing deck specific to your investment opportunity. (Not only can you navigate through information more effectively, they make you look sophisticated and smart.)

10.) Create a resource where someone can access every single piece of information that they need to give you money. (The diligence process is typically butchered. How information is presented is a huge marketing opportunity.)

11.) Respond to people faster than you think you need to respond to people. (Start thinking minutes, not hours.)

12.) Don’t discount the importance of dialogue in the marketing process. (Marketing materials will never close anything. Human interaction does. Make it a part of the process.)

13.) Find a way to measure the ROI on your marketing spend. (Going forward you can allocate resources towards marketing initiatives work.)

14.) Stop thinking that you shouldn’t have to invest heavily in the marketing process to raise capital.

15.) Focus on developing brand loyalty above all else.

16.) Adopt a multi-channel approach. (Don’t rely on any one channel to source capital.)

 

 

By Kyle Dunn

 

 

Need Capital?  Best Monitor Email Analytics.

Mail-black-smallestWhen is the last time you blocked off two hours of your day to monitor the analytics of an email campaign the moment you pressed send?  Good chance – never. 

 

You should start doing this for the following five reasons:

 

1. If you see someone engaging in the information you sent them, you are top of mind.  If you immediately reach out, there is a good chance they will know who you are, and there is greater likelihood you will start a dialogue.

2. The people you think are paying attention to you aren’t, and the people you don’t think are paying attention to you are.  Knowing this is hugely valuable.

3. A lot of times there is a really big fish nibbling on your line.  If you respond quickly, there is a much better chance you will engage.  

4. It is unlikely that a high level capital allocator will every “respond;” however, they tend to pull down information related to the decision they are set to make in advance of making it.  You want to know this.

5. There is so much information out there that within a few hours of acknowledging that you might have said something smart, they will forget it was you.  Best to connect when they think you are smart.

 

Important people that read this will acknowledge the point, and perhaps make a note to tell one of their junior staff to start doing this.  Stop! Focus! This is a really important point.

 

If you are important and you personally respond to someone else that is important, good chance you will start a conversation.  

 

Most people looking to raise capital indicate that things typically progress a lot further once they start talking to a capital allocator.  Getting someone important to immediately follow up with a personalized email to a capital allocator the second that allocator engages in your information is one of the best ways to accomplish this.  (Small hint:  You can make it look like the important person sent the email, without that person having sent the email.)

 

Finally, everyone needs to get over their fear of freaking people out by responding too quickly.  The benefits outweigh the risks every time, and, being honest, it is the new normal.

 

By Kyle Dunn

 

Why Good Culture Makes for Great Marketing

Satori Investment Partners believes its culture is integral to its success.  As a matter of fact, the partners feel so strongly about it that it is the very first word on the very first page of their marketing deck.  

chicagoBears_super_bowl

 Not only have I never seen culture appear on page one of any other marketing deck, I have rarely seen it referenced on any page of any marketing material of practically any other fund.  

  

“Why” versus “What”

 Everyone in the industry talks about who they are, what they do and how they do it.  But great marketing starts with “why”. 

 

Culture is at the heart of “why”.

 

So, while the experience (“pedigree”) of the people in the firm is clearly important, “culture” embodies both experience and character. Culture is about what drives people’s actions, not just a history of those actions.  

 

Additionally, culture encompasses more than just “process”.  Culture dictates both why and how people collaborate along with the steps they take that lead to a trading decision.  Culture is about how people interact, how disagreements are resolved and how decisions are made.

 

Why should allocators care?

Culture is a direct reflection of the core values of your firm. 

 

So, if you are looking at investors as long-term partners, then make certain that they understand what guides you and why.  If they understand your firm from the inside out, they are much more likely to stick around in times of stress.

 

In an industry dominated by “every man for themselves,” a culture of cohesiveness is a true differentiator. 

 

JD David

Marketing

How capital gets raised hasn’t changed much in a very long time. There are inefficiencies, which can be leveraged into enormous opportunities, if one is willing to reach for them.

Technology, relationship management systems, and the manner in which people communicate have revolutionized the marketing industry in the last few years, but our sector has been slow to abandon our traditional ways.

At Meyler Capital, we help organizations make the internal adjustments necessary to stay relevant.

We can help you from idea right through to execution. While our core service is delivered in the form of strategy and consulting; in many cases our clients see the benefits of a seamless single-source roll out of websites, brochures, video, sonar marketing* campaigns, CRM and EDM system set up, copywriting, graphic design and more.

What's a sonar marketing campaign?

To find out get a free copy of our book RAISING INSTITUTIONAL CAPITAL: FIGHT SMARTER

Click Here

Placement

Our approach to the placement business is very simple.

  • We help asset managers define a more compelling value proposition and then build better communication tools to tell the story.
  • We ensure placement agents benefit from more sophisticated marketing tactics, and provide them with more effective systems.

The net result?

A win win: better-equipped agents representing more inspiring opportunities.

If you are a Placement Agent and are looking for a stronger business development and marketing platform, click here.

Clients

“From our first conversation with Kyle we have been thinking differently about what we do and how we can do it better. The excitement about where we are planning to take our firm with Kyle’s direction is incredible.”

David St. Pierre | Principal, Legacy Capital

“Meyler Capital added tremendous value to our firm in terms of tools, strategy and process.  The video Meyler created has provided us with a new and innovative mechanism to message our value proposition.”

Jason Jarjosa | Managing Partner, Bloomfield Capital

  • Sungard_white_logoTopturn-White-Transparent clients_secondcityMcMillan_White CGP_LightLogo

    clients_bloomfieldLegacy_Logo_White_300wide

  • cdc_logo_white

     

 

UNITED STATES
2 North LaSalle Street, Suite 2300
Chicago, IL 60601
914 977 3713

      

CORPORATE
300-1055 West Hastings Street
Vancouver, BC V6E 2E9
604 763 6065

 

info@meylercapital.com

Connect

 
Meyler Capital executes all of its transactions through March Capital Corporation, registered with FINRA/SIPC.