Like Hans Solo, Carly Sewell is an outsider and fearless. She routinely walks in rooms and participates on calls with life forms that don’t resemble her own. Her provocative ideas and edgy design cause the people in the room to buck and thrash. I used to feel I had to step in to help, however, as Carly grew, I grew. It is now obvious to me that Carly’s creative intelligence is something very few people have or can hope to control.Read More
It’s hard to refute that start-up and small HFs are in a tough spot. Institutions are increasingly favoring large, established managers, and the more dynamic early money continues to step back.
If you are one of those caught at the bottom of this widening chasm, the path forward is tough to navigate.Read More
With surprising regularity, managers confide in us that they truly don’t understand why investors aren’t allocating capital their way. “Look at our performance, it’s pretty impressive.”
Here’s the thing, “doing what you are paid to do” isn’t a reason for investors to flock in your direction.Read More
Being special is not the same as having a unique selling proposition. The latter is obviously essential, but the former is what increases your AUM.Read More
Most people think that raising money is solely about “salesmanship” and associate it (often incorrectly) with the proverbial greasy used car salesman. But what it really means is having patience, perseverance, and personality. The personality to relate to others and read a room. These aren’t logic-based actions.Read More
If fishermen find it helpful to regularly modify behavior and use specialized gear in their jobs, why don’t money managers do the same when looking to attract new investors?Read More
It’s time for this industry to be deliberate in owning the story that they are telling. In a digital world, you’re leaving clues as to who you are all over the place. But it’s your choice as to what clues people see.Read More
What causes private equity LPs to re-up in subsequent funds when performance is just ok?
What prevents LPs from redeeming when the performance of a hedge fund falters?
Many PMs acknowledge the evolution of the industry and the need to be seen and heard. Interestingly, those that don’t tend to end up back at our door twelve months later, a bit beat up and a lot more humble – it is tough out there.Read More
Your ability to vocalize, differentiate, and sell your core values and investment process is what will win investors over. And positive performance is a no-brainer here, but we all know that.Read More
A lot of the collective marketing dollars spent across a private equity portfolio go to waste.Read More
I am not psychic, I don’t have ESP, and I don’t know you personally. But…if you are an alternative investment manager, I bet I can guess a lot about you.Read More
Subjectivity is so interesting because there are no right or wrong answers. Our personal choices greatly span from our upbringings, our cultures, our memories.Read More
Hiring a placement agent or “third party marketer” to help raise capital can be a make or break decision for an alternatives investment manager. Unfortunately, placement is a highly fragmented industry. Sifting through all of the potential partners to find the right fit can seem as difficult as raising the money yourself.Read More
A hedge fund will never become a brand if it keeps talking about what it does versus why it exists. Saying that you are a long / short fund is vastly different than indicating that you invest for people that can’t invest themselves – and I just made that up.Read More
Everyone gets fixated on their marketing deck, it’s important, but not the driving force behind an allocation. What is then? The answer, which is rather obvious, there is no single component of the marketing process that is accountable for an allocation.Read More
In the old days loyalty was utilitarian. “I buy these pants because they are the only pants that I can work in for long periods of time that don’t tear.” (Levi’s). Things change, however, when competition shows up.Read More
It’s like looking at one of those before and after body photos. Most of us just have several versions of the ‘before’ body – just as most managers have several versions of the ‘before’ message. But really, what’s the point of making the effort if you never get to the ‘after?’Read More
The big question you need to be asking yourself is what you want an allocator to “feel” when they consider placing capital with you? You sure as heck don’t want them hearing your name and thinking, “an organization that buys companies, improves performance, and then sells for a profit,” or “an organization that buys and sells shares in public companies for profit.”Read More
Whatever the excuse, we have heard it, and you are wrong. Every time you run into someone, get the name into a CRM system and categorize the relationship. It’s simple but in terms of marketing, for this industry, there really is nothing more important.Read More