What Do Lizards, Monster Trucks, And Asset Managers Have In Common?
I have made an interesting observation that fund managers should reflect on.
At Meyler we write blogs about marketing, raising capital, the alternatives industry and the like. Our primary audience: fund managers. Men and women casting for money.
We share our opinions within blog posts to demonstrate to asset managers that we think differently about marketing alternatives. (It is called content marketing… so that’s what that is.) In short, we want our target audience to read our content.
We spend a lot of time with managers. Not long after introductions, they start chastising us for our “crazy” ideas on how to connect with institutional investors. "An 'institutional investor' would never respond to colorful language. They'd never take us seriously if…", they say.
Here is the interesting bit: being serious folk, we naturally assumed that managers would want to hear about market efficiencies, statistics, how to market alpha, things that are agnostic, idiosyncratic, an asymmetric.
Guess what, we were dead wrong. The sillier the title, the more hits/comments/interest/engagement we got. And before you start chastising us again, recognize that we convert this attention into serious conversations about serious stuff. We are starting conversations, nothing more, nothing less.
Managers don’t want to hear this, but this is living breathing proof that they are as susceptible to marketing as anyone else. If you have been in alternatives industry, or any industry for that matter, for any length of time you become deaf to common vernacular.
OK, we have just established that asset managers can be marketed to. We know that anyone that buys handbags, watches and cars fit the mold; teens – yep, anyone that has an iPhone, check, those putting on Nike shoes to hit the gym at lunch are in, all those crazy people that watch Nascar, obviously. I could go on forever…
But wait, institutional investors would never respond to marketing like you, or I, or the guy in the Starbucks line over there.
No one will ever do this, which is the inherent opportunity, however, a discretionary, event-driven hedge fund would make a lot more ground if they marketed themselves as a “hedge fund that takes advantage of smart people doing dumb stuff.” Yes, even to institutions. I know you don’t believe, but I am telling you it would work. (Because, everything behind the “campaign” would be tight.)
Now back to the title, what do “What do Lizards, Monster Trucks and Asset Managers have in common? Absolutely nothing.
If you are smiling, you should call us.
By Kyle Dunn