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Legitimizing Your Firm 

Remember the Saturday Night Live skit with Chris Farley and “the van down by the river?” Well, recently, we had a client come to us that made us think of that, because they wanted us to help legitimize their firm so they didn’t look like they worked out of a van down by the river. Read on to learn where we focused that effort.  

Show Your Team 

One of the first things we did to help our client combat the appearance that their corporate office was a “van down by the river” was to show their team. They had hired the best of the best in their asset class, but no one could tell that from their website. Not only do people want to do business with people, when you’re talking about high-dollar investment minimums, advisors and investors want to see and read about the people behind the company. Include photos and brief bios on key members of the management team. 

Highlight Growth 

We also highlighted our client’s growth in email campaigns. They had added 20 employees in the last year, which was really big for them, so we highlighted that growth as another way to substantiate the firm and paint a visual of it for advisors and investors. 

Bring Execs Front & Center 

Another strategy we used was to feature execs on the client’s webinars. Advisors LOVE access to a firm’s management team – partly to legitimize the firm, and partly to get their questions answered directly by high-level employees. Get creative on the structure of your webinar to feature execs. Hold a Q&A or fireside chat or include a panel of execs to discuss various aspects of your firm. Whichever format you choose, you get exec “airtime” and further demonstrate your firm is substantial, experienced and employs talented and smart people.  

Create a Quality Brand 

We often say, “is your brand more like a Kmart or a Nordstrom?” In a world where we’re asking investors to commit large sums of money to asset managers – many of them new to the alts space – you must be a Nordstrom. It’s important for them – and advisors – to experience a solid high-end brand – and to become loyal to it. That’s critically important as well. One thing we think everybody should know about Nordstrom, people who are loyal to Nordstrom always go to Nordstrom first. It’s far easier to get repeat investments from an advisor you’ve developed a relationship and trust with than with an advisor who has never heard of your firm. 

Contact us to make sure you’re a Nordstrom – and not Chris Farley in a van down by the river. 


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