September 2013: Public Site Thought Leadership

This Annuity Monitor report examines the thought leadership materials authored by in-house experts within our coverage firms’ public sites. We mainly focused on annuity and retirement-themed content, though we also discussed industry trends, market analysis and investment advice pieces.

Three key criteria taken into consideration for this report include:

  • Accessibility and placement of thought leadership materials within public sites
  • Format of thought leadership materials (i.e., articles, white papers, videos, webinars, webcasts)
  • Author details in thought leadership pieces
  • Additional resource functionality (i.e., share, email, print, download)

Overall,
Annuity Monitor firms could be doing a better job at offering thought leadership pieces composed by in-house experts on their public sites. Only 11 of the 18
Annuity Monitor firms feature thought leadership pieces on their public sites. Of the 11 firms, six of them excel in providing current thinking materials from in-house experts on retirement-related topics to the public. Additionally, 55% of firms in this report provide thought leadership pieces centering on industry trends and market analysis.

 

Eight-two percent of firms in this report provide easy access to thought leadership materials as they provide a quicklink within their public navigation menu. In terms of location, 45% of firms house the materials in a dedicated Thought Leadership section of the public site, while the other firms diffuse the thought leadership materials throughout the site. One
Annuity Monitor firm leads the way in location, as it stores thought leadership materials on industry trends, market analysis and investment advice commentary from nine in-house experts on a blog.

 

The format of the materials varies as well, with the majority of firms (73%) offering thought leadership materials as articles. Currently, six firms effectively utilize videos, webinars, webcasts and/or podcasts to present analytical perspectives of in-house financial leaders on a retirement-themed topic. We hope to see more
Annuity Monitor firms providing thought leadership pieces from in-house experts, whether as articles, videos or research papers.

Additional key findings include:

  • 91% of firms provide the name and title of the author of thought leadership materials.
  • Five firms update thought leadership materials weekly.
  • 36% of firms provide a promotional image or link to the materials on the public homepage.
  • Four firms provide specific annuity product type-focused materials.
  • Four firms enable readers to share thought leadership materials on various social media platforms.