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Fund firms take more aggressive line in ad drives

UK fund managers are taking a more aggressive approach to consumer advertising in a bid to be noticed in the inc-reasingly saturated retail inv-estment market.

Many managers are naming and shaming poorly performing competitors in their ads, leaving those which have traditionally adopted a more subtle approach to rethink their strategy.

Gartmore, which has traditionally stuck with more straightforward brand-building ads, recently launched a new series of ads highlighting funds in the European sector which have been downgraded by ratings agency Standard& Poor&#39s.

The campaign runs under the strapline: “Not everyone survived the winter” and promotes Roger Guy&#39s AAA-rated European selected opportunities fund.

Artemis, M&G and Friends Provident have also recently resorted to more aggressive techniques.

Gartmore head of UK ret-ail Mike Wrobel says: “You have got to stand out. We look to stand out by using bright colour schemes and, when we have a punchy message, not being afraid to say it. I think we have been a bit too squeamish in the past.”

Camp Chipperfield Hill Murray chairman Lucien Camp says: “More often than not it is an approach you take if you are a lesser player and want to put yourself up there with the big boys. I&#39m surprised Gartmore is doing it. Usually, the bigger players tend to think they are above such things.”

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