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Sector must improve its &#39bland&#39 marketing

The financial sector is living in the “land of the bland” and lacking brand awareness, claims the Fin-ancial Services Forum.

The forum, which represents senior marketing people in the industry, aired this view at its recent conference in London on how financial services companies can better promote their companies and products in the future.

The aim of conference is to improve the quality of marketing in the industry.

The forum found that the industry spends £890m a year promoting itself, more than the car industry, but relative to that and other sectors it has little to show in terms of brand memorability and differentiation.

It says financial services companies must recognise employees create the brand and are the key to future success, rather than products and processes which can be easily copied.

Almost 200 people attended and among the speakers were Professor Gerry Johnson from Strathclyde Graduate School of Business, Royal & Sun Alliance marketing director Mike Tildesley, Standard Life assistant general manager (marketing) Graham Storrie, Prudential head of brands management Tara Macleod and Axa Sun Life marketing director Frank Wilson.

Forum chairman Anthony Thomson says: “It is clear that there is a strong ambition among the conference attendees to improve the standard of financial services marketing.

“The Financial Services Forum promotes best practice in marketing in our industry and as such I was very heartened by the full and frank discussions last Wednesday.”

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