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Crystal Ball: 10 Financial PR and Marketing Trends for 2024

Happy New Year message in text, coloured in red blue and green.
Happy holidays and New Year! Bring on 2024.

As we look towards 2024, what will the key trends in financial communications and marketing be? I’ve dusted off my crystal ball and here’s what I’ve arrived at.

  1. Focus on Authenticity and Transparency: Financial brands are expected to maintain honesty and openness in their communications, prioritising authentic and transparent interactions with their audience. We anticipate this to increasingly become a specific, stated aim of communications and marketing departments, given the huge drive towards ESG. We also anticipate increased take up of external certifications such as B-Corp, certifying a corporate’s dedication to authenticity, transparency and of course sustainability.

  2. Continued Shift to ESG and Sustainability Communications: ESG, impact and sustainability have made huge inroads in the past few years compared to where it was even half a decade ago. We believe this shift will continue at pace, leading to marketing and PR departments in asset management, fund administration, financial membership organisations and beyond to focus more on promoting their ESG funds, services and general capabilities.

  3. Anti-Greenwashing Legislation Will Keep Us All Busy – Globally: The UK's Sustainability Disclosure Requirements (SDR) have finally been published, the European SFDR has already made its debut and similar moves around the corner in the US and elsewhere are expected. As anti-greenwashing measures intensify, we can expect it to take up more and more of our time. Marketing and PR professionals will work more closely with compliance and legal departments to ensure that pitch decks and publicity campaigns promoting funds cannot be considered greenwashing. Approaches will vary between firms and compliance individuals and therefore between campaigns – and it will be very interesting to see what the differences are between firms.

  4. Thought Leadership Will Become Even More Important: As journalists continue to grapple with increased workloads and shrinking newsrooms, thought leadership will continue to increase in importance in public relations. Differentiating thought leadership content will become harder, with marketers and communicators asking themselves what the distinct, value proposition of big content campaigns is, what makes it stand out is – and whether it’s just another copycat piece.

  5. AI Integrated Across Marketing & Comms Departments: Businesses are integrating AI into their products across most industries. It will become easier and easier for internal marketers and communications professionals to both access tools utilising AI in their work and to make the case for increased AI in marketing and comms, as their own companies may already be utilising the technology in their own product or service. We believe the role of AI in PR and marketing will pass the various “tests” it needs to pass to become a formal part of our industry.

  6. Account Based Marketing & PR: As a side effect of AI taking a bigger role in our industry, I believe people will use it more extensively to personalise communication aimed at clients, prospects and perhaps their own staff, making account based marketing processes more efficient. I also believe using AI in financial services marketing and PR in this way will have a lasting impact on audiences.

  7. Use of PR and Marketing Data is Ubiquitous: Tools that unify your marketing and PR data in one place, perhaps in a dashboard (like MiData) will become more widespread, enhancing data-driven decision-making across the industry, another side effect of utilising AI which can process huge amounts of data quickly. Firms not yet utilising such resources will begin to do so more and more, encouraged by the use of AI generally and its ability to quickly analyse large sets of data.

  8. Focus on Employer Communications: The difficulty in recruiting talent will push firms to enhance their internal communication strategies to attract top talent, but also to retain who they already have. We’re seeing lot of fund administration and asset management firms, as well as financial services more generally, tighten up on this aspect of their operations over the past two years with increasing urgency.

  9. Video Content Becomes the Norm: As attention spans stay short, and fatigue of marketing messages sets in, succinct and engaging video content (with captions) will become the default tool for storytelling.

  10. Social Media Influencer Collaborations Decrease: My personal pet peeve, so this one is definitely biased. There is a lot of research suggesting that collaborations with influencers don’t actually work - and having been sceptical of this practice from the start, I’m ready to believe it. Dollar for dollar, pound for pound, there are better avenues for ad spend out there and I believe this will be borne out over the medium to long term.

We'll soon discover what 2024 has in store for us. In the meantime, we extend our warmest holiday greetings and best wishes for the New Year to all our clients, prospects, staff and their families.


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