In the past decade, the media serving financial services has changed almost as much as the financial services industry itself. Financial services changes have been regulatory as well as technology driven, while media change has been almost entirely the result of the introduction of new technology, coinciding with the decline in advertising support since the global financial crisis which saw many organisations slash marketing budgets.
The rise in 'new' media - generally describing social media such as Facebook and Twitter as well as the proliferation of online e-news and blogs - has been celebrated as a cost-effective and targeted way of communicating with key markets. And its rise as been seen by many as heralding the death of 'old', traditional media.
But effective communication in an era of rapid change, influenced by social media and the internet, doesn't mean discarding all previous communication approaches and starting again. Indeed, 'old' - or mass - media still has an important place in communications activities for financial services. At the same time, the need for ongoing and effective communications has never been more important for financial services.
Proven marketing approaches, including the influence of 'old' media, are still very effective - indeed essential - as it has a big impact on social media content and its ability to influence third parties. As such, we believe that reports of the death of old media have been greatly exaggerated.
Evolution in media
In many ways, the financial services industry is even better served than it was a decade ago in terms of communications channels with investors and influences, thanks to an extended quality specialist financial services media covering news about people and organisations, as well as professional and regulatory issues and developments and other areas of importance.
Little more than a decade ago there were just three or four publications targeting financial services professions. This has now doubled, not only with e-newsletters with the same titles as their established sister print publications, but also with new print and e-newsletter titles.
There are also a number of new mastheads covering areas of specialisation such as SMSF, retirement living and fintech. So while social media may have had an impact on traditional mass media and how news and commentary is delivered, financial services media is an example of not just how to cope with change, but how media can expand to meet demand.