T. Rowe Price Gains Awareness Via NatGeo

The Challenge

As anyone who works in investment management can attest, embracing change is critical to growth and performance. 

T. Rowe Price (TRP), with 80+ years investment experience, has never skirted opportunities to learn, adapt and embrace change. But against a backdrop of competitors with larger market share, TRP faced two challenges: trailing competitors in awareness and consideration while financial marketplace volatility drove a trend toward passive-investing solutions. 

TRP needed to transform brand opinion, and a partnership with a respected, trusted media partner was required to accelerate and bring credibility to the transformation. 

The Execution

Enter National Geographic and the “Go Beyond” video series, capitalizing on the brand equity of a universally trusted brand to demonstrate how TRP analysts go beyond to deliver client value. This partnership needed authenticity and, by leveraging their shared boundary-pushing values and unerring commitment to intellectual curiosity, TRP and NatGeo delivered. The series creates an analogy between the active, passionate NatGeo Explorers who go “beyond” in their work and the active investment approach of TRP analysts. 

The partnership shows that TRP investors are more than cubicle-dwelling nine-to-fivers and, instead, are experts, constantly learning and challenging themselves to bring new perspectives and expertise to their profession. 

In “Gain New Perspective,” NatGeo photographer Brian Skerry is juxtaposed against TRP automotive analyst Joel Grant, as both men get up close and personal with their subject matter. This partnership successfully re-characterized TRP investors as boundary-pushers and resulted in an uptick for TRP across key brand health metrics.

The Results

Increased favorably by 33%, with neutral and unfavorability declining by 21% and 47%, respectively. 

Those aware of TRP were 64% more likely to prefer the brand, with over half more likely to purchase TRP products in the next six months. 

TRP garnered the highest awareness of asset managers among likely mutual fund purchasers, preferred 5x more than competitors.

Key Takeaways

Capitalize on brand equity when choosing a respected and trusted media partner with which to engage in native advertising.

Recast your customers as people pushing boundaries by juxtaposing them against people in more creative fields.

This was a finalist in the Native Marketing category in MediaPost’s 2018 Creative Media Awards.

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