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Monday, May 19, 2008

Hancock Interacts with Advisors Through its Web Site

Reported by Erin Kello

John Hancock is taking to heart the notion that open lines of communication can help soften the effects of a bad market.

The company has added a new feature interactive feature called Flip Book to its advisor Web site. Flip Book features market commentary from Hancock's portfolio managers in video form and also offers a downloadable brochure about how to put tips offered by manages into practice.

The Hancock site currently features commentary from William Priest of Epoch Investment Partners, which manages the John Hancock Global Shareholder Yield Fund. Commentary from Richard Pzena of the John Hancock Classic Value Fund and by portfolio managers with Rainier Investment Management, managers of the new John Hancock Rainier Growth Fund is coming soon.

Company Press Release

BOSTON, May 19 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- John Hancock Funds has launched cutting-edge technology on its advisor web site that offers new and expanded products and services to financial advisors. The unique new features include "Flip Book" technology and video commentary on the markets by portfolio managers of John Hancock Funds.

"In this volatile market, it is extremely important for advisors to offer value-added services and ideas that are actionable and easy to customize," said Carey Foran Hoch, Senior Vice President and head of Marketing for John Hancock Funds.

The Flip Book technology showcases the popular John Hancock Funds campaign "12 Great New Client Connections." It offers a flash-tour with narration of 12 months' worth of tools and ideas. The advisor can browse the information, flipping through the pages like a book. Each month includes a downloadable brochure and seminar presentation on a featured topic, as well as an interactive "brainshark(TM)" segment offering tips on how to put the ideas into practice.

For example, the client connection idea highlighted for the month of May centers on John Hancock's "Successful Investor" guide, which was designed to help new investors learn investment basics. Advisors may help their clients' college-aged children or grandchildren by inviting them to an informal investment session over pizza. The Successful Investor brochure is available for download, and a seminar walks the advisor through ways to connect with the new investors.

"Advisors can build loyalty by filling an emotional need among their clients, in this case a powerful desire to help generations of family members be successful. We think this particular use of the Flip Book format shows its great adaptability in packaging meaningful content for our financial advisor partners," Ms. Hoch commented.

John Hancock Funds plans to expand its use of the new technology in other marketing projects. "Flip Book is an effective and efficient way to organize large chunks of information," Ms. Hoch added. "People like hearing a voice speaking, and they acquire information better and more quickly hearing than by reading alone."

The advisor web site, which already features audio podcasts by John Hancock Fund portfolio managers, is also now featuring a section with videos of market commentary by portfolio managers. Presently available is a podcast by William Priest of Epoch Investment Partners, managers of the John Hancock Global Shareholder Yield Fund (JGYAX). Soon to be added are commentaries by Richard Pzena of the John Hancock Classic Value Fund (PZFVX), and by portfolio managers with Rainier Investment Management, managers of the new John Hancock Rainier Growth Fund (RGROX).

"Due to popular demand from advisors, we plan to continue expanding our video commentary selection," Ms. Hoch said.

About John Hancock Funds

The Boston-based mutual fund business unit of John Hancock Financial Services, John Hancock Funds manages more than $54.1 billion in open-end funds, closed-end funds, private accounts, retirement plans and related party assets for individual and institutional investors at March 31, 2008. John Hancock Funds are distributed by John Hancock Funds, LLC, member FINRA. For more information, please visit http://www.jhfunds.com.

John Hancock Financial Services is a unit of Manulife Financial Corporation, a leading Canadian-based financial services group serving millions of customers in 19 countries and territories worldwide. Operating as Manulife Financial in Canada and Asia, and primarily through John Hancock in the United States, the company offers clients a diverse range of financial protection products and wealth management services through its extensive network of employees, agents and distribution partners. Funds under management by Manulife Financial and its subsidiaries were Cdn$400 billion (US$389 billion) at March 31, 2008. Manulife Financial Corporation trades as 'MFC' on the TSX, NYSE and PSE, and under '0945' on the SEHK. Manulife Financial may be found on the Internet at http://www.manulife.com.  

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