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Rating:Hartford Preps a Strategic Marketing Push for its Fund Arm Not Rated 0.0 Email Routing List Email & Route  Print Print
Monday, August 17, 2009

Hartford Preps a Strategic Marketing Push for its Fund Arm

Reported by Neil Anderson, Managing Editor

The Hartford is about to begin a strategic marketing push for its mutual funds. Keith Sloane, senior vice president of mutual funds in the retail products management department of the insurer's U.S. wealth management business, told The MFWire that the move focuses on defining the "value proposition" of the Hartford Funds in the minds of advisors.

D. Keith Sloane
The Hartford
Senior Vice President, Mutual Funds
"If you ask advisors, there's no real identity, other than maybe a fund," Sloane said in an interview. "We want to help advisors understand what makes us unique."

To that end, Sloane plans to utilize "every driver of communications" to get the message out to advisors, focusing on the two key parts of Hartford's fund business: "strong funds that fit well into styles boxes, and lots of broad mandate, opportunistic, stock-picking funds."

"Advisors are going to increasingly demand managers who are less constrained," Sloane added, pointing to Hartford's successful Capital Appreciation and Capital Appreciation II funds.

Hartford spokeswoman Julia Green confirmed that the "value proposition campaign ... was created internally" at the Hartford, without the help of an outside agency.

Hartford first launched its funds about 15 years ago. Hartford Investment Management Company sub-advises the fixed income and asset allocation portions of the funds (the mutual fund arm is separate, under Hartford Life alongside retirement plans), while Wellington handles the equity portions. All told, Sloane said, Hartford works with more than $40 billion in its mutual funds, and he's aiming for $100 billion. He's also placing more emphasis on distributing via fee-based advisors, who already handle more than 50 percent of Hartford Funds' sales. 

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