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Rating:MainStay Turbocharges on the Internet Not Rated 0.0 Email Routing List Email & Route  Print Print
Tuesday, November 05, 2013

MainStay Turbocharges on the Internet

Reported by Tommy Fernandez

Vroom. Vroom.

MainStay [profile], the $80 billion multi-boutique fund arm of New York Life has kicked up its Internet presence a few notches by launching two new websites tailored for the investor and advisor communities.

The sites are available to registered users via the Mainstay website.

Janiene Losco, managing director and head of MainStay’s Digital & Creative Services Group, said that the Internet changes were developed in to complement an advertising campaign that MainStay launched in September which took their external materials more in line with New York Life Insurance Company’s “Keep. Good. Going” campaign.  

"Earlier this year, in September, we went through a major rebranding. We launched a new advertising campaign that played off New York Life Insurance Company’s “Keep. Good. Going” campaign. We wanted our digital presence to be very complementary to this strategy, and so we needed to overhaul our website. It is important for all of a company's communication channels to have a consistent feel and branding," she said.

The new Internet functionality offers a variety of goodies for users:

Streamlined Navigation
New menus organize content so it's more intuitive. An audience bar on each page makes it easy for investors to view account information, for advisors to register and log in, and for RIAs and DCIO advisors to access information.  A “Fund Finder” predictive search feature can be found on every fund page and throughout the Resources and Commentary sections.

  Improved Products & Performance
  The Products & Performance page highlights MainStay's most popular fund offerings and there are multiple filters for fund type and share class. From this page, users access pricing and performance data, yields, and distributions.  Improved functionality includes sorting columns, linking to individual fund pages, and downloading multiple fact sheets at once.  

  Robust Fund Pages
  Fund pages include all relevant content, including portfolio manager videos, marketing materials, commentary, and additional fund data. The fund pages can be accessed from virtually every page of the site.  

  New Resources
  A comprehensive learning hub is organized by Investing, Retirement, Women Investors, Education, and Practice Management.  Much of this content was behind the password on MainStay's prior site and has now been brought to life on the new sites.  

  Social Sharing
Users can share content through a variety of social media platforms and MainStay's company profiles are promoted throughout the website. In addition, the firm has launched a new YouTube channel which features portfolio manager commentary for their most popular funds.      

  New, Exclusive Advisor Content
  Registration has been streamlined with fewer fields to complete and an e-mail activation link. Throughout the site, there is exclusive advisor-only content. Once logged in, advisors will see firm-specific materials, practice management content, and sales ideas.  Logging in also provides a fund tracker that can be customized with the advisor's favorite MainStay Funds and the ability to add fact sheets, annual reports, and prospectuses to the literature cart from every fund page.

Losco's team didn't approach the projects casually. For her, launching new digital tools is worth much without loads of research demonstrating the utility of these tools to their target audience.

"We won't start anything unless we really delve into what is going on within our target audience," she said.

In the case of the two new websites, Losco said that "We just took a step back. We worked with a number of consultants on the best practices in the financial services industry."

For example, she said two web areas that generate a lot of attention from advisors, and hence had to be extremely user-friendly, were those devoted to performance data and all the important documents related to each fund. Also, much of the company's investment research was designed for easy access for advisors. For example, for the past two years, the company has steadily built up its presence on such social media platforms as Facebook and Linkedin, as well as launched a YouTube channel devoted to insight from portfolio managers.

Losco and her team intend to be busy through 2014. For example, next year, MainStay will launch a website for RIAs.

Meanwhile, Losco and her team will also launch an initiative she calls a "mobile roadmap," designed to garner insights into how wholesalers and advisors integrate mobile technology in their day-to-day lives. The key, she said, is to first develop a solid understanding of what these two groups actually want and need from their mobile devices, and then develop systems specifically tailored to addressing these needs.

'We work with a number of consultants to learn best practices and different metrics. We want to know where our wholesalers and advisors go to get their information, and make sure we are in synch with our sales team and their strategies," she said, 

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