Ameriprise Financial

Part
01
of four
Part
01

Ameriprise Financial - Customer Perceptions

In general, it appears most customers have a positive perception of Ameriprise. However, viewers (not necessarily customers) have a negative perception of the company's ads due to how often they are shown on TV repeatedly.

SURVEYS

  • Hearts & Wallets surveyed consumers in over 5,000 households on what they want from financial services firms. The study showed that Ameriprise Financial is a leader in most categories.
  • The surveyed customers ranked Ameriprise Financial as one of the leading financial services companies that "explains things in understandable terms."
  • Ameriprise was also cited as a top financial service provider that understands its customers and shares their values.
  • These customers mentioned that Ameriprise Financial has well-trained staff and offers the best personal financial advice.

REVIEWS

  • Ameriprise Financial is rated 3.3/5 based on 258 reviews on Consumer Affairs.
  • Some reviewers complain about the company's rude and inefficient customer service, particularly with claims.
  • As one reviewer asserted, they are "rude, condescending and the worst insurer ever."
  • A few reviewers reported the complete opposite. They cited Ameriprise Financial's good customer service. A lot of customers also mention feeling well taken care of.
  • According to one review, "When my wife was in an accident, I didn't have to go through the hassle of calling, waiting for a while, and then having to go through many hoops. They sent me an email, had me take pictures of damage and then followed up with a phone call. It was very quick and easy."

SOCIAL MEDIA BRAND PERCEPTION

  • Ameriprise has almost 600 mentions on YouTube, Instagram, Facebook, Tumblr, Reddit, and other social media platforms.
  • About 64% of Ameriprise mentions on social media are neutral. Neutral posts are neither positive nor negative.
  • An example of a neutral post is a quote by an executive of Ameriprise, "More advisors are taking action on taking control of their own destiny versus having their own destinies pointed out for them."
  • Up to 31% of Ameriprise mentions are positive. An example of a positive post is a tweet that was posted on August 2019 mentioning a partnership between Guaranty Bank in Missouri and Ameriprise Financial.
  • Another positive mention is "I just did a #backtoschoolsuppliessurprise that made my day. The girl told me that her dad died four years ago. This random act of kindness made her feel like he was watching over!! Thanks, Powell Consulting Group - Ameriprise Financial Services, Inc. for sponsoring this surprise!"
  • Only 5% of Ameriprise mentions are negative. An example is a Reddit post regarding what people think about different financial advisors. According to one user, "some Ameriprise advisors will maybe give you half-decent advice depending on how their practice is set up."

MARKETING

  • According to a Forbes article, Ameriprise Financial's advertising "directly engages with particular emotions that their audience typically exhibits." The company releases different ads annually all under its Be Brilliant campaign.
  • A tweet posted by a viewer in 2016 seemingly mentioned that the campaign was unbearable. It asserted, "Trying to decide on an appropriate punishment for whoever came up with the Ameriprise "Be Brilliant" ad campaign."
  • Another tweet referenced how often the campaign is shown on TV, "@msbc @ameriprise PLEASE stop playing the Be Brilliant ad. There are only so many times you should be forced to watch it. @AndyKindler."
  • A tweet posted on October 2018 mentioned, "Hey @Ameriprise? You do realize that the fake student in your ad is the same chick fake singing in the goddamn Humira ad, right?! Jesus, you corporate types must think we all believe these ads. Sorry, we don't. You what I believe? Science. Math. Logic. Ads? None."
  • Although Ameriprise has released several ads on YouTube, it disables comments on all its ads. While most of these videos are also posted on Facebook, the comments on have little to nothing to do with the marketing/ad itself. They tend to be questions or mentions of friends/family.
  • One Facebook user commented "Like this info" while another commented "Great video!" and "This is beautiful" on a recent Facebook ad by Ameriprise Financial about "Money and relationships."
  • On another ad on Facebook titled "Be Brilliant | Ameriprise Financial Commercial | Familiar Face," a Facebook user commented, "My ameriprise advisor is more than a family member, he’s also mentor to my son as a graduate 🎓 of the university of Michigan, thank u so much Jim."
Part
02
of four
Part
02

Ameriprise Financial - Marketing Campaigns

Over the past three years, Ameriprise Financial has released several personal and touching ads depicting the importance of financial planning with a trusted advisor. These ads are all under its Be Brilliant campaign. They have been fully described below.

BE BRILLIANT #1

  • Ameriprise Financial developed the "Be Brilliant" campaign in 2015. Since then, it has gone through different phases of this campaign.
  • The company's aim was to have a way for its customers to tell their stories based on goals they achieved through working with an Ameriprise advisor on financial planning.
  • The Be Brilliant campaign is a multichannel marketing campaign that includes traditional advertising social media, and digital advertising among others.
  • In 2017, Ameriprise launched a new phase of the Be Brilliant campaign.
  • The Be Brilliant 2017 campaign included three 30-second ads that showed individuals achieving their financial goals with the help of advisors. The first ad is titled "Checking In" and focused on a "woman embracing life’s next stage by embarking on an entrepreneurial endeavor."
  • The second ad in the 2017 Be Brilliant campaign is titled "Meet Chris." It featured a couple who decides to retire "on their terms" by being foster parents. The third ad was titled "Alumni Day" and emphasized the importance of planning for a child's future. The ads aired on major networks sch as NBC, CBS, ESPN, and USA Network.
  • Impact of the Ad: According to the VP of marketing at Ameriprise, the campaign resonated with clients and advisers in the US and proved effective. Ameriprise financial ended 2017 with the "highest level of brand awareness since 2005."
  • Link to Ad: Checking In can be watched here while Meet Chris can be seen here and Alumni Day can be found here.

BE BRILLIANT #2

  • In 2018, Ameriprise Financial continued with another phase of its Be Brilliant campaign.
  • The 2018 Be Brilliant campaign highlighted the importance of planning for different financial challenges through three 30-second ads.
  • The first was titled "Sleep Better" and portrayed how sound people can sleep at night when they are financially confident. The second ad was titled "Adding On." It told the story of a couple's diligent financial planning which enabled them to make sure their parents live comfortably. The third ad was titled "Like Father, Like Daughter" and showed an "adult child working with her parents’ adviser as she begins her career."
  • The ads were shown on TV networks like NBC, ESPN, CNN, MSCNC, AMC, Fox News, The Golf Channel, HGTV, and MLB Network among others.
  • The 2018 Be Brilliant campaign was also advertised on social media and radio channels.
  • Sleep Better can be watched here while Adding On can be found here and Like Father, Like Daughter can be seen here.
  • Link to Visuals: Pictures and screenshots of this ad have been provided in this document.
  • In its 2018 annual report, Ameriprise merely stated that its Be Brilliant ads were successful. No specific data was provided regarding the ad's impact. Although the company's revenue increased by over $500 million in 2018, there is no way to say for sure that this increase was caused by its 2018 Be Brilliant campaign.
  • In 2018, Ameriprise Financial was named the Most Trusted Investment Firm.

BE BRILLIANT #3

  • In 2019, Ameriprise Financial introduced another three-ad installment of its Be Brilliant campaign.
  • The first ad is titled "Choices" and featured different investors in various life stages answering the question “What’s important to you?” These investors also discussed their reasons for choosing Ameriprise, some of which include, the fact that the company helps them feel confident and the comprehensive advice they get.
  • The second ad is called "Familiar Face." Investors were asked how well their financial advisors know them. It ends by Ameriprise stating, “To us, you are more than just another face in the crowd.”
  • Its third ad in this installment is called "Trust" and was released on International Women's Day. It showcased a woman "reflecting on her long and trusted relationships with the women in her inner circle." One of these friends then introduces her to an Ameriprise advisor who she trusts.
  • The ad portrayed how Ameriprise advisors cultivate close relationships with their clients by making a clear effort to understand what matter to them and offering the best financial advice.
  • The ads debuted on January 14 and March 8. They were shown on major TV networks including ESPN, National Geographic, AMC, Fox News, and CNBC among others.
  • Ameriprise also posted these ads on their social media ads. So far, they have the highest views on the company's YouTube channel within the past 2-3 years.
  • Choices now has over 370,000 views and can we seen here. Familiar Face can be viewed here while Trust - which has over 200,000 views - can be watched here.
  • Since the ads were just published in 2019, not a lot of data has been offered on their impact. Other than the fact that the ads have garnered a lot of views which means Ameriprise Financial has gotten more exposure through these ads, it is too early to tell what other impact the ads have had on the brand or its revenue.

RESEARCH STRATEGY

In order to provide some examples of Ameriprise Financial's marketing efforts, we first examined the company's website and press releases within the last three years. There, it made mention of Be Brilliant as a series of marketing campaigns it has been running since 2015. As an effort to find any other campaign outside of Be Brilliant, we examined marketing news platforms such as Adweek and Ad Age. These websites made mention of the same Be Brilliant campaign. We also scoured Ameriprise Financial's annual reports and found the same information. The company explained that its marketing initiatives are all under Be Brilliant. In addition to the aforementioned resources, financial news websites like Forbes were also scanned for the impact of these ads. No specific data was offered by these resources on how well the ads did in 2018/2019 and how it impacted the brand.
Part
03
of four
Part
03

Competitors to Ameriprise Financial

The top competitors to Ameriprise Financial by revenue include Massachusetts Mutual, Northwestern Mutual, Prudential Financial, and Manulife Financial. Just like Ameriprise Financial, these competitors were founded decades ago and over a wide range of financial services including but not limited to wealth & asset management, life insurance, and annuities.

AMERIPRISE FINANCIAL

PRUDENTIAL FINANCIAL

  • Founded in 1975, Prudential Financial was established with the belief that "financial security should be within reach for everyone."
  • Similar to Ameriprose Financial, Prudential Financial is one of the largest financial services companies worldwide and offers a wide range of financial services including life insurance, asset management, mutual funds, retirement services, annuities, and pension among others.
  • It is headquartered in Newark, New Jersey but has other locations in the US, Europe, Asia, and Latin America.
  • Prudential's 2018 revenue was roughly $63 billion.
  • Its website can be assessed here.

MASSACHUSETTS MUTUAL

  • Also known as MassMutual, Massachusetts Mutual is a financial services company that was founded in 1851.
  • The company is headquartered in Springfield, Massachusetts but has locations in other US states, Taiwan, Japan, Macao, China, Luxembourg, Hong Kong, and Chile.
  • Similar to Ameriprise Financial, MassMutual offers "life insurance and protection products, retirement and investment services" to help its customers meet their financial goal.
  • MassMutual's 2018 revenue was $32.5 billion.
  • Its website can be assessed here.

MANULIFE FINANCIAL

  • Manulife Financial is a leading financial services company that was founded in 1887.
  • Although headquartered in Toronto, Canada, the company's principal operation is in the US where it is known as John Hancock.
  • Its aim is to help customers achieve their goals. It does this by offering them the "right" financial solutions and advice.
  • Like Ameriprise Financial, Manulife provides a variety of financial services and products including wealth and asset management services, group retirement services, investments such as mutual funds, and insurance solutions including life and travel insurance.
  • Its 2018 revenue was CA$38.97 billion (USD$29.4 billion).
  • Its website can be found here.

NORTHWESTERN MUTUAL

RESEARCH STRATEGY

In order to identify the top competitors to Ameriprise Financial Services companies, we first analyzed its website to understand its product offerings. We found that it is a leading financial services company and proceeded to look for the top financial services companies in the US by revenue. Since financial services in the US is broad, we focused on the segments that Ameriprise operates in. We found that the company's products and services are categorized into financial planning, investments, cash, cards & lending, insurance & annuities, and personal trust services. We also found that its main services - accounting for most of its revenue - are wealth management and life insurance. Thus, we selected the largest financial services companies in the US by revenue offering all or most of these services.
Part
04
of four
Part
04

Competitors to Ameriprise Financial - The Analysis

The top competitors to Ameriprise Financial include Massachusetts Mutual, Northwestern Mutual, Prudential Financial, and Manulife Financial. While Ameriprise Financial has an estimated global financial services market share of 0.061%, Prudential Financial has the global market share, at 0.3%.

OVERVIEW

  • Ameriprise and its competitors offer financial services including insurance and wealth management.
  • According to SelectUSA, the US finance and insurance industry was worth $1.5 trillion in 2018.
  • In 2018, the US supposedly "exported $114.5 billion in financial services and insurance and had a $40.8 billion surplus in financial services and insurance trade."
  • According to Market Screener, the global financial services market is expected to be worth $26.5 trillion by 2022 at a growth rate of 6%. Using a CAGR calculator, it is estimated to be worth around $21 trillion.

Ameriprise Financial

  • Ameriprise Financial segments its products and services financial planning, investments, cash, cards & lending, retirement & life events, insurance & annuities, and personal trust services.
  • Its investments products include a wide range of options such as IRAs and retirement plans, mutual funds, stocks and ETPs, bonds and individual fixed income securities, college savings plans, and real estate & alternative investments among many others.
  • Its cash, cards & lending offerings include cash management accounts, cards, and margin lending among others.
  • Insurance & annuities include annuities, auto & home insurance, life insurance, long-term care insurance, individual major medical health insurance, long-term care insurance, and disability income insurance.
  • Ameriprise Financial had a 2018 revenue of $12.84 billion.  
  • Thus, its US market share is about 0.86% ($12.84 billion/$1.5 trillion) while its global market share is 0.061% ($12.84 billion/$21 trillion).

Prudential Financial

  • Prudential's 2018 revenue was roughly $63 billion. This means its US market share is around 4.2% ($63 billion/$1.5 trillion) while its global market share is 0.3% ($63 billion/$21 trillion).
  • Prudential offers products and services that vary by end-user, specifically individuals, advisors, employers, and institutions.
  • It categorizes its offerings for individuals into financial education, life insurance, annuities, investment, and workplace benefits.
  • Prudential's offerings for advisors include workplace Benefits, life Insurance, and annuities.
  • For employers, its offerings include financial wellness, retirements, and group insurance while for institutions, it includes investments and retirement insights.

Massachusetts Mutual

  • Massachusetts Mutual's products are segmented into insurance, retirement, investment, financial wellness, and business.
  • Its insurance offerings include life insurance (term, universal, variable, and whole life), disability income, long term care, and long term care & life.
  • The company's retirement offerings include annuities and IRA such as deferred fixed annuities, variable annuities, income annuities, and fixed index annuities.
  • Its investment offerings include brokerage products like mutual funds, ETFs, unit investment trusts, and 529 plans.
  • MassMutal offers family budgeting college savings, retirement planning, and estate planning in its financial wellness category.
  • Its offerings for businesses include business overhead expense disability insurance, business valuation, defined contribution 401(k) plans, non-qualified deferred compensation plan, and more.
  • Massachusetts Mutual's 2018 revenue was $32.5 billion. Therefore, its US market share is around 2.2% ($32.5 billion/$1.5 trillion) while its global market share is 0.15% ($32.5 billion/$21 trillion).

Manulife Financial

  • Manulife's products vary by end-user. It is categorized into individual and business.
  • Its individual product offerings include insurance (life, travel & safe access), investments (mutual funds, ETFs, SMAs, ESG funds, college savings, closed-end funds, and target-date funds).
  • Its business offerings include life insurance, 401(k) solutions, real estate, and reinsurance.
  • Manulife's 2018 revenue was $29.4 billion.  Therefore, its US market share is around 1.96% ($29.4 billion/$1.5 trillion) while its global market share is 0.14% ($29.4 billion/$21 trillion).

Northwestern Mutual

  • Northwestern Mutual categorizes its offerings into planning services, insurance, and investments.
  • Its planning services include financial, retirement, college savings, estate, long-term, and business planning.
  • Northwestern's insurance offerings include life insurance (whole life, universal life, and term life), disability insurance, long-term care, and annuities.
  • Its investment offerings include stocks, mutual funds, ETFs, bonds, CDs, IRAs, 401(k)s, 529 college savings plans, and annuities.
  • Northwestern's 2018 revenue was $28.48 billion. Thus, its US market share is around 1.9% ($28.48 billion/$1.5 trillion) while its global market share is 0.136% ($28.48 billion/$21 trillion).

RESEARCH STRATEGY

We kicked off this research by thoroughly reviewing the previous response, where we found the aforementioned companies and their revenue. Armed with the knowledge that they are all large financial services companies, we proceeded to identify their market share by relying on financial news websites such as Business Insider, Fortune, and Inc. As expected, some of these companies were ranked by Inc and Fortune in various segments such as life insurance. However, only their revenue was mentioned on these websites. Nothing on their market share was offered. Next, we turned to data intelligence platforms like Statista. While these five companies were ranked as the largest life insurers in the US, they were only ranked by revenue, not by market share. We proceeded to look at each company's 2018 annual reports and 2019 quarterly reports. Our premise was that they might mention their market share in their annual reports. Again, this was a dead end as none of the companies mentioned their market share.

As proxy, we decided to attempt triangulating this information. As mentioned earlier, Ameriprise Financial, Massachusetts Mutual, Northwestern Mutual, Prudential Financial, and Manulife Financial are large financial services companies. We searched for the market size of financial services. While the US market size was relatively easy to find, the global market size was blocked by a paywall. Only the growth rate and forecast global market size of the financial services industry was publicly available. Using the US market size and an estimated current global size (as identified through a compound annual growth rate calculator), we estimated each company's market share of the US and global financial services industry.
Sources
Sources

From Part 02