The Financial Planning Association of Australia The Financial Planning Association of Australia

Australians engage with professionalism message, members receive a reputation dividend

The FPA’s mission to not only raise professional standards but actively promote its intentions to the Australian public has received independent endorsement with new consumer research confirming the national advertising campaign has struck a chord with its targeted audience.

The independent research conducted by Ipsos ASI Australia launched today at FPA National Conference in Brisbane, described the FPA advertising as “strong on appeal, attention-grabbing and providing a relevant message”.

“[The advertisements were] also working well to promote a positive impression of FPA planners as hard-working, creating wealth and instilling confidence in investing,” the research concluded.

Mark Rantall, FPA Chief Executive, said the advertising campaign had exceeded expectations with the TV message reaching almost 80 per cent of the target audience at least once and over half of the target viewers at least three times.

“This is an extraordinary result for a campaign that is relatively small scale in financial services terms, and has undoubtedly lifted the profile of financial planners and the relevance of the FPA across Australia,” Mr Rantall said. “Taken across the whole multi-media campaign we’ve achieved an additional $1 million of value out of a total spend of $1.7 million.”

FPA print ads reached two-thirds of the target audience at least once and 32 per cent of the targeted group at least three times, which was also above forecast, said Lindy Jones, FPA General Manager, Marketing.

“The print ads reached almost 40 per cent of the total Australian population,” Ms Jones said. “At the same time, the online display advertising generated a ‘click-through’ rate four times above the average for the finance industry, proving that Australians are hungry for trusted sources of good advice, while also delivering tangible, direct response dividends for our advertising spend on behalf of members.

The online campaign activity resulted in the FPA website experiencing over 20,000 unique visits resulting in more than 1,500 ‘Find-a-Planner’ searches.

Ms Jones said that awareness of the advertising increased by 36 per cent while awareness of the FPA brand increased by 14 per cent, as measured by a survey of 620 targeted consumers conducted by Australian Online Research.

“For a campaign that ran over 6 weeks on a $2 million budget, our expectations were for modest, single digit increases in brand awareness.  These results are exceptional and we attribute them largely to the simplicity of the concept and clarity of the messaging.”

The campaign also helped lift the reputation of financial planners as a whole, according to the research, with the proportion of positive consumer impressions of the industry increasing by a third after viewing the FPA ads.

“While the ad campaign has cemented the FPA’s position as the leading professional body for financial planners, the entire industry has benefited from a positive spin-off,” Ms Jones said.

Launched in September, the FPA’s national consumer advertising campaign is fully funded by individual members and reinforces the importance of choosing a financial planner who is a member of the FPA.  Recently completed, the campaign ran nationally across metropolitan and regional TV and print media, as well as a range of online websites, and included a Google Search Engine Optimisation strategy.

Over 1,000 delegates are attending the FPA Conference held this week in Brisbane.