Mackenzie and Manulife: The Implication of Different Trajectories

Credo is conducting a study to uncover the causes of the difference between the trajectories of Mackenzie and Manulife in the minds of Canada’s financial advisors.  We are inviting members of the financial community to offer their qualitative perspective about these two financial product suppliers.  Some of the quantitative data (representative survey-based data) related to these firms are presented below.  It shows that the two companies are on very different trajectories in the minds of financial advisors.

Exhibit 1. Brand Credibility (CR) vs Advisors’ Willingness to Support (W2S) the Company: Mac and Manu from 2015 and 2018

Exhibit 1 above shows each company’s Brand Credibility mapped left to right.  The further to the left, the less credibility the company has within the advice community; the further to the right, the more credibility the company has.  At the same time, the companies are mapped top to bottom in the 2X2 plot with respect to advisors’ willingness to support the company.  The higher in the map, the greater the likelihood advisors are willing to support the company.  Conversely, the lower in the map, the less likely advisors are to be willing to support the company.  This map presents both Manu’s and Mackenzie’s measured positions in each of the last four years. The center or cross-hairs represent the industry average on each of the measured dimensions — an average score that includes 30+ other competitors.

These two product suppliers are apparently on very different trajectories with respect to their brand development:

  • Mackenzie appears to be on a desirable path.  From 2015 to 2018, the company has been moving to a place in Credo’s measurement framework that promises sustained support from the advice community.  Credo is investigating the degree to which Mackenzie’s recent million dollar expense with the OSC for breaches of regulations relating to sales practices may be mitigated by its otherwise high — and strengthening — level of credibility with the advice community.  Some members of the advice community are very concerned about the implications of Mackenzie’s settlement; others dismiss it summarily.  Similar situations for Dynamic Funds and for Sentry Investments have left considerable room for the interpretation of measurable effects.  Other Credo research shows this clearly.
  • Manulife, by contrast, has been in a nose dive with respect to advisors Willingness to Support the company.  Despite relatively strong recent sales results, Credo’s modeling of Manu’s Credibility among advisors, as well as advisors’ claims of being Willing to Support the company, suggest that the brand may experience significant defection from otherwise loyal advisors when the performance of its offerings diminishes or when some other disruption occurs.  The company has not been developing brand characteristics that will sustain it among advisors when tough times hit.

Here’s the ask.  Credo is currently speaking with members of the advice community who are willing to offer candid perspective on the positions of these and other companies. We are preparing to offer these firms (and other Credo clients) guidance in delivering what the advice community wants and needs.  We will help them taking advantage of market opportunities.  If you are interested in having a confidential conversation about the complex situations these firms face and about the experiences these firms are currently delivering to the advice community, contact Credo at 905.919.1926.

Questions:  What experiences are Manulife and/or Mackenzie delivering that are either:

  • particularly constructive for you or,
  • that substantiate your decision to either
    1. eliminate them from your product shelf or
    2. marginalize them for a time?