New research shows managers need to be more specific in ESG messaging

While ESG’s popular has swelled, the content created by managers in the last 12 months is still lagging behind the demands investors are making, according to new research from Peregrine Communications, “Making a Difference, Marketing a Difference.”

Public relations firm Peregrine noted that there has been a 67% increase globally in ESG-related content from asset managers across Tier 1 media in the last 12 months, but 34% of topics are “over-indexed” with managers disproportionately focusing on generic topics.

The topics in demand by investors include: measurement and materiality; supply chain transparency; active ownership and product specific content. Peregrine’s analysis included more than 70 themes within the ESG conversation as part of a “White Space” framework.

“It has become increasingly clear that most asset managers’ audience are not served well by the ESG content provided them,” said Anthony Payne, CEO of Peregrine Communications. “This is why we have built our White Space framework so that asset managers can have more data about which topics their audiences are actually looking for, and ultimately, so that they can build genuine category authority around these topics.”

Demonstrating a real brand dividend surrounding ESG, the research revealed that the average increase in brand interest in firms with significant ESG exposure is 80% over the last five years. Peregrine also discovered a 63% increase in searches globally for ESG-related content in the last 12 months.

There has also been a 36% increase in social media engagement globally around ESG issues, Payne’s team discovered.

“Our latest research confirms what a lot of people will have already suspected, that the majority of ESG content provided by asset managers is generic and hugely mismatched to the information that their increasingly well-versed audiences need,” said Max Hilton, managing director at Peregrine Communications.

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