A disruptive celebration of the world’s first ETF 15 February 2018

Last week saw the launch of State Street Global Advisors' 25th anniversary campaign to celebrate the launch of the world’s first Exchange Traded Fund (ETF).

Our brief was to strengthen the perception of SSGA as a pioneer and innovator in ETFs in Australia and South East Asia and to not conform to the usual reserved Financial Services modes of communication. This inspired us to create a concept that paralleled the intrepid boldness of SSGA’s original move to create ETFs. 

The concept centred around the idea that innovative thinking is born out of a spirit that is not afraid to rewrite the rules and make bolder moves. We used provocative imagery of exaggerated characters that expressed a courage to be different  and a confidence to explore new ways of doing things. In parallel we developed a compelling messaging platform that leveraged 'tongue-in-cheek' humour to challenge traditional ways of thinking and championed the progressive headset.

The campaign is being deployed through press and digital advertising, addressing two different audiences in Australia and South East Asia. While its early days to gauge the impact of the campaign, it is certainly helping SSGA stand out in a highly-competitive communications landscape.

Industry pioneers State Street Global Advisors launched the world’s first Exchange Traded Fund (ETF) in 1993 as a response to investment challenges following the crash of 1987. The new ETF model provided predominantly passive products that traded on an exchange and were highly effective as a diversification tool, allowing large and small investors increased exposure to broad and niche market segments at a lower cost.

This was a monumental innovation by SSGA which changed the investment landscape significantly. 25 years later ETFs were still going strong, with many other investment managers having emulated SSGA’s original idea. SSGA saw this as an opportunity to reassert their pioneering and creative mindset by launching a commemorative, celebratory campaign to own the ETF category.

For more information on our how we can bring your products and solutions to life through an integrated campaign, please contact Kate Shaw in London, Aliena Lai in Hong Kong, or Kevin Windorf in New York.

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