8 Financial Institutions #winning on Instagram

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It’s been almost 2 years since we here at Kurtosys delved into the financial depths of Instagram to find the best uses of the photo-capture app to inspire asset managers.
During that time, however, Instagram (as a Facebook-backed venture) has grown leaps and bounds from a simple photo sharing app to a full-blown social media juggernaut; companies are expected to be as active in their digital marketing and advertising efforts on the platform as much as we long to see new celebrity couples, celebrity pregnancies (how many ‘likes’ did that Beyoncé post gather in the end? Over 11 million, which is astonishing) and well… more from celebrities.
And, yes, whilst “IG” boasts a user base mainly consisting of “those meddling kids” aged between 18 and 29 keen on popular culture, 6 out of 10 adults have an account and 400 million people are active every single day on the platform. What’s more, 15 million registered businesses are all signed up to tackle the enviable task of winning over Millennials/Generation Y/Generation Z. No longer meddling kids, these young people are a financial marketers’ main targets; Hootsuite noted that this year, 70.7% of US companies are expected to use IG for marketing purposes, to surpass Twitter as a valuable content medium.
As of March 2017, 120 million users visited a company’s website, or reached out to learn more about their business via email or messaging service, based on a simple Instagram ad. Financial services must learn that this is the here-and-now. Younger people are more concerned with their money than ever before. Seeking an advisor in a cinematically clichéd stuffy, beige room ornate with smelly mahogany cabinets and dust-ridden photo frames is as unattractive as it sounds. Plus, financial firms just aren’t that anymore. To rival top brands, utilising the service (which is FREE, remember?) is the swiftest, simplest way to obtain a global reach for your business, with 80% of users living outside the US.
Here are 8 FinServ Instagram Gurus setting the perfect example. From promoting your brand, company culture, philanthropy, and video-based financial advice insights, an asset management firm can become a true social media marketing hero as much as celebrities are. Consider yourself a Nicki Asset Minajment Co., an Alliance Biebernstein, a Franklin Ocean Templeton, or a KiM&G Karshadian. I digress, and that last one really was too tenuous.

BNY Mellon

One way in which an asset manager can truly draw Instagram users into recognising their brand is through a repeated simplistic colour scheme and logo advertising approach. BNY Mellon for instance makes effective use of minimalist graphics and motivational thought leadership quotations from both BNY employees and their founder, and even historical figures, all emblazoned in their trademark grey, white and gold colours.

Natixis Global Asset Management

Congratulations, Jeffrey – trumpet player for MMEA & winner of the #GeorgeWein Jazz Ambassador Scholarship #NatixisTogether

A post shared by natixisglobalam (@natixisglobalam) on Aug 6, 2017 at 10:12am PDT

Natixis’ presenting sponsorship with Newport Jazz Festival (since 2010) is the focus of their recent Instagram efforts. It’s another example however in showing how digital marketing and branding through banners and other materials at events all contribute to a mass marketing campaign. Ultimately, this highlights the #NatixisTogether campaign’s aim to nurture talent and community action through the asset manager’s financial services.

T Rowe Price

Promoting a portfolio manager’s ‘knowledge of their craft’ is T Rowe Price’s main aim through Instagram. Ultimately, assuring investors that their practice relies heavily on industry experience and expertise is an attractive proposition, especially when coupled with the Instagram-worthy high-quality photography that the company uses to visually explain this mantra. The artistic works promote skill, collaboration, and a client-first approach.

PIMCO Foundation

Meals that heal: #TeamPIMCO is making breakfast for @ronaldhouseoc families. #GWV2017 #DoGood

A post shared by PIMCO Corporate Citizenship – (@pimcofoundation) on Jul 29, 2017 at 8:04am PDT

Many financial institutions embrace charitable efforts, with employees taking part in worldwide voluntary work and fund-raising challenges to assist in the growing of opportunities for individuals, families and communities that lack necessary resources. PIMCO is particular active, using the hashtag #TeamPIMCO first and foremost, but even going the extra mile and dedicating a separate Instagram channel to PIMCO Foundation. Its voluntary arm takes part in a remarkable amount of charity work for various causes.

Columbia Threadneedle

Similarly, Columbia Threadneedle Investments dedicates much of its Instagrammable content to the company’s charitable endeavours. Most recently, the Boston Triathlon event was the focus, featuring support from the global investment company, and their sponsorship of Dare2Tri. We particularly like their use of action-shot photography and professional video footage; video marketing is a trendy yet valuable tool that can be achieved so easily through this platform.

BNP Paribas

A necessity for financial institutions is a transparency between company and client; bolstering a personal relationship between the two is becoming a more pervasive issue in the age of social media. BNP Paribas achieves this by bringing their Instagram followers into contact with their employees from across the globe, outlining how these leaders are achieving innovation throughout the banking group’s international community. The #PeopleofChange and #CapturetheChange hashtags are used to a consistently great effect.

Legg Mason

Legg Mason uses its social media platforms to promote their company culture extremely well, most notably through their #LifeAtLeggMason campaign. This encapsulates many successful aspects of Instagram financial services marketing: employee appreciation; volunteering efforts; participation at sporting events; working with students and graduates; and many more. Of course, all posts on Instagram consist of on-scene photography of Legg Mason’s involvement in these activities with descriptions informing the user of what it’s all about.


Targeting younger audiences for financial institutions is an ever-growing marketing objective, and Barclays UK’s Instagram has gone the extra effort in their most recent campaign. Taking 4 year old Alfie’s aspiration to become an aeronautical engineer, they are promoting the nurturing and financial backing and support the company offers its customers. It’s a novel idea, and makes effective use of stunning photography and fun video clips to keep business more light-hearted. Ultimately, they are preaching how technology can be valuable in young people’s lives in a financial sense, but they certainly show here that they do indeed know how to use it correctly too.
Focusing on a consistent campaign through use of event-based hashtags, and the promotion of brand through company culture and charitable endeavours are the key Instagram lessons for asset managers. A lesson as important as DON’T SELL YOUR PRODUCTS HERE. Alienating the audience is the big no-no on social media; selling your company’s best values, however, wins.
After all, we at Kurtosys use our Instagram to highlight our highly-valued company culture. Feel free to check it out, and comment below if you have any other examples of financial institutions #winning on Instagram.

Elliot Burr

Elliot Burr

Fervently chatting about the future of funds and fintech.