After more than two decades in business, Altus Partners was successful … but nowhere near as much as they wanted to be. Their pipeline did not match their ambition.
Altus had been through a number of marketing partners over the years, but nothing seemed to work. They tried being bombastic. They tried being quietly elegant. They tried splitting the company into two market-facing segments, with two websites, one for personal risk and one for corporate risk.
In discussing their business goals, we learned some basic things that previous agencies had seemingly overlooked or ignored:
- 80 percent of their revenue came from the corporate risk side of the business, despite being just 20 percent of their client roster.
- They could not go to market the same for corporate risk as they did for personal risk—Altus does not collect commissions for corporate insurance work; they collect a fee, truly a unique approach in the industry and one that positions them to provide objective advice to their clients. Unfortunately, insurance regulators do not allow a fee-based approach for personal insurance.
- Insurance is very much a referral-based business, and this is especially true on the personal risk side. There was also significant crossover between corporate clients who used Altus to manage their personal insurance.
Yes, there was some logic in having separate websites for corporate and personal risk, but it created confusion in the marketplace (which one is the real Altus Partners?), so we brought the two practices back together. We were convinced that the personal risk side of the biz could ride corporate risk’s coattails—and corporate risk a) had a better story to tell and b) drove the firm’s revenue.
We created Altus’ core content—a new website and suite of marketing collateral carrying the now-unmuddied message.
Once the foundation was set, we embarked on a wide variety of activities to raise their profile and generate demand. It revolved around a thought leadership and content marketing effort, positioning the CEO and managing directors as experts in their field and fueling demand generation. Content was distributed through a layered approach that included regular email blasts, LinkedIn posts, media relations and paid promotion.
We also pitched in and helped them build sales decks and respond to RFPs, leaning heavily on the credibility-building thought leadership.
With a new website that finally matched the firm’s sophisticated approach and personality, Altus had true brand alignment for the first time in a long time.
The new approach greatly improved top-line brand awareness, including increased engagement and followership on LinkedIn and a significant uptick in website traffic.
Media relations led to multiple article placements, fueling an industry-wide conversation about Altus’ unique commission-free approach and what is best for clients, helping to make sales conversations more productive and improve talent recruitment. It even played a role in attracting a new member of the executive team who was drawn to the “Altus way.”
Altus Partners provides comprehensive property and casualty insurance and risk management services for corporations, individuals and families throughout the U.S. and around the world.