Last month in Orlando, Credit Suisse hosted COOs, CFOs and other top executives from leading hedge funds for its annual Prime Brokerage Leadership Conference to discuss best practices in a variety of areas.
One area of interest to the group was hedge fund branding and public relations. Russell Sherman, a partner at Prosek spoke on a panel entitled “Evaluating the Hedge Fund Brandscape” which explored the emerging interest hedge funds have shown in controlling and building their brands.
Among the topics explored by Sherman and the other two panelists, a top attorney from Seward & Kissel and a leading hedge fund COO, were how, when and why hedge funds choose to create PR programs and how the needs of firms change as they grow from start-ups to established multi-billion dollar funds.
The panel touched on the introduction of the JOBS act and the use (or lack thereof) of social media and advertising in the hedge fund space.
Sherman also highlighted the growing importance of filling what he calls “The Google Vacuum” with controlled news rather than potential negative news that can all too often impact a fund and dominate its online presence.
“Hedge Funds used to be a sleepy area when it came to brand management,” said Sherman. “But, that is quickly changing. Most funds – from the smallest to the largest – realize they have to be proactive in controlling their message.”
Participation in the Credit Suisse conference was the latest initiative in Prosek's ongoing efforts to share insights with the hedge fund community about marketing and external communications. Last year, Sherman participated with Goldman Sachs in a mini-US tour called the Hedge Fund Learning Series during which he presented to 10-20 Goldman Sachs prime brokerage clients in New York, Boston, Chicago, San Francisco and Los Angeles. Sherman was paired with lawyers from leading firms Akin Gump, Jones Day, Kaye Scholer and Sheppard Mullin on the educational series, which aimed to help hedge funds better understand compliance and public relations issues around social media. While the legal team discussed social media risks and compliance policies, Sherman explained appropriate PR responses in responding to the press, crisis communications and preventative steps to take to help build a trustworthy and successful brand.
About Prosek Partners
Prosek Partners is among the largest independent public relations firms in the U.S., and one of the few domestic, mid size firms that offers global capabilities through its London office and international network. Specializing in providing a full range of communications solutions to financial and professional services companies, the firm delivers an unexpected level of passion, creativity and marketing savvy. Prosek Partners’ “Unboxed Communications” approach brings breakthrough ideas to every client engagement.
Services included digital and traditional media relations, financial communications, investor relations, crisis communications and issues management, digital marketing, design and creative services, editorial services, publishing, media training and branded entertainment. In 2015 Prosek was named "Best North American Public Relations Firm" by Hedgeweek. The firm has also been named an Inc. 5000 Fastest-Growing Company for the sixth time, a “Top Place to Work in PR” by PR News, and a Holmes Report Agency of the Year. Prosek Partners is a certified Minority-and Women-Owned Business. For more information about Prosek Partners visit www.prosek.com or follow the agency on Twitter at twitter.com/prosekpr.