Most asset managers have found video conferencing an effective alternative to interacting with clients now that the coronavirus pandemic has severely hampered the ability to meet with clients face-to-face, according to results of a survey by Cerulli Associates.
While almost all (95%) of managers surveyed by Cerulli in April said that in-person meetings are the most effective way to interact with clients, travel restrictions brought about by the COVID-19 pandemic have prevented such interaction.
So, with face-to-face meetings not being an option for most managers, 75% find conference calls or video conferences with clients a highly effective alternative method of communication since the outbreak of COVID-19, while 17% find them somewhat effective.
"The amount of people that said video calls are effective could be a sign of a more long-term trend," said Cerulli analyst Christopher Swansey in a phone interview, noting that face-to-face meetings are still crucial for due diligence. "I don't think they'll be replaced, but I think you'll see a lot more meetings conducted virtually in the future."
Meanwhile, 67% of respondents found reaching out to clients through phone or email to be highly effective during this pandemic, while 33% found this method of communication somewhat effective.
Forty-two percent of managers said they found webinars and social media outreach a highly effective way to interact with clients, and 33% found them somewhat effective. Thirty-three percent said they found white papers and other similar forms of "thought leadership" to be highly effective, while 54% found them somewhat effective. Rounding out the list, 13% of respondents said press releases on COVID-19 and market volatility were highly effective, while 25% found them somewhat effective.