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PR Case Study: St. James's Place Targeted Consumer Features Campaign

How comparing the complexities of retirement to planning for a hike resulted in UK wide consumer lifestyle coverage for a trusted FTSE100

The PR challenge

In an increasingly complex financial environment, FTSE100 wealth management firm St. James's Place (SJP) wanted to share its experts’ knowledge and financial advice with more people who needed it, beyond just its client base.  

The team believed that there was an opportunity to talk to consumer media in a way it hadn’t before, raise the profile of key executives and create thought-leadership content that had been ‘endorsed’ by third party media. This content could then be used to feed social media strategies and engage partners, stakeholders and clients alike.

Supplementing the great work that its PR agency was already doing, SJP decided to match with a freelancer from Nibble’s specialist database who could test-run reaching out to new, mainstream and consumer-focussed media titles which they hadn’t targeted previously. 

The PR approach

A story about a specific complex financial concept – spending in retirement – would be packaged up to make it understandable to the everyday person and relevant for the media they read. It needed to turn the complexities of spending in retirement – and concepts like ‘dynamic spending,’ ‘balancing path dependency’, ‘navigating inflation’ and ‘uncontrollable markets’ – into a consumer-friendly story which would reach and educate new audiences in a relatable way. 

SJP matched with an experienced and creative consumer PR freelancer from Nibble's network, who worked with the company’s head of investment, Rob Gardner, on a story around how hiking best practices can help explain how best to navigate money in retirement, cleverly blending a popular pastime for the target audience with important financial lessons.

Rob Gardner

SJP was so impressed with the results it signed up for an ongoing retainer with the same PR consultant on Nibble as soon as the project had wrapped up, so it could continue to generate similar content all year round.

The PR results

“How the rules of rambling can keep you from scrambling for cash later on” was developed and secured an exclusive double page spread with The Daily Mirror in the very first week, and was syndicated to dozens of regional titles, with the story noticed and mentioned by key clients, stakeholders and partners outside of London. 

The angle was then re-purposed, with tailored pitches to high-circulation mainstream consumer titles, securing coverage in Red Magazine Online, Good Housekeeping and Prima. The latter two used the feature idea as their key theme for upcoming Pensions Specials, further demonstrating SJP as a thought-leader and resulting in a steady stream of accessible expert-driven coverage across a number of months.

A KPI of 4 - 5 quality features in consumer titles was smashed, with more than 25 pieces generated in total. 

The media were so engaged with SJP’s messaging and calibre of content, two follow-up features were negotiated with The Daily Mirror and an ongoing editorial partnership is in place with Hearst Media, whose publications receive first refusal on bespoke consumer finance features, created collaboratively by the client and PR.

What Rob Gardner, Director of Investments, said:

"We decided to do a small consumer project with a PR freelancer as a bit of a test run. Since then we haven’t looked back.

"She’s smart and understood exactly what we needed, helping us to create content and conversations in media titles we don’t usually speak to, complementing our wider PR strategy. I’m so impressed I’ve booked her again to work with me on a personal project."

Want results like these for your own business? Sign up and post a brief to Nibble to start matching and receiving proposals from the UK's most highly recommended freelance PRs.

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