New kasina Report Analyzes Most Effective Online Approaches to Meeting Needs of Financial Advisors

NEW YORK, February 9, 2005 – kasina, a leading strategy consulting firm focusing on the financial services industry, released its list of the �Top Ten Web Sites for Financial Professionals� in a Whitepaper analyzing the most effective online strategies for meeting the information and marketing needs of financial advisors.

The kasina report (�Effective Online Solutions for Intermediaries� Needs�) notes that leading-edge asset managers are increasingly directing resources to supporting the advisor channel with need-based solutions. The use of advanced transactional features, e-Mail and customizable site options is becoming a baseline requirement for top firms. As the industry moves beyond a basic �cookie-cutter� approach, the next challenge is to develop a more thorough understanding of the needs and behaviors of the advisor community, and to design future Web sites around those specifications, according to kasina.

�The traditional one-size-fits-all Web strategy approach is no longer an acceptable way of doing business with the financial advisor community,� said Conrad Bakker, analyst at kasina. �The top Web sites are seeking to understand advisor behavior and to incorporate the specific needs of their advisors into the design and functionality of their online presence. This helps strengthen the bond with their advisors and should support future sales growth.�

The kasina report recommends utilizing three techniques for identifying advisor needs. �Customer Scenarios,� which seeks to use highly realistic role-playing to uncover the strengths and weaknesses of a particular Web site from the point of view of the advisor; �Customer Segmentation,� which helps firms develop targeted marketing and distribution strategies; and �Personas,� detailed profiles of virtual users that can be used by the design team to help determine website content and functionality.

The Top Sites

The �Top 10 Web Sites for Financial Intermediaries� as named in the kasina report are (listed alphabetically):

  • AIM Investments

  • American Funds

  • Fidelity Investments

  • Franklin Templeton Investments

  • Mainstay Funds

  • One Group Investments

  • OppenheimerFunds

  • Putnam Investments

  • Russell

  • Van Kampen Investments

The firm also named the �Top Five Web Sites for Financial Professionals from
Small-to-Medium-Sized Companies� as follows:

  • Calvert

  • Enterprise Funds

  • Royce Funds

  • Thornburg Investment Management

  • WM Group of Funds

The study was based on kasina�s five evaluation criteria for Web excellence: branding, content, online services, usability, and Web technology. kasina reviewed all Web sites for financial intermediaries from asset management firms with over $1 billion in assets under management. Firms with between $1 and $10 billion in AUM were eligible for the �Small-to-Medium-Sized Companies� list.

About kasina

kasina is a management consulting firm that is focused on helping financial services companies create intelligent relationships with their investors and intermediaries. By combining knowledge of distribution trends, technological innovations, and marketing strategies, kasina aids leading asset management firms with front-office efforts and publishes a regular schedule of cutting-edge industry research. kasina�s client list includes 18 of the 20 largest asset managers in the United States and leading firms in Canada, France, Germany, and the United Kingdom. An overview of services offered by kasina is available at