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Forget brand names, I want a gender strategy

Toni Smith

September 28, 2012

 

That’s it summer is officially over so pack away your expensive Vilebrequins and get out your Napapijri. And you thought financial services had some strange brand names.

 

None was probably stranger than TIUTA which the London Evening Standard newspaper reported as standing for something unsavoury.

 

With the demise of Connaught came the inevitable subsequent demise of Tiuta – its subsidiary bridging lender firm.

 

The reality is no matter what the brand name it is people who are the brand and it is a shame to see any lender disappear and with it some good people.

 

Good luck to all those involved and you never know someone might buy the remnants of the firm.

 

Respected brands names in our industry, and there are plenty, should be fiercely guarded.

 

They should be guarded from external reputational damage but also from internal reputational damage.

 

PTFS at the minute seems to be doing its best not to protect itself from the latter.

 

With a massive hike in the fees it charges its ARs and the comments from its ARs that the communication of that change was far from ideal (some only found out by reading the industry websites) its reputation is on the wane.

 

It will be very interesting to see the networks AR numbers over the next six months.

 

The topic that intrigued me most this month is the number of insurers who are announcing they have or are developing a gender strategy.

 

This is in response to the EU directive that insurers cannot discriminate the prices of their products based in any way on the gender of the person buying the product.

 

Imagine some of the conversations going in these working groups as the insurers decide on their strategy post gender directive.

 

Should they introduce new risk factors to base their price on like the colour of someone’s car (pink should be a good discriminating factor) or preferred alcoholic drink (beer or Bacardi) or preferred TV programme (Eastenders or Top Gear)?

 

All I know is that the one insurer left with no debate about their future gender strategy is Sheila’s Wheels.

 

Gosh I do like forward thinking brand names.

 


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