Having undergone rapid growth in the last 10 years, Enterprise Group of Funds of Atlanta, with $9 billion in assets under management, has decided it is time to attempt its first major advertising campaign in its 32-year history.
Enterprise's new branding campaign, scheduled to begin May 1 on cable television and in investment management trade publications, likens the investment expertise of the firm's portfolio managers to the skills of a professional golfer. The tagline in each spot is, "Lucky? Or are we just that good? Find out for yourself."
The TV spots, in both 30-second and 60-second versions, tell a brief story about an accomplished golfer. The spot begins with a view of a magnificent, peaceful golf course along a coastline. It then shows a golfer driving a ball to within two feet of a 325-yard, par-four hole. The commercial underscores the golfer's determination by showing him drive the ball in slow motion. He hits the ball with such force that it shoots through the sky and takes the form of a comet. A groundskeeper watching with awe drops a rake as he gazes at the soaring ball. The golfer then successfully hits a putt into the hole.
The only allusion to the Enterprise Group of Funds during the spot is a brief camera pan to the golf cap the player wears, bearing the Enterprise logo.
The spot closes with the tagline, "Lucky? Or are we just that good. Find out for yourself."
The TV commercial is scheduled to run on CNBC, while a print campaign will appear in Dow Jones Investment Advisor, Registered Representative, Ticker, Financial Planning and On Wall Street. The latter two publications are published by Thomson Financial, which also publishes this newsletter.
Enterprise will spend more than $1 million on print ads and TV spots through the end of July, said Victor Ugolyn, chairman of Enterprise. The firm is targeting upscale investors and financial planners who sell the Enterprise funds. Enterprise purposely chose a golf setting to appeal to these two groups, Ugolyn said.
Enterprise has done minimal advertising since its inception in 1968, Ugolyn said. It has run a few isolated print advertisements in trade publications, he said. However, business has been brisk in the last few years, which gave Enterprise the courage to make a substantial investment in a large-scale branding campaign, Ugolyn said. Enterprises' assets under management have grown 45-fold in the last ten years, from $200 million in 1990 to $9 billion currently.
Strategic Insight, a mutual fund consulting firm in New York, ranked the Enterprise Group of Funds as the fourth-fastest growing load funds in 1999 and the 15th-fastest growing fund company overall in 1999, Ugolyn said.
"We wanted to do a branding campaign due to our growth," Ugolyn said.
Future advertisements may expand beyond the golf analogy to convey the point that all of Enterprise's 17 funds are managed by well-known, independent portfolio managers who specialize in specific investment areas for institutional clients, Ugolyn said. Each of the independent asset management firms with which Enterprise does business manages portfolios of $100 million or more for corporations, non-profit corporations and governments, Ugolyn said.