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Unit III: Defining Target Markets

Prioritizing Channels & Prospects

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Unit III: Defining Target Markets: Prioritizing Channels & Prospects

Competition takes many different forms in the investment management space. It is not the mere existence of competition that is problematic, rather the manager’s understanding and reflection on that competition that can be. Often, a manager’s competitive lens is focused solely on the performance of a minimally sized peer group within their immediate vehicle structure cohort. This limited lens gives managers not only the green light to proceed into the unchartered waters of institutional investment management asset raising and channel expansion, it also reinforces the manager’s perceptions and misperceptions of their relative value. Defining the Competition is the second of the 12 units in the series, providing organizations with the opportunity to identify the competitive factors at play, along with their offering’s respective strengths and weaknesses v. competitors of all shapes and sizes. Firms completing this unit will:

  • Understand that the competition is more than the manager next door.
  • Broaden the firm’s view of ‘the’ competition to include other product structures, the index and the market itself.
  • Understand product dynamics and factors that drive sales beyond performance.
  • Complete a thorough competitive analysis and document the firm’s competitive landscape.
  • Understand the competition inherent in time and attention.

The Noble Ark Ventures Curriculum Series was developed to provide organizations with an interactive framework for defining their organizational infrastructure, offerings, marketing and sales plan. Each component includes both an audio recording and workbook which can be completed by individuals, or teams, seeking additional insight and a structural development framework. Organizations are encouraged to complete each unit in the series in the order provided below, and to allot the necessary time and resources to full organizational review, integration and commitment. As there are 12 units in the series, firms are encouraged to consider implementing one unit per month, however expedited completion and the incorporation of a facilitator are possible to enhance the timeline. To learn more about the curriculum series, contact us at [email protected]


Your Instructor


Sandra Powers Murphy
Sandra Powers Murphy

Sandra Powers Murphy is a globally recognized investment management marketing and sales consultant. After more than a decade serving in a marketing and sales capacity on behalf of State Street Global Advisors and State Street Corporation, Sandra founded ARK Global LLC. As CEO, Sandra drives product and business development initiatives on behalf of a diverse group of clients. Sandra has helped numerous managers expand their investor base, add product structures, secure strategic partnerships, define business plans, create market presence and improve their overall profitability. Separate and distinct from ARK Global, Sandra founded Noble Ark Ventures to serve as an educational resource to professionals regarding marketing and sales best practices. Sandra is the author of The Road to AUM: Driving Assets Under Management through Effective Marketing and Sales.

Sandra is the President of the Third Party Marketing Association as well as a member of the Women Presidents’ Organization and 100 Women in Finance. Sandra is a partner of Compass Securities Corporation, member FINRA, SIPC, and a Registered Representative of ARK Global LLC, member FINRA, SIPC. Sandra holds investment industry licenses with FINRA, the MSRB and NASAA including the Series 7 and 24; 50 and 53; 63 and 66 respectively. In addition, she serves on the Municipal Securities Rulemaking Board Professional Qualifications Advisory Committee. Sandra is a Licensed Certified Social Worker (LCSW) in the state of Massachusetts.


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