Founded in 1875, Prudential Financial has grown into a multinational financial services leader that now operates in over 40 countries. The Fortune 100 company specializes in insurance and investment management with a mission of helping its customers to grow and protect their wealth.
For years, the financial services industry has tried to reach affluent Black consumers by promoting CSR and DEI efforts.
It wasn’t working.
A study conducted over two years revealed a decline in brand health among Black Adults not just for Prudential, but across the entire financial services industry.
Company leaders suspected that different messages may resonate more with affluent Black consumers, but what were they? And how could their PR team develop a data-driven strategy for reaching Black audiences going forward?
Prudential’s PR team decided to use PublicRelay’s PR attribution strategy to generate insights from the company’s earned media coverage that would:
- Uncover the themes and messages that have the greatest impact on brand perceptions among affluent Black Adults,
- Connect the dots between their work, their earned media coverage, and changes in brand health among affluent Black audiences, and
- Develop a framework for developing data-driven approaches to reaching specific audiences in the future.
Trust emerged as the aspect of brand health that mattered most in Black Adults’ decision to become customers of a financial services company.
And, it turns out the company leaders were right: Trust among affluent Black consumers was less impacted by CSR and DEI and more affected by companies’ business performance and thought leadership coverage.
The findings revealed that, while Citizenship and CSR coverage could improve Favorability among highly invested Black Adults, it does not translate into Trust for that group. Research coverage, on the other hand, correlated with Trust for both high-income and lower-income Black Adults.
With these insights, the PR team was able to intelligently pivot its strategy and maximize the impact of its initiative to target Black audiences.