Gabey Goh
Mar 23, 2016

Game on for State Street Global Advisors

SINGAPORE - State Street Global Advisors (SSGA) is hoping an online game will entice investors in Singapore to invest in US equities and broaden its reach in the local retail investment market.

Lisa Wang
Lisa Wang

The game is part of the Investment management firm’s SPDR US Equity campaign and is the central feature of a Singapore-centric push. SPDR (S&P Depository Receipts) is an ETF (exchange-traded fund) that tracks the Standard & Poor's 500 Index.

Speaking to Campaign Asia-Pacific, Lisa Wang, vice president and head of marketing for Asia Pacific at SSGA, said one of the goals of the campaign is to create an “edu-taining” online game to make global investing accessible. 

“Making an investment decision, like buying a stock or bond, is often not as tangible as purchasing a pair of sneakers or a new mobile phone,” she said. “Our recent SPDR ETF online game aims to bridge that gap, make global investing familiar and offers an innovative way for us to engage with Singapore retail investors.”

The online game prompts players to think of some of the best-known American brands they interact with on a daily basis as investment opportunities they can access through the firm’s local ETF products. Singapore residents can log on to the company's site to answer questions on various US household brands. 

Those with the most correct answers will be entered for a chance to win an S$350 electronics store voucher or S$10 coffee gift card. Participants may also earn an additional entry by sharing the website on their social media accounts or via email. 

To drive awareness of the game, the campaign running until 29 April includes:

  • Print ads in Singapore Business Review, Business Times, Straits Times and Sunday Times (example below)
  • Online ads in AsiaOne.com, BTInvest.com.sg, Straitstimes.com, Business Times
  • Mobile ads on AsiaOne.com and Business Times
  • Outdoor ads on digital panels at 50 bus stops

ETF game screenshot

Wang said that education is always the most important element in financial-product marketing. There is a need for investment providers to engage and educate investors, as it is key to helping them meet their short- or long-term financial goals.

“We hope to make investing more engaging and accessible through this campaign,” she added.

The firm did not disclose how much it is spending on this particular push.

This is not the first time the firm has used digital means to achieve marketing objectives, with Wang highlighting another project, the creation of “ETF Ed”, an interactive educational platform available on its Australia SPDR ETF website.

“Users are able to generate a custom user journey tailored to take them from the basics to more advanced learning modules,” she said. “Advisors are incentivized to use this as well, as we are able to provide continued learning credits.”

The firm’s footprint in Singapore spans the retail, intermediary and institutional market. Specifically in the ETF landscape, SSGA’s offerings comprise approximately 40 percent of the Singaporean ETF industry, as measured by assets under management (AUM).

The firm lays claim to being the largest ETF issuer in Singapore (US$1.13 billion in AUM, as of 31 December 2015) and takes a proactive role in investor education and developing the Singapore market.

Wang said the firm actively partners with the Singapore Exchange, brokers and other partners on multi-channel programmes to promote the use of ETFs.

“We are always looking to learn about user behaviours through engagement insights,” she added. “The key is to keep evolving and to think outside the box.”

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