By Tim Focas, financial services Account Director at Aspectus 

TradeTech, Europe’s largest electronic trading conference, kicks-off in Paris next week. And even more so than in recent years, with the countdown to the January 3rd implementation well under way, the second Markets in Financial Instruments Directive (MiFID II) will be at the heart of the debate.

But as market participants from across the industry gather together to discuss how to make their trading processes more cost-efficient, what does an effective MiFID II communications programme look like, and how can it help technology vendors engage the sell-side and buy-side in their latest compliance software? 

The answer lies in the ability to marry specialist market structure knowledge with content development skills that can really make a vendor’s key messages stand out. With so much MiFID II related content out there, it can be hard for many to know where to begin. One solution, once a vendor has defined its 2-3 core messages, is to create stories that connect specific market structure changes with events that everyone is talking about. For example, linking the MiFID II requirement to shift standardised derivatives contracts onto exchanges, with the Brexit debate about whether London should remain the central hub for Eurozone clearing. Written in the right style and tone, this approach can enable vendors to raise their brand profile in the business media.

But decision makers attending the show are unlikely to be engaging exclusively with the likes of the Financial Times and City A.M. Awareness of their brands in these publications will certainly contribute to financial institutions taking notice. However, by definition, the way in which they bring technical compliance offerings to market, means that the specialist media has an equally important role to play. And while they might not religiously read the technical trade press, when researching for a new piece of software or service, they’ll take the established specialist media over the national press. This means it is imperative for any regulatory focused comms campaign consistently secure coverage in the likes of Financial News, Risk.net, Waters Technology and the Trade.

The secret to achieving this is to react fast to the latest MiFID II developments. As a case in point, just last week, ESMA released its latest guidance on Systematic Internalisers (SIs). Reporters from across the buy-side press, including influential titles like Funds Europe, were on the lookout for expert reaction. For firms supplying technology tools to enable asset managers to get the best possible access to SIs, responding to news like this provides a good opportunity to ensure their target audience has an awareness of their software.

This approach of reacting fast to news and specialist content development needs to be underpinned by an optimised list of keywords. With so many different vendors offering similar MiFID II solutions, optimising and constantly repeating keywords throughout all forms of content is the way to get noticed. This lends itself well to an event such as TradeTech, particularly with so much online conversation about MiFID II likely to be taking place across the likes of twitter and various online forums. With these points in mind, TradeTech 2017 presents the ideal forum for tech vendors to start thinking how they can link specialist and optimised content with the latest regulatory news. Those that do will be best placed to increase awareness of their MiFID II solutions as financial institutions begin to make important technology buying decision over the coming months. 

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