Product or Service Launch

Investment firm launches fund based on strong female leadership on International Women’s Day

Gender diversity was one angle State Street took to introduce the SHE fund.

Investing Capital to Create Change: State Street’s SHE Gender Diversity ETF Campaign- Logo

State Street Global Advisors knows a thing or two about the power of gender diversity. State Street is the organization that placed the “Fearless Girl” statue in front of Wall Street’s charging bull. In introducing the SHE fund, an exchange-traded fund (ETF) made up of the largest U.S. organizations with the most gender diversity on boards and in leadership roles, State Street has won first place in the “Product or Service Launch” category of PR Daily’s 2017 Media Relations Awards.

The fund was a no-brainer, given data that show organizations with strong female leadership produce a return on equity of 36.4 percent. Still, only 4 percent of S&P 500 organizations have that level of female leadership, so State Street needed to get the word out about the fund’s appeal. 

Doing so required more than just engaging investors; it meant sparking a national conversation about diversity and inclusion “reshaping the future of corporate America,” as State Street put it. The organization reached beyond its traditional media targets with pitches that aligned with each outlet’s focus. Those addressing gender diversity got pitches that focused on that issue, while others—those addressing lifestyle, for instance—got different, relevant pitches. 

The campaign was launched during International Women’s Day across traditional media, social media, internal communications and client outreach, along with content on State Street’s owned properties. Coverage came from 136 placements from outlets ranging from The New York Times to Refinery 29. The firm’s social media handles saw a 193 percent increase in engagement and a 14 percent increase in followers. 

In the new fund’s first 30 days, 179 sales activities representing $250 million in potential revenue was ascribed to the campaign. The fund wound up with more than $278 million in assets under management, the most of any ETF launched in 2016.

Congratulations on top-notch work by Anne McNally, Andrew Hopkins, Julie Kane, Brendan Paul and Kerri Doherty.

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