SourceMedia launches sponsored indices to boost research business
August 22, 2012 - Last year, SourceMedia identified research and data as a priority business for the company. As part of that initiative, the company has launched three monthly indices that track business conditions and activity for the public accounting, commercial banking and investment advisory sectors. The indices are developed in collaboration with the editors for Accounting Today, American Banker and Financial Planning, respectively.
"The indices’ purpose is to broaden and deepen our coverage of each market segment, to provide ongoing insight into where each market is headed and to enable the audience to understand and track that insight in quantitative terms,” says David Longobardi, executive vice president and chief content officer for SourceMedia. “The idea is to give companies in B2B markets a sense of where their market is going and what their peers are experiencing."
Each index is created from a monthly poll comprising questions that serve as business metrics. For instance, the Accountants Confidence Index (ACI) is generated from responses from more than 1,000 tax and accounting professionals; they are asked to estimate the growth prospects of their own firms, their business clients (small, midsized and large) and the U.S. economy as a whole.
The Index of Banking Activity (IBA), launched last month, surveys more than 300 senior executives distributed across the FDIC’s asset-size breakouts. IBA indicators include loan activity, loan pricing, deposit account activity, staffing and business and real estate conditions.
Premiering later this year is the Retirement Advisor Confidence Index (RACI), a survey of more than 300 financial advisors. Respondents are asked about business activities in financial planning, such as asset allocations, investment product recommendations, client recruitment and retention, economic/risk factors and taxes and plan fees.
The indices are a part of “an ongoing diversification strategy,” says the company. It plans to leverage existing products, integrating research and data into all of its brands. SourceMedia Research uses the research to support custom content development, “whether by helping clients understand the marketplace better or by enabling clients to build out content that supports thought-leadership and lead-generation engagements.” says Longobardi.
Additionally, the indices may be developed or published in partnership with a sponsor. VantageScore Solutions, created by credit-reporting companies Equifax, Experian and TransUnion, has signed on as the sponsoring partner for the IBA index. ADP is the sponsoring partner for ACI and RACI.
SourceMedia is looking to develop additional indices in mortgages, payments and health care technology, among others.
By Elizabeth A. Reid