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John Hancock: Merger with Manulife

Posted in: Brand Positioning & Development, Financial Services, International, Professional Services/B2B

John Hancock: Merger with Manulife

Challenge: Plan-it played an instrumental role in the company’s acquisition by Manulife to overcome business and marketing challenges inherent in merging companies operating from different countries. In the early stages, Plan-it worked in an advisory position as part of Hancock’s core business team in providing a “brand value” for the company.

Objective: Plan-it’s role was to assess the value of the brand from a “marketplace” perspective, including consumers and multiple levels of business intermediaries and influencers; this brand value was then incorporated into the Hancock business valuation plan, which aided in the final acquisition plan. Once announced, Plan-it worked to develop the optimal positioning and marketing strategies for the two brands as well as leveragability for new product areas.

Solution: The ultimate goal was to ensure a smooth transition between the companies and their respective brands across the US and Canada. Plan-it designed and managed a battery of 15 qualitative and quantitative studies and methodologies across the two phases (attitudinal, pricing, valuation, brand leverage). The work was conducted among seven different consumer and business audiences (insurance agents/brokers, broker-dealers, financial planners, bank and stock brokerage home office decision-makers and group product decision-makers) in the U.S. and Canada across pre- and post-merger phases.

Result: Plan-it analyzed the learning across the combination of studies (from initial merger/acquisition to post-merger) and developed actionable strategies for leveraging and combining the strengths of the two brands in marketing and sales efforts both short and long-term. Plan-it’s efforts and advisory role were highlighted in John Hancock’s analyst reports and annual report.