Communicating with Shareholders

Simplifying complex products and making communication with shareholders clearer, more human and easier to act on.

Client: Equiniti
Type of project: Customer Communication, Complaints
Region: UK

Reducing complaints and communicating with shareholders in a human way

Every year our FS client has to write to hundreds of thousands of their customers with annual messages covering vital information regarding shareholdings, dividends and AGMs. It’s a duty of care that has to be done and it’s a hard one for our client.

Trying to make the letters interesting whilst at the same time conveying the key news and the necessary calls to action is not an easy task.

We’ve all received these letters and let’s be honest they’re dry enough to spontaneously combust… like us when we’ve spent 10 minutes trying to work out what to do with them!

So we were asked to help. An initial target audience of 180k shareholders who were sitting on unclaimed dividends and who had, for whatever reason, failed to respond to previous annual communications to reunify them with their shares.

Could we illicit a better response for our client?

Calls to action: To persuade shareholders to recover unclaimed dividends. At the same time, encouraging customers to switch to electronic shareholding.

Proof of concept: Our client needed to show their own customer it could improve shareholder response for this project in order to sell the case for broader customer comms improvements.

Poor response: The messages were repetitive, sent out every year with the same tone of voice and layout. Responses were reducing consistently year on year and costs increasing.

Queries: Noise from queries and complaints took up a lot of staff and senior management time.

Silos: Different departments were involved in the communication, each producing different tones and styles. Legal and compliance language clashing with marketing.

Simpler, more effective ways of communicating with shareholders

Measurement and benchmarking

We benchmarked the existing communication using a series of objective tools to score the content. We looked at aspects such as behavioural psychology, readability, eye-tracking and information accessing.

This removed any subjectivity and made it simple to identify the potential ‘landmines’ within the comms.

Content optimisation that’s customer focused

We worked across departments to remove the comms silos within the business and get buy-in to the core message .

Customer comms had to focus on what the customer needed rather than internal processes and language.

We rewrote the content and redesigned the layout to optimise the customer experience

Sustaining the improvement

As the project moved into other areas of the business, we were mentoring and training staff in clear customer communication, using internal engagement and coaching sessions to embed and sustain the transformative work.


Improved design and customer-focused layout
More human language
Responses improved
Revenue increased
Management processes improved

212% increase in response to reunification of shares and switch to online share dealing.

64% reduction in spoiled returns and customer queries.