Choreo CMO Shares Experience Advancing Women In Her Firm And The Industry

Pathfinder Winner Fox-Foley Also Shares Keys To Successful Marketing During Acquisitions
Marissa Fox-Foley, CMO, Choreo
Marissa Fox-Foley, CMO, Choreo

As we celebrate Women’s History Month with the Pathfinder Awards – Top Women Industry Leaders of 2024, we provide a platform for winners to address our readership about women’s empowerment in our industry and other topics. This month, we spoke with several winners including Marissa Fox-Foley, CMO of Choreo, whom we named CMO of the Year.

Fox-Foley helped launch Choreo from a division of the CPA firm RSM US LLP to a national stand-alone brand that now operates out of dozens of locations nationwide. In the two years since Choreo debuted, she has launched Canvas, a multichannel digital marketing and communications platform to streamline business development activities, and helped build out an employee resource group dedicated to advancing career opportunities for women.

She developed and executed marketing and communications strategies to integrate advisors from four acquisitions that attracted more than $11 billion in recruited assets to Choreo. She also led the marketing strategy for the Choreo Partner Alliance with affiliated CPA firms.

We asked her about her experience with the women’s employee resource group, Choreo Momentum, and keys to successful marketing during acquisitions.

WSR: Tell us about your role and experience with Choreo Momentum. How has it changed the environment for women at your firm?

Fox-Foley: I serve in two complementary roles. As part of my responsibilities as our Chief Marketing Officer, I serve as the executive co-sponsor of our newly expanded women’s program. In this role, I work closely with Karen Lee, our Chief Growth Officer and other co-sponsor, as well as with our senior leadership, employees and advisors across the country to develop programs, mentorship networks and growth and practice management support systems that elevate women within our firm. We work with internal and external partners to ensure that we are delivering actionable value to the growing number of women who work at Choreo.

While this may seem obvious, my other role with this group is to be a highly visible woman executive. My responsibilities as a senior leader at our firm, counsel to our CEO and board of directors, and leader of a large and growing team serve as powerful examples to other women in the industry, and within our organization, that they, too, can take on these roles. Without examples like this, achieving greater levels of equity across the industry is much more challenging.

Even as I’m proud of the work we’ve done and continue to do at Choreo, we must be honest about how much more we need to do to achieve a balance within this industry. Women have long been underrepresented in wealth management. The other issue: As millions of women stand to inherit trillions of dollars from aging parents and grandparents, we must do more to take advantage of this incredible business opportunity. Investing today in women advisors, women entrepreneurs and firm leadership will pay dividends in the future.

Investing today in women advisors, women entrepreneurs and firm leadership will pay dividends in the future.

WSR: What are the keys to successful marketing at times of notable acquisitions?

Fox-Foley: Over the past two years, we have acquired four wealth management organizations and established a robust network of CPA partners nationwide. Each of these transactions increased our AUM, headcount and operational complexity.

The deals, timing and people involved required a slightly different approach. However, our messaging remained consistent. Because we have clearly defined our mission to become the preferred wealth provider to the tax professional community, we delivered a concise message that enabled our new professionals to integrate efficiently into our firm and signaled to the market that these deals enhanced Choreo’s value.

Clear and straightforward storytelling is critical in times of uncertainty. With this approach, marketing and communications teams can help eliminate uncertainty and drive both strategic and financial value for their company and stakeholders.

Janeesa Hollingshead, Contributing Editor at Wealth Solutions Report, can be reached at editor@wealthsolutionsreport.com.

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