Each year Cogent Reports puts together their annual Annuity Brandscape Study™. The latest report released in February has some interesting insights to share.

A little background on the study: In it they interviewed 712 financial advisors from October to November 2018. In order to qualify, respondents were required to have client assets invested in variable annuities, fixed annuities or indexed annuities. Cogent Reports weighs the data to be representative of the overall annuity producer universe using the Discovery Data Financial Services Industry database as a sample source and Cogent Beat™ Advisor.

This year, financial advisors looking to invest client assets in annuities ranked Jackson National, Lincoln Financial Group and Pacific Life in their top five across three types of annuities: variable, fixed and indexed. However, the leader and subsequent rankings vary by product category, as advisors are influenced by different factors when considering each product type. While Jackson National stands out as advisors’ favorite for variable annuities, Lincoln Financial Group achieves the highest consideration for fixed and indexed annuities.

Advisors cite the ability to generate guaranteed income in retirement for their clients as the top reason for selling annuity products. Offering the best retirement income products is the most important consideration driver for variable annuities, while guaranteed rates and product simplicity are the most important areas to convey for fixed and indexed annuities. Annuity providers must be aware of differences in the drivers of consideration by product type, and focus their sales and marketing messages accordingly.

“Firms looking to bolster advisor interest should work to target the right benefits to the right people at the right time,” said Meredith Lloyd Rice, vice president at Market Strategies and author of the report. “Building strong advisor engagement, through wholesaler and digital interactions, is critical to developing this understanding.”

In fact, underpinning their leading consideration scores, Jackson National and Lincoln Financial both stand out as leaders in wholesaler penetration and marketing outreach, leaving both firms in a position to benefit from rising annuity sales.


Top Five Annuity Providers in Overall Consideration by Product Type

Variable Annuity                                Fixed Annuity                                    Indexed Annuity

1             Jackson National                  1             Lincoln Financial Group     1             Lincoln Financial Group

2             Lincoln Financial Group     2             Pacific Life                             2             Allianz Life

3             Prudential Financial            3             Brighthouse Financial        3             Pacific Life

4             Nationwide Financial          4             Jackson National                4             Jackson National

5             Pacific Life                             5             Nationwide Financial         5             AIG


Source: Market Strategies International. Cogent Reports™. Annuity Brandscape™.