From time to time we come across a professional services marketing campaign that is exceptional, that is worth recognition and should set an example for others to shamelessly copy.

We've highlighted some of these before with our spotlight series here.

This week we're taking a look at the "future of The City" campaign by Deloitte Financial Services. There's a lot to take away from this campaign, from the design of the hero piece itself to the intent behind the campaign. There is so much to talk about that we thought we'd cover the things that set this campaign apart and why they work.

Here are the key learnings:

A non-gated report

At the heart of this campaign is the whitepaper on the "future of The City". Marketers have been trained in the last few years to "gate" their best content behind contact forms that collects details. Those details are fed to a Business Development or sales team to start conversations and demonstrate marketing value.

That playbook was written a decade ago. Deloitte are a step ahead. The future of The City whitepaper is completely open. It requires no email or phone number to access and as a result, it fits the way your market wants to consume your content.

Clients do not instruct professional services after downloading a single whitepaper. What Deloitte are doing is opening up the audience for their expertise and differentiating their brand by offering a better experience.

Don't think that the clever folk that worked on this campaign didn't think to track or measure their efforts - buried in the code for the download button is a tiny tracker that records the action but doesn't inconvenience the reader.

Properly executed supporting content

How often do you see an immaculately produced hero piece launch with little to no supporting content? This whitepaper hasn't been left on a shelf, instead, it's been promoted in a series of shorter, punchy insights that address one key point and offer a wider insight into one aspect of the findings of the report.

Each of these shorter insights features their lead authors of the whitepaper, but also pull in subject matter experts in the particular area being examined. So while the larger report is building the association between Deloitte and the future of The City, each of the subject matter experts are building their own brand and network in conjunction.

Genuinely useful insights delivered with an optimistic tone

So often you see reports or research by service providers where the information serves only their agenda or is achingly obvious in its attempt to convince buyers of their way of thinking.

The future of the city research, undertaken by YouGov sits in a rarer category. It simply and effectively delivers the facts. It is useful. If you were a firm in the financial services space and you were considering your strategy moving forward you'd be silly not to notice this content.

Tone is a difficult thing to get right at the best of times. To co-ordinate a tone that fits perfectly with audience expectations isn't something that you see often from one author, let alone many.

The posts from the Deloitte team have adopted the right mix of professionalism and optimism. The content here is informative without being depressing in a subject that could easily lend itself to a less effective, more severe tone.