Build a bold brand

All brands tell a story. What’s yours?

“I know someone who can help you with that.” Those words are music to our ears when we need a product or service – especially if they’re spoken by family or friends.

That’s because we like doing business with someone we know. It fosters trust and helps give us a sense of security. In a way, that’s also what a brand does: It establishes a relatable point of connection. And, if done well, it can create a lasting bond that turns prospects into ambassadors, helping cement meaningful relationships while gaining new referrals.

If you’re hoping to build a brand for your own business, it’s important to begin with the basics.

Keep it real

Building a credible brand requires you to know your business, including its:

  • Qualities – characteristics that make your business desirable
  • Values – the principles that guide your behavior and actions
  • Client experience – the way clients interact with you

When analyzing your business, pay close attention to client perceptions, even if they are negative. Otherwise, you run the risk of building a desirable but inaccurate image. And if your brand claims don’t align with the client experience, clients will go elsewhere. That’s why it’s crucial for your business to deliver on your brand promise.

Remember, your brand refers to more than your logo. It’s also your promise to clients.

Be clear and deliberate

Next, create your unique value proposition (UVP) – a clear, concise statement that explains the benefit you provide, for whom and the unique way you provide it. To craft yours, consider:

  • What value do you offer clients?
  • How is that value reflected in your service?
  • How do your services improve clients’ lives?
  • What distinguishes you from competitors?

Keep in mind that your UVP is the foundation of your brand.

Stay focused

Once you’ve got your UVP, focus on defining your brand. Add your touch to existing marketing materials, making your office decor, logo and business cards a reflection of you and your practice. It’s about refining your image and promoting your purpose.

When choosing materials, ask yourself:

  • What type of message do I want to get across?
  • How do I want to be perceived?
  • What do my website, social media, stationery, office experience and supporting materials say about me and my service?
  • Do I have a consistent message and does it emphasize what differentiates me from other advisors?

Once you’ve got this down, make sure your brand evokes a professional look and feel through coordinated colors, imagery, language, style and – this is key – client experience.

Keep it rolling

It’s essential that your team understands and reflects your brand because they will be the ones bolstering it. When onboarding new associates, share why and how you arrived at your brand identity and inspire them to carry that message in their daily work. Their support will help further establish your brand and fuel your long-term success.