Professional Adviser's Armchair Critic Brendan Llewellyn explains why it should not be beyond any advice firm to build the required affinity that is in the DNA of every great brand
A brand is what you stand for.
It's also what people think you stand for.
And what you think you stand for
And what they think you stand for
Had better to be more or less the same.
If not, you may have to say, or even do,
Because when it comes to brand
What you do is much more important
Than what you say.
So if you build it, this ‘Brand Stand',
Will they come?
Yes, they might well.
If you build it well, with the right substance,
Then they will not only come,
They will also stay.
Because your Brand Stand will be
A landmark - a beacon in a sea of confusion.
It will be a safe harbour for people seeking
The place to go for financial advice -
Or planning, if that's your thing.
Each time people visit, they must
Feel like it's the same place,
No matter who they see.
Anyone who operates under your Brand Stand,
Must play all the right notes,
And in the right order.
And then the people will tell other people,
And the cost of finding those other people
Will fall steeply and pleasingly.
Others too, seeking a fast route into
The business of advice,
Will see your Brand Stand and see value in it.
As will those plying their trade in yours.
All of this depends on your Brand Stand being built
And maintained with the highest quality.
Because build this brand stand on sand
And you will sink - slowly, perhaps, but surely.
Build your brand pillars with care:
What exactly do you wish to stand for?
Think about this until it is clear.
Do you think your clients agree?
If not, you must work to narrow
Perhaps you can do something different
To best meet their ideas.
Perhaps you can communicate more effectively.
Now look inside your Brand Stand walls
Do all the people inside fit there?
If not, maybe it's time for
The biting of the bullet.
If your people are not fit for your
Purpose, then your building will tilt
Or even crumble.
Think further about your clients.
Do they value the things you think
Are they, in any case, the right people
To be drawn into your Brand Stand?
Now, what about scale?
How big is your Brand Stand?
Can it be seen and known only
By those who dwell in your ambit?
Or can you envisage a Brand Stand
For the county?
Or for the country? Why not?
Because your services, the deep
Understanding of people, their lives
And their money
Can draw you closer and closer to them.
Your clients and those who might be,
Care about themselves, their family
Their businesses and their money.
So build this thing well
And you will be the brand to watch.
Easier for you to build the required affinity
That is in the DNA of every great brand
Than the large institutions who make and service products.
They are but the component parts.
You are the whole of the moon.
Brendan Llewellyn is owner of Marketing Edge and director of Adviser Home
The chairman isn’t answering his email
Reforms not enough
An economic cocktail
To encourage consumers to shop around
Will report to Pat Shea