Financial advisors don’t normally focus too much on branding and design. Take a look at a couple of financial advisors’ websites and they’ll usually look not that much different from a lawyer’s website. Many of these types of websites can be described as bland, boring, and dated.
Even larger financial advisory and asset management firms will stick with more traditional and subdued colors and designs that they’ve been using for decades to appeal to a more mature market. These established firms rely more on reputation, referrals, and word of mouth to fuel the continued success of their organization. Radically changing their branding would be the last thing on their minds—unless they plan on revamping their entire business model.
If you’re starting up a new firm or trying to turn around an established one, you should spend some time on planning and creating a well-defined brand identity.
Your brand identity or corporate identity is not just about looks, it should also reflect your values as a company.
Brand identity is a powerful marketing and communications tool. When people see your branding elements, they should immediately associate it with your organization and have an idea about how it’s run.
Brand Identity consists of many different elements:
Let’s take a closer look at how you should go about planning your brand identity.
If you want to stand out from the rest of your competition, your brand name and logo should be easily distinguishable. It has to be attention grabbing, unique, and professional looking.
Both your brand and logo should also say something about who you and your company is. Remember—these are the first things that people will see on all your channels of communication.
Use symbols and ideas that are relevant to your target market, company philosophy, or your own history. Choose a name and logo that can easily represent or communicate the image your brand wants to project.
Don’t be vague about what you do and what you’re good at. If your brand identity does not showcase your company’s unique abilities, you’ll get easily mixed in together with other financial advisors in your market.
You want your brand image to stand out by carefully crafting a strategy around your brand identity.
For your brand identity to do its job well, you need to have a unified look and feel on everything you publish. A persistent and pervasive design philosophy makes it easier to identify your brand whenever your audience sees it.
Some brands are so ingrained in people’s minds that they can immediately identify it just by seeing a particular color palette or part of a logo.
Before finalizing your brand identity, make sure that it speaks to your target demographic.
Conservative and older clients might be slightly put off by bold colors and fancy graphics. On the other hand, traditional designs might not look sexy and exciting enough for a younger audience.
While promoting your brand identity, you want to cast a wide net. But you also want to make sure it has a good chance of hitting its mark. If you don’t have one yet, think of the ideal type of client you want to work with and find out what makes them stop and give something a second look.
If you want to make your mark and set yourself apart in a new market, you have to be creative and be willing to take risks. Don’t just follow current trends—try to sniff out new and upcoming ones that most people haven’t seen before.
You want your brand identity to make your firm appear relevant today, as well as in the future, so that people will take notice. Your brand identity needs to make a big splash so that people will remember what it is and who you are.
Coming up with a great brand identity takes a lot of thought and planning. If you’re trying to be seen and noticed, your brand identity needs to be effective at putting your firm in the best light possible at all times. Brand identity goes hand in hand with brand image, which makes it an essential part of your business and its potential for success.