Aerial view graphic-styled image of social icons with hands reaching across table

5 Steps to Building an Advisor Brand

The key to success when creating a brand is to approach it methodically and with consistency. Here are five steps to help you successfully create and maintain your brand.

Your brand is a living, breathing representation of you and your business, and you must apply it consistently in all of your marketing projects and communications.

- Sarah LeBlanc

Developing a brand from scratch can feel like an overwhelming task. From selecting a name to developing a professional logo, the impact of these projects is long lasting, making the process intimidating, to say the least. And if branding and marketing aren’t in your comfort zone or areas of expertise, things can feel even more challenging.

The key to success for your financial practice, no matter your creative skill set, is to address things methodically. Here are five simple steps to get you started.

1. Define your value proposition

What do you want to be known for? Which characteristics — specialized expertise and services, for example — distinguish you from your competition? Who are your target clients, and how are you positioned to serve them best? Answering these questions will help you define your value proposition, which can ultimately inform your Doing Business As (DBA) name (see #2, below).

For example, do you want to be known for your deep roots in your community, with a focus on long-term growth? If so, what about Oak Tree Wealth Management! Or perhaps you want to be known as the firm that supports families through generational wealth planning. In that case, you might want to name your firm Legacy Financial Advisors. 

To help get you started, LPL Marketing offers a value proposition worksheet to help you further define your mission and values.

Reference piece: Value Proposition Worksheet found in the LPL Financial Resource Center.

2. Pick your DBA name

Once you define your value proposition and brainstorm names, making a final selection can feel daunting. But don’t fall victim to “analysis paralysis.” If you’re having difficulty choosing an option, ask friends, family members, and even clients for their input. After considering their feedback, make your choice, performing general due diligence to determine availability.

For example, you can search for your selected name using a service like, to make sure the URL (or some version of it) is available. Additionally, work with an attorney to ensure the name you’ve selected hasn’t already been trademarked by another business.

Next, submit your DBA name to LPL Compliance, Legal, and Risk for final approval. For questions about the DBA approval process, contact the Compliance Service Center at (800) 877-7210, ext. 6835.

3. Develop a logo

Your logo is the mark of your brand that will represent your business name and appear on your market collateral. It should clearly represent your brand in both large and small formats.

Unless you have a design background, you’ll most likely need to outsource the creative development of your logo. Here are a few suggestions:

  • Seek input from another business owner in your community whose logo you admire
  • Hire a freelance designer through a creative marketplace website, like Fiverr.com, CrewScale, and Freelancer
  • Work with Deluxe Branded Marketing, available through Marketing on Demand’s Concierge Services

4. Develop a Website

With your approved DBA name and logo in hand, it’s time to apply it to your website, which should act as the hub of all of your marketing efforts. Most people will find you online before contacting your office, so having a strong web presence can make a valuable first impression and promote conversions.

Your website should include the core elements of your brand, such as your logo, color scheme, and mission statement/value proposition.

Pro tip: When developing custom copy for your marketing materials, consider your “brand voice,” or the tone of your content, making sure to apply it consistently throughout. 

For website content development, work with one of our recommended website vendors or an outside web developer. Keep in mind that prior to launch, you’ll need to submit your site to LPL Compliance, Legal, and Risk for approval.

5. Execute with Consistency

Your brand is a living, breathing representation of you and your business, and you must apply it consistently in all of your marketing projects and communications. Here are a few more important places where you’ll prominently present your brand:

  • Business cards and stationery
  • Print collateral, such as brochures and advertisements
  • Social media profiles and content
  • Email newsletters
  • Events (in-person and virtual)

Remember, you’re not in this alone! LPLs Marketing Consulting is here to help. Schedule a one-on-one consultation for guidance, best practices, and recommendations tailored to your business. To set up a consultation, email the Marketing Consulting team or call us at (800) 877-7210, ext. 6700, Option 1.


Questions and Consultations

If you have questions or would like to schedule a one-on-one consultation, or if you’d like to subscribe and receive email alerts when new articles become available, contact Marketing Consulting at 800) 877-7210, ext. 6700 or email Marketing Consulting.

If you’re interested in LPL running your digital marketing plan for you, ask us about our Marketing Solutions program.


IMPORTANT DISCLOSURES

Consult your compliance department for information about the rules and use of social media and the review of any and all advisor marketing materials.


Image

Sarah provides custom marketing and social media consultations for LPL Finanical advisors and investment programs. In this role, she consults with and supports clients in effectively marketing their business in today's increasingly competitive environment. View full bio.