How your personal brand shapes your value for clients

Great brands are shaped less from advertising, a company logo or by products and services and more so from the attributes that make a company stand out from the competition. Getting more granular, a great personal brand, according to Rory Vaden, a leading expert on the psychology of influence and co-founder of Brand Builders Group, is not self-centered but service centered.

“The irony is that your personal brand is not about you. It’s about how you serve others,” Vaden said. “One of my mentors said it this way when he gave me the single best piece of personal branding advice I ever received. He said the goal is to exploit your uniqueness in the service of others.”

Giving away knowledge

One way an advisor can build their personal brand is by teaching everything they know for free. Teaching builds trust, Vaden added, which helps an advisor establish a reputation — “reputations matter because reputation precedes revenue” — and stand out from the competition.

Xu Min Zhang, a 12-year MDRT member from Guangzhou, China, used to be camera shy, but gradually overcame her reluctance to get in front of a lens and share her expertise by livestreaming.

“There was a month when I would talk about certain topics like retirement life, and I would divide this topic into four parts to discuss one at a time at a specific time each week,” Zhang said. “I would explain the current situation with retirement life, how to make good retirement plans, what retirement services include and more. After finishing these sessions, I invited clients to watch replays, and I could edit them down to two or three minutes and use them as educational materials.”

Zhang’s entry into livestreaming and connecting online with people branded her as a tech-savvy advisor. 

“I get feedback. Some clients mention to me, ‘Xu Min, I noticed that you have been livestreaming recently. You’re amazing.’ They see me as someone who is up to date not because of what I broadcast, but because I do broadcast,” Zhang said.

This was excerpted from the March/April 2024 issue of Round the Table article, “Personal brand creation.”

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