The Marketing Questions Breakaways Must Be Able to Answer

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As advisors enter the world of independence, they can – often for the first time – leverage marketing capabilities to create a unique brand and promote their firm. That said, marketing is multifaceted, with a myriad of tools and an array of digital marketing services to consider.

I’ve pulled together the top five marketing questions I have received from the hundreds of advisors I’ve spoken to who are moving to independence.

1. Can I keep my existing name and branding?

Consider the reasons you chose to break away in the first place. Naming your firm is the perfect opportunity to plant the flag of independence and build your brand from the ground up. From a practical standpoint, existing names are often subsidiaries of the large name-brand firm or broker dealer that you left, so they can’t be ported.

When choosing a new name, go through the correct legal and trademarking process – you don’t want to receive a cease and desist order a few months after launching! Other considerations when choosing a name relate to succession planning and M&A.

2. How will I communicate my new firm’s positioning to clients, prospects and partners?

Defining your firm’s vision and sharing that through effective messaging is vital. You want to carefully review your firm’s values and personality, among other factors, to develop core messaging that will articulate your vision. This can include crafting a welcome letter to existing and new clients; developing PR and social media strategies to build brand awareness; hosting client events to raise awareness; and creating different points of collateral including overview documents, brochures and pitch books.

Messaging must include an outline of expansion and growth plans with point-in-time objectives at six, eight and 12 months.