I continued to focus on the reality that the worst thing you can do is be the same as everyone else.
I was listening to a presentation this weekend by Seth Godin who talks about being the “Purple Cow” – ie there’s nothing particularly interesting about cows. However, A PURPLE COW would get and attract attention.
A couple of weeks ago, I was listening to John Carlton. He described the worst possible “copy sin” as being a “COLD FISH.” In his words, “Be Wild, Weird, Do Interesting Things, Lead an Interesting Life – and, then don’t Play it Down – Build on it, Amplify it.”
Certainly among Financial Advisors this is a HUGE Problem. Pretty much everyone portrays themself as no different than anyone else. That’s a HUGE Mistake. The differentiator often is either all of the “Alphabet” soup of credentials. Which I’ll point out that to your prospects is mostly irrelevant. They really don’t know what it means, and frankly mostly don’t care.
The Martial Arts Guys that I work with talk about their rank, their “lineage,” and their accomplishments such as tournament wins. Again, no one cares. Stick with WIIFM – What’s in It for Me (your Prospects.)
I’m mentioned before Dan Kennedy’s description of the industry as looking like the theme song for the series “Weeds” – Little Houses. All the same, side by side.
Whatever makes you interesting – I’d suggest that you own and expand it. If nothing makes you interesting – well, for heaven’s sake – get a life and become interesting.
General marketing advice is to always have a USP – Unique Selling Proposition. That’s a “Purple Cow” differentiator of what makes you different from every and all alternatives. I’d add to that is it’s always better to become a “personality.” Be the opposite of the standard Financial Advisor or Life Salesman. I describe it as the guy behind the oak desk in the JC Penny’s suit. Maybe that’s a dated reference, but I’m sure you get the idea.
Another dated reference that I’ll use anyway is Gerry Spence. He was a world famous “super lawyer” from Wyoming often seen in a suede leather jacket with long silver hair. He was always bigger than life.
Take what you love, what makes you unique and interesting and go be wild, weird, and interesting.
BTW, take a look at our podcast on online marketing. It’s amazing how few Advisors effectively use all the online marketing tools available.
Although an obviously HUGE topic, we share powerful techniques for Search Engine Optimization (SEO), Pay Per Click (PPC), Social Media marketing as well as effective prospect follow-up with “follow them everywhere” Re-Targeting, and more.