Make More Money Making a Name for Yourself
Calling all realtors, financial planners, insurance brokers,
multi-level & network marketers, and anyone else who
works in the precarious and often misunderstood position
of operating under a large company brand umbrella yet
operating as a separate business unto itself. You may find
that you’re standing under the umbrella and you’re still
getting wet– not enjoying the unlimited personal and
financial rewards that business opportunity offers.
Do you have trouble distinguishing yourself from another
person working under the same umbrella brand? Do you
feel the sting of this coming from the cubicle right next to
Do you sometimes feel that you don’t get the support that
you thought you would from the umbrella brand? Or, find
your requests to the corporate office ignored?
Do you experience the pinch that comes from needing to
tow the corporate line and the expectation to create your
financial success as if you were operating your business as
You can stop looking around. I’m not in your office. Really.
You can stop looking around and you need to stop relying
on the brand umbrella that you thought would provide you so
much. Staying under there will only cause you more
discomfort and take you further from fulfilling the dreams
you had when you first started.
Don’t look so dejected all is not lost. There’s something you
can do to turn the entire lose-lose situation around, but you
have to be committed to being really successful and
devoted to being truly happy. Not everyone is cut out for that.
Often, I have been hired to distinguish top-performing
realtors from other realtors –their competition. Ninety-eight
percent of time, the first thing my job calls for is to open the
grip they have on their brokerage firm. You read it right, their
grip on, not the grip the firm has on them. Once their clutch
is relaxed, I can then successfully guide a real estate
professional (or any type of broker or salesperson) to
develop their own business as a brand; all the while
honoring the larger umbrella brand that provides them the
credibility and product value they need to cultivate their
business. Working with an umbrella brand is a blessing,
but it is not a crutch!
This applies to financial planners and insurance brokers as
well with added attention given to the sensitive legal
requirements of the larger institution. While a financial
planner or insurance broker may drive everyday to an office
building, park in the garage, walk past a receptionist sitting
under the big brokerage logo, they eventually walk into their
office or cubicle, sit at the desk of their own business and
are responsible for getting their own clients and generating
their own financial success.
Multi-level marketers and network marketers need to take a
good step back from the brand they are selling because the
umbrella brand’s grasp is often even tighter. This keeps the
majority of MLM participants from ever really hitting the
marks that were promised as possible. The problem is not
that the promised marks aren’t possible. They’re just so
much more difficult to hit coming from the perspective at
which most MLM salespersons operate.
When it comes to creating the business success you want
in any of these or similar situations, it’s not about distancing
yourself from the umbrella brand’s identity… it’s about
creating one of your own.
You need to take into your awareness that people don’t just
buy a product or service, they buy an experience. They buy
something they believe in. They buy a feeling they can count
on– over and over and over. This is where you actually have
an edge over the ‘umbrella.’
The brand conglomerates find it very difficult to meet the
experiential and emotional needs of the customers. They
are just too big. You have the edge because you have what
they don’t; the individual customer and you connect with
them on a daily basis.
It’s what you do with that connection and how you
communicate it that makes all the difference. This can be
broken down into four important key factors:
Realize that the umbrella brand is not a job, it’s a tool that
you’ve invested in to assist you in offering a top-quality
product or service. It’s an instrument that both the public and
yourself recognize as of value in your specific field. If you
think of it as one of many possible tools, even if you never
employ another one, you will put your brand umbrella in the
proper perspective and actually be able to use it more fully.
Connect your own power to your business, after all, it is
YOUR business. You are responsible for getting clients.
You are responsible for keeping them. At the end of the day,
you have to answer to your own disappointment or success.
Remember, the power in any business is not the image of a
business, it’s not even the idea of the business, its the
connection to the customer. They always will be yours.
Establish your own brand voice through all your business
communications. Design your own look and feel to your
materials. Don’t just rely on what the umbrella brand
provides you. Everyone else in your situation is doing that.
Depending solely on the big brand’s voice will not only hurt
you, your customers will find it impossible to separate you
from your competition.
Note: When developing your own materials, you do need to
take into consideration the large brand logo, colors and
even language. After all, not only did you choose that
umbrella brand for a reason, your brand will need to work
along side with it.
Know that your umbrella brand may be wary of your
independence but they will most certainly love your financial
success. They may buck some when you begin to deviate,
but remember, going along with their plan is probably
perpetuating your indistinguishable situation in the first
place. Plain and simple… when you look great they look
great. When you make money, they make money. When you
make a lot more, they make a lot more. Period.
It’s quite simple. You can make more money and
experience greater enjoyment doing exactly what you’re
doing and working with the same umbrella brand, if you
simply change your perspective.
By shifting your understanding from working under to
working with your umbrella, you will find yourself using the
‘the big brand umbrella’ as a tool, staying dry AND basking
in the bright sunlight of success.
Kim A. Castle, Co-founder BrandU(TM), Co-Author of Why
BrandU: Big Business Success No Matter Your Size, and
the BrandU(TM) Bible, the only step-by-step workbook for
developing your business as a brand.
© 2004 Castle Montone, Limited Reprinted with