I have two friends named Charlie and Matt. They opened up a mortgage brokerage firm together in West Palm Beach. In the mortgage industry, an office really is a branch of a bigger mortgage branch. For example, Matt and Charlie do their loan processing through “The Money Store”. This bigger company provides Matt and Charlie with a template website, marketing materials, graphics, and other tools to help them get more loans.
When Charlie and Matt came to me to build them a website, they first thought – “Let’s lead with The Money Store.” And although that may be the “economical” route and the most common route (and certainly for The Money Store brand, the route they want you to take), it doesn’t do Charlie and Matt any good from a personal branding side.
Instead, I took the two of them and I made a Personal Branded Partnership. This is where you combine two people’s name and make one powerhouse brand. We created www.charlieandmatt.com. We brought together what they both love to do (helping other realtors understand the mortgage game) and released a platform for them to be able to disseminate information to their target market. You can see everything we did for them here: http://thecreativecomplex.com/portfolio/charlie-matt/
Some of us are in partnerships, but we’re hiding behind a company brand when, in reality, people do business with people, not companies.
We think sometimes that it’s cheesy to have a partnership brand.
We also think “well, what if the partnership doesn’t work out?” If you’re thinking that, then you might need to rethink the partnership PERIOD. (You can’t have that attitude going into a partnership.)
Lawyers do this all the time. We’ve seen realtors do it too.
The right brand partnership can be a very successful tool in building brand equity and establishing believable connections with consumers. On the other hand, the wrong partnership can be devastating to a brand. This is why it is so important to take the right steps to improve the likelihood of success.
In my over 11 years of experience as a brand builder I’ve paired a few partners. Here is what I’ve learned.
Steps to Perfect Partnership Branding
SECRET #1: Get Clear On What You Bring To The Table
Write down your strengths, talents, passions and interests to unearth the essence of who you are and what you bring to a relationship. Draw parallels between past partners and try to assess what went wrong and what went right. From this new awareness, you may need to vow to do things differently the next time.
SECRET #2: What Are You Going To Teach?
Providing a great service is crucial. If you’re going to partner up with someone, the service better be over the top so that everyone talks about you guys.
But you should be looking for something to provide value to your target market.
For Charlie and Matt, they both identified that helping realtors was a passion of theirs. Realtors bring them their business, so forming a relationship with them is crucial. That’s why www.charlieandmatt.com was set up, not as a lead generation tool to get people to fill out a loan application, but instead to pour into realtors with value.
That’s good teaching.
SECRET #3: Make Your Domain Name by First Names
We picked www.charlieandmatt.com becuase we liked first names better. Their last names (Weiss and Goldstein) would have made them seem like a law firm. We wanted something more personal, and knowing their first name feels like you know them already.
If you’re looking to create a personal brand for your partnership, we want to have a discovery call with you to help.
Visit www.thecreativecomplex.com/call and we’ll be in touch!