Branding, Investing and Emotions: What Financial Agents can Learn from Harry Potter

Branding, Investing and Emotions: What Financial Agents can Learn from Harry Potter

The Harry Potter series is the highest selling book series of all time, selling over 500 million combined copies. The books and the movies based on those books contain several quotes that can apply to various aspects of the financial services industry. Today we will examine how 7 Harry Potter quotes can help you become a better financial agent.

  • “I fashioned myself a new name, a name I knew wizards everywhere would one day fear to speak, when I had become the greatest sorcerer in the world!” – Voldemort, Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets (2002)

The evilest wizard in the entire Harry Potter Universe is an expert in personal branding. He was once known simply as “Tom Riddle.” But at an early age he realized that if he wanted to achieve his goals, he would need a new, more evil-sounding name: Voldemort. The new brand was so powerful that people in the Harry Potter world would say “he who must not be named” in place of Voldemort. But, of course, people still knew who they were discussing. He was the first thing associated with evil.

When you’re trying to establish your personal brand, you need to have an understanding of what that brand will represent. Voldemort wanted his brand to convey great evil because he is evil. Your personal brand needs to express who you are, which, hopefully, isn’t evil. Perhaps you want to be seen as “the best advisor for divorced women under the age of 30 in Mesa, Arizona” or “The advisor in Bozeman, Montana that specializes in planning retirement for high net worth individuals.”

Regardless of how you want to be seen by the public, you need to ensure your personal brand fits that view.

  • “Never trust anything that can think for itself if you can’t see where it keeps its brain.” – Arthur Weasley, Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets (2002)

Proprietary technology solutions exist for many problems in the world. There are proprietary software solutions for payroll processing, scheduling communications and much more. These solutions should be viewed with caution because they are typically “black-box” solutions.

A “black-box” solution is defined as a:

Device, process, or system, whose inputs and outputs (and the relationships between them) are known, but whose internal structure is not.

If you don’t know how the technology works, how it handles workflows, or where it stores information, you should be cautious about trusting it. Fully understanding technology solutions is a requirement to maintain adequate control over your data. The proprietary nature of many “black-box” solutions means you will never be able to understand how that solution works fully.

Open source solutions offer greater transparency, allowing you to gain a more in-depth understanding of the technology. This added transparency can give you greater control of your data and workflows, which allows you to understand how and where your data is being stored and gives you the option to change aspects of your technology solution.  

  • “It does not do to dwell on dreams and forget to live”— Albus Dumbledore, Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone (2001)

With the rate at which the world moves, you cannot dwell on dreams; you must constantly be “living.” That general idea has been promoted throughout history, used many times in pop culture and is the focus of several books.

In business, people always want more. More business, more money, more clients, and more success are goals of nearly every professional. It’s not a bad thing, but sometimes you need to take your focus off where you’re going, and show appreciation to those that helped you get to where you are.

Take some of your clients out for lunch or do something else that shows your appreciation. Building and keeping a customer base is hard work. Show your clients that you appreciate them. They will notice and appreciate what you do for them even more. By adding a personal touch and building strong connections with your clients, you will ensure that you can continue to reach for your dreams knowing you have a committed, loyal client base to build on.

  • “No good sittin’ worryin’ abou’ it. What’s comin’ will come, an’ we’ll meet it when it does.” –Rubeus Hagrid, Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire (2005)

This quote from the Hogwarts gamekeeper goes hand-in-hand with the last quote on this list. The last quote can be taken as a warning not to worry about “seeing the future” and not being discouraged from missed opportunities. This quote can be viewed as a call for patience and also as a call to action.

There is no need to rush into buying a growth stock, adopting the newest technology solution or doing anything. Your actions will not change the way things play out in a market. Rushing into things is a recipe for disaster. “What’s comin’ will come,” be patient and don’t expose yourself to undue risk.  

At the same time, when “what’s coming” finally arrives, you will have to meet it. That can mean many things in different situations, perhaps it’s finally time to adopt social media as a marketing channel. Perhaps it’s time to abandon a stock you believed would be successful. Regardless of the situation, it’s important not to rush, but also to react when necessary. Always move at the pace you feel comfortable with and adapt to change when you have to.

  • ‘It is our choices that show who we truly are, far more than our abilities.” – Albus Dumbledore, Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets (2002)

Choices are a big part of defining who you are. Every aspect of your life involves making decisions. Do I wear blue or black today? Should I have eggs or cereal for breakfast? What time should I leave for work? These choices may be minor, but every choice affects your life. Decisions have consequences, regardless of how small the decision seems.

As a financial agent, you have made decisions that defined your client base. Am I better at making investments or planning for retirements? Should I focus on millionaire Millennials or working-class baby boomers? Should I become a fiduciary or sell branded-investments?

These decisions impact how your brand is perceived by clients and the public at large. How do you want to be viewed? Your choices define who you are, not your abilities. How do you choose to market your services to clients? Are you going to rely on word-of-mouth referrals to grow your business? Are you going to advertise online? Or are you going to adopt content marketing as your tactic of choice?

The choice of whether or not to use digital marketing practices, is perhaps the biggest decision you need to make. Consumers want an “always on” omnichannel experience. Can you provide that without a strong digital presence?

Your choices define who you are more than your abilities do. Even if you aren’t the most digitally savvy person around, you can choose to build a strong digital presence. It will help your business and provide potential clients with a more convenient purchase path.

  • “Just because you have the emotional range of a teaspoon doesn’t mean we all have.” — Hermione Granger, Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix (2007)

Financial agents often have to deal with sensitive, personal issues with their clients. People will come to you for a number of reasons, some happy, others sad. You need to understand your client’s emotions and act accordingly.

When someone loses their job, they will be distraught, but still, require financial advice. When somebody’s parents pass away, they will need a financial agent to help guide them through the transition period. Situations, where loss has occurred, can be very emotional. To build a personal connection with your clients, acknowledge their emotions and help them understand that you’re there to help guide them through hard times with unwavering financial advice.

If your client has a child, gets a promotion, wins the lottery, or experience any number of other fantastic events that occur in life, they will be happy. As their financial agent, you should be jovial and celebrate with them. By showing your clients you genuinely care about their personal victories, you can build a strong connection and become part of their life, not just a part of their finances.

By harnessing the power of emotions and empathizing with your clients, you will be able to build a stronger connection with your client base. Leading to an increase in engagement and loyalty. In addition to providing a better customer experience, treating clients the way they would like to be treated can generate a positive return on investment for your business. The Harvard Business Review found that emotional connections are the best way to build loyalty with customers.

Dog Harry Potter

Harry Potter, a story about young wizards and witches, has become a cultural touchstone for many people worldwide. Are there any lessons that Harry Potter (or any other series) taught you? Let us know on Twitter @VeridayHQ!

If you like quote-based articles, check out: Michael Jordan, Mohammed Ali & Serena Williams: What They Can Teach You About Business .

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  1. […] nuggets of wisdom. We have already examined quotes by athletes that can apply to your business, Harry Potter quotes, and Star Wars quotes that can apply to financial agents, but this time around we will look at […]

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