corporate branding

Fintechs Looking For M&A Opportunities Need A Personal Approach To Branding

Many fintech companies may be ready for acquisition but can they say the same about their branding? Incomplete or unsuccessful brand strategies are some of the biggest detriments to fintech companies who are looking for acquisition opportunities.

Here’s why the CEO’s personal brand is an emerging fintech company’s biggest asset - if they utilize it correctly.

Fintech companies saw the highest M&A quarterly volume ever for Q1 2019, reaching a total volume of $112.1 billion USD. Staggering as that is, there are many more missed opportunities where great fintech startups fail to attract lucrative deals due to a subpar initial reception.

Fintech companies have to rely on the power of their branding to attract the right investors and public interest. Whether they plan on presenting their idea at Finovate or going through several funding rounds, that first impression is essential for establishing a good rapport. Fintechs who don’t focus on promoting a professional outward presentation, and a united brand, will ultimately set themselves up to fail. 

When The Power of Branding Drags You Down

We’ve seen countless branding fails in the past, from both small businesses and big brand names, even within the fintech industry. A prime example of this is Facebook’s recent unveiling of their new cryptocurrency, Libra. A small fintech startup called Current quickly realized that Libra’s logo matched their own, and called them out on it via Twitter. The CEO of Current, Stuart Sopp, mentioned to CNBC that “This is a funny way to try and create trust in a new global financial system,” and he hit a very important point with that statement.

The fintech industry is the amalgamation of two big industries - technology and finance -  and each brings its own set of problems to the table. But one of the biggest adoption barriers that all fintech companies face is the trust factor; the inherent and perceived security flaws that make people wary to trust a new system with their valuable data and money.

The aim of any fintech company is to build a strong, coherent brand that can overcome that trust barrier, and eventually (if that’s their aim) gain enough backing to become a viable target for M&A. But when something like the Libra logo situation happens, it breaks down the small headway the company has made. Some larger companies are able to weather this type of setback but that won’t work for newly emerging fintechs.

When Fintechs Do Branding Well, They Leverage Their CEO’s Brand

Fintechs who want to build a positive brand image know that they need to focus on creating a friendly, open identity that connects with people in a real way. There are more than enough examples out there of fintech leaders and marketing gurus espousing this very idea. Yet, at the same time, it’s incredibly hard to find many who are talking as passionately about the big role that personal brand impressions play, especially on social media

In a lot of ways, fintech brands’ reputations are tied to their founder or CEO’s personal brand. According to a study by Burson-Marsteller, as much as 48% of a company’s reputation comes from the impression created by it’s CEO. Those who value building trust with the public, value their CEO’s reputations, because these lend authenticity and approachability to the brand, which in turn builds trust.

This concept is universal to every industry, and can be especially invaluable in fintech, where the industry can so quickly come across as impersonal and distant. The finance sector needs to be humanized through a user-centric approach and the easiest way to achieve that is with a strong personal brand.

What is the Future of Work?

What makes humans different from robots? Our sense of humanity is what will prevent many aspects of work from transitioning to robots and artificial intelligence. Humans are not machines, and that’s a good thing. However, humanity can only be effective if it’s properly harnessed — and that means embracing a sense of vulnerability and empathy that many of us would rather leave behind at the office.

You need to be vulnerable to connect with another human being in a way that artificial intelligence never can. Social media has conditioned us to only put forward the most perfect versions of ourselves in the name of a good personal brand, but I argue this approach is misguided. If you can open up, even a little bit, you’ll find that others are going through the same things you are. The resulting bonds and shared emotional intelligence are essential for every organization.

Why Personal Branding Is Crucial for Professionals in Finance and Investment Banking

Why Personal Branding Is Crucial for Professionals in Finance and Investment Banking

Being a professional in this industry can sometimes bring an unwarranted negative image. The perception of finance and investment banking professionals often attracts blame for issues such as the financial crash in 2008.

In order to overcome this stigma, professionals in the finance and investment banking industry should look towards increasing their personal brand and changing people’s mind through positivity.

5 Things You Can Learn from Talaya Waller's TEDx Talk on Personal Branding


1. Technology has caused a major shift in influence. Today, one employee can have more influence, and also consumer trust than their entire organization.

2. People are tired of being sold. In business marketing, we have moved away from humanizing objects to influencing people with other people who they know, like, and trust. Individuals who want to build an influential personal brand can use the know-like-trust formula.

3. Everyone has a brand, but most people don’t manage it strategically, effectively, or consistently. Individuals who have a well-defined personal brand usually generate increased value for their company, whether they work for themselves or someone else.

4. Your personal brand is the most powerful tool you have to accomplish your goals. A branding strategy is essential to success in fundraising, growing a business, or changing careers.

5. Branding is no longer about companies trying to manage our perception. Today, it’s about people creating and sharing human experiences.

The future of branding is personal.

How to Become an Entrepreneur Within Your Organization

How to Become an Entrepreneur Within Your Organization

Entrepreneurship is a mindset. An entrepreneur is someone who embraces critical thinking, innovation, and change rather than waiting to adapt to changes as they occur. Entrepreneurs who operate within an organization are looking to add value; they are open to advice from mentors and managers and proactively seek innovative solutions. They take full control of their career paths. Strong business leaders understand that human capital is the most valuable asset they have, even though it often does not show on the balance sheet, and that the best employees are the ones who are proactive, not reactive. These are the people who make the clients and customers happy.