One relic of the older editions are level titles. They started out as wargaming shorthand (as in, a hero is worth 4 fighting men). As video games have show, even otherwise meaningless achievements are psychologically very powerful. Rather than just hand out titles mechanically with level progression, why not make characters earn them literally?
Sample titles: champion, conjurer, veteran, journeyman, robber, baptist, demoncaller, etc. In addition, any organization within the campaign world can have a series of ranks or titles. Such a collection of titles is also a list of adventure seeds that suggests profitable courses of action to the players without compelling them to do anything.
There is no reason why a title could not also be accompanied by an XP award, optionally. It is often suggested that it would make more sense, for example, for a magic-user to gain experience from casting spells. Rewarding experience for titles gained seems like a reasonable way to go about giving experience for activities without overly changing the underlying incentive structure. And it reflects the fact that the first time you do something is special. You can get experience for killing more than one dragon, but you can only ever get the dragonslayer title once.
Don’t forget how Bilbo described himself to Smaug: clue-finder, web-cutter, stinging Fly, ringwinner, luckwearer, barrel-rider.
Maybe I’m being unnecessarily naturalistic, but doesn’t it also make more sense to refer to Felonius as a seer after he has successfully scried something?