Building influence is a difficult task for any brand. How can you be seen as an expert when you’re not as well known as your competition? When you’ve got very little online presence? When you’ve got so much to say but don’t know where to start?
The road to take to be seen as an expert isn’t an easy one but it is worthwhile. It can enhance your brand reputation, grow your audience and result in an increase of sales.
What actually is an expert?
An expert is defined in the Collins Dictionary as “A person who is very skilled at doing something or knows a lot about a particular subject.”
This is relevant to business because at the end of the day it’s expertise that we buy into.
The issue is with 4.4 million blogs being published every day, 700,000 active podcasts and 400 hours of video uploaded onto YouTube every minute, everybody seems to be an expert these days – or they think they are.
The challenge is for you to position yourself as an expert in an area that you know inside out.
Knowing you’re an expert is one thing, presenting yourself as one for others to see is another. Here are 4 ways to be seen as an expert.
#1: Have a clear focus
Have you ever heard the saying “Jack of all trades and master of none?” This is something you want to avoid as it will dilute your brand and essentially mean that you become known for … well absolutely nothing.
Why is this? Because no one will understand what you offer when you seem to do it all. That’s why you need to have a specific focus. For example, if you’re a lawyer you can specialise in one aspect of law, if you’re a manufacturer, you can create products for one particular industry and so on.
So when I say focus, I mean that you need to have a key focus in every aspect of your business. This means:
- A specific area of expertise you’re brilliant at in your industry.
- A key audience you sell your products or services to.
- A single social media platform that you can conquer and become known as the expert using it in your industry – this will help you build your audience and sell online.
- A single platform for your website.
This will help you build credibility in your field and help you be seen as the expert you are.
#2: Share your knowledge
Doing this will help you become an authority in your field. It’s really important to share what you know because this will show your target audiences that you actually know what you’re doing. Obviously you know that you’re good at what you’re doing, but that doesn’t mean your audience does!
There are a number of ways you can share your knowledge. You can:
- Create your own content (I’ll talk about this more in the next point).
- Make guest appearances on other people’s podcasts, vlogs, blogs, memberships etc.
- Use social media to share opinions, tips and get involved in online chats where you offer advice to those that need it.
- Speak on stage at events.
- Host regular Q&A’s either online or in-person (depending on who you’re targeting).
- Host your own events.
Any and all of these things will showcase you as an expert … just don’t do it all at once! Remember point 1 – Focus.
#3: Become a content creator
This is where you position yourself as someone who is worth listening to.
By consistently creating your own content – a blog, podcast, vlog etc – you’re investing in your audience, solving problems they have and building trust. This is invaluable because your audience will soon come to know you as the got-to expert in your industry and will want to buy from you.
This isn’t a quick win. You need to spend a lot of time and effort creating high quality content that your audience actually wants to read, watch or listen to. This is so important. You need to become a concreator for them, not for you.
It’s all about your audience. Listen to their problems, create the right type of content on the right channel and publish regularly for them. If in doubt about what type of content they want and how often to publish – ask them!
Who is well known in your industry? Who does your target audience look up to? These are people you should be seeking to collaborate with.
Collaboration can boost your credibility as an expert simply by association. I mean if you interviewed Beyonce for your podcast or had her on stage at one of your events it wouldn’t hurt your reputation would it?!
Find the Beyonce of your industry and start conversations with him / her / them online and start thinking of joint opportunities for you to offer something unique to your audiences. It has to benefit them as well as you and be something that will add genuine value to your audiences.
My final thoughts …
Being seen as expert isn’t something that’s going to happen in a day, a week or maybe even a year … it’s a process that takes a lot of time and effort because you’re working on changing people’s perceptions.
If you want to be seen as an expert then you need to begin now (it’s never too early to start taking action) and you need to be consistent in your activity. That will help you start building relationships with your audiences.
Do you want to become the go to expert in your industry? Creating a good PR strategy can help you do that. Check out my membership site Headliners: The PR & Digital Marketing Academy to learn more.
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