Last week I spoke about the need to be seen as a specialist and an expert – if you missed it then check it out here.
It got a great response from many but the overwhelming question was – so what do I have to do to be seen as an expert. Good question!
Let me say 2 things straight out – firstly, it is not an overnight thing, but it can be done smartly, and secondly, it is not about becoming THE expert, but AN expert, and there is a subtle but important difference.
For example, you might say that Warren Buffet is THE expert on stock selection, but he is not the only one – there are many others. So, the bar is not being set as being THE expert!
The fact is that there are many things you can do, and here I will share some ideas. The advice I would give is to pick 2 or 3 form this list and focus on those.
Please, do not try and do them all – it will simply create overwhelm.
So here is a list of things you can do:
- Get to understand their needs and desires – this is a must for everyone. The best way, in my view, to do that is to interview a number of ideal clients and that will really help you understand what is important to them. These interviews can be recorded and be used in many different ways.
- Publish a paper that answers the specific needs that you will help resolve – the source for this can be the interviews! See how you can use the same material times over!
- Write blog articles on your own site and on sites they visit – once again, your interviews and the content on those blogs will serve as material for you. Relate your writing to the specialist service you provide – but not in a “sales” way.
- Comment on their online forums – get noticed, but always add value. Don’t just put things like – “good comment”, or “I agree”. Make your contribution meaningful.
- Attend their industry events – be seen! If you are frequently noticed at their industry events, you will get to acquire “expert” status!
- Be visible on social media. Be strategic about this. or otherwise you will waste a host of time! I know I did at the beginning! Focus on where your target market congregates – communities on Google+, groups in LinkedIn, Quora and other forums etc. Get into these groups and add value – engage in conversations that can help position you as the expert. Focus on being a giver – not a taker!
- Build relationships with industry event organisers. If speaking is your thing – and it is not for everyone, I accept! – then speaking at industry conferences is a fantastic platform for you. But, you must build the relationship with the event organisers first. So, have them on your radar!
- Create a promotional pack for yourself. Not to be confused with your CV! This is a pack that you can distribute to referral partners, potential clients, conference organisers or the media. It really is material that promotes you and demonstrates your expertise.
Let me say that there are other things you can do, but just select a few from that list and make a commitment.
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