In a marketplace crowded with others offering similar services, how do you set yourself apart from the crowd?
Thought leaders are essentially recognized for their creative ideas and know-how on trends and topics affecting an industry. But more importantly, the credibility that they command can do wonders for your business.
Although thought leadership is something every inbound marketer should strive for – time constraints and limited resources can restrict your elevation to expert status. And while the cost of inbound marketing is significantly lower than outbound activities, you’ll certainly need to put in the time if you truly want to be recognized as a thought leader.
So, how do you become a thought leader? Here you’ll find five ways to get you started without too much hassle.
How To Become A Thought Leader In Your Field
This may seem rather obvious, but you need a place to publish your thoughts, ideas and tips. Basically, you will want to be posting something your target audience finds valuable, which we’ll get to in the next point.
Of course, if you prefer not write, you can always go down the podcasting or video route. And you can always use those to supplement your blog content.
Find a niche and own it
You’ll have a much easier time creating content for a niche you’re truly passionate about. But don’t set out to become a jack-of-all-trades – narrow your focus to add more value.
It’s much easier to go in-depth into one specific area than trying to cover all your bases – for example becoming a thought leader in technology would be too broad for anybody. But focusing on cleantech makes it more manageable for you and does not limit you too much.
When you find a niche, own it by reading up and researching all you can on the topic.
Be active on social media
Being active on social media helps drives more traffic to your website, plus it also improves your SEO when you’re sharing your blog posts.
But there’s more to social media than just self-promotion. For instance Twitter is a fantastic tool for following conversations in real-time, and the beauty is that you can join in without feeling as though you’re being rude.
You can also use LinkedIn to the same effect, with Groups and the Answers page. Simply offer your advice whenever somebody is asking for help.
Another way to be active on social media is by curating content, i.e. sharing stories you find useful and deliver the most value to your audience.
Offer to speak at local events about your area of expertise. Most people will shy away from giving public presentation, which is good news for you! Since it increases your credibility.
Another benefit is that you’ll meet loads of people in person, possibly potential clients, and start building relationships.
For the online world, check out forums where your target audience gathers, join LinkedIn groups and answer questions on Q&A site like Quora and Yahoo Answers.
Search Engine Optimization
Quality content is important but you also need to get found on search engines in order for people to take notice.
That’s where SEO comes in. Whenever somebody searches for a term relevant to your area, you want your site be ranked right up there at the top.
Find keywords your target audience uses and put them into your content. For tips on how to find them, check out Four Ways To Find Out What Keywords Your Customers Use For Greater Visibility Online
An old saying goes “Knowledge is power.” And to achieve the status and benefits of a thought leader, you certainly need to know your stuff. If you enjoyed this post, you might also want to read; How to stay updated on everything in your industry .
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Photo by Kostas Papageorgiou via Kanguro