A reputation as an expert in your field is your business’s biggest asset. While it’s important to build your business’s brand, it’s critical to leverage its biggest asset by building your own brand as an expert. You do that by engaging in a coordinated public relations strategy to raise your visibility and build your authority. A true measure of brand expertise is when journalists and industry groups seek you out.
Create an Online Presence
In a digitally connected world, if you don’t have an effective online presence, you dont exist to large portion of your market. It starts with having an attractive website populated with high-quality, compelling content that establishes you as an authority in your field. From the moment your website goes live, everything you do should revolve around content. It’s how you get found, how you get attention, how you exchange value, how you build authority, and how you build influence. Your website then becomes the hub of a social media apparatus that links it to communities found on Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, Instagram, and any other social network germane to your business.
Engage Your Community
By simply taking advantage of the free opportunities to create profiles on popular social media sites such as LinkedIn, Facebook, and Twitter, you are automatically expanding your online presence. In doing so, it’s important to remember that social media is not an end; you shouldn’t expect to generate new business from it. Instead, it’s a way to increase your visibility within your target audience. By actively engaging with your communities, your network of followers will grow, consisting of people who are interested in your thoughts and the information you offer. By spending as much time listening as you do contributing, you become trusted and respected for your insights.
Your blog should showcase your ideas and expertise. It is the central component in your social media strategy, where people can share your posts and more easily find their way to your website. If you are not a writer, hire one. Producing content is vital for sharing your insights and providing your market with valuable guidance. You can also create video blogs or podcasts that can be posted on your website and your social media sites, including YouTube. In addition, look for opportunities to guest blog for industry publications. They are always looking for contributors and, when your byline shows up on their websites, you are automatically positioned as an expert.
Speaking in front of groups is one of the most powerful ways to build your brand. When you step on stage or are seated on a panel, you develop a reputation as an authority in your field. Look for opportunities to speak or participate in panels at your industry conferences, at chamber of commerce meetings, or in front of social clubs, such as the Rotary Club or the Elks Lodge. Once you become known as a speaker, the opportunities will keep coming. Always offer value to your audience, focusing on what they want to learn about your field. Building your personal brand as an expert doesn’t happen overnight. With each step you take, your visibility increases and your influence grows, opening up more opportunities to showcase your expertise.