How to position yourself as the go-to expert in your niche or industryEston Swaby
It doesn’t matter what business or industry you’re in, if you aren’t able to get new clients you probably won’t be in business very long. It is said that consistent cashflow is the lifeblood of a company, but if you are not consistently attracting new clients into your business, you will not have the cashflow to support your business.
But the problem is, most entrepreneurs are not finding new clients on a consistent basis. This is one of the major challenges new entrepreneurs face in their business.
And that is one of the reasons why you need to differentiate yourself from the competition because it doesn’t matter what products or services you offer, your potential clients probably have a lot of choices to choose from and so you need to position yourself as the go-to expert in your chosen niche or industry.
People must notice you.
The secret to getting noticed despite all the noise in the marketplace is authority. When you have authority, people will pay attention. When you are perceived as an expert in your industry, people will naturally want to work with you. Instead of you going out there to seek clients, they will seek you out.
But this will be an every night thing. In a world that’s become increasingly saturated with self-appointed “gurus,” it’s become incredibly difficult to separate yourself from the masses and be seen as an expert.
That’s why authority and credibility have become the name of the game.
How do you achieve authority and credibility?
Being seen as an authority or expert in your field and credibility is not something you can buy, it must be cultivated, and that takes time.
You need to be all in
To succeed you need to know what you are doing. But that is not all, before you do anything, you need to make sure you’re truly interested in and passionate about the niche you’re focusing on.
I remember when I started my online business, I was only chasing the money, I wasn’t passionate about what I was doing, and so it was always an uphill battle. Talking about it, writing about it, vlogging about it will inevitably become a chore, and you’ll lose momentum if you are not interested or passionate about your topic.
I can’t tell you the number of projects or businesses I started but soon abandoned over the years simply because I wasn’t fully invested in them. They were all emotionally draining just thinking about them at times.
And as Gary Vaynerchuk would say, “Passion is priceless.”
The bottom line is you need to be all in before anything else.
So are you all in to becoming an expert in your niche?
Here are 8 ways you can position yourself as the go-to expert in your industry:
- Start your own blog
Without question, you must consistently be sharing valuable content if you want to be seen as an expert in your niche. And having your own blog will allow you to do so whether in written or video format, on a regular basis. As you publish and promote your content online, you will gradually begin to position yourself as an expert on the topics that you focus on.
As you share content of value that is enjoyed by others, you will start gaining visibility as some of these people will also share your content on social media. This is how content goes viral – through peer-to-peer sharing. By blogging regularly, you expose your brand and your business to new audiences on a consistent basis.
- Write for other authority sites and blogs
Guest blogging is one of the most popular way to attract new followers as you are leveraging other people audience to build yours. Typically there are three main goals for guest blogging.
- Positioning yourself as an authority and well-known name in the industry.
- Getting exposure (traffic) back to your website.
- Building backlinks to your website.
Make a list of blogs that allows you to contribute to their audience and then pitch them if they have the right audience you are looking for. When looking for places to guest post, your main goal is to find sites relevant to your niche or industry. You are looking for blogs that fit the following criteria:
- The content is focused on your niche / industry.
- The audience of the blog will be interested in your industry.
- The blog has engaged readership (posts have been shared socially and commented upon).
- The blog owner is active on social media (so you know that they will be promoting your work on their site).
If you are health coach, you don’t want to contribute to fashion blogs. You want to find health related blogs with an engaged audience of people invested in their health and wellness.
Contact those websites, and request to become a guest contributor. Most website owners are always looking for high quality content to publish on their website that will add value to their visitors.
Write an article exclusively for each website on your list, and include your bio with a link back to your website at the end of your article. This strategy will help you get your message in front of new audiences online that may have never discovered you otherwise. You provide content to the website for free, and that content helps direct new visitors to your website. It’s a win-win.
3. Connect with other influencers
You already know what you want to talk about, now is time to start forming relationships with other influencers in your niche.
Why is this important?
Connecting with influencers is one of the best ways to get your name out there and to increase your brand equity. With this strategy you can leave from being a newbie, to be seen as an expert in just few days or weeks.
This is because you are able to use their “street credibility” and get their audience (and your audience also) to take you more seriously.
- Be a guest on podcasts
Being a guest on other influencers show is a great way to get known as an expert. Most podcast hosts are always on the lookout for more guests to interview for their show. Do a research on podcast that are in your industry/niche and if you think your story, message, or advice would add value to the audience of a specific podcast, then reach out to the host. Send the host a brief message outlining your experience and area of expertise, and tell them you’d like to be considered as a potential guest for their show.
If you make it a routine to be a guest on other podcasts regularly, your name will gradually become known by thousands of highly targeted people from around the world. At the end of each interview, tell the listeners how they can get in touch with you if they want to learn more about what you do or how you can help them.
- Optimize your LinkedIn profile
LinkedIn is a very popular social network for entrepreneurs and business professionals to connect and learn from each other. Your LinkedIn profile is a great place to showcase your expertise, professional experience, and achievements. Used properly, it can be an incredibly powerful networking and positioning tool.
Here are a few tips to optimize your LinkedIn profile:
- Use a professional photo for your profile picture (preferably a headshot)
- Write a compelling profile description that highlights your experience and areas of expertise
- Add specific skills to your profile so that people in your network can endorse you for those skills (endorse other people’s skills first, and they will likely reciprocate)
- Collect testimonials from other LinkedIn users in your network (write testimonials for other people first, and they will likely reciprocate)
- Include a way to contact you or a link to your website
- Leverage the use of client testimonials
This is an effective strategy to use as a part of your marketing strategy. Whenever you work with someone, ask them for a testimonial and for permission to display that testimonial on your website and in your marketing materials. Video testimonials are ideal, although written testimonials are still very effective.
When consumers are trying to decide who they want to buy from, they will want to see some sort of social proof that others have had a good experience with that product or service. Think about your own experience buying things online, don’t you always look at testimonials to see what others are saying about the product or service? I do that all the time when I am buying things on Amazon and other websites.
- Publish a book
One of the quickest way to be seen as an authority is to write a book about the topic or subject. When you say you are an author, potential clients immediately start seeing you as an authority. Not only that, but writing and publishing a book will open new doors for you, for example speaking opportunities.
Perhaps you’re a coach, a consultant, you own a small business or are in the personal services arena, by writing even a short book, you can enlarge your area of influence. You’ll not only reach your target audience, but your book may spill over into an even wider group of new followers.
- Speak at live events
Speaking at a conference or event is an effective way to build your profile and credibility and position yourself as an expert in your industry. When you are able to position yourself as an expert in your field, you will build trust and credibility in the marketplace which can lead to new business opportunities and an increase in sales and new customers.
This is because speaking opportunities get in front of your target audience to communicate your message and build brand awareness. But for this strategy to be effective it is very important to speak at conferences or events your target audience is likely to attend as it may result in new customers or clients.
There is no magic bullet that can turn you into an expert in your niche overnight. It is a process that will take time, and patience.
However, with the right strategies and connection, you can accelerate the process by following the strategies I have outline in this article. With the right approach, you can gain serious recognition and make your name synonymous with your niche.
When this is done properly, can yield a host of benefits, e.g., increased brand equity, continual leads and higher conversions.