If you’re like most business owners, you want people to come to you with questions and money. You want to establish yourself as an expert in your field. But with so many other so-called “experts” in your field, how can you possibly stand out?
1. Create valuable content
Content is by far the best marketing tool available right now. It’s affordable to create, and it can lead traffic and business to your website. But it’s not enough to simply spit out words on a page. Your content has to have value for your readers.
A company blog is an excellent place to create posts on what your customers want to know. Make a list of questions they frequently ask, or problems you know they have. Create content around these topics and make them highly searchable by using targeted keywords.
The more value you put into the content you create, the more people will share it socially. More people will find you and your company, and consider you an expert in your field.
2. Answer questions
While blog posts are one place to answer questions, there are others. People on Twitter and Facebook ask questions and start conversations daily. Why not jump in and provide your own expertise?
Also, sites like LinkedIn Answers, provide a place for people with questions to find those with answers. Quora and Focus do the same. The experts with solid, in-depth answers get quite a following. You can create a profile with your website URL, which should help people connect the dots back to your brand.
Check in to these sites several times a week and respond to a handful of questions you’re qualified to answer.
3. Write a book
I’m the first one to tell you that not every author makes enough to retire from book writing (or even to go on vacation). But there’s still an aura of accomplishment for those who take the time to write one. It doesn’t have to be a bestseller, or even released by a big publishing house. Simply writing a book and letting people know can do wonders for your status as an expert.
If you don’t want to go through the pain of pitching your book to a publishing house, or even self-publishing in print, take advantage of Kindle’s Direct Publishing service.
4. Start speaking
Public-speaking engagements are great for establishing expertise. You educate attendees, prove you know your stuff and make a few contacts after your presentation. Start speaking at local events, such as at your Chamber of Commerce, and work your way up to national trade shows and conferences.
Becoming an expert isn’t hard if you dedicate yourself to slowly building a following, and providing value everywhere you interact online.