Everyone has a voice these days. The power of the internet and social media means that a freelancer can have as loud a voice as the CEO of a large company. For those of us running small businesses, becoming a well-known voice of influence in our industry can attract sales as well as attention.
But it doesn’t just happen. You can’t just post your opinions and expect people to take note. You need to contribute to the industry community in a tangible way and establish yourself as a voice of authority and become recognised as a leader in your field who has something to say and contribute.
This development from completely unknown to industry leader is not quick or easy. It takes time, patience and an incredible amount of motivation, an entrepreneurial mindset, and sound decision making, a few of which are outlined below.
Create a Blog or Personal Website
First and foremost, you need to have something of value to say, followed by a platform from which to say it. Creating a blog or website can be a very effective way of projecting your voice to your audience and contributing to the industry dialogue. Just be sure that when you choose your domain you find something that is not only available, but fits with the brand you are trying to develop and has a clear history free of infractions. You can find out a domain’s history through a domain lookup tool like this one. Once you have your site registered and live, you then need to produce valuable and engaging content and keep to a regular posting schedule. Maintaining a blog or personal website can be a lot of work, but when done well it can easily repay the time, energy, and effort.
To make it slightly easier on yourself, remember to also link it with your social media accounts so that new content is broadcast to your social audience. You should also build up a good email list and send out email newsletters notifying subscribers of new content as well.
Post on LinkedIn
With the LinkedIn Influencer designation that allows you to make article length posts on LinkedIn, this social medium is becoming increasingly practical for helping business professionals to be able to establish their reputation within their fields. It is also quite handy because your content is directly accessible to other industry professionals within your niche, from your personal connections to others in the industry that follow the same groups. Unlike your blog where you will need to generate traffic and a readership from scratch, LinkedIn already has that in place. What’s more, because it is a platform specifically catering to career development and the professional world, your influential posts are sure to be directed to the right demographic.
Guest Post on Other Influencers’ Blogs
This type of networking not only helps you form significant connection within your industry, but it helps you to align your brand with the brand of the influencer that you are working with. This is a particularly good idea if you are still establishing yourself as a person of influence within your industry and your own blog doesn’t quite have an authorial weight behind it yet. Being published on the blog of someone who is already well established is a good way of getting yourself noticed. Also having the influencer return the favour and guest post on your site can add credibility to your own blog as well as encourage cross-over readership.
Regular blogging and writing will increase your influence. Being able to summarise your thoughts will also improve your communication skills. Whatever type of business you are in, that has to help.