Last week, we began our conversation about achieving expert status. Here are more action steps you can take to increase your visibility and position as THE expert:
Write articles. Get articles published wherever you can. Any publication, from your alumni newsletter to your local daily paper can be a good venue for you to get your message across. When writing articles always ask for a byline and a photo. Reprint all articles you have written. Send them to current clients and potential clients. Your name in print spells expertise. You can publish your articles online for an elevated web presence ... start here.
Publish your own newsletter or "ezine" (e-magazine). If you can not easily get others to print your articles, print them yourself. A newsletter can be no more than a single side of an 8' 1/2 by 11' sheet of paper. In addition to information on a topic related to your business you can also print a list of services, an announcement about a special event or any other self promoting information you see fit. Also electronic newsletters are an effective way to stay in touch and are almost no cost to produce.
Write a book. Being the author of any book adds credibility to your message. If you are not able to get a publisher to take it, consider self-publishing. There are a lot of resources out there to assist people with self-publishing. Also, there is a lot of software on the market that makes the formatting of your book easy. Here is my suggestion for the go-to company for graphic design, if you want the look and format to be ultra-professional. Tell 'em I send ya for the 'friends and family discount.' If you don't have a copy of my book, Tall Order!, be among the first 10 to request a complimentary copy and it will be on its way to you tout-de-suite.
Print a booklet. If a book is overwhelming then consider the simple and easy alternative. A booklet can be nothing more than four pages folded over with information and tips to consumers to consider when working with your industry. You can use this as a leave behind marketing piece that will continue to state your expertise.
Get media coverage. Produce a press kit discussing the topics you would like to speak to. Send out news releases to your local papers radio stations and TV shows when you are doing something news worthy. When you are a guest on a show always ask for a video or a tape so you can use it for other opportunities later, and for the media center on your website.
Get professional endorsements to use in your brochure and other marketing materials. Endorsements from someone recognized as an expert in a related field or from someone recognized as an expert in your field will say that even the experts think you are an expert.
Create photo recognition. Have a professional quality photograph on hand so you can seize any opportunity to use it. People that will not remember your name will remember your face. Then you will hear when they recognize you as an expert "I see your picture everywhere."
Teach. If you are teaching others what you know you must surely know a lot. Community colleges, universities and community organizations are always looking for adjunct instructors and special guests speakers to share their expertise with students.
Whatever you decide to do to establish yourself as an expert, recognize that you must regularly continue your professional development. Go to seminars, read industry publications, consult with colleagues keep current on the use of new technologies in your industry. To establish yourself as an expert, remember the most important part is to first be the expert you are capable of being.
Someone is going to be highly recognized as an expert in your industry. Have that expert be YOU!