You probably hear the term “thought-leader” being thrown around a lot these days. What we used to call an “expert” is now more than that. They not only know their topic really well, but they use the digital world to ensure everyone knows they know their stuff! They are thought-provoking and help question the subject area and provide this information to the masses.
It can be a slow climb to become a thought-leader the likes of Gary Vaynerchuk or Simon Sinek, who are widely regarded as the top thought-leaders in their industry. They have spent a lot of time and money to grow to this level of expertise.
That doesn’t mean that you can’t provide your target audience with a level of thought-leadership as well.
What are the Benefits of Being a Thought-Leader?
Being a thought-leader allows your clients, potential clients, and others to feel confident in the information you are disseminating. They can be opened to all that you have to offer by hearing from you in your own voice. With the even present competition for business, being a thought-leader helps you stand ahead of others.
How Do You Share Your Voice?
One of the ways to be seen and heard is by starting a blog. Both Gary Vaynerchuk and Simon Sinek have grown exponentially due to their blogging (and vlogging) and are seen world-wide as the go to experts in their areas thanks to the exposure they receive.
“One reason I encourage people to blog is that the act of doing it stretches your available vocabulary and hones a new voice.” Seth Godin, Seth’s Blog
Seth Godin writes a blog every day and sends them out via email to a massive distribution list. Some days they are short and thought-provoking. Others are long and political. You never know what you are going to read each day. But you are drawn to read to hear his voice, his thoughts for the day.
He uses his blogs to make sure he is in on the current conversations occurring in the world. As do Vaynerchuk and Sinek.
Blogging is a simple way to be marketing your brand without being in full on sales mode. You are contributing to the market and providing expertise and needed information to your client and/or potential client.
I Can’t Write a Blog?
Are you saying right now “but I can’t write a blog, I’m not an expert”.
Well you can write a blog. It just takes the confidence to put your thoughts down on paper (or computer!) and be prepared for them to be read.
In 2014 I decided to challenge myself by writing a blog article every day for a year (365 Day Mom blog). It was a massive challenge, but it taught me everything from coming up with topics to writing quickly and under crazy circumstances. Plus, I learned how to use WordPress, Canva, Asana and more. All things that I would eventually develop into systems for my 365 Day Media company. Who knew! My blogs weren’t always long, and they weren’t always good. But I did it and built a new career and company because of it.
You don’t need to write every day. But having a blog on your website and sharing these through social media will provide you with content to share with clients and potential clients.
Having a blog is another way that your name may come up in searches on the topic that you want to be an expert in.
Tips for Starting Your Blog
First, decide how many times a month you want to write. Start off with something easy. Maybe it is just once a month. If only once a month, then that is only 12 blogs a year. Easy!
Don’t think you have anything to write about? You do. Grab a pen and paper and write down a topic you feel you know something about. Write down all the questions that you may get from people on this topic. No question is too small. You will probably land up throwing a bunch out, or combining them into one blog topic, but just let your mind run free on possible questions and topics.
Schedule these topics into potential blogs for the next year. And then get writing. Keep your sentences and paragraphs to the point. Don’t worry about being too long or too short, although averaging around 600-700 words to start will work just fine.
Before posting, make sure you find someone to proof your blog, find a great visual or two to go with your blog that best represents the topic, and use keywords when posting. You want to make sure that your blog has the best chance possible of being seen.
You then need to make sure you share on all your social media platforms. Check your analytics on your platforms to find the best time of day to post. You may want to boost your post to get it some extra exposure.
Blogging isn’t difficult (not like writing those university papers!), so just make your blogs work for you. Be your own voice, target your blogs towards the audience you want to reach, and enjoy the process.
This week’s blog was written by our CEO Tami Tate. A small business owner since 1998, she loves working with entrepreneurs, events and businesses of all sizes on their marketing.