If you aren’t the obvious expert in your niche, then why would consumers flock to you for advice and recommendations on products or services? Well, they won’t, unless you get lucky. The fact is that branding yourself as an obvious go-to expert in your niche gains you the name recognition and label of authority in your industry that accumulates leads, grows respect for your brand and ultimately increases profits for the people that do it right.
The only way to really cut through your competition’s sea of noise is to go above it and become the person that other people and news outlets seek out for legitimate information about the niche. By doing this, people will naturally place you and your business on a pedestal in their subconscious. They get to see the part of you that has a vested interest in offering intelligent and relevant insight about industry topics and its use as commentary in a news story. When your audience sees that you are actually informed and knowledgeable about the field and not just peddling a product to them, they will began to trust your brand and use your product or service.
But before you decide to become the obvious expert in your field, you need to create a basic strategy to saturate your particular niche market with news of your superior authority, or at least news that shows your target market that you have a respected expert opinion. You can no longer wait for word of mouth to be the only thing building your credibility and brand awareness. Because while you’re waiting, your competition is out there aggressively attempting to build the same image anyway they can.
Following here are three crucial steps I’ve outlined for positioning Unser Communications clients as the obvious expert in their field and exposing the knowledge and experience that many of them have to offer, but were previously not communicating to their audience.
Step #1) Use Wikipedia to Your Advantage:
Besides the obvious action of creating a web site and using social media to engage with your customers, you must also consider the fact that people look at other things about your brand on the web. Everybody knows that a basic Google search is the first way someone looks for basic information on the web. They’re not just typing in a company’s URL into the browser bar, so it’s crucial that you saturate the search results with your brand.
The powerhouse online encyclopedia, Wikipedia, is the best place to start with this because it’s usually the first link to be thrust to the top of the Google search results. This site can be an effective public relations tool when exposing your client’s expertise and building their credibility within their niche. But everyone cannot have his or her own Wikipedia page. Your client must have done things that are wiki-worthy, which means it has to be significant to the world in some way or another. Every single sentence, every date, and every piece of information has to be properly backed up by sources from news, books, magazines, documents, and legitimate web sites, otherwise it’s just erased. If it sounds promotional in any way, shape or form and does not strictly aim to inform the public, it will be erased. So naturally, it has become a place to find legitimate information on anything that has importance and can be supported with sources. Therefore, creating a page for your clients and listing their background and experiences allows them an additional legitimizing factor for their brand and allows journalists to gain quick and easy knowledge about them as a source.
Step #2) Create a Relevant and Insightful Niche Expert Column or Blog
Another crucial step in preparing for the positioning of your client or yourself as an expert is to create consistent column and/or blog posts about your niche that allows you to give insight and tips on things currently relevant to your industry. It doesn’t matter how smart you are, if nobody knows it. When audiences see your expert knowledge in Forbes or in some other top tier industry news, it gives your organization immediate legitimization and reliability while also showing your audience how informed you are on the niche. People trust these publications. If the publications trust you to not be promotional and to offer intelligent insight on industry issues, then so will your target market.
Step #3) Become an Expert Source for Niche Stories
The final step in preparation for expert positioning is to use your expert column and a short bulleted list of experiences to reach out to specific media that often write on stories relating to the column. These writers will often use the expert’s column and experiences to decide if the expert’s prospective is what they want to add to their story. The media needs the first two steps to actually have the ability to see the qualifications and experiences of the source. In order to position yourself or client as an expert to a target market, you must first expert position to the media. Getting interviewed in the media as an expert is the single most significant step in achieving an expert status within your niche. Once your target sees expert commentary from you or your client in the news, it will elevate the company’s status within the niche and ultimately increase its profits.
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