Are You a Thought Leader?

You’ve probably heard the term “thought leader” thrown around… but what does it mean? And why is it important?

A thought leader is an individual who is recognized for expertise and innovation within a given discipline. A thought leader is someone who keeps the conversation moving, who identifies opportunities and solutions before they are apparent to everyone else.

But why should you care?

You should care because establishing yourself as a thought leader in your industry or your market could make you lots of money.

This is the case for two basic reasons.

First, it separates you from the competition and enables you to bring in more business. People prefer to do business with experts when given the opportunity. If you’re choosing a doctor for your child, and option A is a nationally recognized expert while option B is nondescript, who are you going to choose, all else being equal? Of course you’ll choose the expert– because you want the best for your family.

Secondly, people will pay premium rates to do business with an expert.  It’s an unconscious assumption that a recognized expert is going to be more expensive than average. Establishing yourself as a thought leader gives you the ability to charge higher rates than the competition—and still bring in new business. (Read more on this subject here.)

So how can you become a thought leader within your industry? Below are three ways you can leverage the internet to enhance your credibility and create expert status:

Create a website that establishes expertise and credibility. When consumers and others wish to learn more about you, one of the first things they are going to do is check out your website. If your website looks like it was designed by your nephew back in 1998, it’s going to be tough to convince visitors that you are on the cutting edge in your market. Not only does your website need a modern look and feel, but the content should be created in a way that emphasizes your expertise. Special Reports and White Papers are a great way to do this.

Publish a blog. An industry blog is a great way to establish yourself as an expert—because it shows your readers that you know what you’re talking about. Taking complex subjects and breaking them down into clear, simple concepts that your audience can understand demonstrates your mastery– and your blog also gives potential customers an opportunity to “get to know you” before they actually reach out to you. Blogging regularly also shows that you’re engaged and active.

Get active on social media. These days, a huge percentage of online conversation takes place on social media—and particularly on LinkedIn, Facebook, and Twitter. If you’re not present, you can’t be part of the conversation.

It won’t happen overnight– but if you commit to working towards “thought leader” status and take regular steps in that direction, you’ll begin to see the benefits in your bottom line.

Questions or comments? Would you like to learn more? Feel free to get in touch with us today!

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Spotlight Branding

Spotlight Branding is a content marketing and branding firm for lawyers and other professionals. Our goal is to help you create an online presence that positions you as a credible expert in your field, keeps you connected with your network in order to stay top of mind and increase referrals, and to become more visible online so prospects can find you!