How to be perceived as an expert in your field
Expertise marketing is the process of demonstrating your expertise to a target market so that the buyers in that market become aware of what you know and have done. This practice will draw target clients to you. Social media is the perfect venue for expertise marketing. Here is how you can incorporate expertise marketing into your social media plan.
1. Identify a clear target market
In order to be effective, it’s important to have a clear description of your target market or ideal client profile. By establishing a clear target market you can shape your messages to be most attractive to those prospects. You can differentiate yourself from other providers who have a broader target market and make yourself more attractive to your ideal prospects.
2. Don’t keep it a secret
Once you identify a target market and are clear about its needs and challenges, you need to become more visible to those prospects. Where do they go? What are they reading? How can you be in those places? Are there tweet chats or hashtags that those prospects participate in? How about LinkedIn or Facebook groups where you could answer questions and demonstrate your expertise? Take those articles or Q&As and turn them into short videos to use on YouTube and throughout the social channels. Then take the best – the ones that are really getting engagement – and send them out in an email newsletter to your fans and referral partners. These outreach efforts should drive traffic back to your website where you should provide an intermediate offer of some sort.
3. Go on a date
It’s too much to expect prospects to go from reading an article or engaging with you on social media to hiring you. First, you have to find a way to “date” before you “get married”. The dating phase allows prospect to experience your genius in a more extensive format. It gives them a chance to “get to know” you, see more of your expertise – and THEN they call you. Your first steps toward engagement include social media engagement (you chat with them about an article or answer a question for them). But don’t stop there. How can you get them to sign up for your email newsletter? What about getting to know folks through industry events, etc.?
4. Create products
Engagement can come through eBooks/White papers, webinars or other longer-form videos, or workshops. You need landing pages and calls to action on your site that invite visitors to engage at those deeper levels.Each of those engagement steps should have further, specific calls to action that both invite prospects to contact us directly, or to follow more deeply down the marketing funnel.
5. Convert your audience into buyers
So if you are putting out relevant message that demonstrate your expertise to the target market (through as many channels as possible) you should start to see prospects respond to your intermediate offers. At each stage, reach out to them proactively and try to convert them, or let them continue down the marketing funnel on their own. You will need mechanisms that can capture contact information such as comment forms and email newsletter signups.
How do you get started?
- Develop thought leadership pieces (articles, presentations, etc.).
- Expand each piece into multiple outlets (Blog, Slideshare, Pinterest, YouTube, etc.).
- Link to each of those pieces through your social channels (Twitter, LinkedIn, Google+, Facebook, etc.).
- Demonstrate your expertise through comments and interactions on other thought leaders speaking to your ideal audience (blogs, social channels, etc.).
- Share your expertise on other people’s channels (guest blogging, cross-promotion, etc.).
- Drive that traffic to landing pages where prospects can engage further and see more of your expertise in action with intermediate offers (eBooks, webinars, white papers, videos, etc.).
- Because your expertise is so specific to your target market’s needs they respond to calls to action in those offers and reach out to you for more information.
When you think about it, expertise marketing is a piece of cake. You already know what you know; it’s just about communicating that knowledge over and over and over again until people hear it or see it. And then they buy from you!