Reconfigure Your Branding with Authority
Derive Influence, Drive Authority
Trends in marketing can be like revolving doors – circuitously transitioning from hot topic to yesterday’s news in nominal amounts of time. Account-based marketing, Behavioral marketing, Content marketing, and on and on for what can seem like an alphabet soup of marketing buzz-words. This ever-increasing marketing inventory proves the need to locate a form that cuts through the noise, looking out upon the other marketing subjects with a unified focus. In meeting this need, only one type of marketing taps into the root of all success: influence.
Enter, Authority Marketing.
This term may be new to the scene, but the idea behind it spans generations. People will always follow those who lead; both in life and in business. The challenge in deploying this form of marketing is asserting your power in a tractable, impressionable way.
The most sure-fire way to assert authority is by establishing a clear personal brand. If you can’t establish who you are, what you do, and how well you do it, no one else will be inclined to lean in to your authority either. A personal brand is comprised of three key components: biography, personal real estate, and image. This branding trio dictates the perceived power behind your endeavors in authority marketing.
Bolster Your Biography
A professional biography is the foremost chance to explain who you are. While this bio should remain as succinct as possible, don’t shy away from singing your own praises. Flesh out this copy with awards and accolades. Few will know about the trophy you took home five years ago unless you divulge it.
Along those same lines, who or what are you affiliated with? Align yourself with professional organizations, non-profit boards, your beloved alma mater, and so on. People are inherently drawn to those who are similar to them. As you add these affiliations to your biography, you broaden the net that you cast, enabling a larger catch of potential clients to be reeled in.
Emphasize the authority in your title. Are you a manager, a chief officer, even a founder? Let us know! By planting seeds of authority within your biography, the crop of influence is reaped within the minds of the consumers.
Invest in Your Own Real Estate
There’s another type of real estate that isn’t affected by the ups and downs of the housing market: your personal brand’s real estate. Do you own your personal website domain? Only a quick inquiry into your “firstnamelastname.com” will tell. The average URL is between $10 to $15 dollars a year to maintain, a nominal cost in the grand scheme of authority marketing.
Is there another professional out there marketing themselves with the same or remarkably similar name? If so, consider adding a middle initial to your title. If you have a very popular name, weigh the opportunity of assuming a nickname or a shortened version of your full name. After all, LA Lakers legend “Magic” Johnson’s real name is just plain old Earvin.
Control Your Image
Face it, we live in a shallow society. While there is no need to airbrush your photos into magazine cover territory, be conscious of the image that you put out into the world. A google image search on your name should result in a professional headshot rather than photo documentation of Spring Break ’07. Hopefully you had a great time in Cabo, but don’t let it dominate your prime image search realty. After your name, a clean-cut image is the next thing that a potential client will associate with you. Make this virtual first impression a great one by investing in professional headshots – they’re guaranteed to save face.
Once you’ve knocked out the above, your foundation of authority marketing will have been sturdily laid. Now, it’s time to raise the structure by fleshing out your personal brand with content. Assert your position as an expert in your field by sharing your vast knowledge across digital platforms. LinkedIn articles are a simple and well-targeted way to spread word of your top-tier expertise throughout your network. Additionally, consider adding a personal blog to your website. This enables you to publish interesting takes on topical trends and innovations within your industry. The deeper the library of content, the sooner a client will place their trust in you as an industry leader.
The ultimate addition to the personal content library, however, is a published book. Although it sounds like a giant undertaking, in today’s e-book friendly market, more books than ever are getting published. Some have gone as far to say that the book is the “new business card,” signaling credibility as the author summits the peak of authority.
Keeping Up Appearances with Event Opportunities
Now that the frame of the authority marketing house has been constructed, it’s time to focus on the aesthetics. Adorn the influential role in which you have assumed by making public appearances. Paint yourself as a subject matter expert by planning and attending relevant events. Conferences are always in search of keynotes, just as organizations are constantly looking for panel members in the jam-packed schedule of professional events. By plugging into these opportunities and putting forth your expertise, your network will expand exponentially.
On the flip side, consider producing your own events as well. Aligning your brand with a successful event will grant credibility and foster a sense of trust amongst clients. Giving your followers the chance to interact with you in person, rather than through standard emails and phone calls, will grow a more personal relationship that results in a deepened sense of camaraderie. Another noteworthy benefit; the exposure and PR from these events will aid in transporting your authority farther and wider.
Make Authority a Priority
Now that the components have been laid out, your brand as an authoritative marketer is waiting to be constructed. To sum up the key points:
- Flesh out your personal brand.
- Craft a compelling biography.
- Buy up your personal real estate.
- Control the image that you put forth.
- Create and deploy your own content.
- Paint yourself as an expert by way of events.
Don’t miss your chance to put together the final pieces of the authority marketing puzzle. Stay tuned for next month’s newsletter, containing a continuation of this feature.