How to establish yourself as an expert

Being an expert in a particular field or industry is no easy task, especially when considering building your own business from scratch.  There are many things to consider and steps to take to establish yourself as an expert and grow your business.

The first thing a budding entrepreneur needs to do is create a plan. Start by establishing short-term and long-term goals for your business, and create an outline as to how you are going to achieve those goals. Then, take a step further, and figure out why those are your goals. Intentionality is the key to success. While making money and being successful are great incentives in growing your business – if that is all you are after, you are likely going to fail. You need to determine a strong foundation to stand on. This will keep you motivated even during the times when the money isn’t pouring in and things aren’t going the way you would like.

Next, determine who your audience is. What is your product and who is it meant for? Of course – most entrepreneurs would like to say that your product is for everyone! But having a targeted outreach is going to help you succeed. Learn the demographic for your product and figure out the best way to reach them. Also, once you’ve found your target audience, ask yourself why they should care about you.

Immerse yourself in the industry. The best way to be successful is to observe other people’s successes and failures. Be present both in online communities, forums, and discussions as well as at in-person events. If people learn to recognize your name and your face at industry events – you become memorable and people will automatically assume you know what you’re talking about.

Create your own online presence. In today’s digital world, having a social media following is one of the most important tools of the trade. To do so, you must first create social media pages, and then post engaging content that will result in both likes and follows. The trick here is to post content that will appeal to your demographic – everyone loves a funny cat video, but will that content draw in the crowd you are looking for? In addition to your own social media and web-based platforms, try writing articles for other bloggers or media outlets, like newspapers or magazines. Being published will help you gain a following and will give the impression that you are an expert.

Finally, take some time to volunteer and/or mentor someone of similar interests. Taking the time to help someone else in their goals will help you see how far you have come and will create an impression of authority in you.

If you are truly passionate about your industry and your business, these tasks will not be daunting – it should be a joy to do what you do, and therefore you will do it well!