Not everyone can be an authority within their industry own niche. Sorry to start this piece with a negative, but it is the simple truth.
However, bouncing straight back into the positives, you personally can be an authority within your own industry once you understand how to achieve that position. You will need to understand the key components that need to be in place to convince people you are an expert.
And the great news is that establishing yourself as an authority will deliver key benefits for you and your business.
Firstly, demonstrating expertise will help you to position yourself to achieve the three key components of business success that I often talk about. You need to be known, liked and trusted.
If people know you, like you and trust you, then first and foremost they are more likely to buy from you. Secondly, they will recommend you. That will bring more potential customers through free advertising.
First You Must Clearly Define Your Area Of Expertise
You can’t be an expert on everything. Even within a specific niche, it’s often difficult to position yourself to be the “go to” person for every single related product or service.
So the first task is to clearly define what your area of expertise already is, or is going to be. Then you can position your business very clearly in everything it does, which will make your task much easier.
Niche is often a difficult thing to clearly define. As an “out there” example, let’s talk about Sir David Attenborough.
To the person in the street, he is an expert on nature. His lifetime of experience in that area means that people will listen to him speak on any nature-related topic. However, if you were to ask Sir David Attenborough specific questions, you will quickly find he is not an expert in all areas.
The reason why your questions would not be answered fully is simply that Sir David Attenborough is a good generalist on a broad topic. However, he may not be a specialist in the area you are interested in. For that, you would need to find a scientist or naturist who lived and breathed that exact topic.
And it’s the same with a niche in business.
Once you define the exact niche you are going to become an expert in, you need to live and breathe it in every single piece of marketing that you put out. Doing so will convince people of your specific expertise.
This means your exact expertise must be tightly delivered across all channels. Your social media feeds need to be completely focused on raising questions and answering them within your exact niche. They need to communicate only with people who are looking for exactly for the information you have to offer.
Chucking in more generalist content, or going off topic completely to talk about football results, will water down your message and weaken the position you are trying to build.
Clear Branding = Clear Positioning
Branding your business clearly will help to position you as a strong and obvious authority.
When we talk about branding, we’re not talking about logos and buzzwords. We are talking about understanding your exact niche. We are talking about living and breathing it.
We are talking about always working hard to deliver a unique angle for your potential customers. This unique angle, becomes your brand. It is your message the clearly defines you.
So when we talk about branding your business, we are talking about focusing on creating an information brand that is strongly associated with you.
An Authority Business Always Has Clear Sales Paths
Positioning yourself as an authority means delivering intelligent, creative and unique on-topic content. This content is the information that your potential customers need to answer their pre-sales questions and guide them towards buying from you.
It means your business need to be focused primarily on promoting information, not products or services and why we have already discussed seeing information as your brand.
This is the trick. You know what you want your sales prospect to buy. However, in many cases they don’t.
By delivering high quality information and answering their exact questions, you are raising the chances of them making a purchase. If you don’t have a clear sales path within your information structure, then you will not make as many sales.
So once you have established the niche you are going to be an authority in, and worked on the branding that will give you a unique voice and allow you to be recognised and trusted, you must now build a clear sales path to place that information on.
The trick here is to build information on top of the sales path so that people don’t see it as purely a tactic to make them buy. They need to see it as an informational journey, with a choice at the end.
Although they will know they are being sold to, the trick is to create a blend that appears to give them choices, while leading them relentlessly towards a single conclusion.
The Sales Funnel Is Your Prospects Informational Journey
This is where the construction of a high quality sales funnel is key to your success.
It’s important not to think of a sales funnel in terms of hammering someone to make a sale, you need to think of it in terms of the components we have already talked about.
You need to build your sales funnel so that they get to know you, like you and trust you. That means delivering the exact information that directly answers questions and leads them further down the sales path.
You cannot afford at any stage to lose them through creating confusion, going off at a tangent, trying to sell too early, or trying to sell them more than they are looking for.
This means carefully anticipating needs. It means anticipating the questions they will have and the objections that may arise. The more barriers you remove through cleverly constructing a sales funnel, the less resistance you will have in using your authority information to pass them down it.
So do you feel your business is a genuine authority at the moment?
Are you clear on what you need to do to position your branding and information to achieve authority?