Social media – It’s all about getting as much content out there and building your presence online. This is the approach a number of people take with respect to social media and it is a good strategy for some. I’ve tried it and seen mixed results. In 2014, I’ve discovered a better approach, “Thought Leader”
Building Influence Myth
In the past, I have really been about building influence. I have even written articles on the topic of social media influence and now I am starting to change my way of thinking when it comes to influence. Influence is not about the highest counts of likes or plusses. It does help to see these items, but it’s much more.
Influence is in building connections with the right people. Some people go about friending everyone in the hopes that a smaller percentage of these will really turn into great connections. Going this route may look good from a numbers standpoint, but missing out on “quality” connections will ultimately lead to fewer followers and less relevance on social media.
When people disagree with my comments, in the past I would defend my work because I had experiences that would back up my statements. Today, I look more at trying to understand the position they are taking and I look closer at their profile, their company, their work and I respect their opinions.
Content Marketing Myth
More recently, content marketing has been on the hearts and minds of marketers, including myself. Over the past few years, I have worked like crazy to develop content that I feel people would be interested in with respect to a particular niche market and I’ve seen success on various topics through this approach.
Now, I need to take it a step further and create not only good content, but a new type of action that keeps people wanting to come back and read more. I have found that follow-up discussions or review of some content that was produced has helped keep the content more alive. In addition, I am looking for ways to incorporate this content into other areas like education, introductions to people, writing articles that build on certain topics. I look at this process as “The Next Chapter Approach”.
What Is Involved With Being A Thought Leader?
A thought leader is someone who looks at the big picture. It really comes down to a few items of concentration
Learning New Concepts
Continue to reach out and learn more from other people’s experiences. Find the great, personal blogs and learn someone’s approach.
I keep an ideas composition book. I write down ideas and suggestions I receive from clients, employees, management, professional contacts, articles and other sources. If I write it down, I’ll remember it.
From here I review these ideas and see how it can help me with the next steps that follow, (improving processes)
This is becoming more prevalent everyday. I look at the project list daily and especially those that are prioritized in our top 10 list. Are we meeting deadlines? Are we creating systems that will make us better in the future?
Connecting Closer With Clients
Listening to clients is critical. We need to make sure any improvement made, ultimately will have value for our clients in the future. Clients’ needs are changing daily and keeping up takes a lot of work. It is best to keep a list of these items and look at the group as a whole, to make sure changes being made continue to make a difference for the majority of our clients. Specific clients also may need special work completed, and it is imperative that requirements are defined and communicated in order to fulfill clients’ needs being met.
Establishing a Strong Network
Write content that connects not only with clients but with your employees. Make sure you are always looking for ways to bring people together and get them involved in project work. In addition, connect with people outside of your organization. Provide them with answers to their issues. Add a comment or two when they share an article that had pertinent information for you and your company. Look for ways to connect with people and build your personal brand and company brand.
In summary, stop being loud and trying to cut through all of the information posted today on social media. Instead, take a step back and focus on what is really important and start building your message around thoughts that others might be interested in. Think more and stop thinking you need to produce a lot of content and messages all of the time.
Image courtesy of David Castillo Dominici at FreeDigitalPhotos.net