9 Tips To Sell Yourself on Social Media As An Industry Expert
If you are reading this, you want to be seen as the Jay-Z or Beyoncé of your industry on social media. 5 years ago, before I thought I could be one of the best educators in my profession, I practiced my thoughts and perspective on social media. I used social media to brand myself as an expert by being vulnerable with my friends and networks about my thoughts on the work I was doing. At the time, I did not know people were listening, I did not know I had a voice. At first, I never aimed to be the best social media educator. However, along the way I learned a whole lot about social media branding, which led me to #doingthegoodwork. I shared, through a social media branding strategy, what I learned from the actual work I created and experiences I had working with others in those spaces. I'm not saying you want to be the best at social media marketing, but I think we all want an easy social media strategy that showcases our professional expertise. I am no social media guru, but we all can tell when an influencer, company, or brand doesn't have a strategy. Without a strategy experts fumble their message, words, or goals online. Either they are posting great content, but it’s not engaging, or they just don’t understand how to use social media. So if you’re ready to show the world you’re a industry expert, lets dive in!
BECOME A REAL EXPERT IN AN INDUSTRY
The first step to cementing yourself as a leader on social media is to flex your expert authority muscles in your industry. There are no short cuts here. Experts are people who get paid to solve other people’s problems in Real Life, not just on social media. You need to show that you have experience, you are committed, and have gotten results! Articulating your expertise may not be clear to you right now, but that’s okay. Do not stop developing yourself! All of your little skills and trainings will eventually support you in solving your ideal client’s problem. So, what problem are you skilled at solving? What skills are you best at selling to others in-person and on social media? Do you have credentials that give you credibility in solving those problems? Speak those into existence! Honestly, if you can’t answer these questions in your industry, it'll be hard to see you as an expert.
FIGURE OUT WHAT YOUR AUDIENCE CARES ABOUT
In order to sell your expert authority, you must learn to build an "engaged audience" around the problems you are skilled at solving. There are a lot of strategies out there. I use my Cashtag Marketing System to boost #DoingtheGoodWork's message; this tells a clear and concise story about my brand, messages, services, and posts. Defining your audience is an essential step to building an engaged audience. What's their age, race, etc? Knowing your audience helps you produce content that will resonate with them and create marketing strategies that connects with their emotions, lifestyles, and aspirations. It is critical to be very specific when defining your audience’s demographic. How old are they? What do they do for a living? What are their hobbies? Hint: If you want to grow your brand faster, be open to changing your tone and perspective to meet your growing audience’s needs.
SHARE RELEVANT AND RELATABLE CONTENT
Consider your audience’s problems and lifestyle, then create content that increases relevance and relatability. Do not be afraid to share taboo current events, articles, or life experiences with your audience to start healthy discussions. Honestly, you must believe in your knowledge and expertise enough to back up what you are sharing. Even if you end up being completely wrong, be vulnerable enough to explain your thought process or mishaps. Clearly, I’ve had some learning moments lol; people have schooled me on my page. At the same time, I’ve had some really heated debates, and done some schooling. The thing is, it is my page, it’s all building my brand and expertise. WIN-WIN! I do not start trouble on other people’s post. Unless they’re my students; I give the special ones a really hard time lol
CHALLENGE YOUR AUDIENCE
Engage with those who oppose you by asking thought provoking questions or sharing content that is opposite of your message. Ask questions that will allow you to get a better understanding of their position while also challenging them to see yours. To do this, you must truly have healed all personal wombs and scars. This takes an extreme amount of skill in the “it’s not personal, it’s professional” category. To cement your expert authority in your industry on social media, you should be able to both start healthy conversations and end healthy debates with other industry experts.
RESEARCH YOUR INDUSTRY PEERS
Research your peers on social media and follow them. Watch their YouTube videos and listen to their podcasts if available. Investigate where they are getting their content and research from. The cardinal rule is to ALWAYS share what you learned and from who! I’m not talking about social media plagiarism lol, it’s mainly a tip to align yourself with experts who are content creators and already have some established credibility in solving your problem.
PARTNER WITH REPUTABLE EXPERTS
Increase your credibility by partnering with reputable experts and organizations that are aligned with your values and can use your primary or secondary expertise. Use this as an opportunity to create content to share on social media. Consider volunteering your time or services, conducting webinars on behalf of a company, start speaking, or training some children on how to do something. Increase your reach, by actually giving your best skills and talents away for free! Reach the top 10% of your audience by giving a free sample or sneak peak of some of your best partnerships, ideas, services, and new initiatives. This allows your audience to see what you are really about without taking a financial risk. In return, you are able to receive honest feedback to help you improve it. Again, WIN WIN!
CREATE A CASHTAG
Every expert that has cemented their authority on social media has a Cashtag, such as #DoingtheGoodWork. Other cashtags that you may be familiar with are #shareacoke, #icebucketchallenge, or #tweetfromyourseat. Your Cashtag should be relevant to your industry and catchy. Be sure to include your Cashtag in social media posts alongside other relevant hashtags to help others find you. Use trendy lingo to resonate with your audience. What industry lingo are they using? Can you use the same language to attract them to your posts? Click here to see the different ways I use my cashtag on Instagram or sign up for my free webinar, Hashtag To Cash create your own!
NETWORK IN-PERSON AND ON SOCIAL MEDIA
Ever heard the saying, faith without works is dead. In every industry, to sell your authority on social media, you need to network in-person and on social media. Personally, I am a natural at in-person networking. I have spoken to thousands of people, in-person is no sweat at all! I had to learn the complexities of social media networking. To be totally honest, I still recheck my post for grammar, all the time. Writing is not my strong suit! LOL. Networking can be done anywhere, at anytime on social media; there’s literally endless networking opportunities. Social media makes an expert you’re aligned with, one good message/post away. Follow like-minded people, participate in Twitter Chats and join Facebook Groups to start selling yourself as an expert on social media.
HAVE A STRATEGY
Don’t forget another cardinal rule in the journey, don’t shoot in the dark! You want ideal clients and experts to recall a post you shared, which turns your profile into a professional resource. Create a strategy around your post! If you don’t have a strategy, purchase one or pay someone to create one for you. Don’t overcomplicate this process, find a strategy that works for you or that you believe in. There’s lots of free webinars out there, for example, Hashtag To Cash: The Small Business Crash Course To Cashtag Marketing or others. It’s free, what do you have to lose??? Ultimately, I paid over $1,700 on my social media training, which has paid me back over 10 fold. I’ll admit, this process takes a little bit longer, but it is a lot harder to tear down once the respect and money starts coming in.