There is much talk about finding online influencers who can help you to advance your business through your online interactions. On the other side, there are ways that you can become an online influencer also so that others can benefit.
There is a great deal that you can learn from other people online in this age of ever-changing technology. Some of the concepts are common sense and others may be ideas that have never occurred to you. The best thing to do is to take the advice that makes sense for you and your business and disregard the rest.
WIIFM: People are not concerned with how wonderful you and your business are. The only thing that they really care about is whether you are able to solve their problems. WIIFM (What’s In It For Me?) is a marketing term that means exactly that. As you are interacting with people online, their issues will probably come to the surface very quickly. Once you understand what they want and need, hopefully you will be able to give it to them. If you don’t have the ability to do so but you know of someone else who may be able to help, that is still a good thing to do. Your online connections will not forget that you helped them, even if it was indirectly.
Be transparent: Other people definitely appreciate transparency and honesty. That should be an important part of your business model. That doesn’t mean that you need to reveal absolutely every detail that concerns your business; however, if you come across as sincere, genuine and honest, people will want to do business with you. If you don’t, they won’t want to have a connection with you at all. Part of that transparency means that you not only share positive things but also negative information, if you feel that it is important enough to share. It will make you come through in a very positive light.
Be consistent: It is extremely important that other people can count on you being the same all of the time. They need to understand that they can rely on you every time and that you will do what you can to help them. That is precisely how you will earn their trust and they will start to see you as trustworthy and credible. It is also the way in which you will come to be regarded as a subject matter expert (SME), which means that people will think of you first when they need what something that is a part of your expertise.
Have a clear objective in mind: It is critical that you have a clear goal in mind from the beginning. If your expectation is that people follow you online, you must have a strong idea of where you are going. People will only follow you as long as it makes sense for them to do so. The reason why it is so important for you to have a clear goal in mind is not only for other people but is also for your benefit. You won’t accomplish much if you don’t establish a path and then follow that path to the ultimate end.
Connect with people on line and face to face: Sharing a relationship with people is very important, effective, and beneficial. However, it is also extremely important that at some point, you meet them in person. Connecting with someone online and then connecting with them in person will add another layer to your flourishing relationship.
Write content that makes a difference to others: Not only should your content be very well written but it should also touch your readers in a way that makes them react to you and to what you are writing. The secret is to touch them emotionally. If you are able to do that, your relationship will continue to grow stronger and stronger and your interactions will be meaningful.
Always reveal your story: It is critical that you reveal your story to your readers clearly. If there is no story, there will be no interest on their part. Remember that everyone has a story. It is just a matter of expressing it in the most effective manner possible. If you can accomplish that, you will see that people will start to connect with you frequently.
Share your expertise with other people: You should never feel nervous or insecure about sharing your knowledge with other people. There is no way that they could possibly take the information that you share with them and actually have the expertise to do what you do. After all, it took you a while to learn what you know. They won’t be able to learn it in the blink of an eye.
Interact with other influencers: You will learn a great deal from other people of influence. See if you can identify how they got to be influencers. It is a good idea to read their online content and share it with others with your insight into what they have said. Everyone will appreciate what you have to say.
Help other people to achieve success: The more you help other people, the more they will help you in return. Partnering in some way with people who you feel have something important to share will make you look good and, in turn, you can do the same for them. Everyone will come out ahead.
There are many other things that you can do on your path to becoming an influencer. The information that has been discussed here gives you an excellent start and if you take the advice, people will begin to look up to you for your knowledge and expertise and will want to be a part of your circle of influence.
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Michael Cohn is the founder and Chief Technology Officer (CTO) of CompuKol Communications LLC. He has over 25 years of experience in IT and web technologies.
Mr. Cohn founded CompuKol Communications to help small businesses and entrepreneurs increase their exposure and reputation on the Internet. CompuKol consults, creates, and implements communication strategies for small businesses to monopolize their markets with a unique business voice, vision, and visibility.
Prior to that, Mr. Cohn spent a significant amount of time at a major telecommunications company, where his main focus was on initiating and leading synergy efforts across all business units by dramatically improving efficiency, online collaboration, and the company’s Intranet capabilities, which accelerated gains in business productivity. His expertise includes social media marketing strategies; internet marketing; web presence design; business analysis; project management; management of global cross-matrix teams; systems engineering and analysis, architecture, prototyping and integration; technology evaluation and assessment; systems development; performance evaluation; and management of off-shore development.
Mr. Cohn earned a Master’s degree in project management from George Washington University in Washington, DC; and a Master’s degree in computer science and a Bachelor of Science degree in electrical engineering from Fairleigh Dickinson University in Teaneck, NJ.
Mr. Cohn is a member of the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE).
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