When you’re starting any business in today’s market, you have to position yourself in order to stand out in your niche.
But how do you stand out above the noise of the crowd? Because no matter what market you go into it will be crowded.
Well, you have to position yourself as a thought leader.
But it can be tough starting out, especially when you see other successful people in your niche and think how can I possibly compete with them?
The answer is you don’t.
You start by being a contributor to the market. And then build your knowledge and expertise to become a thought leader just like the other pros you look up to.
Because everyone has got to start somewhere.
Become a Contributor to Position Yourself
There are a number of effective ways to position yourself as a thought leader in your niche. The first step is to think of yourself as a contributor instead of an expert.
So, what you put out there is just contributing to the way someone will interact with your niche.
The world is big and the online world is just as huge, people are unique so everyone interacts in the world differently, they will interact with your niche differently.
You might be the voice in your niche someone needs to hear. The way you interpret key information in your niche could be key for your ideal client to understand and take action on.
There are millions of love songs out there but there’s that one song that gets you every time. The one that touches your soul. Be that song for your ideal client.
You can position yourself to be the voice they go to for advice within a specific niche.
Be In The Know
To start you’ve got to know your niche really well. After all you can’t position yourself if you don’t know where others are positioned in your niche.
Who are the key players?
What do they offer?
How are you different?
What are the key concepts and tools of your niche?
What are the classic books in your field?
What are the current top-selling books in your field?
Who are your ideal clients?
What do your ideal clients want and need the most?
What are their pain points, that is, the most important problems that they need to solve?
Once you know the answer to these questions go out and contribute to the ongoing conversion.
Ideal Client Needs
Customers are looking for solutions that work and offer good value for money.
They want to know, “What’s in it for me?” and “How is this going to make my life better and easier?” With so many websites and businesses online, you need to answer that question from the moment they show up at your website or discover one of your products online.
Once you know what your Ideal client needs, offer it to them.
You can do this with the content you put out on your blog and social media platforms as well as the products you offer.
Make sure your website speaks to your ideal client and shows off what you’ve got to offer in the best light. You can do this by making sure your site looks professional, with an easy to use a layout that is mobile-friendly, as well as uses language that they relate to.
Your niche-related content must be worth taking the time to read. Provide maximum value in your free stuff. Just because it is free doesn’t mean it should be junk.
In fact, publishing impressive niche content regularly is the best way to position yourself as a thought leader. Be consistent with what and when you publish. Ensure you publish on other platforms, not just your blog.
Go to Your Client
Go to where your ideal client is already visiting and publish there. So, social media platforms, online groups, forums, other blogs and publications that they use and visit.
Your list is the most important asset your business will have, so right from the start, you should be building it. Use your site as a lead generation tool to build your email marketing list.
To get your ideal client to give you their email address you need to offer compelling value-driven content they can download that will be packed with information related to your niche.
Aim for a specific topic that tackles one problem that most people interested in your niche will be eager to solve by reading your content, and even to pass on to others via email or social networks.
You should then communicate with your list on regular basis, building your community and your position as a thought leader. Presenting your ideal customers with information, products, and service that will prove you know what you are talking about.
Partner With Influencers
The products you promote can be yours, or affiliate products you are selling for a commission. They might also be Joint Venture (JV) products you are promoting to your list in exchange for your partner promoting your items to theirs.
Promoting other people in your niche who sell complimentary services and products is a key overlooked way of positioning yourself as a thought leader.
Be the person who introduces new and exciting services to your clients that improves their lives. Think Oprah!
Working with JVs gives you other opportunities to show yourself as a thought leader. These include writing reviews on products you use or a partner who has a product that can help your ideal client.
JVs might also invite you to participate in an online webinar or interview you as an expert in your niche.
You might even get some guest blogging opportunities in which you write articles for some of the top blogs in your niche to show what you know. My advice is to not wait for these but seek them out and offer to write about something from a unique perspective.
Publish a Book
One of the best ways to give yourself instant expertise is to write a book and publish it on Amazon. It doesn’t have to be an encyclopedia of everything you know about your niche.
Many bestselling books are usually ones with How To somewhere in the title, offering real solutions to your readers.
Publish it as an e-book through the Kindle Digital Platform first. If there is enough demand, publish it in paperback as well through the Create Space Platform. Get a great cover designed for $5 on fiverr.com and you’re good to go.
Becoming a thought leader in your niche is easy if your prepared to put in the time and give your ideal clients what they want and need, and show you’re in the know about the top players, products, and services available, not just your own.
So, don’t hold yourself back from starting because you think you’re not a thought leader and never could be. To be a thought leader you’ve got to get your thoughts out there.
So, start today!