Many sole traders know they need to use social media to get their message out there and boost their credibility. They also know that an added benefit is that they can use it to increase their influence by being seen as an expert, which leads to clients and sales.
Choosing to use social media as a tool to build and grow your positioning as an expert is always going to pay off in the long run. Here’s how to do it.
1. Own your expert status
It’s been drummed in since our days at school to not toot our own trumpet, so to speak. But actually, in social media and in business, this is exactly what needs to be embraced.
Take ownership of your experience, your knowledge, your time in the industry (even if you’re new to this particular part of your journey) and talk about it as a positive.
For instance: even if you’re new to an industry, use this as the very reason why it’s important to have fresh eyes and a different experience than most others in the industry. If you’ve been in the industry for an extended period of time, own the experience you have in the industry.
Use what you have to your advantage.
2. Own your voice
One of the best things you can do is use your voice. What this means, is that you’ve got to be ready (and willing) to share your opinions on things that are important to you, no matter what. At this point, it’s important you can articulate what you stand for and what you stand against. What values do you want to be communicated to your audience via your content?
For example, is being an advocate for healthy living and choices crucial and critical to your clients’ success? Do you advocate for raw food or super cooked food?
3. Create your own intellectual property
This step is all about creating and articulating your thoughts and opinions, knowledge and wisdom. Creating your own intellectual property means articulating your thoughts and ideology in a way that nobody else does. This leads to you standing out because the way you do things is completely different to the way that anyone else does.
For example, if you’re a coach who helps aspiring authors why is it essential to start with a plan of their book rather than diving straight into the writing of it?
You can then share some big picture steps with how someone would do this, using your methodology, experience and stories.
This establishes you as an expert in what you do.
4. Share your content on the platforms where your audience spend their most time
Contrary to popular social media educators, it’s not necessary to be on every platform. In fact, I recommend against it, unless you have a team who have the ability to disseminate your content all over the internet. Most business owners are time poor, so it’s necessary to be strategic and selective about the platforms where you spend your time.
Facebook has the largest demographic and age spread of all the platforms and the largest audience number at 2.2Billion. Half of these people are active on the platform daily every single month. People on Facebook spend on average 40mins per day whereas on Instagram it’s about half of that time and LinkedIn comes in at 10mins per day. You cannot ignore Facebook as a platform to be present on.
5. Create content regularly that educates and inspires, motivates and entertains people
This means that sharing the intellectual property that you create above, however, it’s also important to create content that shares different facets of your personality.
For example, you might be a dentist and also be an advocate for animal rights. Talk about the issues and topics that are important to you as it shows people that you are multi-dimensional and therefore human and relatable.
You then need to share this content on your social media platform of choice as well as on your website.