Building a reputation as an expert in your field is a great way of leveraging what you’re already doing to get more opportunities for your business.
Digital marketing expert and author, Louisa Dahl, knows this in spades. Through her career and as founder of the digital marketing events and training company, Interactive Minds, she has analyzed the traits and strategies of the most successful people in the business and distilled her findings into the book The Deliberate Digital Marketer.
In the book, Louisa pared down these deliberate strategies into a framework of six key elements that top digital business people apply for maximum leverage. At a live presentation at the We Are Podcast 2017 conference, she outlined three of these strategies. Here’s a summary of her three Rs – relationships, results and reputation.
Relationships – Be deliberate in building and fostering them
Building relationships is obviously important for any business leader. Louisa’s important point here is to take a conscious and deliberate approach to building and fostering them.
With this in mind, Louisa recommends taking a more linear approach to relationship building. The process follows a common path: Research, meet, connect online, offer value, meet again and follow up.
To start with, “don’t be afraid to research what you need. Think about what your goals are and who you need to know in order to reach those goals. Be deliberate about it, use LinkedIn, find the person you need to speak to,” Louisa says. “Find out what you can do to meet the people you need and be prepared to take a deliberate approach, and then meet. An event is a great way to do that.”
Follow up, follow up, follow up!
Follow is another crucial element. As Louisa says, “that follow up piece sounds so easy, of you’re going to follow up, right. But doing it in a way that’s actually going to have and effect requires you to maybe put it in your calendar, to map it out, to make a list of the relationships you’ve made this week and say, okay, I’m going to follow up with them in six weeks. I’m going to drop them a line and add some value, share and article, share a video, send them something I think they might be interested in.”
“Keep in mind that what you want to do in your relationships is have regular touch points. It might be a comment on social media, or comment on a blog or a tweet. That’s all it needs to be sometimes. But have having that consistency is what’s going to get you there,” Louisa recommends.
Results – Why everything hinges on results
The importance of results can’t be underestimated. After all, it’s what will drive your reputation. Louisa found that there were two key things to think about here – you’re key performance indicators and using the Pareto Principle (or the 80/20 rule) to help you focus on what’s really working.
Set key performance indicators to measure success
“Key performance indicators are so important to what we’re doing. They give us focus. They give us goals. And, most importantly, they give us a measure of success,” Louisa says.
“It’s really important that, if you don’t have key performance indicators, or if you’re working for someone else and they haven’t set them, that you do take the initiative.”
Use the 80/20 rule to focus your effort
Louisa is also a great proponent of the Pareto Principle to help you focus on what’s going to get you the best results. It’s a principle that can be applied to any endeavour. Put simply it means that 80% of your results typically come from 20% of your efforts. It’s remarkable how often this has been proved accurate. “Think about what 20% of what you’re doing is having the biggest impact on your business,” Louisa recommends. Make that the focus area for you and your team.
Reputation – How can you develop yours?
Louisa has also found that the top business leaders she’s studied spend time to elevate their reputation.
“There’s a reason that all three of these areas are interlinking, because you can’t really have a reputation if you don’t have good relationships and you’re not achieving good results,” Louisa says. “So in order to have this, those other things already have to be happening. I’m talking here about building your personal reputation, not your business or your brand, but yourself, and putting some time and effort into deliberately doing that.”
Content is a great way of doing this, Louisa points out. “Content is really the best way we can establish ourselves as thought leaders. It’s how we can share what we’re doing, what’s working, what’s not, and how we can start to establish that reputation,” she says. That could be through speaking at events, blogging, creating video or podcast content, writing articles magazines or contributing on social media.
“The most important thing with content, is to be consistent, maintain your reputation, keep producing and putting yourself forward,” Louisa reiterates. The key is to be generous and provide value just as you would in developing any relationship.
Author: Ronsley Vaz
Ronsley is the founder & chief day dreamer at AMPLIFY. He is an author, speaker & serial entrepreneur.
He has a Masters’ degree in Software Engineering and an MBA in Psychology and Leadership. He is known as the creator of We Are Podcast – the first Podcasting Conference in the Southern Hemisphere, and the host of The Bond Appetit Podcast and Should I Start a Podcast. He has an audience of over 3 million in 133 countries.