Before social media became so prevalent, a person could keep his online and offline lives separate. But not any more. Today what you do on your social networks—the kind of content you dish out, the type of people who respond to it—spills out into your offline life. Because you know this, you try to maintain a professional image while posting content on your social media networks.
But let me ask you: Why stop at professionalism? Why not become an online master in your field of expertise? Why not encourage people who share your interests to flock to you because they see you as the influential one? After all, as the known expert in your field, your online influence could spill offline in some pretty meaningful ways. It could even lead to job offers and guest-speaking invitations.
How Can One Become Influential Online
There is no limit to the number of areas or niches you could become influential in. However, in order to stay focused, you will want to choose niches that you are the most passionate about. Better yet, start with one niche that you love the most, and would love to share anything you can about it to others who share the same interests as you. Here are steps to take in order to develop a strong online influence in your area of expertise:
Have Niche-Related Pages/Profiles Set Up
Make sure you have a Facebook Fan Page and a Twitter account that related to your chosen niche. Not to mention on your personal Facebook profile, make sure you highlight your area of expertise or interest in your "About Me" section. This alone will help you attract others who share the same interest as you.
Share Good Niche-Related Content
In order to develop the most online influence, be sure to fill 80% of your Twitter and Facebook pages with niche-related content such as relevant videos or articles. In the remaining 20%, share other sides of yourself that will also attract new fans and followers.
So, say you want to become an SEO guru. That's your niche. You will want to fill 80% of your pages with articles and updates on SEOs. If you like inspirational quotes and pictures of beautiful scenery, add those to your pages too, but keep them to no more than 20%. You will attract more people into your networks this way.
Get a Blog and Write Up Good Content
It is great to circulate high-quality material created by others; however, in order to have the most influence in your area of expertise, having a blog and updating it at least once a week with original material is a must. Share your posts on your networks so others can see, appreciate, and share them.
By creating niche-related videos and uploading them to YouTube and other video networks, and then sharing these links on your networks, you can build an even bigger following. As you gain viewers waiting to see new videos from you, you gain even more influence.
Create a Podcast
Podcasts are an excellent way to spread your influence. On your podcasts, you can do the talking or you can invite guests to speak on topics related to your niche. As with videos you produce, share your podcasts on your networks. This method of gaining influence is very powerful.
Engage with Others
This is a no brainer. If people are interested in what you put out, show the same interest in what they put out. Engage with them and they'll continue to engage with you. It's a great way for you to keep up your influence.
Hook your Networks to Klout
Yes, Klout has its detractors, but the fact remains that your Klout score gets looked at and, the more engaging you are in your social media activities, the higher your score. A high score, which indicates you are highly active on your social networks, grabs attention. And the more attention you can draw to the content you are putting out, the more influential you will become in your area of expertise which could lead to new exciting business opportunities. It's all part of becoming the influential one in your niche!