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How to become recognized as an industry expert

Dave Archer

When it comes down to it, marketing is really about positioning your business in the best light possible and bringing it to the attention of potential customers. In today’s economic environment, while price is always a leading factor in making buying decisions, integrity, knowledge and experience is a very close second. Here are a few ways to go about making yourself a recognized expert in your industry:

Stay up-to-speed on industry trends

Even if you’ve been in your line of work for 30 years, there are still new developments taking place all the time. Make sure you remain educated about the latest things going on in your line of work through industry associations, seminars, trade shows and business publications.

Be active in industry associations

Don’t just join an industry organization really be part of it. Volunteer for steering committees, chair important subcommittees and become a vocal and active member of important groups. Not only will you stay in-the-know about changes in your industry and stay ahead of your competition, you’ll also become associated with the industry as someone knowledgeable and actively involved.

Start a blog

Share your knowledge and expertise via blogging and other online forums.

Yes, there seems to be a blog for everything these days, but once people find you to be a reputable source they feel they can go to for solid information, they’ll come to rely on you as someone who consistently provides expert advice. This approach also expands your visibility, and that of your company, worldwide.

Become a volunteer

Volunteer your time to programs and events related to your field as much as possible. If you’re a writer, offer to speak about your experiences to a college journalism class; if you’re in building trades, offer job shadowing or apprentice opportunities through local vocational training centers; if you’re a motivational speaker, offer to speak at Rotary club or Toastmaster groups free of charge. Everything you can do to position yourself as an expert in your field will help you market your business.

Reach out to the media

Create a list of subjects related to your industry that you’re knowledgeable and well-versed on, and provide it to the assignment editors at various media outlets. Be sure to include your credentials. When a breaking news story arises, editors need to find reputable sources to interview and the more available you make yourself, the more often you’ll be used as the go-to person in your field.

Join a speaker’s bureau

Joining a speaker’s bureau is much like offering your services to media outlets, though in this instance the bureau takes care of matching you with appropriate speaking opportunities. You may find yourself addressing business lunches, educational groups or industry associations. Most speaking opportunities give you a chance to plug your own business, product or service as well.

Rub shoulders with decision makers

Develop relationships with well-respected individuals in your field. Respect-by-association will help you become better established as an important person in your industry.

Participate in trade shows

Trade shows are expanding these days to include speakers, group forums, roundtable discussions and educational sessions, as well as exhibiting opportunities. Find out how to get involved with the most popular trade shows and expositions related to your business or industry.

Publish a book

Self publishing had made it a snap for just about anyone to become a published writer. Penning an industry-specific trade journal, guide or reference book will help establish you and your business as experts in your field. Give the book to clients, customers and colleagues and make it available on your Web site.

Dave Archer, a veteran of the marketing industry, is president and chief executive officer of Nevada’s Center for Entrepreneurship and Technology. Contact him through ncet.org.


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