Yesterday, a small portion of our Women Who WOW members meet in Norfolk, VA for a deep dive mastermind session about Marketing with Authority, Influence, and Information. It was a phenomenal meeting with many A-HA moments, great sponsor gifts, and even more amazing business owners.
Here’s a 3-hour workshop condensed into a 12-minute snapshot of what we covered, and be forewarned, NO ONE really wants to talk about step 3, which is why it is most important.
First things first, what does “marketing with authority” actually DO for your business? Well, becoming the GO TO person in your industry for whatever particular problem you solve not only differentiates you from your competitors, it turns a “wish list” of clients into a WAITING LIST of clients. It allows you to attract the top tier (top 20%) of your industry’s clients… because it grows DEMAND, TRUST, and INFLUENCE.
Sound good? Of course…. so let’s delve into the HOW.
Step One: DEFINE Your Position of Authority.
What do you do better than anyone else? What do your BEST clients appreciate most about you? Are you known for a particular result? Or for your “bedside manner?” Are you known for serving the masses or for the intimacy you share with your carefully chosen clients? Maybe people come to you for a particular experience or because you solve — better than anyone else — a specific problem? You must identify what you WANT your authority to be based upon. Clarify it. Define it. Put it into words.
Habakuk 2:2: “Write the vision; make it plain on tablets, so he may run who reads it.”
Step Two: DECLARE Your Position of Authority.
You want to take it to the streets. Once you’ve put your “authority” position into words and you know exactly how you want to be — how you SHOULD be — known within your industry, it’s time to claim that space for yourself. Put out a flag, bring in a couch, and make yourself a new, well-defined home. Here are a few ways to do just that:
- Include statements of expectation on your website and in your sales conversations. “When you work with me, _____.”
- Create (true) auto-testimonial statements. By auto-testimonial statements, I mean something along the lines of, “When my clients describe our work together…. “
- My clients refer to me as __________.
Most business “gurus” stop here. They want you to DEFINE and then DECLARE your position of influence and authority within your market. But, business is like any other endeavor… as soon as you start working your way UP, you’ll soon face some competitors and conditions that challenge your hard fought position in your industry, bringing me to step three…
Step Three: DEFEND Your Position of Authority.
Assuming you are successful in steps one and two, you’ll soon have to DEFEND the enviable “go to” position you’ve painstakingly created, and — let’s face it — richly deserve.
- Make sure you’re doing what you said you’d do. Nothing will erode the success and demand you’re creating faster than failing to follow through on your commitments.
- Continue to refine your authority position… hone it, and own it, friend.
- Stay the course. Few things work against your position of authority more effectively than continuing to rebrand, rename, redefine your work. (That’s why you need to take some time in step ONE to be sure what you’re defining isn’t what you HOPE to be one day, but who you ARE — authentically and unapologetically — today.)
- Call out — boldly and without apology — who you are IN COMPARISON to other options your market may be considering.
Step Four: DIFFUSE your Position of Authority Throughout the Market.
I’m a newly converted essential oil- lover. =) And I was desperate for another “D” word, so imagining my essential oils diffusing through my house, I came up with this analogy. =)
You want YOUR position of authority to waft throughout the market… making your “go to” presence known… permeating into the hearts and minds of your market before you arrive and remaining after you leave. When your competitors walk anywhere near the position of authority you’ve created for yourself, you want your brand to be wafting through the air. Literally.
- Media is an option that literally can’t be beaten for DIFFUSING your brand throughout your market, and media is surprisingly and increasingly easy to get these days. With 24-hour news cycles and each major print outlet also offering digital information, they need US more than we need THEM… so keep your story in front of the media.
- Creating content is mandatory, regardless of your industry. Don’t know what to write about? Write about your clients… and how you’re helping them. Tell THEIR stories, and let their stories paint a picture of your business.
- Be AWARE of stories that need to be told — about your work, your industry, your clients or the problem you solve– and tell them consistently… in your networking groups, on your blog, in local media, and in national media.
Of course, this is just a thumbnail sketch of what we covered LIVE. No need to keep missing out, though… join us over at womenwhowow.com. Allow WOW to show you just how much you can get for $37 / month. Seriously… xoxo