In our last guest blog, PR guru Paula Garder made a pretty compelling case for how writing a book can enhance your personal brand. If that wasn’t enough to convince you, we hope that this month’s guest blogger, Mindy Gibbins-Klein, Founder and CEO of The Book Midwife, will do the trick!
Have you ever opened a favourite magazine or journal only to find an article by or about your biggest competitor? How did that feel? Not too great, I imagine. Especially when you know that your product or service is superior. Some people just seem to get all the media attention. They also tend to get more business than those with lower profiles. In my experience, media attention and increased business go to those people who have established themselves as the experts.
Finding the Needle
In this day of information overload, it is harder to find the needle in the ever-increasing haystack. There are many new businesses entering the arena because of redundancy (layoffs) and the attractiveness of becoming an entrepreneur. These new companies just crowd the market, confusing and diluting the messages from serious players. So, even if your company is the best, you need to shout even louder than before to be heard above the din.
People do business with people they like and trust. They get to know about those people by meeting them, reading about them and hearing about them. So, a combination of personal relationships, public relations and word of mouth. The people who stand out are those who write and speak like they know what they are talking about, and the PR serves to validate that perception. And it is always a person who is a leader, by the way, not a company. Companies don’t have opinions, companies don’t sign agreements – people do. If the top executives create the right personal brand, the company will do well as a result, and clients will be attracted to them.
Therefore you will be doing your clients a favour and saving them time if you stand head and shoulders above the competition, thus eliminating the need for complicated buying processes.
Someone has to be the expert; it might as well be you
If we look at the market as a pie, we must admit that the pie is a bit smaller than it was before. However, companies still want the same size slice of pie they had last year. Well, that’s simply not going to happen. As a result, the rate of business failure is up while a larger number of businesses than ever before fight over the smaller pie. And the table manners are not always pretty!
In every industry, one person is always going to get his or her slice of the pie, and that person is the obvious expert in the industry. The top person (or company) is the one that stands out in a decision maker’s mind because of their reputation. And, as I mentioned above, that reputation is built by good relationships, good PR and positive word of mouth. If you make yourself visible and share influential views on key topics in your industry, you will become known as the go-to person, someone with highly valued opinions.
One person is standing out above all the others in your industry. It may be you, or it may be the other guy. Being seen as the expert is no longer a luxury since a shrinking market delivers business deals to the obvious experts or the REAL thought leaders only. The good news is that it is easy to set yourself up as that top expert, if you have the resolve and determination to win. I hope you see your name the next time you open your favourite magazine.
Mindy Gibbins-Klein MBA FPSA FRSA is a multi-award-winning international speaker, author and thought leadership strategist. Her flagship book 24 Carat BOLD: Claim Your Position as the Expert in Your Field outlines the four attributes found in real thought leaders. Her latest book, The Thoughtful Leader, explores the next stage of thought leadership.
Founder and CEO of The Book Midwife® and Panoma Press, Mindy has authored and co-authored eight books. She is also a regular contributor to the business press on thought leadership and raising your profile.
Mindy’s clients have successfully written and published more than 500 books and hundreds of bold and opinionated articles, positioning themselves as real thought leaders in their field.
For more information on Mindy Gibbins-Klein, see www.mindygk.com