10 Steps to Becoming A Recognized Expert in Your Industry
Becoming a recognized expert in your industry is a process that will not magically unfold on its own. You must adopt a proactive approach that involves continuous learning and networking with influential people in your industry. Through sustained focus and dedication, you can build your credibility and establish yourself as a legitimate authority in your field. Below are ten steps to becoming a recognized expert in your industry.
1) Become a specialist
“The biggest mistake most small businesses make is trying to be all things to all people, assuming this will give them access to the largest addressable market. What it actually does is dilute your value proposition and position you as a Jack or Jill of all trades, rather than an expert in your particular field.”
– Cian McGloughlin, Founder and CEO of Trinity Perspectives
One of the best ways to establish yourself as an expert in your industry is to zero in on a particular skill or trade.
2) Showcase your industry knowledge
One of the greatest commonalities shared by recognized industry experts is their eagerness to share their expertise with other people. You can follow suit by showcasing your industry knowledge in the following ways:
- Offer to speak at a community event
- Write an e-book on your favorite topic(s)
3) Attend industry trade shows
Trade shows are full of opportunities to showcase your skills while connecting with industry influencers. Whether you participate as an exhibitor or an attendee who walks the floor, you can develop your expertise in the following ways:
- Connect with key influencers in your field
- Gain access to the latest cutting-edge techniques employed in your field
4) Become a mentor
Serving as a mentor to fresh faces in your field is beneficial to you and the individuals you are mentoring. In the process of offering your expertise to people who need guidance, you achieve the following four goals that will help solidify your status as a recognized expert:
- Mentoring helps build your reputation as a legitimate authority in your field
- Sharing your expertise reaffirms your existing skills and expertise
- You expand your existing knowledge base
- Your value as a professional increases
5) Start a blog
Starting a blog is a great way to show off your knowledge while engaging with others in your field. It does not cost any money to launch a blog, but you should make sure that you have the time and resources to post new articles on a regular basis. Here are a few tips to follow to ensure that you craft a blog that will help position you as an expert in your field:
- Select topics that are interesting and relevant to people in your field
- Write professionally and always check your content for spelling or grammatical errors
- Respond to comments and questions that readers pose regarding your blog
6) Voice your educated opinion
As you begin to gain traction as an industry expert, people will expect you to have an opinion and provide recommendations based upon that opinion. You can build your credibility by voicing your opinion as long as you base your opinions on proven facts, studies, and findings.
7) Use social media as a means of promoting your expertise
The average person will spend approximately 5 years of his or her life on social media. Social media allows you to potentially reach thousands of like-minded people within your industry. And with 84 percent of people trusting online reviews as much as they would a personal recommendation, you can use positive social media feedback as a means of spotlighting your accomplishments.
8) Stay abreast of the latest industry news
People will have difficulty viewing you as an expert if you are stuck in the past without a clear understanding of the latest events in your industry. However, it is not always easy to find the time to stay on top of industry news. You will need to make a concerted effort to take time each week to analyze key industry events and subscribe to industry newsletters to ensures that you do not miss any critical news.
9) Publish articles on LinkedIn
“When you publish on LinkedIn, you have the ability to reach the largest group of professionals gathered online. You can enlarge your network and build your credibility. It positions you as a thought leader.”
– Terilee Harrison, Entrepreneur and Networking Expert
Publishing helpful articles on LinkedIn is an effective way to develop your professional identity and share valuable insight with thousands of industry connections. As in the case of creating a blog, make sure that you carefully proofread your articles before you publish them to LinkedIn.
10) Participate in continuing education activities
Learning does not occur in a vacuum. Today’s top experts are committed to learning and mastering the latest cutting-edge techniques and skills. Failure to keep your mind and skills sharp may limit your industry influence, as many of today’s savvy consumers are able to separate the contenders from the pretenders.
The Bottom Line
Attaining status as a recognized authority in your field requires a multi-faceted approach and sustained dedication. By following the steps above, you can begin your evolution into a well-respected industry expert.