6 Essential Cornerstones to Become an Undisputed Authority in Your Niche if You Own a Small Business

— November 15, 2017

It’s public perception that in life you don’t get what you wish for but what you work for.

However, hustling, being a relentless person who never sits back, will not guarantee you success in pursuing your goals and becoming the person you aim to be.

The same is true in business: you do not achieve a specific level of revenue by simply working hard but by working strategically hard.

The necessary step in the goal-setting process is the strategy that defines the specific tactics you need to make in order to translate into reality a concrete plan that once was just in your mind.

What are those steps, then?

The first step is deciding to get out of obscurity. We live in a culture of visibility; only what you can first see and later experience has the right to be considered real. As Al Ries says: Perception is reality. People cannot perceive what they do not know exists.

The second step is deciding to make it personal. If you own a small business and you do not have the ambition to scale it, or if you are making your first steps into the world of entrepreneurship, people will be more interested in you than in your product. People buy people when they can’t buy brands. Making it personal means that you must be an absolute master in selling yourself, your story, and your expertise.

The third step is doing whatever is necessary to get third-party endorsements (generally called PR). Third-party endorsements build your credibility. People give more weight to what other people say about you than what you claim to be good at. When you think about third-party endorsement, you do not necessarily need to think about the press. Your clients’ testimonials and word of mouth will be your best free investment when it comes to building credibility.

The fourth step is maximising the potential of your customer service. It is your customer service that will get the positive attention of your first-time customers and will make them your best advertising campaign as well as loyal repeat customers. Customer service is not just about a face-to-face flattering sales approach. It also means immediately answering customers’ calls, emails, and texts on social media (even during evenings and weekends). Customer experience starts with customer service.

The fifth step is writing a book. Author and authority comes from the same root. The book is your chance to move from being perceived as an expert to being perceived as an authority. Becoming an authority is the last stage before becoming a celebrity, which is a goal that you might not need to reach on a national or global scale but will help you maximize your customer reach in your neighbourhood or town. The main function of a book is to create the positive association of someone who has intellectual and in-depth knowledge supporting his/her expertise.

The sixth step in becoming an undisputed authority in your industry is staying loyal to the five above mentioned objectives:

  1. Increasing your visibility on a daily basis,

  2. making it always more personal until your personal brand becomes a single reality of your business,

  3. amplifying word-of-mouth and media (even local) coverage,

  4. improving your customer service until it becomes closer to perfection,

  5. and writing relevant content that supports your expertise and your authoritative perception in the eyes of your prospect and your current customers.

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Author: Robert Lingard

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