There’s a reason why self-publishing is so big right now, especially for entrepreneurs—a book can give you instant authority and credibility. Your book instantly sets you above other people in your niche who don’t have books. It shows that you’re serious about what you do and your business. And, it shows people that you are a thought leader in your space.
In this episode, I want to dig deep into the idea of thought leadership and how your book will help you become a thought leader in your niche. If your goal is to become a go-to person in your field, to get speaking gigs, or even just to be seen as an expert, thought leadership is KEY. So, I’ll walk you through the biggest reasons why your book will help you become a thought leader in your niche, and then I’ll tell you how you can get started on your book…FAST.
(This is a direct transcript of the episode. Please excuse any typos.)
Let’s dive in here and first I want to just talk through why it’s so important to be seen as a thought leader. First and foremost, when you are known as a thought leader in your niche. People turn to you for advice, which is huge. They know that you are again, that expert and they see you as a credible source for information and not only that, they know that when you’re an expert, you can give them really good advice because you’ve done a lot of learning and maybe even with your clients. You’ve seen a lot of different circumstances and so you can take a look at their circumstances and be able to help them or at least give a quick piece of advice or two to help them get to the next step. And so how that can really build up is that you start to get, for example, tagged in posts in Facebook groups or just in general on Facebook to answer questions which can be huge.
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And then in turn, when people start to see your name being tagged over and over in a particular topic that you’re an expert in. That really honestly shows them that other people too, that you’re an expert and you start to become known as a go-to person to ask and really you get to be seen as that thought leader so it can help expand your reach really, and your notoriety by, you know, having other people know that you are a thought leader and this is the same thing in Instagram posts. So for example, if somebody posted that they were struggling with somebody and then if you, one of your clients or friends tags you and says, Hey, this is somebody to follow for help. Well, if other people are reading through the comments, they might see that tag as well. And it just, again, it’s that sort of word of mouth marketing where even if somebody is not directly referring someone to you as a client, they’re still referring people to you in terms of somebody to follow to help them, which is huge.
Um, and then in turn, that can spiral into media attention. So for example, if you know people who are, who are experts, and that in turn can spiral into attention on media platforms for example. So, if I needed somebody to talk about a topic related to what you do and if I know that hey, actually I’ve seen you being mentioned a lot in the groups that I run in, maybe I’ll ask you to, for example, be on my podcast or to do a Facebook live with me. And so that expert status can be really helpful and I’ll give an example of this has actually been helpful for my own business. So if somebody has questions about self publishing, I get tagged in a lot of things now. And then if somebody I know who’s an entrepreneur who has a group full of people who might be interested in self publishing, then they’ll come ask me to give a presentation to that group, which I’m happy to do.
And it just helps build my status again as a thought leader and a go to person, which helps me build my business. Um, and again, this can also lead to new referrals and clients and a whole bunch of other things that are gonna help you build your business. Being seen as the thought leader also helps establish you as a person to trust in the niche so when you know a lot, when you’ve read a lot, when you’ve synthesized a lot of information about your niche topic that shows that you are an expert. You know a lot and people want to go to the expert. They don’t want to go to somebody really who has just read a couple of articles online and you know they say that they’re an expert. They want to go to somebody who has actually proven that they are an expert in that they know a lot and that they know enough to help a wide range of people in a wide range of circumstances.
And so that thought leadership again really makes you that expert to whom people want to go for advice. And then also being a thought leader just helps you make a name for yourself. And again, this kind of comes from that little bit of notoriety. But when people see you as somebody to go to for advice and who knows a lot, then you start to get referrals. And again, that may be paid or if you’re putting out great content that might just be somebody saying, hey, go follow this person on Facebook. I watched their live videos, or go follow this person on Instagram TV, or go listen to this person’s podcast, but still every mentioned like that helps you build your audience, helps you build your circle of influence and the more people know about you and the more they know that you give really great advisor that you really know what you’re talking about.
Then they will refer people to you who do need your services, and it’s just kind of snowballs from there. So being seen as a thought leader is really big for building your business. And I really think a book is a great way to help you become a thought leader in your niche and to show people that you are a true thought leader. And there are three main reasons why I think this is the case. The first reason why your book is really going to help make you be seen as a thought leader is that you in your book, you show that you know enough about your niche to write an entire book about it and anybody can talk about a topic for 10 minutes, you know, anybody could get on Facebook live or do a short presentation about any topic, but if you know enough about that topic to write an entire book about it, that shows that you know even more about the topic and it shows you are a true expert and you know, just an example, there are things, things that you probably know a lot about.
Even things that you could get up and give a 60 minute talk on. I know I have certainly done this. Um, even within my own local community, I’ve taken what I’ve learned about, for example, social media marketing and I’ve given presentations about it to local businesses. But at the same time, I wouldn’t necessarily consider myself a Facebook expert. I know enough to help people who are behind me get to there, but I could never write a book on Facebook and really nor what I want to, but I can write books about self publishing and about writing and the process of putting together a book that will really help people and knowing that amount of information, a book amount of information is huge and that helps me show people who then stumble upon my website or listened to my podcast that I am a thought leader and the same thing will happen with you as well.
So another example is that this is the difference between just writing a blog post about a topic and writing a book about it. So if you know a little bit about something, you can certainly write a blog post. You can quickly do some research, you know, I’d say an hour or two Max of research to be able to write a blog post, but to be able to write a book that’s a lot more learning. That’s a lot more knowledge. That’s a lot more insight that you have to put into what you’re teaching. And so that’s something that can’t be learned in just a couple of hours. That’s something that takes true expert status. And that’s one of the reasons why a book really helps set you apart. Your book really shows your depth of knowledge. It shows people that you know a lot and that you’ve spent a lot of time learning and researching and in a lot of cases, even testing different methods to figure out what works and what doesn’t work.
And you really have something and you really know something. If you can write tens of thousands of words about it, which is what you’re going to need to write for your book. Or a short book is like 15,000 to 20,000 words. So really, again, you do need to know a lot about your topic to write a book. Don’t let that scare you because you do know a lot, but knowing a lot shows that you are, again, a thought leader and putting it all in. A book shows people that you know what you know that you do know a lot and it just, again, it helps set you apart in people’s minds. So the second reason why a book is a great way to show that you are a thought leader is that it helps you show off, that you have a unique perspective that you can synthesize all the information that’s out there, other people’s ideas, that sort of thing, and then put your own spin on it.
So there are lots of people out there with lots of ideas and one of the first steps to showing that you’re an expert is to show that you understand what other people in your space are talking about and saying. And when. A given example. So, with PhD programs, really your job in the PhD is to become an expert in the topic. And one of the first places you start when you’re getting a PhD is by reading all of the papers that have been published and all the material that has been published in your topic, so you just read and read and read and then you’ll write a literature review where you write up everything and sort of synthesize it. And then as throughout your degree program, you then take your own spin and you either do research or you create something based on what you’ve learned.
And a book is sort of like a miniature version of that. So again, you are an expert, but on top of that, I’m sure that you’ve been following other people in your niche and you have been learning from them and learning about what it is you do. So if you’re a fitness expert, you’ve been learning about different moves people can do and you’ve been learning about, you know, nutrition, things like that and motivation. And you take all of these pieces that you gleaned from different areas. And then you try it out and you figure out your own method to helping people get fitter, for example. And so again, you’re building on what’s out there, but then putting your own spin on it and similarly you can use your book to feature the unique method or process you do or you use with your clients or whatever it is you do.
So my personal example here is my fast author framework that I use to help my clients put together their books and to help them write faster, but then also to structure the book in a way that makes sense to their readers. Um, another example here would be a nutritionist who helps people work through their issues with food. Um, if that sounds like you were even in this example, so I would ask that nutritionist, do you have a place where you start, like where you start out with your clients and then what’s the next step you take them on? And then once the next step after that. So not being a nutritionist, they may. This may be a little off, but here’s my example. So the place that people could start would be like a food journal. And then after they just keep track of what they’re eating for a little bit, they’ll start to think about, or the nutritionist, let’s say, ask them to start to think about the emotions they have about food in general and they kind of talk through that and then the next step is to start thinking about how their emotions affect their food choices and then they kind of go from there.
They take the next step and the next step, well over trial and error. In this example, this nutritionist has honed this strategy and maybe she found that while when they started to just jump in and talk about how emotions affect that person’s food choices, they’re not really in the right headspace. They need to step up or start a couple of steps earlier and so it’s through that professional experience that they’ve come up with this method that actually really helps people break through their issues surrounding food. And so they worked through there, but that’s their unique method or that unique framework that they use. And so I would challenge you to think through whether you have one. Because having that process that works actually does make you a thought leader and an experienced leader in your niche. And so if you can put that process into a book that’s really going to wow people and to help them.
And then the third big reason why a book helps show that you are a thought leader in your niche is that it shows that you can get results and specifically it shows that you can get your reader results even if it’s just a small result through your book. Um, so for example, I will, um, I’ll give the of my book blogger to author, turn your content into a book. The book really walks bloggers through every step of taking their blog posts, putting them together into a main new script, editing them and then self publishing them into a book. But one simple step that even if they don’t follow through the rest of the book, if they follow the first few chapters and they get an outline put together for their book, that is huge. That is huge, huge, huge. It’s going to make the writing process easier for them.
And it’s just going to make them feel like they are closer to finishing their book, it’s going to get them excited and the fact that I help them through that process is going to then make them have a special affinity for me, even if they don’t become a client, if they have another friend who is interested in writing a book, they’re going to say, hey, go listen to Beth’s podcast or go follow [inaudible] on Instagram, that sort of thing because she gives a really great tips. So that’s my example. Um, another example, again, let’s go back to what I just was talking about the example of somebody who struggles with healthy eating patterns. If that nutritionist writes a book that helps that person understand how their beliefs or thoughts or making them stay in disordered eating habits, that’s huge. So even though that nutritionist may not be fixing everything in their book, just that realization that, oh, this is why I do what I do.
That internal switch that gets flipped, that’s amazing. And that is incredibly helpful to people. And if you’ve read any sort of books that deal with internal work, I know you felt this as well. So don’t be afraid of even if you are somebody who helps people, make breakthroughs in different areas, especially if it’s mental. Your book can absolutely number one, be very helpful, but it can help them make even small jumps that will make them know, like, and trust you, that will make them want to work with you further. Follow you further so that you can help them even more so even if you don’t solve the whole problem for them. If you don’t take care of their whole issue, the entire issue, you can still help them take the first step and that is huge. If you are the person that helps them, take that first step to the better life that there had been hoping for, are to completing a big task that is amazing and they are gonna.
Love you for it. And that is going to help establish you as a thought leader because you are somebody who gets results. You have shown them that you understand where they’re coming from and that you are the person to help them get and when you actually help people. That is honestly the best way to show that you are a leader and to put all of that in a book is gold. It’s seriously a gold mine when it comes to really establishing that authority and credibility and more importantly showing people that you are a true thought leader. And then I just want to end on a quick little bonus thought that when you write a book on your topic, you literally have written the book on the topic and there is a reason why that idiom exists. Why to say that’s why you know it’s a metaphor for somebody who is an expert in an area. You said that they wrote the book on it because it shows that you know a lot at shows that you’re an expert and it shows that you are a thought leader. So, I really encourage you, if you are trying to show that you are a true thought leader in your niche, that you want to show people that you know your stuff, that you should be there, go-to expert, that you do. Write your book.
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