In our culture, celebrities have some of the strongest influence and get some of the greatest opportunities. This is because people have become familiar with them, feel like they “know them,” and have developed a sense of trust. Warranted or not, that’s how it works. When people know, like, and trust someone they are more likely to be influenced by them.
The same is true not just in popular culture, but in business as well. I’ve personally experienced this celebrity association phenomenon myself. Through the summer of 2016 my company released our book, we produced our first product, and I scored the opportunity to speak at The Business Expert Forum at the Harvard Faculty Club. Right afterwards, I was asked for my autograph on multiple occasions. I was asked to speak on yet another Business Expert panel, and I received an offer to be flown across the country, all expenses paid, to share my expert knowledge. The efforts I’ve taken to raise my image and influence were beginning to pay off.
If you are looking to gain better results in business, you must understand that building your personal brand is not just for the rich and famous. It is for the small business owner like you, entrepreneur like me, and even corporate executives as well. In fact, it is becoming vital in building the know, like, and trust “it factor” your prospects are seeking.
7 Ways to Gain Influence and Celebrity Status in Your Industry
1. Build your personal brand with a unique point of view.
You really must take a BOLD stand and be OK with not pleasing everybody. By aiming to please everybody, you end up really pleasing nobody. Find your voice, share your opinions, and know that you will attract the audience that subscribes to your frequency. Extreme Example: Miley Cyrus reinvented her image a few years back and in doing so she offended many people. However, her bold actions received a lot of attention and put her in the top of the charts. Keep in mind, being bold doesn’t mean you have to aim to offend people but you should stick out and be different or you’re just Another Brick in the Wall.
Action: Find a discussion on social media and weigh in with your expert advice.
2. Create original content that provides value.
Original content does not mean that you have to create ground breaking content that reinvents all of man-kind. It does mean that you need to create content that is not vanilla and the exact same as you may see on other websites. Show some personality! Have some fun with your content. Have you ever gone to a movie and start rolling your eyes because the movie is so predictable you know exactly what’s going to happen? It’s ho-hum at best. Now think of movies such as Quentin Tarantino’s Pulp Fiction. This movie was so different it inspired a new style of writing and directing. The content in the movie itself wasn’t much different than what you may see in other movies but it was delivered in a unique an original manner.
Action: Create an original blog article or video and ask people to review it.
3. Use systems & tools to stay top of mind.
People surf websites and channels quickly. They are overloaded and bombarded with so many messages in a day they can’t even process the data. However, Rockstar Professionals aim to create fans by creating valuable, entertaining content and delivering it to people who are in-tune with their message. Your content can not just sit on your blog or video channel. You must deliver it in some form or fashion if you want people to see it. You can not rely on chance alone. Leverage e-mail, text and app automation tools that can ensure your message reaches it’s intended target.
Action: Ensure you have a tool in place to stay top of mind. If you have one, brainstorm an idea of how you can better leverage it.
4. Create goals and a strategy.
If you find yourself still executing a hit and miss approach to raising your influence, you are not alone. A blog post here, a few social media checkins there, a live stream every day for a week and then stopping. I get it, life is busy and it’s hard to get everything moving. That is exactly why you need to create clear goals and a strategy that you can execute, track and optimize. You can’t improve what you don’t track and it’s pointless to track inconsistent efforts. Execute consistently, track your results, and optimize through time. This will help you reach your goals. You can never hit a goal you don’t set.
Action: Create one clear goal right now that you will execute, track, and optimize in the next 14 days.
5. Elevate your circle of influence.
You end up being a by-product of the closest 5 people you associate with, so hang around people you aspire to be like. This can be challenging because this may mean you need to quit hanging around old contacts, groups or organizations that you actually like. But let me be clear, if they are not elevating you… they are actually holding you back. Hollywood A-Listers hang around Hollywood A-Listers. Influential leaders work with other influential leaders.
Action: Reflect on your current circle of influence and define a new group to join or new contact to reach out to and do it.
6. Generate newsworthy ideas
Simply working nine to five typically won’t get you noticed. You’ve got to do something newsworthy and interesting to attract attention. Think about pop artists. They must continually come out with new music, get involved with projects or do something that is of interest to people or they will eventually fall off the map. Newsworthy ideas for the Rockstar Professional may include:
- Hosting your Own Event
- Writing a Book
- Sponsoring a Charity or Fundraiser
- Creating a New Product or Service
- Being Interviewed on the Media
- Interviewing Influential People
- Being Published Online
Action: Brainstorm a newsworthy idea that you can execute in the next 30 days and put it in your calendar. Execute it then be sure to promote it.
7. Become a speaker in your industry
There may be no better way to “Claim Your Stage” and raise your influence than to become a speaker in your industry. When you are positioned as an expert speaker in your industry others will naturally look as you as a leader. You’re on a stage and people are in the audience learning from you and your expertise. It is really important here that where you speak and who you speak to makes a key difference. Bruno Mars and Beyonce are both celebrities in their industry. However, even they raised their influence a couple notches when they performed at the SuperBowl. Mary J Blige, another celebrity in music, almost committed career suicide when performing one of her tunes in a Burger King commercial. This effect of association is very similar to your circle of influence.
When I spoke at the Harvard Faculty Club, I had many professionals reach out and congratulate me for my success and even earned some other high profile opportunities.
Action: Research a speaking opportunity that will help you get started as a speaker OR will elevate your status and work at it until you achieve it.