How To Increase Your Influence Online

6 Oct 2016
Alan Martin

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Trust and credibility are vital ingredients of an effective social media presence. Without these you may be spinning your wheels and finding it difficult to gain traction.

A great way to build trust and credibility with your community online is through a process known as ‘Social Influencing’.

‘Social Influencing’ is where you regularly share valuable content through your social media channels.

Social Influencing is about showing your expertise so you become known the go-to guy or girl within your industry, so that means that the majority of the content that you will be sharing will be content that you have created yourself. An example might be a blog post or a video that you create then promote via social media.

If you are thinking “that sounds like a lot of work”, I’m not going to lie it can be very time consuming, especially if you are not used to writing longer-form content. But, if you follow my suggestions outlined below, you will get maximum value out of the content that you produce.

Firstly what I would recommend is that you find a medium that works for you! Some people just don’t like writing content, so if that’s you maybe video or live streaming broadcasts would suit you better? Secondly, although you do want to go to the effort of creating your own content, you can supplement this by strategically sharing other people’s content and still provide value to your readers. This technique is called ‘Content Curation’.

For ideas about what topics to write about check out  ‘What Content Works Best On Social Media‘ and Digital Marketer’s excellent article on ‘How to Increase Engagement with Topic Maps‘.

The Tools

Once you have created your content you are going to want to make sure you get the maximum impact out of that effort, by using social media to help you spread the word.  Mark Schaefer calls this process “igniting” your content. Tools such as HootSuite or BufferApp as well as Facebook’s native scheduling tool can be used to make sure your content goes out at times when you know your audience is most likely to see it.

It would be a shame if that was the end of the story and your content was only seen once, after you went to so much effort to create it. One solution would be to schedule your posts to go out at multiple times across different social media platforms, but this is a time consuming job so you probably wont want to do it manually. A much better solution is to use a tool like Edgar to take the heavy lifting out of it! Edgar allows you to create a library of content in different categories which then gets recycled according to a schedule that you choose. Genius!!

If you are sharing other people’s content you can make a Twitter List and add in industry experts and trusted information sources, so you will always have a ready supply of good quality content that you can share with your audience to supplement your own. This can also help get you noticed when the original content creator notices the re-tweet or when you tag them in your Facebook post.

Repurpose Your Content

So you have your content going out at regular intervals, what’s next? Well you want to wring every bit of value from the content that you have so lovingly created! The best way to do that is to repurpose it.

That means taking the content that you originally created, say a blog post, and then reusing elements of that content in different formats. A blog post could be made into a series of tweets, an infographic or even a webinar.

In fact this post you are reading now started out life as one of my weekly ‘Ninja Tips’ emails, but with a bit of editing I was able to easily create a stand-alone blog post that could then be shared with a wider audience.

If you need more inspiration for ways you can repurpose your content, you can find plenty of ideas in ‘50+ Ways to Repurpose Your Content‘ over on the CoSchedule blog.

Conclusion

Although time consuming to produce, if you want to enhance your credibility online you need to be regularly creating and sharing your own content. Your community want to know about your opinions and get a feel for your area of expertise.

Ideally your content should also be housed on a property that you own, not on Facebook or any of the other social networks. That way your website will also benefit from additional search engine optimisation as visitors discover your content and spend time on your site.

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