It’s indisputable that no one likes to be sold to and that people do business with people. How then can companies use their marketing to build meaningful relationships with clients? The answer lies in becoming a trusted partner before doing business with you has even been considered.
Rather than wasting energy and resources shouting about your years of expertise, focus on making your expert team a little bit famous by raising their profiles as trusted thought leaders. They don’t need to love the limelight – there are ways to play to each person’s strengths.
Five steps for building your team’s star potential:
Digital insights: LinkedIn is an ideal way to build the profile of individual subject matter experts (SMEs) on both their personal pages and your company’s page. Build a list of topics that each SME can speak about. These could be current industry challenges you are facing, new regulations, or common questions your team gets asked.
When posting on LinkedIn, having a month-long focus on a particular theme or topic is an effective way to land messages. Remember, only a small percentage of followers will see each post so sharing multiple posts on the same theme will increase your visibility. A connected series of posts that link to thought leadership blogs or an e-guide can be combined with emailers, a media feature, and perhaps an industry event.
Media commentary: Securing media coverage is a highly effective way to build trust in your SMEs. Rather than only issuing press releases for big announcements such as contract wins, widen your approach by suggesting expert-insight pieces. Combining these with a relevant case study is a great way of providing potential customers with valuable insights while also demonstrating that you know what you’re talking about.
Expert guidance: Hosting regular webinars or in-person insight sessions will ensure your company and team are front-of-mind when potential clients are ready to buy. They also provide an opportunity to build meaningful relationships with your peers. Developing and promoting a calendar of events, rather than one-off sessions will create opportunities for regular engagement.
Events: Just like media relations, securing speaking opportunities at industry events is another way for your SMEs to become a little bit famous and become recognised thought leaders. Remember sharing their attendance on social media is the minimum you should be doing. Their abstracts and presentations can be repurposed as blogs and e-guides. Some event organisers also video presentations which can then be shared on your social channels and website.
Awards: Being shortlisted for industry awards is yet another way to raise the profile of your experts and your company. Build a forward plan of award opportunities at the start of the year to avoid missing any opportunities. And remember just like industry presentations, award content can be repurposed as social media posts, blogs, and media articles.
There are plenty of ways to make your team, and your company, a little bit famous. For reluctant ‘stars’ start small with blogs or a selection of social media posts and build from there.
Find out how we can help build your subject matter experts’ profiles. Get in touch at firstname.lastname@example.org