One of the things that I’m often nudging clients on is how to build their thought leadership, brand, and visibility in ways that are not self-aggrandizing and that their very full schedules will accommodate. Below you’ll find some suggestions.
5 avenues for getting your thinking out into the world:
- Writing. Journal articles, professional association publications, and LinkedIn (where you can post articles, join forums, comment on posts and re-share, and also publish short pieces).
- Speaking. Keynote or breakout, your experience or expertise or a combination. Select one or two premier conferences for your industry and throw your hat in the ring.
- Moderating. If the speaking spotlight seems too bright, consider moderating a panel. A wonderful way to showcase your thinking simply by the questions you ask. Be sure to keep the focus on the panelists and not on your own opinions or input.
- Podcasting. Hosting or guesting. Think conversation meets preparation. Just like presenting a talk at a conference, know your audience, messaging, and content.
- Videoing. Snippets or full length, engaging and relevant to your intended audience on the topics that are most important to them. And those they have yet to consider.
Some tips for delivery:
- Story is sticky (I believe it’s Dan and Chip Heath where I first heard this articulated). Tell stories and people will more likely remember your content. I once had someone ask me about a restaurant that I’d mentioned in a speech. Two years later.
- When speaking, keep your focus on what you’re saying rather than how the audience is reacting, particularly at the outset. For every exec that I’ve coached for big presentations (and for myself), this is key. When we focus on people noticing that we’re nervous, we get more nervous. And then, well, everything starts to slide. Accept and expect nerves as part of it, and they’ll likely evaporate more quickly.
- Re-purpose and leverage your content to lighten your load. You’re speaking at an event? Be sure that photos are taken and share them on social, for example. You’ve written a blog? Turn it into a longer article. Written an article? Break it up into smaller pieces of content for other avenues of distribution. You get the idea.
- Build time in to your calendar for creating content, recording videos, looking into conferences, etc. Literally put it on your calendar.
- Know your audience, your intended audience, and the brand you want to build.
- Your experience as a leader, how you came to be where you are, might be one of the most valuable and compelling things you can share.
- You need not write a tome to be effective.
- When you have an idea for content, dictate it into your phone immediately so you can come back to it later.