It’s not easy becoming a thought leader.
It’s part knowing the right connections, a dash of perfect timing, and a touch of serendipity. Oh – and actually being an expert.
Money is always a consideration when you’re a freelance professional. Yet, you need to have specific goals. This can be anything from doubling your income, to paid speaking engagements or earning a best-selling author title. Since you don’t have a huge staff to help you achieve these dreams, it’s up to you to create an affordable, but effective DIY strategy.
Here are a few ideas to help you get started:
Titles matter. It’s really that simple.
In the professional world, having the right credentials can make all the difference. And while each industry is different and has unique specifications, there are some standard certifications that will help fortify your reputations as an expert in your field.
Check out the top certification options in your field and see what types of programs they offer. This one has several affordable choices and has self-paced online options.
Build a Personal Portfolio Website
With the right credentials after your name, it’s time to showcase your talents.
Depending on your specific industry, you’ll need to create the right kind of portfolio website that allows potential clients to see your best work. Obviously, any artistic work needs amazing visuals, and a freelance writer wants to share their best work and where it’s been published.
If you’re not tech savvy enough to build your own WordPress site, try an easy and affordable platform like Weebly that has portfolio themes.
Create a Signature Product
With credentials in hand and a place to show off your talent, it’s time to create your own signature product.
There are several digital products that work including writing an eBook, a how-to-guide or even starting your own podcast. But creating your own online course is a step above these as now you’re teaching others. And there are many affordable platforms to create your own online course.
Using the popular platform Udemy, Lisa Powers created the course Your Soul is Calling: Creating Your Ideal Life: A Step by Step Guide to Creating the Life You Were Meant to Live. As a certified Reiki Master, this course helped Lisa share her wisdom with others and build her brand’s image. Udemy is a great DIY platform for building courses as it’s free to use and charges a percentage when you sell a course.
Create something new that shows your talents or take on an important issue. It’s important that your signature product is unique and innovative. This is where you take a risk and try something new. Take a look at the current experts in your field. I doubt they achieved the title of “thought leader” by doing the same-old thing. So be original, daring, and bold.
The First Steps to Reaching Your Long-Term Goals
Establishing yourself as an expert in your field won’t happen overnight. This is definitely a long-term territory. Yet, every single expert that you admire started where you are right now – at the beginning.
Think about your long-term goals and your strategy for reaching them. Start now by putting the pieces together that will establish your credentials. With a little luck and a lot of hard work, you’ll become a next generation leader in your field.