In our previous post, we discussed the benefits of promoting yourself as a business expert, and whether or not it is a smart idea to actually do so.

Grow Your Reputation Organically

In a world economy dominated by the importance and value of critical information, being recognized as a business expert can boost your reputation and esteem within your industry or business community, leading to many advantages and opportunities that could cost a fortune to achieve by other means. For example, you could spend thousands in advertising and marketing promoting yourself and achieve fewer results than if you were to build your reputation organically. Also, by organically developing and growing your reputation, you will have a demonstrable history to back up and bolster that reputation, which is something that simply can’t be achieved through those other, artificial means.

Patience And Determination Are Key

Through the tools, platforms, and services provided to professionals online, it’s not necessary to invest a significant amount of money to begin promoting yourself as a business professional. However, the process does require commitment and energy, as well as a significant investment of time and effort. It’s also important to remember that the payoff may not be immediate, and will require a hefty dose of patience and determination to achieve.

Building Your Reputation And Promoting Yourself Online

The easiest platform with the lowest barrier to entry is the online world of blogs, social media services, and groups associated with both. There is no cost to creating a set of social media accounts and profiles, although there may be a minimal cost involved in developing your personal branding elements and a profile photo that you incorporate into the cover and avatar images for each account. Remember, the goal is to begin developing your “brand” as a business expert, so these elements must be consistent across each profile and account.

Join Relevant Blogs And Groups

Next, search out and join blogs, groups, and communities on social media that are as relevant as possible to your industry or business community. Look for groups that are industry specific, geographically specific, or both, as those groups will be very beneficial to join and participate in it. Once you’ve joined, begin to be as helpful to other members as possible. Yet no one wants a new community member to force themselves and their knowledge and expertise on the rest of the group, so don’t try to force things right away. Remember, we mentioned that an investment of time and effort is required, and rushing things can be counter-productive.

Take The Next Steps In Person

Once you’ve established yourself as an expert and member in good standing of local online business groups, the next steps require joining and participating in groups in person. The best place to start is with your local chambers of commerce and other local and regional business groups. As with the online groups, refrain from immediately forcing yourself and your talents on the group. Instead, begin to develop relationships and offer to assist others whenever possible. Most groups have regular social meetups and participate in charitable events, so set aside as much time as possible to participate. In addition to local groups, you should also try to participate in as many industry-specific events as possible, although these events will likely not be locally-based and may require a monetary investment in travel and lodging. As with local events, attempt to be helpful and build relationships, and if the opportunity arises, you can offer to give your group a presentation. If you continue these trends, your community and peers will soon see you and your business as experts in your industry.