Authority. You know you’ve got it when your name/brand carries a certain bit of weight. Your blog readers hold you in a little bit of awe, and they look at you with respect. They devour everything you give them, paid or free. Other bloggers in your niche want to interview you, or they ask you to review your products.
In short, being an authority has its benefits.
Why Authority Works
Think about it – when’s the last time you bought any sort of product online from someone who DIDN’T know what he was talking about? Which bloggers do you eagerly follow who don’t know a thing about their niche? Which bloggers do you see topping the search results who have absolutely no idea about what works and what doesn’t?
People are more likely to buy from the ones who have a proven track record. Along with authority comes a certain sense of security from prospective buyers. That’s why Amazon tops sales of goods online, and not some 2 bit, out-of-the-way online store nobody has ever heard of.
Know what you do, and let people know that you know it.
1. Dominate The SERPs
That’s right. You’ve got to dominate the SERPs. Every. Single. Time.
First of all, topping the results pages gets you leads. Secondly, people will obviously hold you in high regard when they realize that even Google recognizes your worth. This is especially true if you run an Internet marketing blog.
You don’t need to be numero uno for every single keyword related to your niche, but you should definitely rank on the first page or pretty close to the first page for any keyword(s) you target. The closer you are to the top, the more you build your brand authority.
2. Be Everywhere
Nope, sorry. You can’t just huddle around your own blog and never visit any other site except your own – even if you publish high quality content on your blog.
You’ve got to be everywhere.
In your niche, wherever a potential customer turns, you need to be sitting there for all to see. You need to show them that you’re serious, and that you’ve enthusiastically thrown yourself into everything related to your niche.
3. Be Human
Faceless masks sitting behind their computer don’t do well in this day and age. You have to be human.
Meaning, you need to be out there. Your face needs to be out there. You need to get on Skype and on your cell phone and actually call and talk to people IN PERSON. Go to Internet marketing/blogging conventions. Maybe even hop into your car and visit one of your long time customers or blog readers who remain dedicated to your brand.
Show people that you’re human, that you’re alive, and that you exist both virtually AND in real, tangible flesh.
4. Comment On Blogs – A Lot
Blog commenting is probably one of the best ways to boost a business – it gets you free, targeted traffic, builds connections with fellow bloggers, increases activity on your own blog, and builds authority.
One of my favorite things to do on a blog is to reply to someone else’s question. For example, if someone has just asked the blog owner a question and he/she hasn’t replied yet, I step in and give them the answer. I show the original commentator and everyone who sees my reply that I know the niche as well as or even better than the blog owner.
WORD OF CAUTION: This strategy can backfire if you drop a piece of misinformation, introduce an outdated concept, or if you’re rude/boisterous. Your online profile is almost as important as your offline one – don’t ruin it with one silly mistake.
5. Guest Post Like Nobody’s Business
Guest posting is undisputedly one of the best ways to grow your blog right from the get-go. Getting a post approved on ProBlogger or on some other established blog is one of the best things that could ever happen to you.
Especially in the early days, your highest-quality content shouldn’t go on your blog. It should go on other blogs more qualified, more popular, and more authoritative than yours.
The instant I see someone’s byline in a guest post at ProBlogger, I have respect for them. I haven’t even visited their site. I know nothing about them. But the very fact that he/she was able to land a post on one of the biggest blogs in the world has already got me holding ’em in awe and deep esteem.
6. Be Choosy
If you have a 100,000 ranking blog, don’t interact with the 1,600,000 blogs. Pick and choose your connections, who you interact with, and where you guest post. Show them that you don’t associate with every Tom, Dick, and Harry. You’re in an elite class with fellow elites.
NEVER publish rotten guests posts on your own blog (even though you get free content) – that’s one of the quickest ways to DEcrease your brand authority in an instant.
At the same time, don’t be snobbish and overbearing. That’s the quickest way to lose a potential reader and lose your reputation.
7. Own A Product. A Good One.
The problem with affiliate marketing is that when you do it, you don’t really have a product to your name. It’s hard to classify yourself as an expert in your niche if you haven’t yet created a real product you can CHARGE money for (and not just a free report for your squeeze page).
Whenever someone questions your authority on a certain subject, you can direct them over to your product. This puts the idea into their heads that you know the niche, since you sell something about the niche that other people actually buy.
Of course, product creation is also an excellent way to make money from your blog.
8. Be Active On Social Media
Social media marketing is probably one of the biggest influencers in growing your brand. Getting social online tells your prospective customers that you’re human, and it also tells them that you’re not so condescending so that you won’t sign up on Facebook.
Particularly when you consider that Facebook pages & Twitter accounts can be set up and automated so easily, it seems ridiculous not to dive right into SMM.
9. Brag A Lot
Bragging and pimping your achievements in “real life” is likely the fastest way to lose friends and distance yourself from people. Online, it’s a totally different ballgame.
One of the first things people see when they visit your blog page is a list of your achievements thus far. Have you been featured on MSN? Maybe even popped in for an interview at the New Your Times? Perhaps you’ve guest posted on ProBlogger (commonly considered the pinnacle of blogging fame).
Michael Dunlop at IncomeDiary has taken advantage of this particular authority-building strategy remarkably well.
10. Advertise In The SERPs And On Other Blogs
This is probably the best way to show people that you mean business. Advertising is also one of the best ways to help your brand be everywhere.
The fact itself that you’re investing money into advertising is enough for people to know that you’re serious. You’ve got a solution to their problem. You know what you do and you’re amazing enough at it to make money off of it.
11. Know What You Do
Leave everything else alone. If you don’t know what you do, then you’re done for even before you get started. The other ten strategies won’t build authority if you don’t know what you’re doing or what you’re talking about.
If you’re gonna teach people about something on your own blog, you had better be doing it too, and you had better have the results to prove that whatever you teach works.
It’s almost the same scenario when you build a product – if you’re just rebranding PLR or rambling on about some nonsense everybody already knows, your product won’t be successful. Fact.
On the other hand, if you’re constantly coming up with new advancements, new ideas, and new concepts, and if you’re confident in yourself and your ability, people will take notice. And you’ll be rewarded.
Simple as that.
Advertise. Comment (or even guest post) on other blogs. Pimp your achievements. Outdo your competition in everything, even in SEO. Be choosy with whom you interact. Get social. Be human. Stay elite. Know what you do.
Build your authority.