Being a thought leader comes with many benefits. People trust thought leaders. They respect them. They rely on them. And they remember them. Positioning yourself as a trusted resource in the property management industry can help put your brand on the map and ultimately lead to greater success down the road. But becoming a thought leader isn’t something that happens overnight. It takes time and a concerted effort to build your reputation and establish a following. That said, here are five steps you can take that will help get you closer to your goal.
Create your personal brand
Your ultimate end-result may be to position your property management company as a trusted resource, but before you can do this you must first establish your own personal brand. Thought leadership begins with building a strong reputation. Start by optimizing your existing social media accounts, focusing primarily on Twitter and LinkedIn. Next, start producing consistent, quality content on your company’s (and/or your own personal) blog. This will help you lay the foundation.
Partner up with others
A great way to kick start your own thought leadership journey is to reach out and connect with other mentors and influencers in the property management industry. You may find them through your social media and content marketing efforts, or they may find you first. Once you’ve narrowed down a list of about four or five individuals who are willing to partner with you, step back and start observing. Watch how they carry themselves and ask them to share their wisdom. Read their blogs. Learn from them.
In addition to working with your mentors and influencers, the next step is to begin expanding your reach through networking. Get involved in the conversations that are taking place surrounding the property management industry, both online and offline. Join groups. Start and participate in discussions. Attend events and meet new people on a regular basis. When you’re ready and it’s appropriate, seek out speaking opportunities. Over time, people will begin to recognize you as a trusted resource and therefore place even greater value on the message you have to share.
Your blog is a great place to begin your journey as a thought leader, but once it’s established, it’s time to start thinking bigger. If your goal is to reach and influence as many people as possible (which it should be), you’ll need to extend beyond your comfortable little corner of the web. Start by guest posting on other industry-related blogs and, when you’re ready, seek out publication on larger, more authoritative sources, such as industry magazines or some of the leading online publication channels. The more exposure you get this way, the more your audience – and your influence – will grow.
Lastly, don’t be afraid to think outside the box and make bold claims. After all, thought leaders don’t follow the pack. Once you’ve established your reputation as an authority in the property management industry, it’s time to use your platform to drive change and spark innovation. When people see that you are confident and not afraid to speak your mind, they will naturally begin to view you as a true thought leader.
Lastly, but perhaps most importantly, understand that this process will take time. Don’t try to implement all of these steps in one day. Instead, focus on the long-term benefits of becoming a thought leader. Over time, with enough work, commitment and dedication, you’ll be able to establish yourself – and your brand – as the go-to resource in the property management industry.