While you may not have the in your face style that catapulted Gary Vaynerchuk to fame and fortune, everyone on the planet has a unique personality and a personal style. In truth it doesn’t matter what your personal style is, there is a group of people out there who need you. It’s your job to help them find you.

Since the advent on the Internet, thousands of people have created powerful personal brands around passions as diverse as correct English grammar (Grammar Girl Mignon Fogarty), prairie living (Ree Drummond, The Pioneer Woman), life coaching (Suzanne Evans) just to name a few.

How do these self styled experts gain their status? Each has taken their own path to authority status, but there are some similarities. The good news is the tools are readily available. The only real barrier to entry is making the commitment to the effort.

Here are the things that each of these experts did to position themselves:
1) Creating a message around a personal passion.
2) Using that passion to connect with the people who need to hear their message.
3) Sharing their message widely through technology (blogging, social media, videos, podcasts)
4) Writing a book that positions them as an authority.
5) Repeat steps three through five.

Today, opportunities for spreading the message about the expertise you can deliver are literally, right at your fingertips.
The easiest way to get started is through the written word. For an investment of around $100 for a domain name and web hosting, anyone with access to a computer can start a blog. That’s how Ree Drummond got started, sharing with her readers about her life as a rural wife and home schooling mom. Book deals and a television show soon followed.
Grammar Girl Mignon Fogarty was a free lance technical writer and editor. She started recording a podcast in her closet, and within months she had landed a book deal. What set Mignon apart was her kinder, gentler approach to delivering information about using correct grammar. She saw that most of the grammar advice online had a holier than thou tone. Grammar Girl is highly approachable and fun instead of reminding you of the evil grammar teacher from eighth grade that still gives you nightmares.

Who are the people who need to hear your message? How can you connect with them? The answers to those two questions will guide your decisions as to how to step into the spotlight.
Writing an article for a professional journal or trade publication might be the best first step if you are in a corporate environment. If you serve small businesses and entrepreneurs, setting up a regular schedule of posting articles from your blog on LinkedIn is a logical first step.

Now, sit down at your keyboard and get started writing a blog post, and article or the script for your first podcast and you will be on your way to becoming a recognized expert.

About Your Columnist

Kimberly Schramm is a featured columnist for Women Taking Charge, the official blog for Connected Women of Influence, where she covers how to position yourself as an expert authority in business. Kimberly is the owner of Like a Boomerang and is a Certified Inbound Marketer who helps her clients develop and implement strategies to target prospects and deliver their messages in a variety of media, online and offline.

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