Several years ago my boss started emphasizing “becoming famous in your industry.” If you become famous in your industry, either locally, regionally or nationally, you will become the first person prospects will call for additional services. Also, clients want to continue working with people who have good reputations for hard work, experience and knowledge.
What does it take to become famous in your industry?
Below are the steps I’m in the process of taking to become famous in the banking industry. I’m not yet where I want to be but I’m making good strides toward the goal.
Find your niche – Deciding on the niche in which you want to specialize is the most important step. Several years ago, one could thrive by being “good at many but master of none.” Now, business owners want to work with specialists to make sure they get the best advice.
Specializing in a niche will allow you to provide more benefit to your clients. You want to be “good at many and master of few.” Maybe you can succeed at being a master of just one niche. I’m focusing on being master of a few.
If you choose more than one niche to master, they should at least be related. All of the areas for which I want to be recognized as the expert are within the banking consulting realm.
I can speak to the same person about each niche. If I had to speak to three different people within a bank to be able to discuss my specialties, that would be very inconvenient not only to me, but more importantly to my client.
Decide on one niche. Before you master that niche (and do we ever really master one?) choose a related area on which to focus. Then, add more niches as you continue building your experience and specialties through your career.
Stop wasting your time – A few years into my career, I was getting really bored. I had been working on the same type of engagement week after week. Those engagements became very easy for me to complete and I could complete them efficiently from an hours perspective.
I was still young and those engagements were what I was expected to work on at that level in my career. However, I needed a change. They weren’t challenging me anymore. What did I do?
I told my boss I needed something else to work on. I was honest about being bored with these types of engagements. He recognized my efficiency with them so he knew it wasn’t that I just didn’t want to do the work.
From that point on, I was assigned to more difficult engagement types. I enjoyed my job more because I was challenged once again.
If you work on things that do not complement your career goals, find a way to stop doing them. Focus on doing things that will help you. Ask for new assignments. Delegate tasks that can be done by someone else. Stop wasting your time.
Write – An easy way to get your name known to others besides your current clients is to write articles or authoritative works about your chosen niche. I’ve written a few articles over the years but not near as many as I should have. I’ve decided to put more focus on this going forward.
More important than writing the article is getting it published to your desired market. It is likely there are trade magazines or other periodicals that publish material related to your niche.
Pick the publications in which you want your article to be published. Learn about the rules for submitting articles for publication and then submit. If you can talk with an editor before you write your article, you can determine a specific topic that is most likely to be published.
Speak – Getting an article published in a magazine has the potential to reach many people. Speaking, though, is the desired medium. When people sit through an oral presentation, they are more likely to resonate with the personality of the speaker.
After hearing a good speaker present, a listener will likely feel as if he knows you personally. Since a majority of communication is nonverbal, the listener will hear the passion in your voice. That does not come across by reading an article.
Write a book – Having a book published is the holy grail for spreading your message. Even though it has become so easy to publish a book these days, a book still portrays authority, especially if it is a traditionally published book.
I have not written a book yet but I do plan to do so. Due to time constraints, I have not yet made that a priority. Other things first.
What have you done to make yourself famous in your industry? Which of the above steps have you taken? Perform these steps in the order presented and you will be well on your way to fame (in your industry at least).