This is the first, in a three-part video series on how professional services executives, specifically those selling technology services, can make their thought leadership more visible. This video explores the first strategy, Direct Contact.
Hi. I’m Liz Harr and you’re watching the first of a three-part video series on how professional services executives, specifically those selling technology services, can make their thought leadership more visible. I’m gonna be talking about three different strategies for doing just that. But before I get to that, let’s talk about why we’re talking about this in the first place.
As we know, in the world of professional services, expertise drives the needle in the balance of more business back to us, as executives in professional services, like nothing else. And one of the best ways to promote your expertise is through thought leadership. So, that’s why we’re spending time talking about how you can make your thought leadership more visible and, at the end of the day, secure more business.
Now, the first strategy that I’ll be talking about is what I’ll refer to as direct contact. And the notion around direct contact is very simple. What I’m talking about is allowing your audience the experience to interact with you directly and experience your expertise. And the way that you can do this…I’m not necessarily talking about networking events and cocktail parties, those don’t quite cut it. What I’m talking about are real direct interactions, perhaps as an advisor to your client, perhaps as a mentor to your peers or your colleagues, perhaps as a partner to a non-competing visible expert in your space, but also to your prospective audience. Think in terms of free consultations, free assessments. So, these are real opportunities for your audience, the folks that you care about at the end of the day, to directly interact with you and experience what you’re an expert in.
Now, why does direct contact work? Well, it’s for a couple of reasons. The other thing we know about professional services is referrals make the world go round. And we know from our research on referrals that one of the primary ways to secure referrals is through what we call expertise-based referrals. So, all that means is somebody perceives you as an expert because they worked with you and have that experience, or they saw your thought leadership, but somehow you’ve convinced them of your expertise. And these folks will refer you based on that. So, since referrals are so important, it’s important to secure those expertise-based referrals.
Another reason that direct contact is so important. I’m gonna show you a chart. Take a look at this. In some of our research that we did on visible expertise, we talked to buyers of technology services and we asked them, “What convinces you that someone is the expert that they’re claiming they are?” And look at the top one here on the chart. You can see that having a visible track record of your expertise is, in fact, the number one criteria. So, when you use direct contact as a channel for allowing people to experience your expertise, to really experience that track record that you say you have in your thought leadership, it has a halo effect of, in turn, bringing credibility to you as an expert, bringing credibility to your thought leadership, and raising the spectrum of visibility around your thought leadership.
So, I hope I’ll see you at the next two video segments where we’ll talk about the other two strategies to make your thought leadership more visible.