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3 strategies to build influence and become a market leader

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black-and-white-city-man-people-1It’s no secret market leaders consistently attract bigger and better deals than their lesser known competitors.

Everybody wants to work with an expert, and unsurprisingly, becoming your market’s go-to expert is easier said than done. But that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t try; on the contrary, working towards that type of influence and recognition is one of strongest ways to advance your career.

So whether you’re a junior broker just starting to build a name for yourself or an industry veteran with years of experience, there’s always room to boost your presence and grow your market influence. From building your personal brand to finding creative ways to bring people together, follow these steps to build influence and win more deals.

1. Cultivate your personal brand

Building influence starts by cultivating a strong personal brand. Your personal brand includes everything from your image, body language, Facebook and Twitter accounts, network, and of course, how well you deliver and execute with clients.

Start by thinking about what type of image you’re currently presenting. Is it the image of a market expert? Is it consistent across your social media accounts, prospecting efforts and interactions with clients? Be honest about the state of your personal brand and work towards addressing any problems or gaps between your current image and the image you want to project.

Think about ways to use your personal brand to highlight your area of specialization — it’s always easier to build influence in a targeted niche than it is to become the biggest single broker in town. And even if you aren’t a specialist, build a personal brand that makes you stand out from the crowd and delivers a consistent message on why you’re the broker to work with.

2. Stay visible

After taking the time to build a strong personal brand, the last thing you want is for it to go to waste. Avoid that by promoting yourself and your brand everywhere you can.

Take advantage of the usual avenues, the conferences, social media and networking events, and work to connect with key players in your market to bolster your brand influence. Also consider creative ways to become more visible, such as writing a series of articles on LinkedIn or launching a blog that covers trends in your market.

Boosting your visibility will help build your presence — it’s hard to have a presence if you’re invisible — and this will open doors to new opportunities and give you a leg up in the prospecting game.

And depending on what type of personal brand you’ve built, you may even find ways to build influence through unusual avenues, such as launching a podcast focusing on a favorite hobby or joining community groups. While these tactics are admittedly less likely to put you in contact with your target prospects, anything you do to boost your visibility in ways that fit your personal brand will help get your name out there and could build connections with the right people.

3. Bring people together

So far we’ve focused mostly on promoting your brand to others, and while that is a critical part of gaining influence, don’t overlook the power of bringing people together.

Consider building a reputation as a local business leader by hosting forums on current issues impacting commercial markets in your community. You could also put together webinars or lead a monthly lunch and learn program to connect with professionals in your market. While these activities will take some time to get rolling, doing them will build your status as a local leader and broaden your network.

In a similar vein, be on the lookout for opportunities to connect people with experts in your network. If you hear that someone is having trouble finding a lender or appraiser for an upcoming project, don’t hesitate to reach out and connect them to a few professionals you love working with. Although you won’t gain anything on the current deal, helping others by connecting them to the right people will build your reputation as a market expert.

Being a market leader isn’t a static accomplishment — it’s a way of approaching your career each and every day. From fine tuning your personal brand to creatively finding new ways to boost your network, embrace these strategies to cement your influence in the market.