Over the last month, we have all focused on our digital footprint and our online presence. I have had countless chats with professional service experts about the effective creation and sharing of their expert content. The creation of good content is, of course, crucial - it should be client relevant (niche), digestible and timely - but if your network sucks no-one important will see it!
You must curate, nurture and look after your network. LinkedIn, Twitter, 1-2-1 email, newsletters and alerts are all useful channels - who sees, reacts and shares your content is crucial.
Now is the time to check out who you are actually connected to - run an audit; think about who is important. Be ruthless - ensure your content is getting to the most important people in your universe. Make sure your universe is not everybody. Big is not necessarily beautiful. I would rather 5 of the right people (clients, colleagues and prospects) read this post than 100 of the wrong.
A little while ago were in a meeting with a consultant from one of the big 4 accountancy firms who specialises in financial services for health care insurance.
- We asked - Who would he love to see his content?
- He said - Everyone
- We said - There are 6.4 billion people in the world
- He said - Everyone in Financial Services
- We asked - Can everyone in Financial services buy what he was selling?
- He said - no
- Eventually - We got to the 5 big firms he either advises now or would love to advise. We worked out the key 3 individuals in each of those firms
- Together - We made the list of the 15 people
- Now - He continues to very effectively write content and use it to influence those 15 individuals.
Think about your circles of influence. For a start I recommend you audit your LinkedIn connections (click here to see how) and make sure the list provided (individuals and firms) matches the list of people who gave you your income in the last 12 months and you hope will give you your income in the next 12 months.
My advice: Focus on the small circles of influence. Invest time and effort into them rather than spreading yourself too thinly. Remember each of them has a network and they are in the best position to recommend and refer you (thereby getting to larger numbers.
Great quote below from Harvard Business Review below.
“It’s important to consider the five people who are in your inner circle, because they are going to deeply and profoundly influence you,” says Darrah Brustein, founder of Network Under 40. In other words, you need to be ruthlessly selective, because everyone in your core group also has an inner circle with which you will ultimately be connected, and those people will have an inner circle, and so on.