Becoming an Online Influencer: Our Thoughts on David Spark’s Post

By on April 4, 2011

We read a really interesting post on Mashable a few days ago, written by David Spark of Spark Media Solutions. He makes the point that while information on approaching and attracting online influencers is rampant, there’s not much on actually becoming an influencer.

online influencer, leader

Courtesy of freshnetworks.com

Is that because most of the blogs we read are run by influencers already? He made some good comments that we’ll chat about below.

1. If You’re Not Creating Content, You’re Not an Influencer

A lot of people will argue that this point is 100% correct, and it is – except for the fact that many businesses or blogging ‘personalities’ are making names for themselves based on someone else’s writing.

We agree that no content means no influence, but there are ways around the ‘content monster’ that most influencers have come to appreciate.

Outsourcing for example is common, so is hiring content businesses to keep your name, or your business name, in the public domain. By all means get cracking on your content, but don’t be afraid to ask for help when you’re a little overwhelmed by it all!

2. To Become an Influencer, Interview Other Influencers

The old ‘interview’ tactic is getting older, and it really is industry specific. While social media marketers might be able to find interviews with social media influencers – really it’s the niche that prompts them to reply.

Would this work for smaller niche orientated businesses? It’s hard to imagine any industry outside the media, online marketing or social media that would openly give an interview to a direct competitor. That being said, if you happen to be an ‘up-and-coming’ in one of those niches, then yes it’ll work. But it won’t be easy!

3. Find The Popular Trends or Topics and Get There First

This is a great piece of advice and not one offered as much as you’d expect. One of the best things you can do in your industry is to always know what’s happening, as early as you can. Subscribe to news feeds, trending topics on Twitter and do your best to look for that ‘opportunity’ information that you can capitalize on.

Something as small as a blog post written on a subject, then released first online can result in a boost in traffic, more subscribers – even more backlinks. Shaping your day’s social media strategy around this information, well that’s pure gold. You get there first on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and your blog.

Our Final Thoughts

As David says, to be an influencer you have to influence someone. In other words your content has to influence the content of other writers. You have to influence your readers – even influence other influencers.

It’s one thing to claim to be an influencer, and another to be crowned one by other people. That’s when you know you’ve made it. The only way to do this? Get involved. Use your time to create the right content that is supposed to get you noticed. Thanks again to David Sparks and Mashable, for giving us something to think about. Read the original post here.

How would you become an influencer? Anything we’ve missed?

About John Souza

John Souza is founder and chief strategist of SMMU and Social Media Impact, and is a bestselling business author. He won the 2011 Tech Marketing Awards ‘Social Media Marketer of the Year’ and most recently the About.com Reader’s Choice Award for Best Online Education Site. John has appeared on The Michael Gerber Show, and his business has been honored at the Mashable Awards, Forbes Business Awards and The Stevie Awards.
Close

Like what you're reading?

Like us on Twitter, Facebook or Google+ for more!