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Increase your influence Origineurs podcast episode hosted by communication expert, Loretta Milan

Increase your influence

Your voice matters.

Your skills, experiences, personality, story and style – the whole life you’ve lived to date – make you unique.

No one is exactly like you and this means you have an original perspective on life.

When you share this with the world, you can make an impact. You can make people pause. Think differently. Act differently.

Influence is a force.

When you have influence, you can get people not only interested in what you have to say but to take action on it.

And – let’s face it – influence feels good.

It’s great when people care about you and your ideas. It’s great when they want to hear what you have to say, when they act on your suggestions, when you see things happening because of what you’ve had to say.

Influence is an essential ingredient for success. Think of any successful person in the world, and people will be paying attention to them, whether they like them or not.

When you don’t have that influence, however, it can be frustrating. When no one is interested, it can feel like you don’t matter, that you’ll never make a difference, that you’ll never succeed.

So, how do you change that?

3 ways to grow your influence.

1. Be seen.

You have to get out there and start talking about what matters to you in a meaningful way so people not only know about you but know what you’re about.

If you want influence, you don’t just want to be talking about anything and everything. Although it may seem like the way to appeal to as many people as possible, the problem is you can end up getting known for nothing. In addition, people will get confused about what you’re about and may switch off.

So, get clear on what’s really important to you and what you want to be known for.

Grab a notepad and write down your thoughts and ideas related to these themes. Keep it topped up as it will act as a useful prompt when you’re considering what to talk about with your audience.

Also consider why you are the person to talk about these things? Do you have experience in the area? Was there a specific event that caused your interest? You’ll want to make sure people know about this.

And, if you’re not an expert but are learning yourself, share your journey. Share your insights from the books you read, the people you meet, your best lessons and more.

Once you know your focuses, the most important thing is to get out there and get talking. Publish posts on social media. Go to networking events. Wherever you audience is, reach out. Inspire them.

You don’t need to post every day – let alone several times a day – but be seen regularly. Over time people will get to know you.

2. Be heard.

There are a lot of voices out there, why should someone pay attention to you?

All the things that make you unique – your skills, experiences, personality, story and style – give you an original perspective and it’s this that people will be interested in hearing, the more they get to know you.  

But, to inspire them to listen, you’ll need to know not only what you want to say, but what matters to your audience. Then, you can create a bridge to reach them.

Great bridge-builders are great influencers because they’re relatable.

To do this, first be clear on your audience. If you’re broadcasting to everyone about everything, it’s hard to get known for something. 

Who really matters to you? Get to know that audience.

  • What are their interests, desires and ambitions?
  • What are their challenges, pain points and darkest fears?
  • How can you make a difference?

Show what you can offer in the context of what matters to your audience, and people will pay attention. They’ll start seeing you as someone who has something of value to offer and their ears will prick every time they see your name or what you have to say.

But be real. There’s no better way to switch people off than to be inauthentic. This doesn’t mean you have to share your deepest secrets, or every event that happens in your life, but be yourself.

When people care, they listen.

3. Be trusted.

The most crucial step to increasing your influence is to build trust.

Think about your friends for a moment. Who are the people you can turn to for reliable advice? Of course, it will depend on the context – some are better on the subject of parenting, some know more about travel, others have lots to say about finance, for example. But why do you turn to them?

Because of their track record.

At some point in the past, they offered an opinion or you heard them offering it to someone else and it turned out to be sound.

However – in contrast – if their opinions weren’t reliable, you may question everything they say and even stop paying attention, at least on certain subjects.

The same applies when it comes to your audience. So, make sure, the opinions and advice you offer are well considered and researched, consistently.

Top up your expertise regularly. Read, watch, listen in your sector. Collaborate. Interview others. If you want to become a trusted voice in your industry, it’s important to appear up to date, well informed and energised by all these new insights.

Also, be clear about what you don’t know, although you can always expand your knowledge. Recommending other people and resources your audience can turn to when you don’t know something, shows confidence – you don’t need to pretend.

If you get things wrong, don’t try to hide it. That will only diminish trust further. Be open about what you learned so that others can not only benefit from your lessons but perceive you as honest and straightforward.

To be trusted, you also need to be seen in the right places. So, be bold. Put yourself forward to speak at events, offer to run workshops, circle the room at networking events, write articles. Do all this in places your audience hangs out and respects.

Get started.

Write a list of all the things you could talk about. Write a list of all the places your audience turns to and where you’d like to be seen.

Then, take active steps to get out there.

Go at the pace that works for you. For example, if you want to be featured in magazines, you may decide to submit one pitch a month, one a week, or one every quarter. The most important thing is that you’re making progress aren’t stagnant.

You don’t have create everything from scratch every time. You can repurpose content in different ways for different channels and different audiences.

The more intense and focused you are, the faster you’ll see results. But becoming an influential voice isn’t a race or a competition. It should be something you can sustain and enjoy.

When you embrace being an Origineur and are seen, heard and trusted by your audience consistently, you’ll be surprised at how quickly your influence will grow.

Key takeaways.

  1. Your voice matters. What makes you unique is your blend of skills, experiences, personality, story and style. This gives you an original perspective on the world.
  2. To increase your influence, you need to be seen regularly. Understand your audience so that you can create a bridge between what you want to talk about and what matters to them. Being relatable encourages people to pay attention and listen.
  3. When you’re known for consistently offering valuable information, insights and advice, you become one of the most trusted and influential people in your field.

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