When it comes to creating effective social media content, it's all about knowing your audience. If you want to provide value and showcase your expertise, you have to first know whom you're talking to.
That’s why we were thrilled to sit down with Candice Denise.
Candice is an Expert Authority Content Coach and Creative Director. With over ten years in the event planning industry, Candice is known for creating and curating memorable social experiences for clients. She took the logistics skills, project management, and creativity gained from the event industry, evolved and created CD Creative Loft, helping female coaches, consultants, and "done for you" service-based professionals position themselves as Expert Authorities in their industry by leveraging brand images and strategic social media content marketing.
Social media is an incredible way for us to become known and build authority for ourselves. Whether you're just getting started in an industry or have established expertise, social channels are places to go to build relationships, have conversations and learn.
Take for instance Candice, who leaned into social media to help build awareness when she pivoted her career away from event planning.
“...social media became super helpful in that transition for me- because I was able to showcase what I know and that’s something we couldn't do years ago before social existed.” - Candice Denise
Social media lets us showcase our work. Whether you're a great writer, talented photographer, skilled videographer, or even a fantastic comedian, social media is a place to showcase your talents, deliver value, build an audience and generate FOMO for your business.
Think about the growth of influencers; they are growing in popularity because we trust them more than we trust brands.
On social media, we want to connect to other human beings, not logos. We want to learn from trusted experts and people with authority.
In fact, research shows that some 96% of all B2B companies want more content from industry thought leaders. The reason being is thought leaders are trusted; not to mention, they come with an audience which really helps for the exposure of your content.
At the end of the day, social media is about being social; it's about being a human being. When we show up as ourselves, share quality information, contribute meaningfully to conversations and share good stories, we have the ability to become known on social media.
How To Position Yourself As An Expert:
There are so many different ways that we can go about establishing our expertise and positioning ourselves as thought leaders in our industry.
We’re breaking down Candice’s top 3 tips for positioning yourself as an expert:
Change your mindset:
This comes down to getting out of your head and understanding that people don't know what they don't know.
It's easy for us to overthink the act of sharing our expertise on social media. We think “it looks like I'm bragging.” The reality is, you invested in the education and knowledge you have in this field. It’s not bragging; it’s making what you do, known.
“A lot of times, we don’t want to seem like we’re boasting but it’s like why is that a bad thing? Like, nobody wants to work with someone that they don't feel like has a level of expertise or knowledge.” - Candice Denise
You wouldn't go to a mediocre doctor, right? It’s the same concept… let’s stop being meek about how we speak to our strengths. We’re the BEST at what we do and deserve to make that known.
It's all about changing our mindset so that we don't feel like we can't share who we are. Because the reality is, what's effective on social media is being human; it's showing up as we really are.
“I’ve struggled with this all of my life - this feeling that I don't wanna put something out there because it feels like 'oh I'm constantly like cheering for myself’ and I realize it’s not kind to MYSELF!” - @jessikaphillips (click to tweet)
We are human beings; it's human nature to care what others think. But going into social media means knowing you're going to work in a noisy space.
You can choose to focus on who doesn't love you, or you can choose to focus on who does.
Nourish your audience:
Building relationships with your audience is critical.
“It's important to make your people feel special because they are your people. That’s why I call my community lofters.” - Candice Denise
By personalizing the greeting to our audience we show them that we know them. We all wanna feel seen, heard, and understood… and social media gives us a chance to provide that to our audience. Through social media, we can show our audience that we’re really there for them.
How do we do that? >> We serve them.
“You’re in a relationship with your audience. They did their part by following you so you have to do your part and show up for them.” - Candice Denise
Serve your audience:
Serving your audience is all about providing valuable content, exceptional experiences, and customized conversations.
“Your audience isn’t looking for you to be perfect, they’re looking for you to be present.” - Candice Denise
It's all about serving rather than selling. And the reality is, if you serve them well enough, you'll never have to hard sell.
People are going to want to work with you and buy from you because they see the value in you... because you've been sharing your expertise.
People are going to want to work with you because they feel like they know you, like you, and trust you. That comes from showing up as you are, consistently.
It's about putting out content that's valuable, perspective-shifting, thoughtful, inquisitive, and interesting. It’s helping people figure out and address their pain points.
When we put ourselves in the shoes of our potential and current customers we have the ability to solve problems for them in meaningful ways.
“I’m not a salesperson, I’m a service person.” - Candice Denise
Adopting A Relationship Marketing Mindset:
At the end of the day, everything outlined above is really a crash course in adopting a relationship marketing mindset.
When we listen to our customers and allow them to ask questions we have the opportunity to learn from them and build closer relationships with them.
“When people are asking you questions, don't get annoyed. They’re trying to learn about you. People aren’t just buying the product, they’re buying into you.” - Candice Denise
We can use social media to give people a good insight into us, what we’re all about and how we can help them.
Everyone wants to feel like they are seen, valued, and heard. We want to feel like we're not just another number.
And we're not just saying that; in fact, studies prove this. The number one reason someone will choose a brand over another is the experience.
Experience being a verb: how we make someone feel.
“Don’t focus on views, focus on value. If you’re leading with thinking about views, you’re not thinking about value and you’re not serving your audience.” - Candice Denise
As brands, we have to recognize that it's not about a sales funnel anymore’; the funnel is dead. It's a flywheel of momentum.
We have to be focused on serving the whole time. That is how you drive repeat and referral business, and it is what creates brand advocates.
Getting Started As A Brand:
The most important thing for brands looking to get started is to have a clear understanding of their ideal audience.
Take the time to really establish your customer personas. This will help you focus on your community and focus on what's important -- which is the conversations -- not the likes.
“We don’t know who is watching, so act like everyone is there for you.” - Candice Denise
Focus on the current audience that is showing up. Stop worrying about your follower count and stop focusing on what you can't control. Instead, put that energy towards getting the right people to you.
The best advice Candice has to share with us? >> Protect your light. Protect your energy.
By being mindful of whom you give your time to, you ensure that you have the ability to put your time and energy into the greater impact and service that you're looking to create and provide to the world.
What do you think? What's your top tip for establishing and showcasing your expertise on social media?
Share in the comments below!