How To Become A Thought Leader Online

Social Media has opened an array of new portals for individuals, brands and businesses alike. Giving us the ability to become thought leaders in our respective industries. With the click of a button we can be connected with virtually anyone around the world in a matter of seconds. Not only has this been great for developing relationships on the friendship level, but many have been able to attract new business and clients simply by showcasing their business or brand in a more personal way.

One thing I have learned through my experience working with clients and my own projects on the social media platforms is people do not respond well to “in your face” selling. When you are constantly tweeting, Facebooking or Instagramming out “Buy My Stuff” posts, people tend to be turned off. They are on social media to have fun, learn and interact, not necessarily to buy. That doesn’t mean you can never run a sales special or come up with a clever ad showing the benefits of your product but if you don’t balance your content marketing campaign with useful information in respects to your industry, you’re going to hear crickets.



So how do you sell without selling? One of the best ways to do this is showcasing your knowledge of your respected industry or craft through video blogging. If you have never read Gary Varynerchuk’s book CRUSH IT, please by all means go order this right now! Gary was and still is a pioneer on the art of displaying your knowledge through video.


I’ve had the pleasure of working with one business owner in particular who in my opinion is one of the most knowledgeable people of an industry I have ever seen. His name is Richie Galdieri, owner of The Las Vegas Cigar Company. Now my experience with the characters who inhabit this magical Las Vegas storefront is an entirely different story which I’ll save for a different post but my point is, Richie knows his stuff. Not only does he have a huge passion for cigars but Richie has a ridiculous amount of knowledge of everything in the industry from how cigars are made, how they should be stored, cut, lit, smoked, etc.

We’ve shot a series of videos with Richie which has included topics such as:

How To Smoke A Cigar

How To Cut A Cigar

How To Light A Cigar

What To Drink with a Cigar

How To Choose A Cigar

In addition, we’ve also shot a variety of other topics related to the lifestyle of cigar smokers and stories from his shop. What’s been interesting to watch is how Richie’s Youtube channel has grown organically. I don’t know how many times I have heard people say “I want a viral video” and think that one million view videos fall from the sky. I hate to break it to you, but unless you have an array of cats falling off a table or a ridiculously funny baby video, I wouldn’t count on it.

However, with Richie, we chose topics we thought cigar smokers would want to know about. The most successful video thus far has been Riche’s “How To Smoke A Cigar” with over 64,000 views. People that have never even heard of Richie or his cigar shop are coming to him for his knowledge. Video is a great way to deliver the message because people are able to physically see who you are and the environment you work in. Put simply, it helps build trust with the viewer. For Richie’s videos we keep it simple by filming a majority of them in front of his neon “Las Vegas Cigar Co.” sign.

Another example of someone we have worked with who has delivered stellar content marketing for their industry is Deven Chase of Sutton & Chase Reality. Deven is extremely knowledgeable of not only real estate in the Las Vegas area but he is also on the cutting edge on how to incorporate Social Media into his marketing plan. Not only is this a great way to build trust with potential clients looking for a new property but it is also making Deven a thought leader and viewed as an expert to other realtors. Check out Deven’s entire playlist below:

One final example of someone I’ve worked with who has positioned themselves as a thought leader online is Julie Bergonz also known as the “Sin City Shooter.” Julie is an amazing photographer who has a wealth of knowledge when it comes to the realm of photography. With Julie we shot a video series covering wedding photography, concert photography and photography tips for beginners.

To sum it up, individuals like Richie and Deven are CRUSHING IT (Just like Gary V.) when it comes to positioning their business online and being viewed as an expert in their respected industries. If you too want to become a leader in your industry I suggest starting with 10 different video blog topics you can speak on within your realm. If you don’t have access to video, start by doing written blog posts. However, I highly encourage you to incorporate video into your content marketing mix. You don’t have to start with fancy equipment or editing, every smart phone now has a built in camera which will get the job done.

Whether you are a doctor, lawyer, restaurant owner, personal trainer or a photographer, share your knowledge with the world and position yourself to be a thought leader online!

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