Much advice has been written about reaching out to influential people online. Doing so gives you the potential to get noticed by these influencers. But how did these people get into the position of authority in the first place? Their followers put them there.
While it is still a great idea to reach out to influencers, it’s not an easy task. They are busy people and the more influential they become, the more people will be reaching out to them. There are only so many hours in a day. Why not reach out to the people that made them influential, i.e., their followers.
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When you track the activities of influential people, take note of who is commenting, liking, sharing, etc. Take a look at the influencers websites’ and start connecting with the people who are following them. Do the same for competitors in your same industry. Connect with anyone that has the potential to be in your market. Start conversations with them. Ask them questions and go out of your way to help them. If you have answers to their questions or solutions to their problems, they are going to start looking to you as an authority.
That is when you will become an influencer. And you did it all by targeting the followers of other influencers. There is nothing unethical about this either. These followers are easily found and you already know they have an interest in some way with your brand. This is because the influencers you followed are likely to be related to your niche. Otherwise, why bother getting involved with them?
As you become more authoritative, the influencers will also take notice. People don’t become influencers in a vacuum. Influencers will also help each other out whenever possible. There is plenty of internet slices to go around. There’s always room for others to coexist in most niches.
The followers of influential people may be themselves up-and-comers. Pay attention to their online footprint and continue to share with these people as well. This kind of networking is very popular among bloggers and is the reason for the success of many bloggers.
Your reasons for connecting with these people should always be to help and offer value. Selling should always be a secondary activity. It should be a byproduct of your helpfulness. If not, you run the risk of getting shunned from the network and it will take a while (if ever) to get back into the good graces of such communities.