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The Ultimate Guide to Build Authority Online (Part 1)

How I built my audience to 85,000 people

Read time: 3 min, 55 secs

Hey there - it's Brian 👋

I give in.

Readers keep ask me how I built my audience to 85,000 followers.

But I’m not an influencer. I’m a business builder.

So I refused to answer…
But I still get questions every week.

Because when you build an online presence your business thrives:

Talent gets easier. Customers get easier. Publicity gets easier.

Clients started asking too. So today I’ll finally answer:

How you become a thought leader online in a way that actually gets you talent, customers, and press.

This issue will help you:
• Decide who you’re writing to
Design your profile (so customers know it’s for them)
Choose which topics to write about (to hook clients)
Know when you post which type of content (to become a thought leader)

I’ll break this topic into a 2 part series.

I’m writing this with LinkedIn in mind. Though most of these rules will apply to other platforms.

Let’s get you an engaged presence on the internet (so people want to become your client):

Let’s make your business an outlier: 👇

8 steps to build authority

So how do you actually build authority on the internet?

I’m breaking authority building down to 8 steps. But that’s a lot for one email.

So today we’ll focus on parts 1 - 4:
1) Who are you writing to?
2) Design your profile
3) Choose your topics
4) When to post

Want any other topics covered? Reply to this email to let me know.

The 8 steps to build authority

1) Clarify who you’re writing to

Content that’s not targeted to a specific person will get followers. Not engaged followers.

These people don’t buy.

So you’ll create a profile of the target customer for your business. And target your content at their interests, frustrations, and dreams.

Here’s a few topics for customer profiles:
• Emotions: Fears, frustrations, desires
• What they need to solve their problem
• Labels: Job titles, parent, student
• Controversial opinions
• Where they live
• Values

So the more detailed you are here, the easier it will be to tailor your content.

Now we need to convince these strangers to follow you.

Next step:
We’ll design the social media version of your landing page: your profile. 👇

2) Design your profile

Here’s where you persuade strangers to follow you.

Your goal:
30% of all people who visit your profile click the “follow” button.

When they go to your profile, they need to know your content is made for them.

Questions you need answered between your profile description and banner:
• What’s your mission?
• Why should people listen to you?
• What benefit will people get when they read your content?
• Is there an action you want them to take?

Answer as many of these questions as you can.

But don’t wait for the perfect banner. Especially when you have low traffic, no one notices.

I’m on version 79 of my banner…

Get going, then get good.

My LinkedIn profile

So now what do you actually write that gets people to visit your profile?

🧔🏻‍♂️ Brian’s nerdy side rant:

Here’s a few tools I use for analytics:
Twitter profile analytics: Black Magic

A/B test Twitter profile description: Birdy

LinkedIn Analytics: Shield

No affiliates. Just sharing what I use.

3) Choose which topics to talk about

Every post you share brings people into your network.

Those people range from superfans to people who barely remember your name.

So here’s your content strategy:

Post broader content to cast a wide net. It brings a lot of people into your network.

Then write a more specific post to target the superfans that came in from the wide net.

You do that by alternating REACH posts (cast a wide net) and DEPTH posts (targeted).

Reach posts are slightly broader than your target niche. But they’re posts that your target client is interested in.

Depth posts speak directly to your target customer to turn them into superfans.

Two types of “Depth” posts:

1) Empathy content:
Show you understand the customer pain

• Stories: how you went through the pain
• Motivational posts targeted to your customer to help them get through the pain
• Stories that tie to customer frustrations

2) Solution content:
Show you can solve their problem

• How to guides
• Case studies
• Real client success stories

The goal with solution content is to make it obvious to the customer why YOU’RE the best fit to solve their problem.

How-to guides are the most common business posts. Anyone can do these. So make sure it’s an angle that’s unique to how YOU do it. Frame how to guides through real stories / examples.

4) When to post (which type of content)

The type of content you post changes depending on which stage of the journey you’re in.

When you start you have no distribution or social proof.

The internet doesn’t know who you are.

So you’ll start with broader content that steals credibility from other people.

Instead of sharing your opinion on how to do something, shares lessons on that same topic from a famous person in your niche.

People recognize that person and you get traction.

Start roughly 80% broad and 20% depth.

Once you start to see traction, you’ll slowly reverse the ratio. Put more of your opinion and less from others.

This way people buy into who YOU are.

Shift overtime to 20% broad and 80% depth.

🧔🏻‍♂️ Brian’s nerdy side rant:
At the beginning, you don’t know what a good post looks like.

Quantity leads to quality.

Start with more frequent posts (I did daily). Once you reach 100 posts you can shift to less frequent, higher quality.

If you don’t want to do this yourself you can hire someone to write for you. You’ll skip the learning phase, but you’ll still go through the traction building phase.

And that’s steps 1 - 4 to building online authority!

Do this right and you’ll have more customers, talent, and recognition than you know what to do with.

Next week we’ll cover steps 5 - 8:
• How to write (so people actually read)
• How to get customers to engage on your posts
• How to get people to share your posts
• How to know you’re on track

Want help?

If you’re over $3M in revenue, I’ll make you a marketing plan (& build this system into it).

If you liked this post, and don’t want to miss future issues, sign up for free:

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See you next Thursday 👋

P.S. Run a consulting business?

Want me to make you a marketing plan (& the systems to make it a reality)?

I’m an ex-Deloitte consultant turned Digital CMO.

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