Image courtesy of scottreinhard.com.
This blog post will show you how to position yourself as an expert when you are doing your own publicity if you are an author or speaker. This way you can be booked for interviews on TV and in the process you can plug your book, speaking platform or service. This generates huge returns. Being viewed as an expert is the key to gaining extra creditability and therefore having your interviews take on more value to you.
Every media producer I work with will go out of their way to book an expert in the field. They want to do a segment on versus someone who doesn’t have expert credentials. The producers know this adds value to their show, as the audiences want experts.
Let’s look at some of the ways you can demonstrate to the media that you are an expert in your field.
First you must begin to view yourself as an expert. This is harder than it sounds, as most people fail to give themselves credit for what they have accomplished in life. We are taught to downplay our knowledge, experience, skills, etc. for fear of looking like we are bragging. You need to set these views aside, at least in your professional life and view yourself as a true expert in your field. Begin to announce your expert status to the world every chance you get until it becomes part of your belief system.
One of the key things you must realize is that you are selling yourself, not a product, cause or company. When a TV producer looks at you for possible booking, she is watching far more than your credentials, she is looking at how you talk, walk, dress, etc. The producer is looking at the whole package and it all has to work.
When the producer is looking at you for a possible booking, you need to be able to show you are different and better than the other experts in your field. Make sure your study the other experts and know how you stand apart from them. Then as you construct your website, pitch and other material, you can stress this difference.
You need to be ultra professional in everything you do, once you begin to go down the expert road. Begin to ask yourself if an expert would have this, say this, do this, etc. You are part of the big leagues now and professionalism is the operative word from now on.
Continuing on with the need for professionalism road, lets look at some of the most obvious ways this needs to show. Look at your website and every part of it to see if is up to the standards of other experts in your field. Is it hosted on a reliable host, do the pictures reflect quality, is it up to date, etc? And since you are looking to be booked on TV, does it have clips of you, so they can see how you look on camera? Your website is generally one of the first places a TV producer will go to check you out and a mediocre website will stop them from looking any further.
Do you have a blog? You need one. You want to show people are looking for your opinion and value it. A blog shows you share your knowledge with the world and the world wants and uses it. And the blog must be up to date and professional looking, plus hosted by a reliable host just like your website. Sometimes you can tie a blog into your website and make the two parts of each other. This is a choice you will have to work out but it can work either way.
Testimonials that highlight your expert credentials are really important to a producer, so use them whenever you can. Put them in your email pitches, put them on your website, etc. Testimonials are vital to showing your have credentials as an expert.
Write a book on your subject matter and get it published, even if you have to self publish.
Also have all your books, articles, posts, etc available on your website. Even if they are not read, they speak to your expert status.
If you are not a speaker, start giving talks on your subject in various venues. As before, place excerpts of your talk on your website. Don’t pass up the chance to speak at smaller venues, such as local Rotary clubs, etc., these can give you valuable experience and begin to build your credibility step by step.
Oh by the way, this approach can be used by fiction authors to get publicity by being an expert as well, but it is a bit tricky. If you have a question on this, email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Another thing you can do is to add a signature line to your emails that ties into your expert status. For instance I use a signature that declares me as “America’s Leading Media Pitch Coach’ under my name. Thus everyone who receives an email from me on any subject learns that I am an expert in pitching the media. I know it doesn’t sound like much, but I could give you many personal examples where just this signature line has lead to opportunities.
So the key to building an identity as an expert in order to be booked on TV if you are an author, or speaker when you are doing your own publicity is to build creditability. Every step you take must have this objective behind it. Ask yourself “is this building my expert creditability?” before you do anything.
Probably the only issue you will have much difficulty with is how to position yourself as an expert if your subject matter is the least bit out of the mainstream. Being a little different can be a huge plus as producers are always looking for something new, but you risk being viewed as too far out. That is why I include one on one phone coaching as part of the media-pitching program I created. It is the Quick Fame System and will work to hit that sweet spot in a producer’s heart to get her reaching for the phone to book you right now.
If you have any questions about doing your own publicity email me at email@example.com.
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America’s Leading Media Pitch Coach.