In today’s competitive environment, having an amazing product isn’t enough to make it as an entrepreneur.
We’ve talked a lot about the importance of building trust and rapport with your audience. People buy products for a variety of reasons, but trust and connection are both a huge part of the equation – you can’t expect people to invest in you if they aren’t comfortable with you as an individual.
Why influence matters
When you think of the term “influencer” you might imagine a beautiful person with envy-inducing Instagram photos, a picture-perfect life and lots of clout.
Truthfully, influencers come in all shapes and sizes – you don’t have to be beautiful, wealthy or showy to be an influencer. What you do need to have is confidence and knowledge in your field.
Notice that only knowledge is required, not expertise. Sometimes we get hung up thinking that we can’t share what we know or educate others because we don’t have the right degree, the right certifications or the right training. You don’t have to have all the answers in order to inspire others–you just need to know enough to point people in the right direction.
Influence matters because people are more willing to invest in someone that they trust. Even on a small scale this concept is important. You might think that it’s tricky to build trust without getting to know someone in-person, but a quick browse through social media reveals that in-person contact isn’t a prerequisite to gaining trust. All that’s needed is a willingness to be open, to share and to connect with others.
The 4 different influencer types
There isn’t a one-size-fits-all influencer formula that you have to follow in order to make an impact online. Instead, influencers can be broken down into four broad types: dynamo, blaze, tempo, and steel.
And we’ve even created an Influence Guide, which you can get here https://adamhoulahan.com/influenceguide/
Let’s examine each of these types to learn more.
- – Dynamo Influencers – Idea Smart
We all know someone who is excellent at coming up with innovative, creative ideas. Dynamo Inﬂuencers are experts at helping people find and build on their ideas. Their true genius lies in helping clients find their great ideas and in giving them conﬁdence to expand on those ideas.
Examples of Dynamo Inﬂuencers include famous entrepreneurs like Richard Branson, Bill Gates and Steve Jobs, and creative stars like Michael Jackson and Beethoven. Inventive scientists like Edison and Einstein also fall into this category.
Dynamo inﬂuencers are often best at developing online group-based programs to deliver their genius and have support teams who have the communication and sales skills to share those ideas with the world.
Dynamos love creating podcasts and writing content since these are both great vehicles for showcasing their unique ideas.
- – Blaze Influencers – People Smart
Blaze Inﬂuencers love being around people. They build relationships eﬀortlessly and are natural thought leaders. They deliver their genius through a tribe of like-minded people who already believe what they believe.
Icons from Marilyn Monroe to Oprah and Donald Trump are natural Blaze Inﬂuencers. Famous leaders like Bill Clinton and Jack Welch as well as social connectors like Ellen DeGeneres and Larry King are other well-known Blazes.
Blaze Influencers make the most impact through live, high-connection events like in-person meetings and videos content. They hit their stride as they create group-based products or services and connect people who add value to each other.
- – Tempo Influencers – Senses Smart
Tempo Inﬂuencers are grounded and dependable; their products and services suit people who are looking for long-term solutions and a steady path toward success.
Leaders from Gandhi to Nelson Mandela and Mother Theresa share Tempo Inﬂuence. Tempo also describes investor George Soros and sportspeople like Ayrton Senna and Michael Phelps.
Their content creation can cross all mediums; however, it’s mostly focused on the journey more than the solution. Tempo influencers are equipped with the skill and knowledge to build long-term programs that deliver value over time.
- – Steel Influencers – Strength Smart
Steel Inﬂuencers excel in helping their clients create and implement the systems and back end workﬂows that set their existing businesses or startup projects on the road to success. They’re detail-oriented and have high levels of patience and empathy.
These traits are what attracts clients to their products and services in droves; they hold all the answers to seamlessly functioning businesses.
Steel Inﬂuencers include Warren Buﬀett, Henry Ford and famous entrepreneurs like Rockefeller and McDonald’s Ray Kroc. Larry Page and Sergey Brin, founders of Google, and Mark Zuckerberg, founder of Facebook are other well-known Steel Inﬂuencers.
They are best at creating video content and mentoring programs that are not generally delivered face to face. These programs are very detailed in their methodology and contain all kinds of useful tips to help entrepreneurs on their path to success.
The four influence categories are broad enough to capture almost anyone who has influence. You might not be aware of your influence type at first, but your natural strengths should point you in the right direction.
Building influence shouldn’t feel forced or uncomfortable – the best influencers naturally grow a following by being themselves and sharing their ideas with the world.
Some people don’t set out with the goal of becoming an influencer, but their natural charisma and likeability draws people to them. Others try to become influencers and have to tweak their approach several times until they find a method of sharing with others that sticks.
And unfortunately, some try hard to become influencers but don’t succeed because of trying to copy someone with influence while being inauthentic.
The worst thing you can do is to force yourself into an influence category that doesn’t match your strengths – you’re better off taking the slow and steady route toward influence while still being true to yourself.
Natural “Like” Factors
Each influencer type has a natural “like” factor that draws people to them and keeps them coming back:
- – Dynamo – Energy
Dynamo’s natural energy and enthusiasm is infectious. It’s never-ending energy that attracts Dynamo’s tribe in the first place.
- – Blaze – Radiance
Blaze’s love of people radiates warmth that attracts like-minded people who want comfort and care. This radiance gives people a sense of belonging.
- – Tempo – Momentum
Tempo’s down to earth, grounded approach is seen as dependable and sustainable. It’s what attracts those who are looking for long term measurable success with a blueprint to follow to their own goals.
- – Steel – Strength
Steel’s patience and empathy attracts those looking for a dependable system to follow and a leader who has the strength to go the distance. Steels attract people by offering unwavering support along people’s path to success.
Finding your strengths
Recognising your strengths isn’t always as simple as it seems. As humans, comparison isn’t our strong suit – we’re often quick to look at others and to put ourselves down based on what we see, when the picture on the surface only tells a sliver of the full story.
In contrast, some people react to their insecurities by puffing themselves up and over-estimating their abilities. The reality is that we all have unique strengths and weaknesses, and that anyone can build influence if they find an approach that suits them.
One of the best way to find your strengths as you start out is to experiment with different mediums and methods for connecting with others.
Do you love to write? Do you enjoy making videos? What about telling your stories through a podcast?
There are many different ways to share your ideas – you just need to find a method that feels comfortable and natural.
Additionally, asking for insight from friends and family is a great start as well. People who have been around you for years and who know you best are in a good position to point out the things you’re good at. Collect these suggestions and use them to create your own strength profile.
Turning your strengths into influence
There are a lot of different ways to grow your following on social media — that topic could easily fill multiple books. The connection you build with others is the glue that makes your ideas stick, and that helps you build your tribe.
Regardless of whether you’re a Dynamo, a Blaze, a Tempo or a Steel, becoming an influencer isn’t easy. The time you put into the process will likely be a significant investment.
Influence isn’t a one way street because you need to reciprocate with others by interacting with their content, having meaningful conversations and collaborating. You have to think creatively about ways that you can connect with people in your space to expand your network and to reach new audiences.
As you build these connections and create great content, your influence will start to grow.
Are you ready to get started on your path to becoming influential in your space? Take this influencer profile quiz to find out if you are a Dynamo, a Blaze, a Tempo or a Steel!
Read the guide here:
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