Far too many bloggers are struggling to find a way to develop themselves and their blogs into influential online cornerstones to which others flock and pay attention. When we speak, or in our case write, we want others to stop what they’re doing and pay attention. We want our words to carry weight to our listeners… and rightly so.
John Maxwell referred to this principle as The Law of E.F. Hutton. The financial firm that sports that name used to run a television commercial wherein two people sitting down at the bar of a local diner would be discussing their stock broker’s advice. The first man would share some tips that his advisor had given him. The second would then say, “My advisor is E.F. Hutton and he told me…” As he said the name of his broker, the diner would go completely silent. Every patron would stop talking and turn to hear what E.F. Hutton had said. And then the slogan would come on the screen, “When E.F. Hutton speaks, people listen.”
That level of influence will unlock doors that you can’t even imagine. You can call people to action. You can change the way people think. You can change lives.
Of course, if you develop that level of influence only to take advantage of people, you are wrong. You have to be careful that you guard yourself with an unquestionable level of ethics.
Develop your influence online and then use it to guide people toward those things that will help them. Promote products that you believe are useful. Promote habits that will better your readers. Call people to action for goals that are worthwhile for them, yourself, and everyone involved.
Not only is this the appropriate use of influence, but it’s also a terrific way to continue the cycle of developing and growing influence. It’s a terrific cycle. Build influence. Use your influence to help people and to accomplish great things. You then build more influence and work to keep that cycle alive.
Influence isn’t built in a day. It’s built day by day. It doesn’t just develop in the minds of your readers and visitors because your site looks snazzy. It builds up slowly over time as you make daily deposits into your relationship with your readers. As they see you day-by-day promoting solid information, encouraging your readers with truth, and challenging your readers to think critically and live passionately.
You won’t build influence by regurgitating what everyone else online is promoting. You’ll build it by standing for what you believe in and when necessary opposing the mainstream. You certainly shouldn’t be chasing controversy, but if you want to build credibility then it’s going to happen when you promote your ideas and stand firm on what you believe in. Don’t back down.
You want to be influential? Be your own voice. Stand for what you believe in. Treat people with honesty and integrity. Use your influence to better the lives of your readers. Keep the cycle alive.
As a point of discussion for the comments section below, I want to ask you two questions. First, what do you believe the call to action is for this post? Second, do you feel it’s a call to action that you should take with you and act on?