5 Levels of Authority

social media thought leadership

There are five levels of authority on social and in life.

Watch the video and see the summary below…

Level 1 - Commodity Trader - These people find buyers by promotion or cold outreach - No social authority is needed. They have to sell and promote daily. Downside: It's low status. Downside: You must play the numbers game, which is low status

Level 2 - Socialite Seller - These people leverage the power of their relationships. Their revenue is contingent on them having a big circle and maintaining those relationships. Downside: Your network is your net worth. You have to consistently build strong relationships to win clients.

Level 3 - The Expert In Demand - These people leverage a relatively small audience and focus their messaging to elevate their personal and business brand and create their own demand. This individual can maintain key relationships whilst using their content to pre-sell and build new relationships. Downside: You must nail your message and have a clear strategy to build Expert-Status. - That's how I can help you.

Level 4 - The Thought Leader - This individual must achieve widespread acknowledgement of their subject matter expertise and has built a respected following. This requires a level of content production, pr and audience building. It takes years to build and requires long-term commitment. Downside: It takes considerable time to become high-status.

Level 5 - The Influencer - This is the pinnacle of social authority. Gaining a huge following who will act based on your posts and content. This requires a significant investment to achieve and is out of reach for many. Downside: You need to achieve celebrity status.


The sweet spot for most subject matter experts is to be the Expert In Demand.

You can achieve this in a short period of 90 days with a small audience (less than 500).

 If you are trying to sell your services as a subject matter expert, consultant, or coach, you may think the route to getting clients without selling is to become a thought leader or social media influencer.

It’s a mistake to pursue those areas unless you have a significant budget and time commitment to invest. Building a following to establish yourself as a thought leader or influencer requires you to not just get noticed but convince many thousands of people that you are the go-to person on the subject. That involves press and pr, social content, big audiences, and wide reach across social platforms.

For many, it is the goal, but there is a very profitable stage people should pursue first.

This is the Expert in Demand. A space which allows you to get high-value clients and build a fanbase that will allow you to scale up to £1m in revenue more easily.

Becoming an Expert in Demand is a better alternative that will allow you to sell your services without resorting to low-status sales and marketing hacks.

Many people think they need to have a large following and be recognised as an influencer or thought leader to get a queue of clients - it's not true.

Now that you know what an expert in demand is and why you need to be one, let's talk about how to become one. Being an expert in demand isn't about having one massive article that attracts 1.5 million views, it's about consistently creating highly targeted content on a regular basis that solves a real-world problem and solves it well.

Instead of thinking about it as one post blowing up and changing everything, we harness the power of building a small fanbase and using a ‘little and often' approach to content.

In other words, we let content sell for us, but to achieve that we have to have the tools, strategy and plan in place.

As you start creating content, focus on the following areas:

  • Expert Research - Learn about the most pressing problems that your target audience is facing.
  • Expert Association - Learn how your audiences approach and think about these challenges.
  • Expert Synthesis - Combine the knowledge you have gathered to create content that addresses real problems people have.
  • Expert Status – Leverage different types of content to attract, engage and convert your audience into paying clients.
  •  Expert Demand – Leverage the amplification power of your audience by building a fan base for your business.

 For most people to have a profitable business, they don’t need 000s of followers. They just need 100 fans. They give you credibility, social proof and get you in front of more people. Those 100 fans help you build an audience that will buy from you.

 When you pursue thought leadership, 100 people just won’t cut it. You need thousands of fans to achieve a critical mass.

 If you are seen as the go-to expert with 100 fans, your business will explode in growth. Most people miss the impact 100 people can have… because they have never really invested in building their fanbase, they just focused on follower count and views.


 Becoming an Expert In Demand is pretty much a requirement for any business owner, freelancer, coach or consultant.


If you want to avoid the low-status elements of selling and attract clients without cold pitching, you have to take charge of your demand.

 You create your own clients.

 Go make it happen…

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