This post is the fifth in the Benefits of Blogging series, where I will cover the many benefits of blogging, for bloggers and readers.
What is authority?
I consider being an authority on a subject being someone that others can look to for solid, useful information. If someone is an authority on SEO, then you would know if you were having SEO related questions that this person would be the one to ask.
Do you have to know everything to become an authority?
Some people may assume that, because they may not be an expert on a subject, they cannot become an authority on it. I do not feel that is true. I think that an authority on a subject not only knows their subject, but also knows where to find information that they do not know. They continue to learn and expand their knowledge, as new information becomes available.
Consider someone who gained a master’s degree in a subject 5 years ago – at that time, they would have then been considered an authority on that subject. But if they have not maintained their education, chances are the subject has evolved. This is especially true in the areas of technology, science, medicine, etc. Their degree would be less valuable than someone who is either currently studying or gaining hands on experience in the same field today.
How to Become an Authority Through Blogging
Blogging allows you to become an authority on a subject in many ways. As you continue to maintain a blog on a particular topic, you would want the information to be fresh and up to date. This would give you more incentive to continue educating yourself on new information for that subject.
When you blog, you will also gain feedback from your readers. This is another way for you to learn. Your readers will possibly open your eyes to new information or viewpoints you had not considered, thus expanding your knowledge on the subject. They will also help you learn how to effectively communicate and share knowledge effectively.
Advantages to Being an Authority
Consider that you were looking at two web designer sites. One site was just a big fancy commercial, and the other one was more simple, but had a blog with lots of good information about web design tips and tricks. Who would you trust to design your site?
I know that some people may think that if they put their tips and tricks out there, who would need to hire them because now they would be sharing their secrets? There are still lots of people that you could give a ton of information too, but although they would see the value, they would not have the skills or time to implement the information presented to them. And this is just the technical industry I am referring to. There are many industries, such as medical, where you can put a lot of your knowledge online and people would still have to come and see you to reap the benefits.
Becoming an authority can also be a useful reputation management tool. Say you have one thing negative about you or your company that comes up in search results. By building a blog and writing honest, useful information, people would be able to learn about you “from the horse’s mouth” so to speak. Add some social media marketing for your blog to the mix, and you may be able to remove the bad search results from the top page.
Benefits of Finding Authorities for Readers
With so many blogging authorities on almost every topic, from personal developemnt to natural health to technology, it is possible for anyone trying to learn more about a subject to find someone who is willing to share a great amount of information. So instead of having to go to the library and find out of date material, or going to the bookstore and spending money on several books to get varying viewpoints, you can just go to Google and start finding current information about the subject of your choosing. And if you can’t find something on that subject, maybe this is a great time for you to turn from reader to blogger and start something!
Are you becoming an authority on the subject of your blog? Do you feel this has helped you, personally or professionally?