But what is a trusted advisor?
"A trusted advisor is an expert, someone who brings you a new idea or teaches you something she has learned about your industry," Jim Clifton, CEO of Gallup, told members of the Direct Marketing Association of Washington at last night's annual meeting.
If you're not your customers' trusted advisor, you'll inevitably have to compete on price alone, Clifton said.
1. Follow and comment on news in your niche
Make connections that will alert you to breaking news, then toss in your two cents. "Finding ways to make industry connections will help your company move from news consumer to news creator," Osman says.
2. Be disagreeable
Thought leaders find ""the sweet spot between saying something that not everyone will agree with, and completely stirring the pot with a controversial opinion."
3. Be nice
Be generous with praise and thanks for those who engage with and support you.
4. Hunt for exposure
Seek and jump on every opportunity to collaborate on a content marketing project.
5. Be charitable
Except for perhaps an email address, don't ask people for anything in return for your thoughts.
6. Get out and speak
Speak at and sponsor key industry conferences, and never refuse speaking opportunities at smaller events.