Among the ways to discover your unique voice as a writer, or as any Creator or Communicator, is leveraging your role of kingmaker.
Too many people start defining who they are by going the opposite way. They communicate what they are against, or who they are not like. This is short sighted. Developing your voice must be more extensive and significant. It’s easy to be contrary, but finding a niche includes being influential by going deeper and become proficient in a certain area.
Some bristle at shifting the focus elsewhere thinking it will diminish their own position, and hurt their efforts at success. But, done correctly kingmaking solidifies one’s spot as an maven in a specialty. It helps define you while and by helping others.
Malcolm Galdwell, the author of Tipping Point, speaks about the importance of mavens in how trends develop and ideas take root. A maven is a person who possesses key information and keen insights about why a service, a talented person, or product, etc. stands out above the rest, before others have caught on. Mavens want to help and educate.
In short, they influence the early adopters and secondary influencers. Trend setters listen to mavens, and pick the hit. They have connections to large networks of people which in turn starts something novel. The mainstream begin to incorporate what the trend setters and early adopters have latched on to, and suddenly a new fashion, or company, or service takes hold at a grassroots level. Google, Toms shoes, and Pinterest took off this way.
To be a kingmaker, first you need some initial credibility. You must have some knowledge and insight that proves you make good picks in a certain area. Curiosity is the fuel of a maven.
The more narrow your niche, the the easier it will be to specialize. This attracts more people then you might think. Having a broad range dilutes your message.
So, for instance, if you love music and know a good deal about a certain style, don’t divide your time and spread yourself thin as a kingmaker in a different category, like cars or cupcakes. Don’t leave your niche, except rarely.
The good news is that to broaden your influence, you don’t have to be keen to all the breaking trends. You don’t have to worry about missing out. And you don’t have to be the person who gets something going because of great networking and many connections.
You can develop your niche by what you know. Then, you only need a few people to pay attention. You influence the influencers. To get them to listen establish your area of expertise, and then be generous with your expertise to prove yourself. Make recommendations, explain why and what you like about your picks, and why your picks make sense. Be reliable.
For instance, Michael Hyatt niches in the area of leadership. He’s a leader, but he also recommends people, resources, and services to help leaders. He doesn’t give out all the information himself, nor does he promote just himself. He’s become a go-to person on the topic through expertise and by “making kings” thereby solidifying his prowess in the field in general.
Keep at it, and narrow your focus. As you develop in your area, you’ll gain the credibility to make kings from people in the same niche. You’ll gain allies and respect in your niche.
What is your niche? And who or what have you recommended in your area of expertise?