Want to Be an Influencer? Be Service Oriented

Influencers are service-oriented people. These are people who become attention magnets because of the value they offer to the community. This value can span the areas of entertainment, education, matchmaking and even inspiration.

Is it just me or do you too feel that people are so focused on building their "street cred" online they've forgotten their manners? They've forgotten what it means to be service-oriented.

You wouldn't go knock on a random person's door and ask to have their barbecue, raid their closet or borrow their pool. So why is it that online we feel so comfortable asking for so much?

You have to give before you get. You have to give a lot for a long time. It's the unwritten law of the universe as applied to influencer status.

The truth is you have to contribute a lot of content and value, often for free, before you're able to attain influencer status. If you pursue the road itself, you'll be successful. If you pursue the status of arriving, you will fail. It's a long road but a rewarding one if you stick with it.

Becoming an influencer is hard work. You pound the pavement every day curating engaging content, building relationships over time, and earning the trust of the community. But it seems that people don't understand how long it actually takes to build a reputation--even online it takes years.

The Rules of Scarcity and Wealth

There's nothing more unattractive than people who seem desperate to get ahead -- like they'd step over anyone just to get a little attention. When someone seems only interested in what you can do for them, they automatically emit scarcity.

Just like in real life no one becomes popular by being a mooch. Just because it's easy to ask other people to promote your stuff doesn't mean you should make a habit of doing it. I'm not saying you shouldn't ask for help -- you absolutely should. However when you do ask for help, make it a habit to do your research, be thoughtful, measured, and understand how you can also benefit the person you're reaching out to. It will make a difference.

It's easy to forget our etiquette. We rush from one thing to the next, switch tasking, and skipping steps. But certain steps can't be skipped. Why send out 200 emails that aren't tailored sent to people you don't know that well. Think about it this way, if you don't do it right the first time when are you going to have time to do it over again?

Your time is valuable especially if you're just starting out. Many of us spend too much time singing in our own shower -- looking at our own number of retweets, likes and shares. But think about the people who are some of the most influential in the world. Did they start out by checking their klout obsessively, or focusing on contributing value obsessively? Do they approach life from a place of scarcity?

There's no escaping the grind. Unless you are a celebrity, you need to do a lot of giving back before you become highly influential.

While this may seem harsh, in the long run you will thank me for reminding you to focus on others first. Life is so much more fun that way. A service oriented approach to life is a happy life.