People have always looked up to experts and authorities and they always will. Since it’s impossible to know everything, we sometimes have to consult the advice of others, and that’s when we look for thought leaders on the topic in question to help us out.

The definition of an authority or thought leader is essentially a well-known, recognized expert in a given niche. Since expert knowledge is required it follows that becoming an authority isn’t easy, and usually involves many years of learning and building a reputation. For someone who’s involved and interested in a niche it is definitely possible with some time and hard work.

Practically every niche in existence has its own set of experts and authorities who get to enjoy the respect and admiration of the community. Being an authority comes with a range of benefits, and it’s no wonder that so many strive to reach that level. If you’ve been considering giving it a shot, but you’re still not convinced it’s worth all the hard work required, here is a short list of some of the advantages that may aid you in making a decision:

You have the power of the whole community at your disposal.

When you’re at the top of the food chain in a niche, getting everyone under you to rally towards a common cause becomes fully doable. Say you get an idea to create the most comprehensive website in the niche – all you have to do is reach out to the community and you’ll most likely get all the help you need.

Opportunity will be everywhere.

Whether it’s someone who wants to offer you 50% of their latest project in exchange for expert advice, or someone who wants to pay you obscene amounts of money to come speak at an event, opportunity will be everywhere once you reach authority status. Making money will be easier than ever before. In fact you will probably have to turn down most of the offers you get because you just don’t have the time available.

People will trust your word.

As a thought leader your word will be treated like gold. Even if you have an opinion that people disagree with, they’ll still respect it because you are, after all, the authority. If anyone should know, it’s you. Don’t expect everyone to always agree with you though – even when you’re an undisputed thought leader there will always be people who think of things differently.

Your network will grow effortlessly.

As a newbie trying to get started, building a network can be difficult and time-consuming. If you haven’t got much to bring to the table it will be a very slow process. Everyone wants to network with those higher up on the ladder than themselves, ensuring they stand to gain something from it. It therefore follows that when you’re at the top of the ladder, everyone will want to connect with you.