How To Be The Go-To Expert – Part 1

I’m starting a new blogging series on how to become the go-expert in whatever field you choose to blog about. I’m not sure how many parts there will be, but I do know the series will help you greatly in presenting yourself as the go-to expert to your readers.

Why You Need To Become The Go-To Expert

When people are searching for information online, they want to learn from the experts in the field. I have over 250,000 daily readers and followers because I am viewed as the go-to expert in the field of Internet marketing and blogging. This expert status separates me from all the other make money online blogs, and allows me to continually attract more readers, which increase the go-to status. Being the go-to expert means people trust you, and you will need that trust in order to make money.

Here is the good news. You don’t need to be an expert to become an expert. Let me explain.

An Expert Is Someone Who Knows One More Thing Than You


When you break it down, an expert is just someone who knows one more thing than you. When you have a dire problem and I know how to fix it, you would view me as expert on that one thing. And this is how it is when you’re blogging. You are providing information that your readers don’t know about.

This is one of the main reasons I tell new bloggers to blog about a topic that they are passionate about. If you’re passionate about something, then chances are, you are already an expert on the topic. It’s very hard to be an expert on something you’re not passionate about.

When you’re passionate about a topic, you get to really know it and study it to the point where you know more about it than everyone else. That’s when you become an expert. However, being an expert is not enough. There are tons of experts that no one knows about. You need to become the go-to expert. Theses are the experts that people talk about. Their names come up with the topic. The odds are high that my name will come up in a discussion about blog monetization because I have established myself as a go-to expert. Here’s how you can do the same.

Assumptions and Perceptions

Expert status is not something you give yourself. Instead, the status is given to you by others. If enough people give you this status, you become the go-to expert.

Getting people to see you as the go-to expert is done through a series of assumptions and perceptions. Most people will assume someone is an expert just by the way that person presents himself. I was once asked to be on a panel about real estate investing. Other than owing a few houses, I’m not an active real estate investor and don’t consider myself an expert in the field. However, because I was on this panel, I was viewed as an expert by the attendees in the session. If I let the assumption stand, then the assumption become real.

About a year ago, I met a person who presented himself as a YouTube expert. He spoke at various meetups (that’s how I met him) and even has a course on YouTube marketing. He sounded professional and presented himself quite well. However, when I went to check his YouTube channel, I found that he had less than 50,000 total video views and less than 400 subscribers. I’m coming up on 3 million video views on my YouTube channel and I don’t considered myself a YouTube expert.

While I would not call this person a YouTube expert, the other people in the room did because he knew one more thing than them, and he was put in an environment where he could present himself as the go-to expert. Here’s how to create the same type of environment for your blog.

Presenting Yourself As The Go-Go Expert

Your blog is the first point of contact between you and your readers, therefore it needs to stand out against the other 100 million blogs out there. You achieve this by creating your own custom look and feel.

My blog stands out because it has its own unique look and feel. The theme was custom made by Unique Blog Designs. My blog is the only blog that uses this theme. If you were to take my content and put it on a blog with the default WordPress theme, it would lose its impact. The content is the same, but a new visitor will not think of me as the go-to expert because of the perception created by running a blog that looks the same as 100 million other blogs.

If you want become the go-to expert, you have to look like the go-to expert. Look at all the big blogs out there. Look at all the blogs that you consider an authority. Chances are, every single one them will have a custom made theme that is unique to them. You need to do the same.

Creating a custom look doesn’t have to cost you an arm and a leg. WordPress Frameworks like Thesis and Genesis allows you to customize the look and feel of your blog without any coding knowledge. You can use crowd sourcing services like 99 Designs or Logo My Way to create a custom logo for as little as $100. By using a framework and crowd sourced logo, it’s possible to create a complete custom look and feel for just a few hundred dollars. Going the traditional route will be considerably more expensive. Custom theme packages by Unique Blog Designs starts at $7,500.

End of Part One – Your Homework Asignment

Your assignment this week is to create a custom look for your blog to present you as the go-to expert. If you’re still running the default WordPress theme, or even if you’re running a paid premium theme, it’s time to change it to something that is truly unique, and shows off your expert status.

Look for part two of this series soon. Your feedback on part one is welcome. Please leave it in the comments.

25 thoughts on “How To Be The Go-To Expert – Part 1”

  1. Tiffany Dow says:

    Excellent start to a series John! I had someone customize a theme for me that’s 3 columns – everyone loves it. I used to have my own DIY design which sucked. Made my header on PowerPoint and Paint – LOL!

    (Hey at least I was taking action).

    Then I hired a professional graphics guy to redo my graphics. Made it look much more professional. I’m in the process of having him create widgets for my sidebar to promote my individual products since those too are a Paint/PPT job.

    Can’t wait to read part 2!

  2. Elena says:

    Great points. I think the problem for most is that we tend to think we should know everything there is to the subject or that one day we will be challenged by someone who knows more than us. But if you take a close look, many ‘experts’ often don’t have all that deep knowledge in the field.

    The point is the balance. We know more than some others and less than some others. Just be who you are and you will be safe, but give yourself a chance.

    I am reading your last book right now and I think it’s packed with useful information.Thanks for taking time to share your experience!

    1. DealMayhem says:

      Good point, I think it’s not a problem though… we all tend to think we should know everything, it’s good! One will never be the Expert with NOT EXPERT thinking. One has to be with an expert mindset. OR…
      I reread John’s books over and over again and, you know what I found?
      NEW ideas! It’s great! Thanks, John

  3. Excellent article John. Improved by the fact you are wearing a stylish suit in the photo πŸ™‚

    I’m happy with my current theme just now but I’m keen to customise it more in the future. It does what I need it to do at the moment though.

  4. adam fastino says:

    Hey John what a awesome post yet again!!!! i am so pumped to implement this into my blog!!!!
    You said it right Tiffany, can’t wait for part 2!!!!

  5. Eric says:

    Hey John! wow that pic is almost Donald Trumpesque! Very Very Nice…plus the read is worth while and I would fully agree image and first impressions are everything! I really appreciate the homework assignment. Thanks for the start of this series.

  6. Minna Bryant says:

    John thanks for this reminder because it’s easy to forget that to the person behind us, we can become the go-to expert. As we constantly learn, grow and help, it only improves the way people view our expertise.

  7. Tim Miller says:

    Totally agree with you John. When i see an expert of the field i’m really interested in, i don’t see that expert as someone who knows everything about his expertise, or so called master of his expertise. When he/she knows one thing or 2 more than me, i consider him/her as expert.

    I also agree with the design aspect of our blog to represent or differentiate our blog from other blogs, especially if it’s designed by a pro designer like you’re referring in this article. Readers will trust you instantly when they just landed on your blog even at the very first time.

    Great article John.

    1. adam fastino says:

      Yes Yes Yes your soo cool sir!!!!! John Chow has 100 ft deep of crap on you then comes you;) just FYI

  8. sapna says:

    Hi John

    Exciting as ever.The expert is really the Go-To person but seldom does he knows everything, you rightly pointed out that he might know 1-2 more thing than you and at times after learning those things, we consider ourselves an expert, but actually we are not.

    Thanks for this series.



  9. Samuel says:

    Good stuff!

    You sure know what you are talking about since you are the expert and the expert does talk on how to be the expert on his own part.

    The unique blog look design is very important thing to talk about.

    Tweeted the article out for you John!

  10. Excellent post. Agreed “When you break it down, an expert is just someone who knows one more thing than you. ”

    So go out there and soak up as much knowledge you can in your field from books, webinars, workshops, blogs, whatever.

    Also, search YouTube for Brian Tracy’s “Increasing Your Income 1000% Formula” video.

  11. Great post, I’m learning so much from your site. Spent the day after reading this customizing more elements of my website πŸ™‚ I have also signed up for your program bloggingwithjohnchow Love it so far.


  12. Micmerty says:

    Tried to subscribe at bottom of story but got an error messages required field needed, but there’s only one field.

  13. Sam Rivera says:

    Excellent post John!

    I have your site bookmarked on my browser because of this exact reason. Your information and nuggets of wisdom are always consistently solid… leaders as yourself are what keep me motivated and working to improve my site and methods.

    Great intro to your new blogging series. I’ll be checking back for more info πŸ™‚


  14. Michael Sato says:

    Excellent advice John. Being unique especially in our theme and logo makes us stand out from the sea of bloggers using the same wordpress theme and layout. Definitely one of the ways you can do to rise above the typical blogger!

  15. JB says:

    Why not use the stylish suit photo John for 2013 and the future? It’s not as eccentric as your other photo’s : ( but you can personally brand like Kiyosaki & Trump or would that not be your style?

  16. Beatrice says:

    Noooooo….! When I see you in a Tshirt biking or hanging out with your daughter, I identify with you and trust you. If this suit picture was the first image of you I saw, I probably wouldn’t have bothered to read any of your stuff. It screams “Beware! Slick salesman”. I don’t deny you are a good salesman, but not in a slick (as in slippery, slimy) way. I get the point you were trying to make about appearances leading to assumptions, but I assume this is not the assumption you were after.
    Stay true and prosper.

  17. faisal says:

    I think minor customizations also help.

  18. Correct IMO – people and businesses want to talk to experts and not some sales guy who want’s to earn a commission and is already thinking about jumping ship to the next company.

    As far as the look and feel – I do believe that you can customise the look and feel for a lot less providing you have some technical knowledge. Now, of to creating my own logo πŸ™‚

  19. May Peng says:

    Well, I know I haven’t reached that stage yet, but I’m determined to. It’s a small step towards a bigger project. Thanks John for the heads up. Cheers.

  20. Hi John,
    I agree with you that being passionate about a topic helps one to become an expert in that field. Becoming an expert requires one to stay updated with the latest in that field, keep learning new things and exploring new aspects to it. Passion makes doing this easy and not seem like a burden!

  21. geekmom says:

    I know it sounds strange, but I started doing this way back when I started my site as a CMS in 2001. It was pink, white, black, and kind of neon. It looks a bit more professional now, but still the same colors and since I focus on WAHMs it makes sense. Using stylesheets makes life so much easier when experimenting with colors. Oh, and I try to watermark my images with the same look, too. If only I could find a watermark tool that would use my logo from the cell phone to tumblr to my site. Hmmm maybe I could make a subdomain to hold my images that would post to tumblr that would post to my site and use watermark reloaded. Why do I post comments on your blog? You always stimulate my creative side.

  22. Great way to start a series, I liked the homework way of teaching. Doing the custom logo for right now.

  23. Ralph Hua says:

    Thanks John, great post.

    Reminds me of the term, “Perceived Value”.

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