Table of Contents

Author: Adam Witty, Rusty Shelton

Marketing never had a greater ally than Authority, and here’s why. In the book, Authority Marketing: How to Leverage 7 Pillars of Thought Leadership to Make Competition Irrelevant, Adam Witty and Rusty Shelton take a deep dive into the concept of Authority Marketing, how it works, and why it provides immeasurable benefit to business leaders. The book guides readers through the Seven Pillars of Authority Marketing, explaining how Authority is built and leveraged. A simple ‘equation,’ presented in the book, can be used to understand how the process works.

Expertise x Celebrity = Authority

When a business leader takes their expertise and ‘multiplies’ it by “celebrity-style visibility,” they put themselves in a position of power and authority, which in turn drives leads and generates profit. You don’t need visibility or ‘celebrity status’ at the national level. Rather, business leaders are encouraged to locate their niche – their specific target market – and increase their visibility specifically in that market.

For example: if Dr. Chatelain, a dentist, practices in Kokomo, Indiana – Authority Marketing can ensure that when anyone in Kokomo thinks ‘dentist,’ they immediately think, “Dr. Chatelain.” Not only this but there is a general understanding that Dr. Chatelain is THE expert on dentistry in the area, more so than any of his competitors.

The authors state that the successful authority “marketing blueprint” consists of 7 pillars.

1. Branding & Omnipresence                  2. Lead generation

3. Content marketing                                4. PR & media

5. Speaking                       6. Events                    7. Referral marketing.

The book is broken up into 3 distinct sections

1. The big idea

2. Building your blueprint: the 7 pillars of authority marketing and

3. Implementing your authority marketing blueprint.

In this book, we will learn

  • What Authority Marketing is and how to use it to grow your business
  • How others have used Authority Marketing to create unimaginable success
  • Why thought leadership is your most important secret weapon

The 7 Pillars of Authority Marketing

Thus, the big idea of Authority Marketing is: you can achieve wild success in your field when you intentionally, systematically position yourself as THE authority in your field. In doing so, you give yourself an unfair advantage over your competition, allowing you to command outsized influence in your target market – leaving your competitors in the dust. The book explains how to court leads, taking them from curious audience members to loyal fans, buyers, and clients.

Despite only being elucidated as a concept recently, Authority Marketing itself is “as old as civilization,” with three distinct historical eras. The book explores these eras in rich detail. The Institutional Authority era has no true start date, seen simply as “pre-1875.” During this time, Authority was something bestowed upon others by institutions, like the Church or the state, through formal titles and posts. These institutions acted as the gatekeepers of Authority. The second era, 1875-2000 was coined the Media Driven Authority era, wherein this power was transferred to the press and media.

Those who could properly leverage the media to generate enough buzz around their name could reach Authority status in their industry. The modern, Market-Driven Authority era saw the democratization of the media. In turn, the power to create and confer Authority is now in the professional’s own hands – whether or not they achieve Authority status depends entirely on how they market themselves. Hence, Authority Marketing.

Perhaps the most valuable lessons to be gleaned from the book lay in its second part, where they lift the curtain on how a business leader can become a magnet for leads and prospects, rather than having to hunt them down. Dissecting the Seven Pillars of Authority Marketing, Witty and Shelton provide powerful insights into the world of marketing, pointing out to professionals all the unused tools at their disposal.

PREFACE according to the book:

In the spring of 2015, Advantage Media Group founder and CEO, Adam Witty, took a step back to try to identify the macro trends that would shape the marketing world in the years to come. At the time, the company he founded more than a decade before in 2005, Advantage Media Group, had helped hundreds of entrepreneurs, CEOs, and professionals create and publish a book to help grow their business. Although the company was incredibly successful and won numerous awards for rapid growth, quality, and culture, he believed book publication only scratched the surface of what the company could achieve for its authors.

It grew steadily apparent to Adam-he needed to provide a marketing framework, one that could be reliably executed. As you know, because you chose to pick up this book, there is no shortage of options when it comes to marketing. Adam felt like a shift was taking place that was putting more power in the hands of you the business leader. Rather than having to do what everyone else is doing by focusing on the expensive, time-intensive, and unreliable process needed to build a corporate brand, you could control your own marketing destiny.

How did he know a shift was taking place?

He saw it happening in his own life.

When Adam founded Advantage, he did what most entrepreneurs and business leaders do-he focused on building the company’s corporate brand. He was successful by most metrics, growing the company at a significant rate, but he was plagued with competition from other publishers. The company didn’t truly hit “lift-off” until he started focusing on something none of his competitors were focused on-a a personal brand. Adam knew he didn’t have the marketing budget or brand name in a place that large publishers had.

He decided the quickest and most effective route to success was to focus on building his own personal brand. This, in turn, would bolster the Advantage brand. As a result, he was named to the Inc. Magazine 30 Under 30 list in 2011, wrote numerous books, began speaking at EO, YPO, and Vistage events, and made it a point to personally be involved in author events around the country.

The shift to Authority-building had a significant impact on the business. Revenues have grown tenfold and the visibility Adam built opened the door for a partnership between Advantage Media Group and Forbes to launch the company’s first-ever book publishing imprint, ForbesBooks. By building his personal Authority, Adam recognized he was playing a game none of his competitors knew was being played.

Authority Marketing was the most important macro trend entrepreneurs, CEOs, and professionals needed to pay attention to. He decided the best way to help authors was through acquisition and he went on a nationwide hunt for the top thought leadership agency in the country.

That search quickly led him to Rusty Shelton, who was running Shelton Interactive, an award-winning agency that represented more than thirty-five New York Times and Wall Street Journal bestsellers, including clients like Keller Williams Realty co-founder Gary Keller, Chicken Soup for the Soul, and numerous other global brands. A published author himself, Rusty had been building his own Authority, first by speaking at Harvard on the changing world of PR and marketing at the age of twenty-three and by being a veteran speaker of many other elite conferences including SXSW.

Adam and Rusty quickly hit it off and joined forces to build the Authority Marketing System that has helped numerous experts build their Authority, expand their impact, and, ultimately, make their competition irrelevant.

The book you’re about to read will teach you how to utilize Authority Marketing to take your business to the next level.


Learn how to use Authority Marketing®

to build thought leadership and dominate your competition by playing a game no one else knows is being played with this ground-breaking book!

Are you the Authority in your field? Are you recognized as a stand-out thought leader, a published author, a keynote speaker, or a media personality? Are you viewed as a commodity? A hard-working expert who is a commodity and has to compete on every level, including price?

One thing is for certain: Authority doesn’t just happen; Authority is built through a systematic process called the Authority Marketing System.

But how can you make this shift in an environment that is noisier and more crowded than ever before?

If you are an entrepreneur, CEO, or professional who is frustrated with the traditional approach to marketing and wants to grow your business and make a bigger impact, this book will show you how to use the Authority Marketing System to create a clear and trackable blueprint to shift yourself from a commoditized expert to a highly visible Authority.

In this book you will learn:

• What Authority Marketing is and how to use it to grow your business

• The Pillars of Authority Marketing

• How others have used Authority Marketing to create unimaginable success

• Why thought leadership is your most important secret weapon

Authority Marketing isn’t about ego or attention—it’s about accelerating the speed of trust so you are viewed not as an expert with something to sell, but as a thought leader with important insight to teach. Start growing your Authority today!

Table of Contents:

Foreword Steve Forbes ix

Preface xiii

Part I The Big Idea  1

What Is Authority Marketing?  3

The Three Eras of Authority Marketing  13

The Case for Authority Marketing  23

Part II Building Your Blueprint: The Seven Pillars Of Authority Marketing  25

Seven Pillars of Authority Marketing  27

Branding and Omnipresence  29

Lead Generation  41

Content Marketing  59

PR & Media  71

Speaking  77

Events  83

Referral Marketing  87

Part III Implementing Your Authority Marketing Blueprint  93

It’s Hard to Spell Authority without AUTHOR  95

Authority Marketing: Beginning With the End in Mind  111

Happiness and Authority Marketing  123

Why Authority Marketing? Dan Kennedy  131

About the Authors  141


Adam Witty

Advantage Media Group

Forbes Books

Twitter – Adam Witty

LinkedIn – Adam Witty

Email – Adam Witty


Product details

Publisher: ForbesBooks (May 3, 2018)

Language: English

Hardcover: 168 pages

ISBN-10: 1946633135

ISBN-13: 978-1946633132

Item Weight: 1 pound

Dimensions : 6.1 x 0.8 x 9.1 inches

Best Sellers Rank: #501,484 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

#332 in Multilevel Marketing (Books)

#581 in Marketing for Small Businesses (Books)

#4,165 in Entrepreneurship (Books)

Customer Reviews: 4.4 out of 5 stars    79 ratings

Amazon category: Books › Business & Money › Marketing & Sales

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