The power of the internet is a double-edged sword.
On the one hand, the ability to create intellectual property in expressing oneself has never been more remarkable.
On the other hand, this self-expression comes with dissenting voices weighing in.
When everyone has a megaphone, the challenge isn’t communicating but being heard over the noise.
And democratizing communication means that individuals can hide in the shadows and throw daggers at unsuspecting passersby.
This is where introvert power lies—the ability to influence people under the color of darkness.
However, these introverts don’t troll or throw daggers but solve problems often anonymously.
Tim Denning, a writer for CNBC & Business Insider, lists the advantages of being unknown as follows:
- You can say what you want.
- You can walk the street without anyone recognizing you.
- You can open your email and have no new messages.
- You don’t have to think about what’s next.
- You have no status to maintain.
There is a difference between being unknown and irrelevant versus being unknown and influential.
The power of introverts lies in the latter.
In this regard, introverted influencers attempt to reinvent the world in their idyllic image.
It is not enough to merely be displeased with the direction of the world and complain about it.
The trick is to influence society in a favorable direction without ever knowing it had been guided.
The best influencers direct society in ways that individuals believe are their own doing.
Typically, introverts are well-read, great problem solvers, and best equipped to spearhead the direction of society.
As a result, introverts can have quiet success without the fanfare exhibited by extroverts.
And since extroverted influencers seeking fame and fortune will often capture the imagination of the general population, society is better served by introverted influencers operating responsibly in this role.
Katie Wheatley, Editor-in-chief at Liberty Belle Magazine, said,
Whether it’s a product, behavior, or way of thinking, today’s youth’s passive minds will believe anything their favorite influencer tells them. Influencers cultivate their audience members to trust them and make them feel as though they’re forming a friendship. Although you’d hope it is less common nowadays, there are still people online who endorse products they do not believe in to earn money. Deciding who to trust online can be a challenging task.
The major flaw when extroverted influencers embody trust is when their human foibles emerge publicly.
In Christopher Nolan’s Batman movie, “The Dark Knight,” the character Harvey Dent says, “You either die a hero or live long enough to see yourself become the villain….”
Unfortunately, many extroverted influencers live long enough to become villains.
And find themselves apologizing for missteps, and a cache of credibility comes tumbling down.
Not so for introverted influencers.
By becoming introverted thought leaders operating behind the scenes, they can let their ideas and solutions become the star.
There are five ways introverted influencers can have their cake and quiet.
Use pseudonyms in your works.
Creating fictitious names for your articles, books, and research allow you to experiment without being self-conscious. As an objective third party, you detach your work’s emotionality, enabling you to experiment with diverse concepts and ideas.
Additionally, using pseudonyms affords you anonymity, which disallows dissenters and trolls to lodge personal attacks against you. Yes, they may critique the idea, but your identity is left unscathed.
Write scripts and use spokespeople.
Use other people to tell your story if you want to be the power behind the throne. You put words in people’s mouths when you write scripts and hire spokespeople to give video correspondence.
Also, podcasts are an excellent venue for audio productions where you or someone can interview experts allowing them to be the star.
A great podcast is called Film Courage, where individuals within the motion picture industry give on-camera interviews, but the interviewer is off-camera. The interviewer asks profound questions that people within the movie industry want to know, but she doesn’t reveal herself.
Create online groups and use them for think tanks
Creating a LinkedIn or Facebook group facilitates a specialized network through content creation.
As people begin dialoguing, you can ask thought-provoking questions that serve as the groundwork for future articles and books.
Also, you can develop surveys about critical issues that serve as original research as a think tank, which once upon a time required many volunteers and a lot of money to conduct.
Communicate with like-minded people
It has been said that the hardest thing to change is a made-up mind.
The aim of influencing is not to change minds but to encourage great ideas to flourish through like-minded people with similar values.
Extroverted influencers want to communicate with everyone to engage many people, whereas introverted influencers want to share with selected audiences to build quality ideas and concepts.
As introverted marketer Seth Godin would say, “Pick your tribe.”
Turn off comments on social media.
As you build a body of work based on your reading and research, you will identify who the information is created for. Since you have selected your tribe, they will appreciate your knowledge and reach out to you through the limited avenues you have provided.
Thoughtful people take the time to investigate and communicate through an email you may have provided.
Dissenters and trolls use the most direct communication channel available.
They tend to destroy through rude and acerbic comments instead of constructive feedback to build on.
In this vein, you want to remove megaphones from people who would abuse the opportunity for progressive communications.
Introvert power is a force to be reckoned with and must be exercised strategically.
If we are to bring light into the world, it must be done under cover of darkness.
This way, we can’t be extinguished.
—Amy R. Grunberg
De La Cruz, V. (2021, May 15). “You either die a hero or live long enough to see yourself become the villain. My Geek Wisdom. Retrieved from: https://bit.ly/3rIwHGq.
Denning, T. (2019, July 8). The joy of being unknown. Medium. Retrieved from: https://bit.ly/3BjQD5n.
Wheatley, K. (2020, July 23). How influencer culture is impacting today’s society. Empoword Journalism. Retrieved from: https://bit.ly/3oKWcEX.