What is the “elevation workflow™”?

The “Elevation Workflow™ is my proprietary path to your digital thought leadership constructed from decades of studying and observing the interaction between big, global thinkers and technology.

The title “thought leader” cannot be self-appointed. It’s an honor bestowed upon you by others. As a thought leader, you are recognized as an expert who shows up early in search, and whose work is recognized by social shares and quoted content.

Thought leaders have done hard work and serious thinking around a particular topic or interest. I like visuals and alliteration. This diagram may look complicated – it’s not. If you aspire to be recognized as a thought leader, and you’ve done the hard work (translation: paid your dues) I can help.

The ‘elevation workflow’ is applied simplicity for content marketing, search and social media

No one has ever done a better job of documenting my workflow than @ryanrhoten of http://ryanrhoten.com. I use the following with permission from his website:

“Today I welcome to the show Todd Lohenry from toddlohenry.com.

Todd is a former director of marketing and technology for a major employee wellness brand and former college instructor of content and search engine marketing and social media.

His passion is helping thinkers become thought leaders through a process he calls the elevation workflow.

The elevation workflow is ‘lather, rinse, repeat’ process, which Todd follows with his clients to help them become credible thought leaders in their field by making their content searchable, findable, knowable, usable and shareable.

Todd, welcome to the BRAND new you show.

Listen to the interview here…



Todd mentions two books. The first is a book written by Dr. Richard Hanson called:

Hardwiring Happiness (Affiliate link)

Summary from Amazon – Hardwiring Happiness lays out a simple method that uses the hidden power of everyday experiences to build new neural structures full of happiness, love, confidence, and peace.

The second book written by Jon Meacham called:

American Lion (Affiliate link)

Summary from Amazon – Andrew Jackson, his intimate circle of friends, and his tumultuous times are at the heart of this remarkable book about the man who rose from nothing to create the modern presidency. Beloved and hated, venerated and reviled, Andrew Jackson was an orphan who fought his way to the pinnacle of power, bending the nation to his will in the cause of democracy.


Whether you decide to become a Linchpin (affiliate link) for your organization or you Choose Yourself (affiliate link) and become a solopreneur or entrepreneur it is critical that what we do online, we do on purpose, not by accident.

The title of “thought leader” is bestowed upon someone by others. In order to reach this status, you need to become the person who shows up in search as having done the work on a particular topic or niche.

In this way, you’re becoming the Google of your niche.

At this point, other people recognize your work as evidenced by social shares, by quoting you in their content and by talking about you when you’re not around.

We all start out as thinkers. We limit ourselves to word of mouth conversations and may be recognized in our town, city or region.

This beginning stage referred to by Dorie Clark as one-to-one communication. If we are intentional we can quickly move from this stage to the next, one-to-many by leveraging today’s online platforms.

Without a home base online we cannot become a thought leader. Being conscientious of what we post and knowing what we want to be found for will help us build our online reputation around a particular topic.


Understanding the culture and language of your target audience will help them find you faster. To determine the language we use tools such as Google searches, Google trends, and Google keywords planner to find the keywords associated with the language of your audience.


Because we took the time to identify the keywords of our particular niche, we know what language to speak and who the current leaders are in our chosen niche.

By consuming the world’s best info on the topics of niche whether via audio, video, or text we are fueling our personal knowledge and growth.

RSS feeders like Feedly or Inoreader help to facilitate bringing the sites, searches, sources, and some day maybe information directly to you.


Curation is the process of sharing the content we are consuming with the world. Whether via social media or on your own personal website. Tools like IF THIS THAN THAT (IFTTT) help you disseminate information from others to your audience.


This step is a simple as it sounds. On your own self-hosted WordPress site you will begin to put your thoughts down on digital paper via blog posts and other types of information. To get started Todd recommends using a “Yes, No, maybe so” approach to blog posts.

I also wrote this POST about other ideas to help you get started.

Collect Todd recommends saving everything you consume online in one place. In this way, you make it easy for people to find you in search by providing all of your social proof of your growing expertise in one place.

To help you collect content, Todd recommends a freemium tool (free to try with the ability to pay for upgrades to get certain features) called Rebel Mouse because it meets his 5 criteria for use.

“Best of class, Cloud based, Cross platform, Robust – Never use two tools when one will do, Freemium”

Rebel mouse allows you to collect content from up to 25 different streams onto one place / one page.


After you’ve taken the time to consume, curate and create new and original content yourself, it’s time to starting connecting with others.

Begin to look for opportunities online by finding like-minded people in social, during a Twitter Chat for example. Connecting with people today is easily accomplished via social networks.


Like it sounds, the converse is simply an extension of the connections you make. It carries the initial connection to a deeper level by carrying on an actual conversation offline or online to grow a better relationship with people who connect with you.


In it’s simplest form, conversion is anytime you ask someone to do something and they do it. This could mean signing up for a newsletter or downloading an ebook.

Understanding the keywords and your target audience is critical to conversion. By knowing the language of your audience, you can use strong call to actions to help people decide to make those conversions.

Create Community

Technology today again can help you accelerate creating a community of people around your work. Creating a place for your audience to continue the discussion and reinforce the value of working with you via a Facebook group, for example, is a great way to create a community of like-minded people.


The following methods are The best way to get in touch with Todd

Web: toddlohenry.com

Twitter: @toddlohenry

Todd leaves us with these final thoughts on thought leadership and online reputation management.

“In order to get found you don’t need to master 17 different social networks at the same time. It’s possible to start simple and stay simple. You stand a much better change of getting found.”