How To Establish Credibility

How do I establish credibility?”

This is the number one question I get from small businesses eager to bid on or pursue larger opportunities. Whether you’ve just started your business or have been around for some time, it is incredibly important to establish and maintain credibility in your respective field. No, I’m not talking about how to get a better credit score or how to make yourself more attractive to lenders – that’s a whole other series of articles, my friends. I’m talking about establishing yourself as a credible leader in your field.

Credibility as an expert, a thought leader or for providing quality products and services can help generate brand awareness, build a positive brand reputation and further separate you from your competition. There are a number of ways to do this, so I’m going to very briefly touch on six approaches in this article and then expand on each in the Marketing Toolkit, a series of articles with marketing ideas and resources. As I post them, I’ll update each title below with a link to the corresponding article. 

  1. Create and Distribute News: It sounds simple because it is. Developing and publishing press releases, articles, blog posts, etc. on your website can help establish you as a credible source. Just don’t make everything a sales pitch. If you’re genuine in your approach, it shows and endears your audience to you. Don’t forget to post your press releases to appropriate media outlets, like PRWeb,  so that you can reach a broader audience. Here’s a list of 16 free (and a few paid) press release distribution sites
  2. Educate the Industry: Share your knowledge with others by developing and publishing whitepapers, presentations and even training materials.  Identify and schedule key speaking engagements at industry conferences and events. Present at local MeetUps or seminars. Volunteer to speak at local colleges or to your local Chamber of Commerce
  3. Contribute to Conversations:  Join conversations on Linked In, Twitter, and organizations in your industry, which increases visibility and influence.
  4. Start a Conversation: Post interesting articles, whitepapers or blog posts on Linked In. They don’t always have to be your own; they can be one you found interesting or thought provoking. Share the wealth with others and you’ll be pleasantly surprised to see how many people respond and engage. When you encourage conversation, use compelling titles, direct questions, and be sure to remain engaged by responding and participating in the conversation.
  5. Media Relationships: Develop expert profiles on key PR platforms such as ProfNet, PR Web, and Help A Reporter Out. Establish key relationships with media – local and national.
  6. Network: Take some time to evaluate and join additional groups and organizations that facilitate networking and increased brand recognition. Attend networking events and be sure to follow up directly with people you meet, either by email or in person.

Now it’s your turn to share. What has worked for you in establishing credibility for your company, product or service? 

This post was written by
A reformed corporate rock star with a serious addiction to food porn. She is a serial blogger, small business coach, and lover of casual Friday's. When not writing, researching, or coaching, she can be found working on her other blog(s) or watching action hero cartoons with her boys.

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