If you feel like you’ve stalled in the process of building your business, it may be time to level up your credibility. To earn top dollar you have to first distinguish yourself as the go-to expert and thought leader in your niche. You’re likely already working toward that goal, and probably have been for some time. However, if you’re still on the path because you’re not quite there yet, here’s five ways you can build credibility in your niche.
This is by far the most important thing you can do to grow your audience and your credibility. Blog posts, podcasts, ebooks, and self-paced training programs—whether free or paid—are the building blocks of your empire. The key is to create content that highlights your expertise and give useful and/or instructive information. This requires a bit of time and planning, particularly if you’re not a writer; but it will create a solid foundation. If you follow me, you know that I’m a big content creator.
Not a writer, then video may be your best option. However, this is where a lot of people struggle. Maybe you hate the sound of your voice or you hate how you look on video. You’ll need to get over it. Your potential clients need to get to know you better before they shell out $5,000 or $10,000 for that group-coaching program you’re putting together, and video is the easiest way for them to do that. This is where a consult with your friendly neighborhood image consultant will come in handy. Make sure your image and personal brand is cohesive. Get help with your voice by hiring a performance or voice coach. Once you feel confident, start sharing what you know on Facebook Live, YouTube and other video channels. While I don’t do a lot of video, I appear monthly on a local morning television show and do a visual radio talk show every few months.
Write a Book.
The big daddy of content, a real, physical book can skyrocket your credibility and pave the way for the rest of your coaching career. Now, we’re not talking about Kindle books here (although they do have their place in your overall content plans). No, for this, you want to publish a printed book—and if you can attract the attention of a publishing house rather than going the self-publishing route, that lends more credibility. While it’s not the path to riches, it’s definitely a credibility builder. Here’s a quick hint…if you’ve been blogging, ebook-ing, and doing videos, your book content is already at your disposal.
Taking the stage is my absolute favorite thing to do. I love connecting with people live and sharing what I know while receiving instant feedback. Nothing says “I’m an expert” quite like speaking in front of a group. Chances are your expert status has already attracted the attention of event organizers and you’ve been asked to speak. If you have, and have turned down the opportunity, now is the time to boost up your confidence and make the leap. If you haven’t, then go out and actively seek opportunities that are a good fit. Don’t be afraid to start small—at your local Chamber of Commerce or a recurring MeetUp group—but keep an eye on the big stage, too, and be open for the chance to wow a crowd with your expertise. Before you take the stage however, work on developing your signature talk as well as your signature style. Remember the words of the great Coco Chanel, “Dress shabbily and they remember the dress, dress impeccably and they remember the woman!” You want to make sure they remember what you say, not the nightmare you were wearing.
Host a Live Event.
Want to really blow your audience away with your coaching and business skills? Plan and host a live event. It doesn’t have to be huge—in fact a small, intimate venue is often the best choice—but do start making plans. Live event hosts are often viewed as the real movers and shakers in their industries (because they are). I love hosting intimate vision board workshops, style workshops, leadership skills training, and strategic planning meetings.
Remember, no matter which credibility-boosting method you’re using, it will only work if people know about it. So don’t just start a podcast, market it. Don’t step onto a stage of any size without shouting about it to the rooftops, and never ever write a book without a big launch. Credibility and visibility go hand in hand, so do everything you can to get the word out about your achievements.
I work with my clients on building their visibility by utilizing credibility techniques. Need support in this area? Is it time for you to level up? Then let’s schedule a Strategy Session today!
Live, laugh, and confidently shine!