Online Credibility: Do You Have It?

by Martha Giffen

Online Credibility.  It can happen at lightening speed and it can be torn down just as fast.

It goes hand in hand with Reputation and you need to take it seriously.

My own method . . .

I have built my online presence around being credible.  I pride myself in being a person known for dishing out good, clean, helpful, researched information.  If I recommend a product, I’ve used it.  If I recommend a website, I’ve gotten value from it.  If I create my own products, I want the expectation of my customers to be that they know  I’ve worked diligently to make sure that product  doesn’t hit the marketplace until it does what I say it will.  And more.

Think of credibility somewhat like a first impression.

Once it’s online, you really can’t take it back!

Every time we put a product into the marketplace, every time we post a blog about a certain subject, every time we answer an e-mail or send one out, our credibility is on the line.  At least, that’s what I always keep in mind.

Know the secret bullet!

If there’s one “secret” to everything you do online, it’s tell the truth.  Don’t ever be caught in a falsehood.  For example, when I take on a one-on-one coaching student, I teach them what I’m doing to be successful.  I teach social media because I’m already doing it.  I teach how to make money online because I’m already doing it.  A few years ago, I wasn’t an expert in those subjects so I wouldn’t have been credible.

Get the picture?

You can’t be an expert in something you don’t know about and haven’t actually done.  If you’ve never secured a customer from using social media, you won’t be too credible trying to be a social media manager. Make sense?

Is there  a measuring stick?

You bet!

It comes in the form of recognition, awards, testimonials, etc.  The measuring stick is what others are saying about you.

Social Proof.

That’s what awards and accolades are all about.  It’s someone else giving you their seal of approval. Think “Good Housekeeping” here!

How do you get it?

By being connected with people.  It’s just that simple.  Your recognition for your work will come from others.  Are you a product creator?  Then ask  your customers for a testimonial.  Put it on your site or your sales page.  (I’m actually revamping and compiling my own as we speak!)  Are you a social media diva? The proof is in the pudding.  Are you being followed around and connected with like crazy?  Then your credibility is probably close to stellar.

Here’s the thing. . . .

Your credibility is being built right along with your online presence.    If you are writing consistently great blogs, people will notice.  If your articles are worth their weight in substance, they will begin to appear all over the net.  If you are joining groups within your niche on Facebook and LinkedIn and are adding value, people will take notice.  If your coaching students are bragging about the money they’re making, you’ve probably got great credibility.

It’s NOT brain surgery!

It’s really not difficult to build your credibility on the web.  Continue to put out good information, great products, and always be helpful to others.  Say what you mean and mean what you say.  Be sure your products always give more value than your customer pays.

Your credibility will grow just as your web presence does.  If everything you put out on the web says, “buy my stuff, buy my stuff,” then you are a long way from establishing credibility.  Credibility comes with the know, like, and trust mantra.  You build this over time by taking daily action.  AND, it builds through others.

It’s been said that one sour customer can ruin your credibility.  Why?  Because, especially in this day of internet speed, everyone is connected.  Their bad experience with you or your products will be told to their network and it spreads like wildfire.

Can you say “viral?”

Credibility, good or bad, can become viral.  Chances are, you trust the people you continue to learn from.  My guess is you also never forget the ones that took your money and provided nothing in return.  Right?

We all need credibility.  You know what to do.

Be credible and enjoy your rise to success!

Peace,

-Martha

 Online Credibility:  Do You Have It?

Martha Giffen

Martha Giffen is a Small Business and Social Media Consultant, Coach, Trainer, and Speaker. The author of 3 best-selling books, including "Be Social Be Rich," she is an Online Marketing authority and teaches Small Biz Owners how to achieve massive profitable success. And, -she dishes it all out with a warm southern flare!

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