It’s been proven that people buy from those they know, like, and trust – but a big part of building trust is having years of experience and a certain level of expertise in your field. Think about your own experiences in purchasing products or booking sessions with a coach. You may know and like someone but if they are brand new to the coaching field, or if they have only one year of experience, will you hand over your hard earned money as quickly as if they had ten years of experience or written an acclaimed book? Chances are you would not.
With the age of social media and online marketing, it’s easier than ever to showcase your expertise.
Here are some easy ways to get it done.
Know you’re an expert.
Be confident in your knowledge and don’t be afraid to refer to yourself as an expert. When you are unsure of yourself, others will see it. You need to have the confidence to let people know that you are an expert in your field and that you are willing to back it up. No one will simply bestow this title upon you have to give yourself the title and believe it.
Proactively answer questions.
There are more and more ways for people to ask questions about nearly any subject today. LinkedIn Answers is popular with professional audiences who ask questions to their own networks. Facebook status updates and tweets on Twitter often include people seeking others’ opinions or experiences. Finally, social answering sites like Quora are getting a lot of buzz right now because they let people ask questions to a crowd and then bring answers together.
Each of these is an opportunity for you to demonstrate your expertise. To do it, just create an account (if you don’t already have one) with four sites to start: Facebook, Quora, Twitter, and LinkedIn. Then search for relevant questions that relate to your business and try to make it a point to answer one to two questions per day based on your expertise. Over a span of time, the quality of your answers will bring people to your site and your small business.
>> How Do You Know When You’re an Expert? Here Are some Easy Ways To Tell.
Create a “how to” video.
Several recent studies have shown that one of the most popular phrases searched for on YouTube or Google is “how to.” That means that if you want your video to be found by the most people, make sure you use the words “how to” in the title of the video. In terms of the content for the video, think about some of the questions you most commonly get from your customers or things that people often wonder about when considering who to work with. For example, if you have a dental practice, a good video could be “how to choose a great dentist.” The videos that address a big question that many consumers are likely to have are the ones that will ultimately get the most views and be seen as the most useful. Then make sure it is easy for anyone watching the video to learn more about your business and your expertise.
Be a guest contributor/author
There are already key media sources that people are going to in order to learn more about topics that relate to your business. Instead of always trying to compete with these, consider how you might get featured on a relevant site so you can share your expertise with a built-in audience. For this to work best, you need to think in terms of a freelance writer. What topic would the maximum people be interested in reading about that fits your expertise? Is it topical and relevant to what is happening in the world right now? What makes you the best person to write this piece?
Once you can answer these questions, you can approach the manager/editor of any site online and offer to create a guest contributed article for their site. Volunteer to do it without payment, give them an idea of the topic you would cover, and share a bit about your background and why you’re qualified to write that piece. As long as it is clear your piece won’t be overly promotional, you would be surprised how often site managers would be willing to publish content like this — and it can do wonders for your reputation.
Getting your name and ultimately your brand recognized is key to getting more speaking engagements. Unless you let people know you are available to speak, they will not know it. Again, you can utilize the Chambers of Commerce for this purpose. Not only can you volunteer to speak at some of their events, but they will help put you in front of others within the business community that may be looking for speakers at their engagements as well. Also, don’t pass up on the opportunity to speak online during webinars and other events.
Start your own blog covering topics within your area of expertise. Write regularly about your industry and offer your opinions and experiences in your writing. You can post new and interesting topics daily or weekly if time is an issue. Be sure to refer and link to other things that you have written previously that are relevant to the topic at hand. Allow people the opportunity to comment on your blog or to submit comments to you. This will give others the ability to ask you questions that you can answer in a public forum to show your expertise. Be sure and tell people on your blog and in your “About the Author” section when you submit work to other outlets that you are available to speak on these topics. The best thing about having your own blog is that some people will link to it, and others will forward your URL onto friends and colleagues.
PUBLISH AN EVERGREEN “CONTENT BOMB.”
One of my favorite terms in the world of blogging is what I call a “content bomb.” This is essentially a piece of content that can act as a land mine (but in a good way). It will sit online for days or months or years, but when someone searches for something relevant to it, they will uncover this piece of content and it will address their question while also demonstrating a deep level of expertise on the part of the writer. Good examples of this are two- or three-page PDFs, eBooks, topical blog posts, or videos. This content can be anything you like, and it can be posted on your own website or through a third-party site. Either way, choosing the topic is the most important thing — and it needs to be something that people always want to know about.
Write a book or spend time researching places where you can submit that which you write about your topic of expertise. Discuss specific topics of interest and newsworthy topics in your industry that are current and carry a lot of interest with your field. By doing so, you are giving people a sneak peak at your level of knowledge on each topic while also remaining relevant and current.
Establishing your credibility as an expert requires attention and planning.