Credibility is one of the most important aspects of your brand.
Being credible means people feel like they can trust you and your company. Without trust you will not be viewed as a legitimate business or a credible authority in your field. You need that impression of legitimacy to attract clients and customers, look professional, and earn a reputation as a respectable business.
Credibility is like respect; it has to be earned.
It takes time to lay the foundation of trust, and consistency to grow it into a solid reputation based on credibility.
One of the most effective strategies to growing your online credibility is to add some personality to your website and social media.
Here are 5 expert tips on how to boost your online credibility by adding personality.
1. Be real
Customers are more and more wary of scams, fakes, and rip-offs. They will see through your sales jargon and stock photos and move on to your competitor. To make it to the top of their consideration pile you’ve got to provide genuine, valuable content.
Add a human voice and personality to your brand by showing empathy. Use the words on your website to make the reader feel like you are speaking directly to them. Show that you understand the difficulties they face and address the way they feel and think about your product or service.
People like stories and they like underdogs. Share your business story. Make it personal and authentic, relating to them on a human level. Show them who you are and what you are passionate about.
You can highlight your authenticity in many ways – through social media, customer support, blogging, or behind-the-scenes interactions with others. Get to know your audience and allow them to get to know you too.
2. Look the part
Anybody can make a website these days, and it’s hard to know who you can trust. To be seen as credible, you have to look credible first. Show your skill and expertise by giving your viewers a glimpse of what you do. Let them see that there are real people – not stock photo people – on the other side of the website.
Show photos of you in action, doing what you do best. This could be meeting with a client, creating or inspecting your product, or working in your store or on your computer. Looking the part will increase trust in you and your brand.
Cheap and amateurish images are one of the first signs to people that you aren’t a serious operation – and can’t be trusted. Forget the stock photos - they’re obvious and give the impression that you have something to hide. Delete the selfies and find a personal branding photographer you can trust with your brand.
3. Give away something delightful
As a successful business owner, you must be an expert in your field – or you wouldn’t have succeeded! Establish yourself as an expert and thought leader by sharing your knowledge with the rest of us.
For example, you could you offer ideas on alternative uses for your best selling products. Or if you are a chef you could provide tips on choosing the freshest ingredients. If you’re a fitness instructor, you could share your recommendations on the best workouts or supplements.
Giving away a free and valuable gift of knowledge has the bonus effect of showing that you are a genuinely good person who cares about your customers and clients.
4. Introduce your team as real people
Human-to-human relationships can be tough to build. That’s where photos come in. Showing a photo of your team – even if it’s small – can help your audience feel like they’re working with real people. Let your company’s personality shine.
Match the style of photo to the vibe of your company and industry. For example, if you’re a law firm your team should look highly professional. But if you’re in a creative industry or in the startup world, your images could be more casual.
5. Be accessible
Engage with your fans and potential clients on social media channels like Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram. Similar to client recommendations and testimonials, social media engagement is another form of social proof.
These platforms allow you to listen to your customers, troubleshoot issues, and answer questions. People don’t want to be sold on social media. Instead, seek out real and meaningful interactions and encourage your consumers to communicate with you.
It can be difficult to manage all the social media channels effectively, and a dormant profile can hurt your brand’s credibility. I recommend choosing only 2-3 social media channels to create a strong brand presence on. Actively engaging online each day will build credibility with your audience, making them more likely to check out your website.
The best way to build credibility for your brand is to provide ‘real’ content that is genuinely interesting to your audience.
Pitch less and delight more with interesting, engaging, honest, and consistent content. Injecting personality into your website and social media channels will build your brand authority and credibility, ultimately growing your business.
Sending good vibes and love! - Kasey
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