The internet has been a wonderful place for many businesses to grow, but consumers are becoming more discerning about how they interact online. Their BS detectors are particularly heightened, so you’ve got to find a way to help them see that they can trust you.
There are four main types of influence that every business owner needs to leverage in their marketing, regardless of what is happening in the world economy. Do this so you can cut through the noise, be visible and keep your business going.
Share your expertise
Thought leadership is the method used for sharing and demonstrating your expertise in a certain area. This works for authors, CEOs, accountants and even florists. There is a reason that you do things the way that you do them. It can be helpful for people to learn a bit more about why you do what you do and in the way you do it. What do you stand for and what do you stand against? Why do you use certain techniques and not others?
For instance, a consultant will often use a process with clients to help them. What are the main stages you take your clients through? Or if you’re a florist, for instance, you can share why you present flowers in a certain way that will fascinate people who don’t understand this.
The internet is known to be full of trolls, scam artists and people who are out there to make a quick buck without worrying about delivering on services or products. It’s disastrous! You need to be seen as different to that. The easiest and most effective way to do this is by being you and showing people who you are. You can do this by sharing stories that compliment your thought leadership.
Showing people “behind the curtain” what goes on on a daily basis in your business can inspire people to like you. Sharing some fun things you do outside of work and even sharing other projects or hobbies you enjoy can do this, too. It shows that you’re a real human, not a fake. Not a scammer and not someone who is going to rip them off.
Robert Cialdini says in his book Influence that one of the Pillars of Persuasion is likeability. When people see that you are like them or that they like you, they are more likely to buy from you. Do this by sharing the real you.
The key to creating online influence is leveraging the two above points and adding consistency into the mix. Marketing is all about helping people to get to know, like and trust you. Showing up consistently on the internet is one of the simplest ways you can create this.
Commit to showing up every day online, so that when people come across you, they can see who you are, what you’re like and that you are not one of the rogues. Share your ideas, your thinking and your expertise online. People will love you for it.
When you’re in a room with people, you have all your senses working for you. You can read people’s body language, you can see the way they interact with people and it can help you to arrive at a decision about if you like that person — or not! People are doing the same with you. When you combine offline influence with online influence, you have a powerhouse behind you, because people then see that you are exactly like the person they see online. This further helps to build confidence in them when they’re thinking about doing business with you.
When you leverage all four of these types of influence, you are helping people to see that you are a business to be trusted. They will see that you are someone that they need to work with.
When you have three of these types of influence working simultaneously, you’re more likely to be a business that survives when the economy tightens. When it expands, you’ll thrive. Start now!
Nicola Moras is an online visibility expert and author.