Six Simple Ways to Build Your Credibility as an Entrepreneur

This is a follow up guest post By Rich Schefren

As I mentioned in my last guest post

If you want to move your business online or even start your business from scratch, you need credibility.

In other words, you need proof.

Proof that you can do what you do what you say, proof that you can help others, and proof that you can help someone worse off than your prospects do it.

In fact, that’s step one to marketing an online business.

Fortunately, there are many strategies you can use to develop your credibility as a marketer and an entrepreneur and provide proof that you can do what you claim.

Today, I’m introducing you to six of them…

#1 The Powerful Demonstration

What It Is: An over-the-top demonstration that proves beyond a shadow of a doubt that either you’ve honed your chops to perfection, or your product is capable of making magic happen.

I wrote about this in my blog post about Billy Mays when he passed away.

When done correctly this type of demonstration is MUCH more powerful than a sleuth of testimonials.

In fact, earlier this summer, Pete and I showed how powerful this could be on our Profit Hacks livestream.

We took several content-generation tasks that most people find difficult, time-consuming and expensive. Specifically, creating several blogs, videos and other pieces of content.

Then we showed how Pete could get all that done through outsourcing for pennies on the dollar.

With this live demonstration, we proved you could have blogs written, videos produced and even a podcast recorded by only investing 15 minutes of your time.

And in short, it worked.

By showing how we could accomplish the biggest time-sucking activities and business boosting activities in 15 minutes, Pete had hoards of new clients wanting to buy his new Profit Hacks course.

You can copy this strategy by filming 2 or 3-minute videos of yourself doing a live demonstration in your area of expertise. Trust me, it will be just as effective.

Why It’s Powerful: Prospects discount and distrust testimonials more and more each day. But show them how you can magically solve one of their pressing problems in a way that makes them say WOW and you’ve got them.

With a demonstration, your prospects can see themselves solving their problems or getting the results as easily as you’ve just shown. So they see themselves creating the same result in the same way.

And this is powerful stuff.

You’ve made what they (previously) thought as difficult – as something easily done. And who doesn’t want that?

#2 Results In Advance

What It Is: This distinction comes from Frank Kern. And it’s a doozy. Here’s the concept – let’s say your prospects have to achieve 10 sub-goals to reach their main goal.

Then in your free content you help them take that first step, and achieve their first sub-goal.

So, let’s say your prospects want to make money online by having a massive list of prospects and sending them offers.

In this case, if your prospects were wet-behind-the-ears, step one would be helping them get a website up with a squeeze page.

Why It’s Powerful: The power of momentum is a magical thing. We’ve all experienced it.

When you taste initial success, your belief you’ll achieve your goal skyrockets and you redouble your efforts.

It’s like when you first go on a diet, and the next time you weigh yourself you’re 5 lbs. lighter! You think “IT’S WORKING!” and you find it easier to stick to your diet that day because of the perceived progress you are making.

Of course, if you’re the person that’s responsible for giving your prospects their initial win, then you’re the person that will lead them to the promise land.

And they’ll buy your products and services because they’ve gotten a taste of what you can do for them.

#3 Marquee Clients

What It Is:  You’ve seen consultants do this for years listing all the big companies they’ve consulted for.

And the reason they still do it… because it works.

I became the “Guru to The Gurus” because I’ve coached many of today’s top Internet marketers. And I don’t think it’s too surprising the incredible number of clients I got because of it.

Think about it: You’re on Guru X’s list – you’re impressed with his success and his knowledge.

Then you find out he had a coach when he first started out – one that helped him get incredible results.

Wouldn’t you immediately seek that very same coach out? Of course you would.

Why It’s Powerful: With the right marquee clients, prospects naturally assume if it’s good enough for them, it’s good enough for me. Especially when the prospect aspires to get the same results of those marquee clients.

You probably heard that old saying “No one ever got fired for buying IBM” – just take that sentence to its natural conclusion and you’ve got the point.

#4 Track Record

What It Is: An impressive array of previous accomplishments.

In investments it’s about picking winner after winner. In health it might be the first to expose effective alternative approaches. In my business, Strategic Profits, it’s the results we’ve achieved ourselves.

One of my mentors, Michael Masterson, built a 100+ million dollar company in his 30′s, and a totally different 350+ million dollar company in his 50′s.

Is there any wonder why advice from Michael is valued more than from others who haven’t achieved his level of success? I think not.

Why It’s Powerful: A great track record shows: You’re a step ahead of everyone else. You’ve got a high success rate, and you do it consistently.

Who doesn’t want to be around success like that? Ultimately you want to be the “go-to” person in your field for your prospects and clients – and one of the easiest ways to be that person is to advertise your successes.

#5 Powerful Association

What It Is: If you associate with powerful people then it’s assumed you’re powerful…

If you associate with great marketers then it’s assumed you’re a great marketer… if you associate with the rich and famous then it’s assumed you’re rich and famous too… and so on.

Also, when you partner with big name players, often times their credibility extends to you.

In fact, even when you interview enough thought leaders you’re seen as a thought leader.

How To Do It: If I was just starting out in a niche – this is one of the tactics I would immediately leverage.

I’d create a blog… begin posting… then head over to Amazon and buy the most popular books in my niche.

I’d read them, and then approach the authors to interview them about their books.

Almost every author is willing to be interviewed about their books – and when you ask insightful questions (proving that you’ve actually read their books) a friendship is likely to develop.

I’d post the interviews as soon as I did them. And when I had enough of them I’d put them all in a free report with a snazzy introduction and conclusion from me.

Whamo… instant credibility by association.

Why it’s powerful: It’s simply human nature to assume that if those people (whoever those people are) seem to think you are worthy then so will I.

#6 Unique Mechanism

What It Is: Gene Schwartz went through a very thorough explanation of this in his book:  Breakthrough Advertising.

I also wrote about how Billy Mays used this in the blog post I wrote about his life.

Here’s the gist of it:  A mechanism is a new way, unique method, new system, or approach to getting the benefit your prospects desire.

Why It’s Powerful: Having a new way to achieve a result makes getting the result more believable to all your prospects who already tried other approaches.

So there’s an immediate increase in the believability of your promise.

Bottom line: No matter which method you choose, you need proof to get the credibility you need. So pick a strategy and get started.

To higher profits and beyond,
Rich Schefren

About the Author: Rich Schefren is the author of the Internet Business Manifesto, and CEO of Strategic Profits. Look for more coming from Rich and Pete later this year when we launch the Profit Hacks course.
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Pete Williams is an entrepreneur, author, and marketer from Melbourne, Australia.

Before being honored “Australia’s Richard Branson” in media publications all over the continent, Pete was just 21 years old when he sold Australia’s version of Yankee Stadium, The Melbourne Cricket Ground For Under $500! Don’t believe it? You will! Check out the story in the FAQ section (it really is our most asked question).

Since then, he’s done some cool stuff like write the international smash hit ‘How to Turn Your Million-Dollar Idea Into a Reality’ (+ the upcoming ‘It’s Not About the Product‘) and he’s created a bunch of companies including Infiniti Telecommunications, On Hold Advertising, Simply Headsets and Preneur Group.

Lots of other people think he’s pretty good too! He’s been announced as the Global Runner-Up in the JCI Creative Young Entrepreneur Awards for 2009, the Southern Region Finalist in the Ernst & Young 2010 Entrepreneur of the Year, and a member of SmartCompany’s Top 30 Under 30.

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