When customers look to you as a respected expert in your field you can get more business, and maybe even raise your prices. Your education, such as degrees and professional designations, and accomplishments, such as publishing a book, will cause others to view you as an expert.
Build on your existing credentials by using these techniques to get others to promote you as an expert and enhance your credibility.
Get testimonials from customers. When customers are happy with the results they got from your product or service, ask them to give you a testimonial. The testimonial may be in writing, or they may give it over the phone, or in an audio or video format.
Most people are hesitant to write testimonials. They may feel uncomfortable writing, or they just aren’t sure what should be in their testimonial. Make it easier for them by writing a draft testimonial they can revise and sign. For example, write down some of the things they have said to you about why they are happy with your company, then send it to them and ask if you may use their comments as a testimonial. Let them know they can make changes if you didn’t capture exactly what they meant. Use the testimonials at your Web site, in your advertising, in brochures and other marketing materials, and as a part of your proposals.
Get endorsements from well-known people. They may be celebrities known to all, or experts who are known only in your industry. Approach them and ask if they would comment on your product, supply a blurb for your book, or otherwise provide something you can use. Make sure you have the person’s permission to use their comments and/or likeness in your marketing, but many well-known people are happy to do this.
Get photographed with famous people. If you hang out with the rich and famous, get your picture taken with them. Likewise, if you are at an event with someone important in your industry, try to get a picture with them. As with the previous method, make sure you have permission to publish the photos, especially if you are going to use them in marketing. Even if you can’t put the photos in your brochure, you can always hang them on your office walls where customers will see them.
Get reviewed. Reviews make people aware of you, and good reviews are like endorsements, encouraging people to buy. If you have a product, or a book or tape, offer review copies to publications and Web sites that might be interested in reviewing it. Send press releases about your restaurant, gallery opening, performance, or other attraction or event to attract reviewers.
Have your seminar sponsored. I present seminars all the time, but I don’t promote and manage them myself. The courses are listed in catalogs put out by colleges and other organizations. They do the promotion, handle registrations and other paperwork, and provide a place for the seminar. I show up and teach. And, because my classes and I are featured in the catalogs put out by these organizations, I get more exposure to potential customers, and the credibility that goes with being associated with the organizations. In fact, I’ve sold books and gotten consulting clients just because people saw me in the catalog.
In addition to colleges and learning centers, you may have your seminar sponsored by a professional or community association, such as your local Chamber of Commerce.