Credibility for Consultants
I’m presenting in Key West and a very common question is, “How do I create credibility when I don’t have a commercially published book?”
While I use book publishing as a key marketing tool, it’s not the sole route to credibility. Here are some techniques to consider to create credibility with any true buyer:
• Position papers (“white papers”) on subjects related to your value proposition which are provocative, innovative, and stimulating.
• Client testimonials, especially on video, with “name, rank, and serial number,” and specifics of your help. These can be 60 seconds or less and needn’t be professionally shot.
• Client lists. (You can generally use a client name without permission, so long as the client hasn’t prohibited it. You can’t use a client logo without permission, however. See your attorney if you’re unsure. I’m obviously not an attorney, though I did attend law school for two days.)
• Typical client results. You don’t have to be specific about the client, but what types of results can a prospect expect, e.g., reduced attrition, market share growth, reduced stress. Do NOT use your methodology here, but your results.
• Case studies. Three paragraphs, in this order: Situation (What were the circumstances that demanded your assistance?) Intervention (What methodology did you use to resolve the issue?) Resolution (What was the degree of improved client condition that resulted?)
• Mixed media. Brief videos of you explaining your approaches, products, and services help to personalize the site and create credibility in your passion and explanations. Downloadable audio which people can listen to in other venues and with the ease they prefer.
• Blogging regularly (at least three times a week) using mixed media. Focus on your value proposition and demonstrate that you’re a thought leader.
• Newsletters that are brief and pithy, targeted at your highest potential audience and offering value in every issue. These must be regular and consistent.
• Appearing regularly in public at conferences and events, with your name and photo in the brochure and agenda.
• Press releases on new ideas, accolades, and experiences that you disseminate electronically (today you don’t need the traditional medial to print your releases).
• Metaphors and analogies which you create about your intellectual property to make it memorable (“achieve escape velocity”).
You get the idea. Your credibility will be enhanced with value, frequency, consistency, memorablity, and originality.
© Alan Weiss 2010. All right reserved.