So, this is number three, so far, we have covered Clarity and Identity, now it’s time to talk about Credibility.

But, before we do that, what do you think of the Good Foundations series? We want to hear your thoughts on this series of posts, do you agree with our theory that there are 6 characteristics that you need to demonstrate in order for prospects to decide to work with you? Add your thoughts below.

Back in the late 1990s I was a recent graduate, living in Brighton, with huge debts and NO idea what I wanted to do with my degree. Eventually, I stumbled into a casual job selling restaurant discount cards door-to-door, I thought it would be easy.

To say it was the worst job of my life would be an exaggeration, but it was pretty dire. Each day I would be dropped off, alone, in Portslade, Rottingdean or some other outskirt of Brighton, from where I would walk 7 or 8 miles every day getting (literally) hundreds of doors slammed in my face. It was a good life experience, but not so good for the ego – as a saleswoman I was a failure. During the 3-weeks that I managed to keep going at the job I sold close to zero discount cards (okay, I sold 1, but even that was a pity sale). I felt frustrated and like a loser. I became convinced that I was not good at sales and never would be.

I couldn’t understand these abysmal results, I had a script provided for me, and I knew people liked me because lots of lovely housewives took one glance at the defeated expression on my face and invited me in for a sandwich, and a good chat. Some scary men invited me in too, but I ran away from them (as a middle-aged adult, the dangerousness of this situation makes me shudder).

Now I have come to understand why the sales didn’t work. I didn’t believe in what I was selling – I knew the restaurants were awful – so no one else believed the discount cards had any value either. The result: I had NO credibility.

If people don’t believe in you, they will NOT buy your stuff, it’s simple. Human beings are naturally risk averse, and if something seems, even slightly, amiss with the information that you are sharing about your business (even if purely accidental) your audience might suspect that you are not genuine, and it will shatter your Credibility.

But, how can you get people to believe in you when you aren’t able to get face to face with them, wearing a dodgy lanyard and hoping you aren’t about to get a close up of their front door? You know the answer….well-planned marketing.

So, if you want to ramp up your Credibility, work your way through The Marketing Architect Credibility Checklist, you’ll soon be the most believable brand on the block.

1. Do you publicly share (either on your website, your social channels, or your printed materials), enough detail of your history, your experience and your skills to explain WHY people should believe you are good at what you do? Without this, you are expecting your audience to take a giant leap of faith. Read this to find out the first steps to creating a compelling story for your business.

2. Do you have full contact details on your website, including a landline phone number and a physical address? Making these public, rather than just sharing your mobile number makes you seem like a more ‘genuine’ business.

3. Do you have and share full-name customer testimonials for your business? Having ‘real’ people who are willing to put their name to your effectiveness at what you do is the fastest way to establish your Credibility. Video testimonials are even more effective than written ones. Here are some of our testimonials.

4. Have you created case studies for your most successful customers? (If not, here’s a useful article – 11 steps to create a powerful case study that converts) Case studies take the reader step by step through what you provide for your clients and will help to convince them that you genuinely know what you are doing.

5. Is your website properly set up, with a professional logo and a security certificate? Having a solid infrastructure for your business will help to communicate your Credibility.

Get all these right and you’ll get a gold star for ‘Credibility’. Next week we’ll be outlining the next characteristic in the series: Tangibility. Make sure you don’t miss it.