What’s the most difficult thing about marketing your services to people on the Web? If you’re someone who sells your expertise, like a doctor, lawyer, an executive coach, any kind of consultant, it’s probably hard for you to toot your own horn.
Unless you’re a raving narcissist, you probably struggle to publish a blog where your goal is to look like the smartest in your niche. And yet you must, if you want to get found, get known and get clients.
You can write about what you’re an expert in, share your knowledge, and talk about your work with the people you’re helping. But even if you’re the world’s number 1 best at what you do, this challenge is one of the most difficult:
How do you build trust with readers who land on your blog or website in 25 seconds?
(Because that may be all you have to impress them. Studies show that people usually spend 25-35 seconds on a web page.)
One of my clients is a successful coach. She helps high-achieving executives become better at what they do. And she’d love for other people to know how good she is at doing what she does, because she’d love to help more people.
She hasn’t started her blog yet, because she’s not clear how she would convey her message. She knows she’s good at what she does, but doesn’t want to come across as a “know-it-all,” when it comes to coaching people to make lasting improvements in their lives.
Here are 10 tips professionals in any field can use to write about themselves on the Web and get marketing results.
- Pick 3-5 topics you know well and identify the keywords which you’d like to rank high for with search engines. (Don’t complicate this, just figure out how people who have a problem you solve would look for solutions, what words would they use)
- Write something about each of these topics once a week on your blog. Doesn’t have to be long, 250-500 words.
- You can use books, other blogs, other experts, but don’t forget to write your own perspective.
- Be contrarian, don’t agree with everything and everybody. You can be nice, just don’t be “me too.” Take a stand and define yourself by being oppositional, even argumentative. This grabs readers’ attention.
- Frequently refer to the clients you’re working with and how you’re helping them. Use client stories, testimonials, and examples to illustrate how you work, what you do, and the beneficial results they experience.
- Don’t be shy about sharing mistakes you’ve made. As long as you remain authentic and sincere, you will do more to build trust by being real and by admitting wrongs, than boasting.
- Ask questions and always try to understand where your readers and clients are coming from. Reveal your doubts and concerns about things, and don’t be afraid to ask for help or for ideas.
- Be generous about your knowledge and expertise. Don’t hold back. (If you know 10 ways people can avoid backaches, tell them all 10. People will still need help.)
- Give people a chance to know you quickly and easily through pictures and sound: video clips are no longer an option for professionals. A 1 minute video clip will let people sample your voice, your face, your personality far better and faster than any article you write. Videos are great for trust-building.
- Show you care about readers. Offer them something for free. Ask them their opinions with surveys. Ask them how you can help them. Make it easy for them to get their questions answered.
What else? Please contribute to this list. How can professionals build trust with readers on the Web?