Your expertise and trustworthiness make up your credibility. Your ideas will only be accepted if people feel that you are credible. If not, it is unlikely that they will rely on what you say. Your credibility, therefore, affects how well you can influence others.
It is crucial to understand how to build credibility because it is an important factor in helping people achieve success; regardless of the role they play. There are various ways to go about working on your credibility, and here are some general pointers to begin with.
- Look the part
This depends on which industry you are in but generally, put yourself in your clients’ shoes and consider if you would believe yourself if you were them. For instance, you would expect your financial advisor to dress smartly instead of turning up for an appointment sloppily.
- Know what you can offer and also know your client well
Know exactly what your product or service can provide and plan the points you will be touching on. If you truly know the value that your client can derive from your product or service, you will be unafraid to communicate both the strengths and weaknesses. This way, you’ll be more confident and also come off as being genuine in helping them with their issues and not just wanting to forcefully close a sales deal.
Apart from being able to talk about what you have to offer, it is also wise to research about your clients and their organization or industry they are in so you will have something relevant to talk about during discussions. Adding insights may impress your clients and increase your credibility in this area.
- Focus on the interest of your client
When communicating with your clients, it is important to remember not to make the conversation sound like a sales pitch with unsubstantiated claims of being “the best” when you have no way of proving so. Do not be pushy. It will just make your clients feel like you’re not concerned about creating value for them, but simply just want to get their money and they may question your credibility.
- Share personal experiences
Make your clients feel comfortable and share your personal story with them. Tell them how you got into your current line of work and what motivated you. Sharing a private thing is a great way of establishing trust.
- Be respectful when talking about your competitors
In some cases, competitors are brought up during discussions. Trash-talking your competitors may seem to help your own products and services look better, but your clients will be unimpressed with your immaturity and doubt your competency.
- Always keep promises that you make
Even if you think you will not be seeing the client again, always keep the promises that you have made. The client may have contacts that you would like to approach in future and word-of-mouth could work for or against you. If the client did not have a pleasant experience with you, potential clients may then choose to avoid you.
Start working on your credibility from somewhere and figure out which method works best for you. Always keep in mind that credibility requires a lot of effort to build and is easily tarnished. Hence, one must also make the effort to maintain it subsequently.